The Base and Midlayers of 2014

Stay drier, ski longer, and go faster with the best base and midlayers of 2014.

Joe Jackson
(Inga Hendrickson)
Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014

Stay drier, ski longer, and go faster with the best base and midlayers of 2014.

Joe Jackson

SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T

BEST FOR: Damned Cold

This midweight ($110) is a heater and quickly became our go-to midlayer, although it was warm enough to work as an outer layer for ski touring on a stormy 12-degree day. Smart: backpack-friendly seamless shoulders and a garage for the zipper, so it doesn't chafe.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)


Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR Zip

BEST FOR: Double Duty Thanks to a jersey-knit exterior, the Rendezvous ($120) looks more like a sporty fleece than a merino base layer. Testers found it to be an ideal midweight for skiing; it's a bit warmer than, but not as breathable as, the SmartWool.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)


Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition One-Piece

BEST FOR: Feeling Like a Superhero

A bit of spandex and an athletic cut make this the most formfitting onesie ($199)we've ever skied in. And silver nitrate added to the fancy Polartec polyester fabric fended off funk during a week's worth of sweaty outings.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)


Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody

BEST FOR: Backcountry Skiing

The grid pattern of the Polartec fabric lining the CoEfficient ($159) makes it breathe like a champ when it's worn as a stand-alone piece, but it also holds in warmth when layered. Nice: thin spandex wrist gaskets trapped heat and never got in the way.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)


Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windblock 1/2 Zip

BEST FOR: Moving Fast

Breathability and wind protection are usually at odds in layers. Not so in the Dry Charger ($80). A half-hourglass-shaped swath of loosely woven mesh on the back dumps heat, while the windproof front keeps your core warm.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)


Icebreaker Escape Cardigan

BEST FOR: Slope Style

If you're riding chairlifts on a sunny day or heading out for a mellow snowshoe, a supertechnical midlayer is probably overkill. The Escape ($160) looks sharp, the merino wool is remarkably soft, and it's cut roomy enough to pair with a dress shirt or a base layer.

Icebreaker Escape Cardigan Helly Hansen Dry Charger Windbl Black Diamond CoEfficient Hoody Patagonia Capilene 4 Expedition Mountain Khakis Rendezvous QTR  SmartWool Mid 250 Pattern Zip T base layer mid layer dry best outside buyers guide winter 2014
(Inga Hendrickson)

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