By Cooper Miller

Skiing in Spring (It’s Better than You Think)

For many people who live in an area with no skiing, such as Louisiana, there is a common misconception that ski season ends around March. Most years this is simply not true and many people miss out on an opportunity for great skiing at a lower cost. Late March to early April is typically my favorite time of the year to go and ski because of the weather, lack of crowds, and cheaper access to gear.

Another overlooked aspect of skiing in spring is the money you can save on gear if you are needing to upgrade or are beginning for the first time. Most winter gear and ski gear gets discounted by February as the end of the season nears. My partner shopped at The Backpacker for her ski clothes and managed to get everything she needed at a great price compared to the still full price stores at the ski resorts. She managed to get a North Face Tri-Climate jacket, North Face pants, Smith ski goggles, Hestra gloves, and Smartwool thermals without breaking the bank. These are top of the line products that helped make her ski trip comfortable and stress free as a beginner that will also last her for many more seasons. I also used ski gear that I bought at The Backpacker before my trip. I wore a North Face Chakal jacket and pants combo, with an Arcteryx Atom jacket midlayer, Hestra 3-finger gloves, Smartwool thermals, Smith 4D mag goggles, and Smartwool socks. All of this was new gear I had upgraded to this year through The Backpacker and I could not be more satisfied with my purchases. This year was the most comfortable year of skiing for me because of the great new products I bought at The Backpacker.

For many people in Louisiana who are not used to cold weather, skiing can be a real struggle without the proper gear. Nothing ruins a day or even a trip more than cold hands and feet. By skiing later in the season, you reduce the chances of this becoming a problem by a significant amount. Around this time of year, the weather on a typical day hovers within the 25-40 degree range, which is plenty comfortable to ski in. In fact, these temperatures are often considered warm and allow you to ski with less layers. If you are looking to ski for the first time and are not able to afford the highest quality gear, then this time of year is usually perfect. Cheaper ski clothes, especially gloves, will hold up just fine in this weather, allowing you to still learn and have fun comfortably.