9 Tips For Organizing Winter Gear
Happy World Snow Day!
Today we're celebrating that feeling, after a perfect winter day outside — muscles tired, appetite hearty, body ready for a soak in warm water — when all feels right with the world. To us, this moment (almost) matches the one just before taking the first powder run of the season.
And then there’s the gear. Playing in the snow is inarguably gear-heavy. Getting to your destination to find you’ve forgotten one glove or an important layer is an inconvenience (and usually expensive). Dealing with a pile of soggy clothing and equipment when you get home from your snow day is the opposite of pleasure.
We’ve got a system for this. With a proper plan, you can circumvent the winter gear bummer-factor once and for all. Never again do you have to spend an hour searching for your things the night before a big snow fall. It’s possible to make it to your outdoor destination every time with all your gear intact. Even better, at the end of a long day, you don’t have to endure floor-damaging puddles or clothes that smell like wet sheep all winter. All you need is a little organization game.
These are our top nine tricks for organizing winter gear like a boss:
1. This is the most important rule. Buy gear bags for each season: Summer bags, Winter bags, and Seasonal Crossover bags. Develop the habit of storing your equipment in them until the season arrives, and it will all be there when you’re ready to use it again.
2. Create a system for your footwear. Place your wet, muddy, snowy boots on a cooling rack (normally used for baking) that rests inside a waterproof tray by the door. This will allow the mud and snow to melt away, while sparing your floor.
3. Keep your indoor shoes on a higher shelf by the front door. This helps them stay dry and separate from wet outdoor stuff and they remain easily reachable when you come home.
4. Invest in a proper clothes drying rack for wet gear. (Return your gear back to the gear bag once it dries!)
5. Skis, snowshoes, and snowboards actually make great wall art if you place them on the right rack in an artful location. This organizational technique is especially worthy if you live in a small space that doesn’t have a gear closet or garage.
6. Invest in a boot dryer. You won’t regret it, especially during ski season.
7. Keep plenty of dry towels at the door, rolled nicely on a shelf, as if you're running a spa. This is an adulting habit that you, your guests, and your dogs will appreciate. The towels can be used for mopping puddles, wiping paws, quick clean ups, and for placing under your dripping gear while it dries on your new clothes drying rack.
8. Cull your stuff. Go Marie Kondo on your winter gear and jettison what you don’t use. Let go of the broken things you’ve been holding onto for years because you think you’ll fix them one day. Same with the gloves and socks that are missing a mate. Donate old gear you have upgraded. Release the unworn clothes that don’t “spark joy” (or, in this case, "stoke joy").
9. This is the SECOND most important tip of all. At the end of the season, put $40 in your Winter bag with the rest of your gear. Use it to buy the first round on the first ski day the following year.
With the world in its current state, getting outside is certainly one of our primary pleasures and privileges these days. We say, do it often, even if it’s cold. And with apologies to whomever first said, “There’s no bad weather, just bad clothes,” we say, “There is no lost gear, just poor organizational techniques.”
Wishing you a Winter full of fresh powder and many days enjoying it.
image credit: @mgshannon