Madshus Skate Package
Madshus has been busy retooling its optimal performance skate package, starting with the Nano CLC boot ($430), which is now PVC-free. The heat-moldable boot’s upper combines a softshell MemBrain construction for breathability, durability and water resistance. With carbon fiber heel counters, flex notches and biomechanically-accurate pivots, the Nanos will drive your skis forward with outstanding efficiency and feel for the track. For skis, the Nanosonic Carbon Skate ($600) is well-suited for Colorado’s often-steep up-and-down skate tracks (think Eldora!), thanks to low-height tip and tail designs that provide reduced swing weight and an overall shorter ski length without reducing the running surface length for glide purposes. And the Nano Carbon Race 100 Pole ($280) increased Madshus’ previous version’s stiffness by 5 percent while reducing the weight.
Salomon Performance Skate Package
The S-Lab Equipe 10 Skate Ski ($550) which, for Colorado’s conditions, is probably best selected in the hard/cold or hard/medium version, is quite stable and offers a high level of rebound energy for the acceleration you need to get up the humps. Salomon has built quite a reputation for its almost omnipresent S-Lab Skate Pro Boot ($500) and, with its new seamless design that incorporates a micro-adjusting buckle and carbon skate chassis and skate plate, you’ll be assured of a snug fit and phenomenal power transmission.
Rudy Project Noyz
The wraparound wind-shielding frames and interchangeable and prescription-ready lenses of these shades make them ideal for changing conditions on the trail.
This fabric puts a novel spin on merino’s insulating and thermo-regulating qualities, even when wet, encasing them in a micro ripstop nylon shell in either a body-hugging jacket ($249) or vest ($179) for an ideal warm-up or sub-zero layer.
Salomon Momentum II Softshell
This jacket and pants offers plenty of lightweight breathability with the dynamic stretch you need for exertive efforts on the skis. With Nordic in mind, the jacket features a back pocket with a zip so you can carry a water bottle, and the pants are half-zip for easy removal over boots.
$150 jacket, $120 pant; salomon.com
Craft Performance Wear
If you really want to go Nordork, don the Swedish answer to high-output moisture management in cold conditions. The brand’s newest version of the favorite baselayer is the Zero Extreme Concept Jersey ($75), which marries bodymapping with ergonomics. Craft’s accessories are also designed for Nordic skiing with the Thermal Split Finger Glove ($50) featuring Thinsulate insulation and a removable fleece liner glove for sub-zero sessions, and the Gore WS Skull Hat ($35) combines Gore’s Windstopper panels and Pro Zero fabric liners.