Updated: Jun 27
Check out our packing guide to make sure you're covered for the snow and the cold. Because there's no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing :).
TO WEAR WHILE SKIING- 1. Base layers/ inner layer-
These include a full sleeved inner and full length leg warmer (eg- thermal/ stockings).
It is advisable to choose a non-cotton/ quick dry material for the base layer. This is because as you sweat, the cotton will take longer to dry, making you feel cold. A quick dry layer will absorb the sweat and dry quickly, thus keeping you warm. 1-2 pairs is good for a 5 day ski trip.
2. Fleece layer-
A fleece pullover to wear over your inner layer will give you good protection against the cold. Fleece is both light weight and quick dry, making it a good material of choice for skiing.
3. Ski jacket & pants / Water proof outer layers-
Waterproof material is essential for a comfortable experience. Or else, your jacket and pants will soon get wet from the snow, making you cold.
Rain jacket and pants also work well. A hood is a must, allowing you to ski even during snowfall. The jacket will work for evenings out too.
Ski jacket and pants are also available for rent at ski shops.
Water proof gloves with a warm lining. Available for rent at ski shops too.
5. Woolen Socks (2-3 pairs) - Thick, long socks are ideal, which should cover up till your shin. This is to provide yourself a lining under the ski boots. These socks will also work for your evenings. Woolen socks are usually available for purchase in the local markets.
6. Sunscreen & sunglasses- The sun reflects on the snow making it very bright. Bring along UV protected sunglasses and sunscreen with SPF 40+.
7. Gaiter- This is to protect your neck from the wind. This is optional; many skiers don't prefer using it.
GENERAL/ EVENING WEAR-
1. Warm sweater and long pants. Avoid denim as it takes longer to dry if wet in the snow. Line it with the thermals you are anyway carrying for skiing. And cover with the ski jacket.
2. Warm pyjamas- Lets be cozy at night.
3. Trek shoes/ Waterproof shoes-
Evening walks around town will be over snow covered paths. A good grip is a must as roads can get slippery. Gum boots are available for rent at ski shops.
4. Slides/ crocs- Something you can lounge in when indoors with your warm socks on.
5. Muffler & Beanie/ Woolen cap- Evenings are cold. Lets cover our neck & heads.
6. Underclothes A pair a day.
ACCESSORIES & MISCELLANEOUS
1. Lip balm. Lips get dry very fast there.
2. Hot water flask/ Bottle Fill hot water from the restaurant for the night. Take it with you on the slopes too.
3. Quick dry towel 4. Day pack To carry with you on the slopes with your snacks, water, ski pass etc Ideally waterproof, so it lasts through a snowfall. Or else line it with a plastic.
Also, backpack over suitcase, if you have a choice. It’s difficult to roll suitcases over snow-covered roads.
5. Toiletries-The usual- Soap, shampoo, moisturizer (highly recommended), toothbrush and tooth paste. Sanitary needs for the ladies. Carry a mini hair dryer if you are particular. Or else sit in front of the heater after a head wash :)
6. Baileys, anyone? After a hard day of work, the body craves something sweet and something to make you feel warm inside. Alcohol shops are difficult to find in Gulmarg. Best to carry your own bottle from home/ pick up from Srinagar. Or else visit the bars in town :)
7. Energy bars, dried fruits, chocolates
Take them up on the slopes for mid-day snacks and quick energy refills. Also available in the local market
8. Electronics & accessories If you have a GoPro, then you can ask your ski shop for a helmet with a GoPro stand. Or else ask your instructor to take videos from your phone. Carry your entertainment kit- speaker for evenings in the hotel and your kindle/ book.
9. Small first aid kit + Corona kit Best to carry some basic medicines for cold, fever, loose motions, ointment for aching muscles, some band-aids and any other personal medication. Don't forget your mask and sanitiser. The new basics.
10. Others Phone charger, ID card, personal medicines, some cash (there are also 2 ATMS in Gulmarg, but GooglePay may not work everywhere). Also internet is fleeting in Gulmarg; best to save screenshots of your bookings and other important information.
11. Last but not the least, some spunk! That’s the difference between you and the next door Joe who didn’t sign up for skiing :D A trip to Decathlon should sort out most of your needs. Note- This is simply a suggestion. Please add/remove as per your needs. Images are merely to give an example. Please replace with nearest items from your existing wardrobe. Sustainability & functionality > appearance, always :)
Nitisha Sethia is an outdoor sport practitioner and founder of Adventure Play. Ex-McKinsey & Co. and IIM Ahmedabad, Nitisha left her corporate job to follow her passion in the outdoors.
Adventure Play is a one-stop platform to discover & learn new outdoor sports.