Best GoPro for Skiing

I understand how difficult it is to choose the best GoPro for skiing when there are so many options available. Although GoPro cameras are designed for action sports, each GoPro has different features and video settings.

Hi, my name’s Larry. I went skiing for the first time when I was 9 years old and have since gone every year. Just like you, I fell in love with cruising down the slopes and spending a special day with friends and family. 

However, adding a GoPro to my skiing trips made each ski trip even more memorable. I’ve been recording ski footage for the past 7 years and have tested many different GoPro models. In today’s guide, I’ll share the best GoPros for skiing.

Let’s dive right in!

Key Takeaways

  • Most GoPro cameras are waterproof and don’t need exterior housing.
  • There are dozens of ways to mount your GoPro to your body for hands-off filming during skiing.
  • Video and camera quality are the most important factors when buying a new GoPro for skiing.
  • The GoPro HERO10 is the best GoPro for passionate skiers who want to film great content.

GoPros are action cameras, which means that GoPros are more than excellent for skiing. GoPro cameras have built-in video stabilization to smoothen out your shaky ski footage. Furthermore, GoPros are lightweight, compact, and mountable to any part of your equipment or body. 

My favorite standard GoPro setting for skiing is 1440p with SuperView for HERO cameras or MAX Superview for the GoPro MAX. Furthermore, I usually shoot at 60 fps or bump it up to 120 fps if I want to create beautiful slo-mo shots. High-resolution videos will fill your SD card quickly, so I prefer filming at 1440p.

GoPros were specifically created for rough and rugged conditions. Therefore, all GoPro cameras after the GoPro HERO5 Black are waterproof on their own. This means you don’t need to attach a waterproof case when bringing your GoPro into the snow.

There are multiple ways to mount a GoPro while skiing. You can mount a GoPro to your helmet, chest, boots, and wrists. You can even mount a GoPro to one of your skis. However, I recommend mounting a GoPro to your helmet. In my experience, this produces the best footage since it’s close to eye level. It also keeps your camera safe and away from danger. 

You can mount a GoPro to the front, side, or top of your ski helmet. However, the best place to mount a GoPro on a ski helmet is on the front. Mounting your GoPro on the front of your helmet offers the best view since it’s close to eye-level and not at the off-angle that you would produce if you mounted it to the side of your helmet.

What Makes the Best GoPro for Skiing

Action cameras are different than standard cameras like DSLR or mirrorless cameras because they’re built to shoot action footage. While other types of cameras are great for vlogging and recording normal videos, GoPros are made for much more.

GoPros are miniature handheld cameras with high-quality recording and photography capabilities. Here are the core factors of what makes the best GoPro for skiing.

  • Max Video Resolution: The best GoPro offers advanced video resolutions such as 5K and 4K. This way, you can record the highest quality footage possible.
  • Camera Sensor: Although GoPros weren’t designed for pictures, the best GoPros for skiing can still take high-quality pictures. This way, you can use your GoPro as a flexible camcorder and camera. 
  • Video Stabilization: The newer GoPro models have built-in video stabilization features called HyperSmooth. HyperSmooth was introduced with the GoPro HERO7 Black and creates smoother and better GoPro action clips.
  • Battery Life: Since you’re bringing your GoPro out to the slopes, you won’t have many opportunities to charge it. For this reason, the best GoPro for skiing offers a durable battery life.
  • LCD Touchscreen: The new GoPro cameras have a big LCD touchscreen that you can use the review footage, delete clips, and clear space for new videos.
  • Waterproof: Since you will expose your GoPro to snow, the best GoPro for skiing has waterproofing capabilities without needing an external case. 

The GoPros mentioned on the list below feature all or most of these qualities. Therefore, you can’t go wrong choosing any option on this list. However, I highly recommend opting for the GoPro HERO10 Black if you plan on using your GoPro frequently.

This is the newest GoPro camera model and has the most advanced features out of all the action cameras on the market.

