I always have trouble finding snow clothes for a toddler. In the UK you can find ski wear for 4 year olds and upwards without too much trouble. But the winter clothes for younger kids generally won’t cut it in deep snow and minus temperatures The things called ‘snow’ suits are generally rubbish for actual snow as they are not waterproof enough.
So I was very excited to find the McKinley brand in an Intersport in Austria. McKinley have been making functional outdoor products for more than 30 years, but I had not heard of them before. They aim to make extremely well equipped products that are value for money and still test all of their products themselves. They are named after Mount McKinley, the highest mountain in North America (6,194 metres) and design equipment that is supposed to cope with the kind of conditions you might find on that mountain. McKinley offers a broad range of equipment, from mountaineering and trekking to trail running and mountain biking.
Finding Snow Clothes for a Toddler: The Jacket
Obviously I was most excited by their ski wear. And even more excited by the weeny sizes. They go right down to 86cm (around 1 to 2 years in UK speak). The jacket I bought had all the features you would expect of a full size ski jacket. It was colourful and insulated, offering both breathability and waterproofness in bad weather conditions with fully taped seams to keep the wet out. Both the cuffs and hem were adjustable and the elbow was shaped allowing free movement. The snap-off hood was useful to adapt to the conditions.
I just loved the details like inner cuffs, the snow skirt, and lift pass pocket. Perhaps a bit unnecessary for a toddler who can just about walk and certainly isn’t skiing yet… But I thought it was cute to be a complete replica of an adult jacket. For the techies among you, the mebrane has breathability of 5,000 gr/24h and waterproofness of 8,000 mm – not too shabby.
Finding Snow Clothes for a Toddler: The Trousers
Just as important for someone not that steady on their feet: some warm, waterproof trousers. Made to the same spec as the jacket, these have cute proper little leg gaiters to stop snow getting in.
My toddler used these all last winter and stayed cosy and dry in the snow. And I thought that they were reasonably priced at under 100 Euros for both. In fact, I loved them so much that I bought the next size up in the end of season sale… I haven’t tried sourcing these in the UK, but there are lots of Intersport stockists.
Off to find some decent snow accessories for a toddler now… Any recommendations?