I recently wrote a post about taking the kids skiing, and what you do and don’t need to buy before you go. Well hubby has just been away to Switzerland snowboarding and I thought it would be good to do an adult version for you.
I would recommend buying yourself a decent winter coat, they are expensive but it will be useful for winter at home as well. Don’t scrimp on the coat, spend a good amount, it may seem warm initially but a cheap one will lose its waterproof-ness quickly or the thermal layer will deplete leaving you cold.
Base layers, for women I found no need to buy specialist thermal leggings, a normal pair worked just fine. But a proper thermal long sleeved top is really good. When you are skiing you will sweat and these ones, for example, wick the sweat away from your skin so it doesn’t make you cold and damp once you stop moving.
I always recommend buying decent ski/snowboarding socks, any old hiking socks don’t work as well. The proper socks are padding in the right places, so will be much more comfortable.
Don’t forget suncream! It might sound odd, but you are at higher altitude closer to the sun, so the sun is stronger. Not much of you may be showing, but the bits which are need protecting.
As far as how may base layers and socks you need, this depends on how many days you are skiing? If every day then I would handwash them in the evening and wear a clean pair the next day while they dry, so you don’t need too many pairs. Most days we arrived back from snowboarding and had a shower and got into our “lounge wear” (ie pyjamas or joggers), so even if your base layers get a bit stinky nobody really cares.
You can rent skis or boards while you are learning but you can’t rent goggles. If it is physically snowing while you are skiing/boarding then the snow can get in your eyes and cause visibility issues and if it is clear and sunny then the sun is really bright and strong up there, so can damage your eyes and give you headaches. So I would definitely recommend buying a pair of goggles. You don’t need to spend a fortune on really expensive goggles, hubby got these from amazon and they have been really comfortable and don’t fog up. They also come in loads of funky colours!
Snowboarding/skiing is a fun holiday, especially as a family, but it is hard work and not a very relaxing holiday. It costs quite a lot more than “regular holidays”, but then the ski season is limited so it’s not an all year round type holiday. I would certainly recommend it!