Nothing gets much better than that white powder and mountains, add a sled & some top-notch gear and you are set for a good time. However, this great time can become a not-so-fun time if you aren't dressed properly. Which is why we are writing this guide - to help you figure out your outfit for the ultimate snowmobiling experience.
Obviously helmets are pretty important. They protect that pretty little face of yours from accidents to the elements of nature - like rain, snow, trees, rocks, wind, etc. Helmets also keep your head nice and toasty. When it comes to helmets there are a few things that sets them apart from each other. Weight, ventilation, and style/design. If a helmet is made with carbon fiber it typically means that the helmet is lighter which helps reduce neck fatigue. Fog is an annoyance that nobody enjoys - so the more ventilated the helmet the better it will be at preventing fog. Air rushes through the helmet and removes that hot fog-causing air.
Jackets & Bibs (Shells)
Although it may not seem like a jacket would be considered a component to a layering system - it is the most important element. Jackets & Bibs or "shells" allow for a comfortable ride thanks to their ability to keep snow, wind, and moisture off your skin and off your mind. A good jacket not only keeps you toasty, but it also keeps sweat and moisture from staying inside the jacket. GORE-TEX is a magical fabric that does just this - keeping water out while getting rid of sweat from the inside. Click here to find out more about GORE-TEX.
When it comes to these "shells" there are two basic categories that they fall into - insulated & non-insulated.
Insulated pieces are typically preferred by those who ride the trails - where high speed & freezing temperatures are inevitable.
Non-Insulated gear is preferred by mountain riders - when climbing hills, dodging trees, and working up a sweat are all par for the course.
A lot of times layering is overlooked - but having the correct undershirt can be the difference between a wet cold ride & one that you can actually enjoy.
Base Layers are the very bottom layer and it sits directly against the skin - this layer can provide a small amount of insulation, but more importantly base layers wick moisture and sweat away from the skin and disperses it quickly so that you don't freeze and you can keep on keepin' on.
Mid Layers are a little bit bigger than base layers & often give riders more insulation value. They also wick moisture so that any moisture can be pulled out of the base layers and then pulled from the mid layer by the shell. Mid Layers also double as great casual jackets - from the Windstopper Stow-Away to the Yukon Pullover you can expect to be stared down by jealous bystanders.
Obviously gloves play an important role on having a good time on the snow. Not only do gloves keep your hands warm and protected from the elements, they can also help improve your grip. Most of the time gloves with high insulation value have the worst grip. But many companies have come up with innovative ways to combat this issue. For example, KLIM has developed GoreGrip technology - No loss of insulation value, but due to the mending of all of the layers of the glove it provides significantly better grip.
Boots & Socks
Boots & Socks are vital to having a comfortable trip - not only do they protect your little piggies from rocks, branches, and anything else that might jump up and try to get you, but they also keep your feet warm - which is harder than one might think. Most snowmobiling boots are fairly rigid in structure to take the beating of running boards and have a ton of insulation. If you are prone to extremely cold feet and you struggle to keep them warm then invest in a pair of KLIM Mammoth Socks - and never wear cotton socks as they simply soak up you sweat and that makes for a cold and uncomfortable ride.