Cross-country skiing is undoubtedly a thrilling and exciting activity and in a lot of instances, gives you an experience of a lifetime. If you are an explorer and would like to discover new sceneries and views that are not easily accessible by walking, then cross-country skiing can be an excellent choice for you. It also doubles up as an intense full-body workout, which gives you another good reason to take it up either as a hobby or a passion.
Having said that, any skiing buff will tell you the importance of wearing the appropriate clothing and gear whilst skiing, given the physical exertion, difficult terrains and rapidly changing weather you can expect to encounter.
What to Wear?
With the above backdrop, any decision to purchase sportswear that you plan to buy before that very exciting or challenging ski trip must be well thought out. There needs to be detailed research and a thorough comparative review of different brands and types of cross-country ski jackets that are available in the market.
Nordic Skiing – Layers
Cross-country outing ought to be comfortable. To achieve this, it is recommended that you wear multiple layers of light clothing as opposed to one thick layer of a cross country ski jacket. This ensures that you get more warmth and also provides for better flexibility during the activity. The science behind wearing several layers is that there are more space and air in between your body and the outermost layer, which eventually provides your body with more insulation from cold wind/wave (bearing in mind that the body temperature goes up and down pretty quick depending on whether you are skiing uphill or cruising downhill). The flexibility is achieved by reducing or increasing the layered garment depending on your body temperature, whether it is high or low. As a rule of thumb, the innermost/base layer should be a tight fit followed by a full zipper fleece and finally cover by an outer layer fabric that is breathable and waterproof. This is what we describe as your classic three-layer method of layering for Nordic skiing – an absolute basic preparation for any avid skier before setting out on the adventure.
Outer Layer: Jackets – The Last Layer
The outer layer jacket forms one of the most important aspects of ski clothing. As mentioned earlier, given the ups and downs in the weather (and hence the body temperature of a skier), it is crucial to ensure that the last layer item has exceptional breathability quality. It is commonly stated that an outer layer made up of softshell is the ‘go-to’ choice for most skiers to deal with most of the skiing conditions. Softshell jackets are generally manufactured with a tightly woven material that is treated with a water-repellent solution, enhancing its durability and providing cover for the skier from rain or light snow. However, please bear in mind that softshell jackets won’t be appropriate for heavy rain or snow conditions. For such unexpected weather, you will need to separately pack a waterproof hardshell cross ski jacket (breathable too), which you will need to wear instantly when the weather changes.
Best Men Cross Country Jacket
Buying your winter sports gear includes, first and foremost, a cross country jacket. The options are endless (whether you are purchasing it from a physical store or looking for options online). Always keep in mind that you cannot take chances by compromising on the price and quality of the jacket you are looking after. After all, the whole point is to give you a comfortable and enjoyable skiing experience and at the same time ensure that you stay warm and protected from adverse weather conditions. Here are some of the best cross country ski jackets that we have shortlisted for you, to make your decision making a tad bit easier.
1. Craft Men’s Sharp Jacket
The jacket is super functional as it is elastic, has a breathable back and a windproof front (VentAir wind fabric WP 8000/MVP 10,000) with mesh lining.
The jacket has solid features that are evident from its four pockets, soft and comfortable collars and reflective texture. The cuts, de-bossed panels and taped details give the jacket a neat and contemporary look.
There is minimum embossing of the logo and solid texture which makes it an elegant looking cross country jacket, which will generally appeal to any age range.
This cross country jacket is easily available in purchase stores and online for a price range of $88.78 – $151.10, depending on the size and color you opt for. The available sizes include small, medium, large, x-large, xx-large. The color options are black, maritime/white and dark grey melange/black.
2. Craft Men’s Pursuit Jacket
Craft Men’s Pursuit Pace Nordic Cross Snow Skiing Jacket is manufactured with the breathable 3L wind and water-resistant material and new Fuseknit technology, which aims to bolster this high-performance sportswear. This is the ideal jacket for you when you are cruising through the slopes and winter weather, which keeps you comfortable, warm and dry throughout your excursion.
This cross country jacket is designed by a Swedish manufacturer who generally understands the skiing sport best. The jacket is well-engineered with a seamless and jacquard knitted back and undersleeves, an ergonomically-shaped collar and zippered side pockets, which are neatly hidden to give it a plain, clean and neat look.
It can be ideal pairing wear with a cross-country ski pant. The design is crafted to aid you to achieve your best performance.
The functionality of the fabric is brilliant as it doesn’t allow light rain, wind, and snow to pass through and can be your ideal outer layer or mid-layer in chilly conditions, depending on your choice of layering and weather conditions.
