Most of us like to picture ourselves enjoying the alps in sunshine and we do have our share of sunny days in Australia. However, alpine weather is unpredictable and a fine sunny day can quickly deteriorate into cold, wet, high wind or blizzard conditions. Your clothing, therefore, must be versatile and you should have ready access to protective clothing.

Clothing can be divided into two layers:
• The inner, insulating layers;
• The outer, windproof and waterproof layer.

Insulating Layers:
In cold weather these are the most important layers. Several thin layers that trap air and are made of material that will stay warm, even when wet, are better than a couple of thick bulky layers. The number of insulating layers you wear depends on the weather and the activity you are participating in.
  Wearing thermal underwear will also help insulate against the cold. Wool is a good natural fibre and manufactured fibres such as polypropylene and fibre pile are also effective. Cotton undergarments perform poorly in cold and wet conditions.

Outer Layer:
Staying dry and reducing the effects of wind chill are important, therefore your jacket and overpants should be waterproof and windproof. The outer layer also helps to insulate by trapping warm air next to the body. If you don't have your own windproof and waterproof outer clothing you can hire them from most ski hire outlets.

It is important to wear a warm hat as significant body heat is lost from the head. Woollen or synthetic socks and gloves should also be worn. On wet days, large rubber dishwashing gloves worn over the top of your gloves help to keep hands warm and dry.

Never wear jeans or cotton/vinyl gloves as these do not give adequate protection against wind, rain or snow.


Alcohol & Drugs are fuel for disaster in the snow, they impair your judgement and your ability. Your reaction times are significantly reduced and increase the risk of injury. The whole alpine experience begins when you leave home and doesn’t finish until you return. Avoid alcohol consumption and the use of illegal substances, because they increase your risk of hypothermia.

Alcohol & Drugs impair judgement, slow response time and reduce your ability to respond to an emergency.