Can You Ski In A Down Jacket?

Published by Harry Sowers on

If you own a down jacket, you know how incredibly warm and comfortable they are. They keep you warm and insulated in the cold weather, and there are many different types of designs for down jackets. It’s easy to find one that matches your outfits and accessories. But will a down jacket keep you warm and insulated while you were skiing? Many people believe that a down jacket is insulated enough to keep raging winds and Sub-Zero temperatures away from their skin and bones, but what do real skiers and snowboarders say?

Can you Go Skiing in Down Jacket?

Let’s look at the ways traditional skiing jackets and down jackets are similar. A ski down jacket is made for cold weather, just like a skiing jacket. It will keep you warm by using your body heat and trapping it within the material.

So if you use a down jacket ski, you might be able to save more room in your skin bag if you use it instead of a skiing jacket. You’d be surprised at how small down jackets can fold into, especially if you keep the small sleeve they come in. If you lose the sleeve, it’s okay. Many people lose the down jacket sleeve because it is easy to forget about it. Tip: you can stuff your down jacket in a large sock if you lose your sleeve.

Why You Shouldn’t Ski In A Down Jacket

down jacket skiier

While skiing and snowboarding jackets share many of the same properties as down jackets, it is inadequate to use a down jacket while you are playing winter sports. One reason why you should not use a jacket while skiing or snowboarding is that down jackets are not as durable as skiing jackets or snowboarding jackets. They are much more likely to rip if they’re caught on a branch or if you slip on a rock. Compared to skiing jackets, they are not built to stand up to sharp objects, severe scrapes, and blistering weather.

A second reason why you shouldn’t use a down jacket as a skiing jacket is that many people who practice winter sports say that down jackets lose their ability to insulate your body heat when they become wet. So if the weather starts to turn, and you are caught in the middle of the snowfall, which is expected given that you are surrounded by snow and freezing temperatures, the down jacket will get wet, and you will begin to lose your body heat. If you’re far away from your resort or hotel or your ski gear that has more insulated clothing, you could end up getting hypothermia or frostbite.


Down jacket skiing is not the right way to keep yourself warm and dry while you are skiing. The material that goes into down jackets is not the same material that goes into skiing or snowboarding jackets. A down jacket will not be able to stand the rough conditions that skiing jackets were made for. You can still take your down jacket and use it while walking around the skiing area or a downtown area, but once you get on the slopes, you need to change back into your skiing jacket.

Categories: Ski


Harry Sowers

Harry grew up outside of Denver Colorado and has been skiing and snowboarding since he was 3. He is most passionate about skiing and when he was in college at UC Boulder he even participated in the olympic trials for the USA Olympic Downhill Ski team.