The Top 5 Best GoPros for Skiing

I created this list based on my own personal testing and experiences. I’ve ventured to different mountains across the United States and have even skied in Niseko, Japan. Throughout all these trips, I brought different GoPro cameras and put them to the limit. This is the definitive list of the best 5 GoPros for skiing.

1. GoPro HERO10 Black (Best Overall)

  • Max Video Resolution: 5.3K at 60 fps
  • Camera: 23MP camera sensor
  • Video Stabilization: HyperSmooth 4.0
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 meters or 33 feet

The newest GoPro HERO10 Black camera is known for getting the sharpest video footage due to its built-in HyperSmooth 4.0 image stabilization technology. With HyperSmooth 4.0, your shaky ski footage will automatically stabilize and smoothen out. The GoPro HERO10 Black is the only GoPro with HyperSmooth 4.0 and is, therefore, the best GoPro for skiing.

This is also the only GoPro model with the new GP2 Processor. A camera’s processor is essentially the engine that makes it work. With the new and improved GP2 Processor, the HERO10 Black is faster, more responsive, and easier to use than previous models.

Furthermore, the GP2 Processor offers an improved max resolution with the ability to record crystal-clear 5.3K footage. Although you’ll need to bring extra memory cards on your ski trip if you want to utilize 5.3K video resolution, you’ll be blown away at the quality of your videos.

Before making your decision, it’s important to note that the GoPro HERO10 Black is the most expensive option. Since it’s the newest GoPro model and features the latest advancements in action camera technology, it also has the highest price tag. 

My Verdict: The GoPro HERO10 Black is the only GoPro you should consider for skiing if you plan to use it regularly. It’s the only GoPro offering HyperSmooth 4.0 and the innovative GP2 camera processor.

2. GoPro MAX 360 (Best for Creative 360° Shots)

  • Max Video Resolution: 5.6K at 30 fps
  • Camera: 17MP camera sensor
  • Video Stabilization: MAX HyperSmooth
  • Waterproof: Up to 5 meters or 16 feet

If you’re interested in recording and creating unique shots, the GoPro MAX is an excellent option. The GoPro MAX features a 360° degree camera which you can use to record footage in all directions. Then, you can crop and edit your ski footage later on to your heart’s desire.

The GoPro MAX features three different cameras that allow you to capture 360° immersive footage. Rather than only filming what’s in front of the camera, the GoPro MAX can draw in your entire environment. This makes for some fascinating and creative ski footage.

Here’s an example of beautiful ski footage recorded with a GoPro MAX.

Another defining feature of the GoPro MAX is its size. The MAX is smaller and more lightweight than the GoPro HERO10 Black. However, despite its size, it still features a responsive LCD touchscreen, making it easy to change your camera settings or view back footage.

However, since the MAX is a different size than the HERO GoPro cameras, you may need to purchase an additional set of GoPro attachments and accessories. Nonetheless, GoPro MAX mounting accessories are relatively inexpensive and worth the investment.

My Verdict: I recommend going for the GoPro MAX if you already have experience recording ski footage with action cameras. Since the MAX has a 360° camera, experienced videographers can develop new skills and play around with an entirely new recording feature.

3. GoPro HERO9 Black (Best Older Generation)

  • Max Video Resolution: 5K at 30 fps
  • Camera: 20MP camera sensor
  • Video Stabilization: HyperSmooth 3.0
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 meters or 33 feet

The GoPro HERO9 Black is essentially a slightly watered-down version of the HERO10 Black. Since the HERO10 Black is the best action camera on the market, the HERO9 Black is nearly just as good.

Featuring HyperSmooth 3.0 image stabilization, you can fearlessly cruise down black diamonds without worrying about shaky footage. Furthermore, the ability to record 5K video footage at 30 fps gives you the option of taking stunning shots.

Compared to older generation GoPro cameras, the HERO9 Black has an upgraded LCD rearview touchscreen. It’s bigger, more responsive, and lets you quickly change your settings. Furthermore, the HERO9 black has a bigger battery than its predecessors. This is extremely important since you’ll be in the mountains all day without the option of charging your camera.

