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Nordic Skating: The Gear
by Ted Stedman
skating clothing

Insport Cirrus Quest Jacket ($75), Thermagrid 50 Trainer ($60), Thermagrid Wind Tight ($100):
Sweat doesn't lie. As a high-output activity, wild skating might have more in common with running than other Nordic antics. The trick is to wick, and for athletic apparel designed with runners in mind, Insport has the bases covered for skaters quite nicely. Start with the Thermagrid 50 Trainer, used as a base or mid-layer top. The lightweight Polartec polyester fleece sprouts tiny heat-trapping, breathable grids next to your skin, holding heat more efficiently while letting moisture escape. This top is comfy, stretchy, and has side gussets that help offset fabric folds that can begin to rub you raw after a long day swinging your arms. For ventilation, you've got an 11-inch front zip that's topped with a nice little chin protector to eliminate irritating zipper stabs.

For your bottom half, the Thermagrid Wind Tight is built with the same functional grid system, but serves as a primary layer with windproof Polartec Wind Pro fabric. The stretch fleece is skate-ski-friendly, made with a slightly looser cut and extended inner-leg gussets to reduce chafing. A durable, weather-shedding nylon face means you can brush off those inevitable mid-lake spills, while a back zip pocket and leg zippers add a touch of convenience. Top it all off with the Cirrus Quest Jacket, an ultra-packable, breathable microfiber shell coated with slippery Teflon so water, sleet, and snow roll right off. Its ventilated yoke helps purge excess moisture to keep you dry but still warm. An adjustable elastic hem, extended tail, inner storm fly, and front zip pockets give you what you need without superfluous features that bog you down. Contact 800-652-5200, www.insport.com.


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Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Budget: $$
Season: December to March

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