If you ski on the East Coast or anywhere that gets wicked cold, the Balaclava is something that you need to have. On those cold, blustery days when any exposed skin is likely to succumb to frostbite, the balaclava keeps you skin protected. The recent fad of wearing a bandanna is great and all, but those things freeze and shift around your face. The nice thing about the balaclava is that it goes over your head and stays where you put it. You can really become “sealed” from the elements with one of these things. On most effing cold days at Stowe, I’m wearing one of these. I never really liked them in the past, but now I can’t seem to ride without one! There are many kinds of balaclavas, ranging from fleece ones to moisture-wicking ones that don’t hold any moisture.. those are sick! One of the down sides to them is that when you are riding pow, it does take away from the face shots a bit, but it’s OK because your face is nice and warm! If you don’t have one, you can get one at most ski shops. I would highly recommend the R.E.D. Ninjaclava, Patagonia’s R1 Balaclava or the Serius Balaclava. If you don’t have one, it’s worth the investment for the warmth and wind protection!
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