Other than snow, your ski or snowboard gear is the most important ingredient to a good day on the mountain.
With the 2018/2019 season quickly approaching, it’s time to unpack your gear and make sure you’ve got everything you need to make this the best season yet.
Whether you’re a mountain bum or are new to the sport, ask yourself these 5 important questions to make sure you have the perfect gear this year!
Should I Rent of Buy?
We’ll start by pointing out the obvious. If you’re new to skiing and snowboarding and unsure of how many days you’ll spend on the slopes, renting is the way to go.
The point where you have to decide about buying gear is when you’re regularly hitting the slopes multiple times a year or taking trips where you’re skiing or snowboarding for multipl days every year. Regularly renting gear adds up over time and as your riding progresses it becomes more difficult to adjust to new gear every time you rent, so if your interest in alpine sports is growing and you don’t see yourself stopping anytime soon then it is smarter to buy your gear.
What Kind of Rider am I?
If you’re a beginner who is going to spend their entire day getting the basics under them, then you don’t want to be riding an expert set-up just like how a backcountry skier wouldn’t want to ride a beginner set-up.
No matter their skillset, everyone on the mountain will agree that there’s nothing more frustrating than having the wrong gear for your style or size.
Be honest with yourself about what kind of riding you can expect to be doing and how far you’re able to push your skill level and good rental technicians like those at ASO Mammoth will match you to the perfect set of gear.
Do I have a good pair of socks?
Whether you’re skiing or snowboarding, your boots are arguably the most important piece of gear out of your entire set-up. If you’re spending the entire day on the mountain in a pair of boots that are either too big or too small, you can bet on a tough day of riding and plenty of blisters and falls to prove it.
If you’re renting boots, then your feet are at the mercy of the shop you’re renting from, so one way to keep your feet in good shape even when you’re renting is to make sure you have a solid pair of socks. The ideal socks are going to be thin and a material that can handle moisture well such as smart wool. Thick, cotton socks should be avoided as they’ll make it difficult to fit your foot into your boot. Plus, cotton socks will absorb moisture from sweat or snow and give you cold feet all day long.
Even if you’re renting gear, the right pair of socks is an important piece of gear that you have control over so take the time to find the right pair.
Where am I riding?
Knowing what kind of conditions and slopes you’ll be riding on makes a huge difference when renting, especially for riders who are looking to ride a variety of conditions and terrain types.
For example, if there was a massive storm the day before you rent your gear and you want to take advantage of the new powder, you’re going to need the right gear. The same can be said if you’re riding manmade snow on a shallow base at the beginning or end of the seasons.
Knowing what and where you’re riding will allow your rental technician to quickly pick out the right gear for you and get you on the mountain as soon as possible.
Do I Need a Helmet?
On most mountains, wearing a helmet is up to the rider. Wearing a helmet is always the safe choice even for expert riders, but if you or someone in your party is planning on enrolling in ski school know that many ski schools require students to wear helmets.
Don’t be caught unprepared. Ask yourself these questions before you rent your ski and snowboard gear, and if you need help answering them stop by ASO Mammoth for the best gear and advice on the mountain!