3. Swix Men’s Keltten Hybrid Jackets
These cross country ski jackets provide effective insulation to the chest area, shoulders and upper sleeves for windy and chilly weather conditions. This insulated part of the jacket is also water-resistant hence, assisting you in retaining your body’s best normal temperature on the coldest of days.
The remainder of this hybrid jacket is made out of the pure softshell, keeping in mind performance-based activities. The material of the jacket has a great texture which is stretchable and breathable and provides moisture protection by drying swiftly. This ensures that you stay warm and comfortable throughout your outdoor activity.
The jacket is ideal to wear in those low light/heavily overcast conditions since it has reflective detailing on it, which provides for more visibility of the skier and safer too.
This cross country jacket is available online for a price tag of $189. It is available in varying sizes such as medium, large, x-large and xx-large. It comes in a bright and funky Olympian blue color.
Best Women Backcountry Ski Jackets
Generally, sportswomen consider multiple factors when buying a backcountry ski jacket. These would include warmth and protection from adverse weather, the value of the product, styling and look and the general feel of the jacket with pragmatic and functional features.
Here are some of the backcountry ski jackets that we have selected for you to consider. After all, variety is what most women want whilst shortlisting and buying their Nordic ski jackets.
1. Craft Women’s Pursuit Primaloft Cross Country Skiing
This Swedish manufactured cross country skiing jacket is ideal for all activity types. The puffer jacket is water repellent and has a removable hood to suit the weather and wind conditions (which can be folded and zipped conveniently). The fabric is lightweight, thermal layered microfiber which is guaranteed to keep you warm and cozy in cold, wet and chilly conditions. It has a big zippered chest pocket which is ideal for safely and securely storing and easily accessing your personal belongings while you are on the move. It is crafted to assist you in achieving high performance.
It is 3″ high and 12″ wide. It has breathable 3L material with a front upper body padding which (along with the hood) keeps you warm and comfortable. It also has an elastic rib at the bottom with side pockets that can be closed with a zipper, making it a perfect choice for those snowy days, when you want to keep your palms warm.
It is made out of polyester fabric to keep you dry from rain and snow and act as insulation from windy weather, hence making it an ideal outer layer jacket. This cross country jacket pairs well with Craft’s cross country gear such as shelter gloves and skiing tights.
It has a price range of $124.98 – $144.98. This jacket is available in multiple bold colors such as black, touch/black and P Jungle/Logan. There is a range of sizes available such as x-small, small, medium, large and x-large for you to choose from.
2. Swix Women’s Keltten Hybrid Jackets
It is a softshell jacket coupled with synthetic insulation which is an ideal combination for winter weather activities anywhere in the world. The panels on the side and the back of the jacket are stretchable which allows for complete mobility to the skier, particularly during heavy physical movement such as sharp maneuvers or cruising downhill at great speed. The padded front of the jacket ensures that your upper body is kept warm at all times and this is also ensured by the straight collars which help protect your neck from strong winds.
The jacket is no short of pockets with one zip pocket on the back, a media pocket and two side pockets (also zippered) which help you keep your hands warm whilst on the move. As part of its design, it also has reflective patches that are ideal for low light or heavily overcast conditions to ensure you stay visible to others and improves your safety.
The softshell fabric is applied with durable water repellent (DWR) which avoids the light rain and snow to penetrate the jacket.
Although specifically designed with cross country skiing in mind, this hybrid jacket can come in handy in other sports too such as cold-weather cycling, running outdoors or snowshoeing. Hence, this is a great multipurpose jacket that you can use in multiple conditions and avoids the need to spend extra money on additional jackets for other sports that you may be interested in.
This crossbred skiing jacket is available in multiple sizes such as x-small, small, medium and large and comes with a reasonable price tag of $180.00. It is available in two different colors namely black and turquoise melange.
3. Craft Women’s Spirit Anorak Jacket
Spirit Fuseknit Anorak has imported woven fabrics, attention to details and a lot of thought into its designing and making. This jacket has a three-layer softshell with brushed textured clothing inside at the front and seamless material at the back and sleeves which provides multiple benefits to its skier such as protection from wind, comfort and regulating the body heat. The elbow and shoulder areas have rib-knitted panels which provide improved mobility and flexibility to the wearer.
The jacket also features a knitted hood (for additional protection and a very chic look), fairly big sized kangaroo pocket and two zipper pockets for extra and secure storage.
Make sure you keep yourself warm and well-protected from the extreme weather. After all the planning and excitement for the trip, you don’t want to fall sick, do you?