Overall, the only downside to the HERO9 Black is that it isn’t the HERO10 Black. If both cameras are within your budget, I’d go for the newer HERO10 Black every time. However, the HERO9 Black is no slouch and is still a game-changer for skiers who want to capture their favorite moments.

My Verdict: The GoPro HERO9 Black is an excellent choice for skiers who don’t need the ultra-advanced features of the HERO10 Black but still want a highly capable GoPro action camera. 

4. GoPro HERO5 Session (Best Compact and Budget-Friendly)

  • Max Video Resolution: 4K at 30 fps
  • Camera: 10MP camera sensor
  • Video Stabilization: Built-in video stabilization (not HyperSmooth)
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 meters or 33 feet

The GoPro HERO5 Session is one of the smallest cameras you’ll ever see. It weighs only 74 grams, which is less than 4 AA batteries (weighing 100 grams). Furthermore, it’s only 1.49 inches wide, 1.49 inches long, and 1.42 inches deep.

Even though the GoPro HERO5 Session can fit in the palm of a child’s hand, it still features outstanding camera technology. It offers 4K recording capabilities at 30 fps, 1080p recording capabilities at 60fps, and wind noise reduction.

However, this camera doesn’t have a rear LCD touchscreen due to its size. Therefore, you can only view back your ski footage on the GoPro mobile app or after you upload your clips to your computer. It also has a built-in battery, so you must bring a portable charger to keep your camera alive during daylong ski trips. 

Although most skiers won’t need the high video resolution seen in the GoPro HERO10 Black, the main drawback of the HERO5 Session is its image stabilization. The built-in image stabilization is great but not as comprehensive as the HyperSmooth technology seen in GoPros after the GoPro HERO7 Black. Therefore, you may be exposed to shakier footage.

My Verdict: The GoPro HERO5 Session is suitable for casual skiers who don’t want to invest in the best action camera available. It’s lightweight, compact, and more than capable of recording out-of-this-world ski footage.

5. GoPro HERO8 Black (Best Budget 4K)

  • Max Video Resolution: 4K at 60fps
  • Camera: 12MP camera sensor
  • Video Stabilization: HyperSmooth 2.0
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 meters or 33 feet

Released in 2019, the GoPro HERO8 Black is still a highly competent action camera for skiers. This camera features a max video resolution of 4K at 60 fps and HyperSmooth 2.0 image stabilization. Therefore, you can easily record buttery smooth, high-quality ski footage with the GoPro HERO8 Black.

Additional video settings include, 2.7K at 120 fps and 1080p at 240 fps. Higher fps means you can introduce heavy slo-mo into your editing to create beautiful montages and action clips. The GoPro HERO8 Black is a highly versatile action camera that substantially enhances future ski trips.

Compared to the GoPro HERO7 Black, the HERO8 has the same GP1 Processor and 12MP camera sensor. However, the HERO8 Black has improved battery life and build quality. In addition, it has twice the shock resistance as the HERO7 and better audio wind resistance.

The only downside of the HERO8 Black is it doesn’t have all the advanced features seen in the GoPro HERO10 Black. If you want better usability and video quality, I recommend choosing the HERO10 Black. However, the HERO8 Black is more than enough for most skiers. 

My Verdict: The GoPro HERO8 Black is an excellent choice for skiers who want a high-quality action camera with a friendlier price tag. Compared to the GoPro HERO10 Black, it’s a step behind in nearly every aspect. Nonetheless, it still has a very high standard compared to other action cameras in the market.

Final Thoughts

I hope you found my guide on the best GoPro for skiing highly valuable. This guide culminates a decade’s worth of experience recording ski footage with different GoPro cameras.

Although the GoPro HERO10 Black is a no-brainer for skiing, the other options on this list are just as adequate. If you want a more budget-friendly GoPro camera, you can opt for the GoPro HERO9 Black or HERO8 Black.

But, now I’d love to hear from you! Which GoPro are you going to choose? Where do you typically go skiing? Are you a cross-country or downhill skier?

Either way, let me know down in the comments below, and I hope to catch you out on the slopes one day!

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