I was influenced. I don’t remember her name, but there she was on Tik Tok doing a #GRWM (“get ready with me”) video before her ski day. I followed along, mentally matching her gear with my own.
Merino base layers, top and bottom. Check.
Fleece quarter-zip mid-layer. Check.
Down capri pants… Wait, what?!
I had never encountered this item of clothing before, which basically looked to be a capri pant made out of puffer material, but I instantly understood how much of a game changer they could be.
I knew my current kit needed work. I had the base layers, but to stay warm I would throw on a pair of sweatpants or another bulky, workout pant over my leggings. (I realize this pragmatic, no-frills approach is the New England skier in me.) All this fabric kept me warm, but it also turned me into the Stay-Puft marshmallow on the slopes, really hindering my movement. My thermal/sweatpant combo had one additional annoying flaw—I’m a strict “nothing in your boot except for your ski sock” person, and bunching all the non-sock clothing above my boots created a bulge and some uncomfortable constriction on my upper calf.
Watching this influencer layer up, I was mostly sold from the start. But at $130, these pants are an investment! I spent the next two weeks trying to find a good knockoff, but there wasn’t much out there, and what I did find had fatal flaws, like being full-length or only having insulation on the front panels. (Tush insulation is vital for the chairlift!)
Finally I bit the bullet and bought the original, non-discounted pair.
And I will never, ever go back. The capri pants slide on like sweats and button easily at the top. They don’t interfere with my boots, and they’re the ideal mid-layer between merino base layers and insulated ski pants to keep my legs warm at the summit and on the chairlift. They’re super lightweight and not at all bulky. I cannot believe I skied this many decades before discovering them.
Supplies are limited at this end of season, so run, don’t walk, and add these to your gear kit for spring skiing and beyond!
Buy the Kari Traa Women’s Eva Down Capri Now!
While supplies last – end-of-season means sizes are limited
Backcountry: Kari Traa Down Pants