You may not be able to control the weather, but you can control your core climate. So say the folks at Mountain Hardwear—a favorite brand of climbers, backcountry skiers, and serious backpackers. But how does Mountain Hardwear gear fare on your average ski mountain on an average day in late February?
To be fair, Steamboat is not your average resort. Famous for its champagne powder and tree skiing, Steamboat offers a little something for everyone: long groomers, bumps galore, and sidecountry skiing at its best.
The foundation of Mountain Hardware's Core Climate Control system is the baselayer. I suit up in my new Integral baselayer, a mix of 65% merino wool and 35% recycled polyester. The wicking polyester is placed strategically where you need it—namely, under the arms. The warm wool on the chest and back keeps you warm. The Integral baselayer looks great, and feels soft on the skin. On the bottom, I’m wearing a Capri-length Advance Baselayer. 100% polyester, the Advance is super lightweight, warm, and treated with Chitosan, a naturally-derived, odor-controlling agent to keep you from stinking up the gondola. The length, ending just below the knee is perfect for people who have to wear a brace (i.e. me).