If you’re like the team here at ASO Mammoth, after the first time you linked a few turns without sticking your arms out for balance you were ready to dive in to skiing or snowboarding.
For most skiers and snowboarders, that means buying a set of skis or a snowboard, boots, and bindings that you not only love to slide down the mountain with but love to see leaned up against the wall in your home. If you don’t know what to look for and when to look for it though, you could end up with a setup you want to replace after one season. With the price of buying ski and snowboard gear always going up, no one wants to be in that situation.
To help you fight the urge to buy ski and snowboard gear until the right moment, the ASO Mammoth team has put together a simple list of tips that will help you decide. Check them out below and stop by the shop in Mammoth if you decide that now is the time to buy!
You Know Where You Like to Ski or Snowboard
Many skiers and snowboarders like having the flexibility to ride all over the mountain, which means they buy all mountain gear. However, you should at least try all the different parts of the mountain from the terrain park to powder on tree runs in order to know where you like to ride best before buying your ski and snowboard gear.
An all mountain setup will take you far and are generally a safe bet for riders and skiers buying their first serious gear, but other setups like a rocker or alpine touring are created for very specific styles of skiing and snowboarding. To know if you would be interested in riding those setups you have to know what riding where they’re made for is like, so ride all over the mountain before you make a decision about what type of gear you want.
You’ve Tried a Few Types of Gear
The most obvious example of the importance of trying different skis and snowboards is knowing how you like traditional cambers and board designs, but it’s also important to know what type of boots and bindings you like.
For example, there are snowboard bindings with a traditional two-strap setup but there are also step-on and rear-entry bindings. Both step-on and rear-entry bindings offer more convenience in terms of strapping in, but you may prefer how a two-strap binding offers more control over where the binding applies pressure. One other example is how different boots offer different levels of stiffness. A very stiff boot will offer more control to the rider and respond faster than a flexible boot, but a flexible boot may offer more variability for park riding.
The best way to know exactly what you want to ride long term is by trying out different types of gear, so try different setups before you make a decision on new gear.
You Find a Great Deal on Used Gear
If you don’t know what type of skiing or snowboarding you like and haven’t tried a few different types of gear out, you can still buy yourself used gear if you find a great deal.
You’re unlikely to find a deal on new gear good enough to justify buying it without being more experienced, but it is possible to find used gear cheap enough to buy even as a beginner. Only you can decide what deal is right for you, but check your local shops, online gear stores, and online groups on sites like Facebook for great deals on used gear.