Before kids, Beast and I used to get 20+ ski days in a year. With little kids it is a lot harder to get up the hill so we have been rather impatiently waiting for Ladybug and Bear to be old enough to start skiing. We did a single ski lesson for them in 2019 at Keystone Resort. It was fine but very expensive. Each time we spied on them, Ladybug was sitting and eating snow so we were’t so sure that we were getting what we paid for. This year, we signed them up for a 4-week Kids Club session at Arapahoe Basin. Bear is in Kids Club and Ladybug is in Little Kids Club. I have been really impressed with their progress and how much they are enjoying lessons! The cost is also much more reasonable. In addition, Arapahoe Basin has been our go-to ski resort since we were in college. (At one point we were known by name by one of the bartenders and had our own mugs each year behind the bar.) The food, drinks, and coffee are all very good too (including the raw bar on Sundays) so it is an overall win for everyone!
At the drop off each week it has become pretty clear that many parents struggle with finding the right ski gear for kids so I thought I would share the items we have found (after some trial and error) that work extremely well.
My two main pieces of advice:
- Do not overdress the kids. I can still remember the ski instructors I had as a kid getting frustrated when kids were overdressed. If kids get overheated and then sweaty it is really hard to keep them warm the rest of the day. It goes better if you focus on keeping the core warm and everything else covered.
- Let the kids pick out their gear as much as possible. It is a lot easier to get all of that on them when they like the colors/patterns. A few of the things my kids picked out do not exactly match or were not exactly what I would have picked but they happily put them on which makes my life easier.
Gear: All purchased at Epic Mountain Gear
- Skis and boots: Epic Mountain Gear has a fabulous program for kids called their Junior Trade Program. We bought used gear at a reasonable price as part of their Christmas present and then will get to trade it in towards new gear when the kids need longer skis/bigger boots.
- Helmets: Giro kids ski helmets purchased at Epic Mountain Gear.
- Goggles: Giro kids ski goggles purchased at Epic Mountain Gear.
- Head/neck covering: Turtle Fur Lightweight Ninja Balaclava purchased at Epic Mountain Gear.
- I’m sure you’re asking, “What is a balaclava?” Just the absolute, most perfect item to go under a helmet without being too bulky and cover the neck/chin without being too hot. They come in a ton of fun patterns and my kids really enjoyed picking out exactly the pattern they wanted. I liked the kids’ so much that I wound up buying an adult sized balaclava myself and now I will not ski without it.
Clothes: Mainly from Primary.com
I love primary.com because the clothes are soft, tag-less, and the kids love picking out their favorite colors. The clothes mix and match very well and are very good quality, which means I can easily pass them down from one kid to the next. Also, I feel like they are just touch longer in all the right places so the clothes last just a bit longer than average. Get 20% off your primary.com order with promo code PRIMARYMELISSAG71 or here.
- Base layer pants: PJ Pant (Cozy Sweatpants would work too)
- Base layer top: Long Sleeve PJ Top
- Socks: Burton Kids Weekend Midweight Sock purchased at Epic Mountain Gear
- Vest: Lightweight Puffer Vest
- Jackets: Lightweight Puffer Jacket
- I strongly recommend this lightweight jacket instead of a bigger, bulkier jacket. It has the right amount of warmth and is thin enough that the kids can easily move around in it.
- Ski pants: Hand-me-downs or VarageSale/Facebook Marketplace finds.
- This is a great item to look for used because you can find deals that are in great shape or barely worn. I like the overall/bib style for little kids so they don’t get snow up their back when they are rolling around in the snow.
- Gloves: Chakka Snow Blakka Snow Mittens purchased on Amazon.com.
- The extra long sleeve on these keeps snow off the wrists. My kids leave these on better compared to other mittens.
We have used this set up many times now and it has worked very, very well. We have not heard any complaints from the kids about being too cold or too hot and they have happily skied even in really cold weather with lots of snow coming down.
Again, you can get 20% off your order at primary.com the following ways:
- Use PROMO CODE: PRIMARYMELISSAG71
- Follow this link: https://primary.com/r/primarymelissag71
I hope this helps you put together cozy ski outfits for your little ones!