During any given winter season, you’ll find me alpine skiing three days a week. Whether it’s at my local hill carving groomers, crushing GS gates in the Wednesday-night race league, or traveling to my favorite spots in the northwest and British Columbia, I always have a baseline for my skiing loadout.

I’ve searched long and hard for the perfect bag to haul my gear, and I’ve settled on the 38L Swix Norwegian Team Rucksack. This bag holds everything and leaves your hands free for your skis and poles. It’s loaded with features:

  • A large top-load main compartment with ventilation/drainage grommets
  • Will accommodate boots up to size 13
  • Adjustable webbing straps on the front of the bag for diagonal ski carry
  • Two side zipper pockets that are great for storing gloves
  • Internal hydration sleeve with two exit ports for the drink tube
  • Tuck-away mesh helmet hammock
  • S-shaped shoulder straps with sternum strap and media/cell pockets
  • Padded back panel with tuck-away waist belt
  • Front zipper accessory pocket holds wax and tools
  • A small top zippered compartment holds personal items
  • A stow-away rain cover

This was one of my best ski-equipment investments, and now everyone in our family owns one—making the trek from the car to the slopes much easier. I’ve travelled all over with this bag, and it holds up well despite the airline baggage handlers’ constant mission to damage everything they touch.

Photo courtesy of Ski-depot.com
Swix 38L Team rucksack. (Photo courtesy of Ski-depot.com.)

Once you have the perfect bag, it’s time to for the ideal loadout:

image courtesy of POC Sports
POC Receptor Backcountry. (Image courtesy of POC Sports.)

This is what’s in my pack as I walk out the door for a day on the slopes. If I were to venture into the backcountry, I’d have a separate pack to wear while I ski, equipped with a more specific loadout to cover any contingencies that may arise. Stay tuned for an article on my preferred backcountry ski loadout. For now, stay safe and enjoy the slopes.

(Featured image courtesy of wallpapersgalaxy.com)