The first time you go snowboarding can be exciting but overwhelming. There's so much to organize in advance, so many layers to wear and gear to buy or rent. Taking some time to make sure you are ready for everything will guarantee that your first time snowboarding will be a great experience and leave you wanting more. To help take some stress out of your trip, here's a handy checklist of essential items to bring for your trip to the hills.
1. Snowboard and Bindings
If you do not own a snowboard or bindings, you will need to rent these from the resort. If you prefer to purchase a snowboard, make sure that the snowboard is about chin height and made of a softer and flexible material. This will help make learning snowboarding a lot easier. Bindings should also come with your board. These help fasten your boots to the board and come in different sizes to fit your boots. If you are renting, resort employees will assist you in your selection to make sure you are all set.
2. Snowboard Boots
These specialized boots will connect you to your board through the bindings. Snowboard boots are designed to conform to your feet specifically, so owning your own pair will be far more comfortable. Snowboard boots come in regular shoe sizes, but sizing can vary among different companies. Your boots should be snug, but not tight to the point of restriction.
3. Snowboard Socks
Snowboarding or any thick socks are essential because cold feet will quickly ruin your day. If you don’t own any of those, one way of getting around it is to double layer your socks. Since your feet will sweat from the heat of your boots, you need socks that wick moisture. Also, your socks should be high enough so your skin does not rub against your boots and cause irritation. If you are looking for an all out experience, try grabbing these heated socks for extra warmth and comfort!
4. Snowboard Helmet
As a beginner, you may struggle with control, so protecting your head is paramount. One of the most common injuries when snowboarding is concussions. Since your brain is the most important organ in your body, wearing a helmet should be a no brainer. If you do not own a helmet, the resort will have various options to rent one that ensure you will find one that fits. My helmet has saved me so many times where my head snaps back towards the ground after a fall.
5. Beanie and Hats
While we are on the topic of headgear, a hat or beanie that can cover your ears is essential on the hills. Underneath a helmet can get chilly without a hat. Your helmet is not enough as it is designed for safety and not warmth. You don’t have to go all out for a hat, but we suggest you bring one with ear protection.
6. Snowboard Jacket and Pants
A good snowboard jacket will have a wind and waterproof outer shell. The jacket should also be breathable, which means it will allow sweat to escape and keep you warm. While on the mountain, the weather can fluctuate on a whim, so owning a jacket that specializes in temperature control is important to feeling comfortable throughout the day. Like your jacket, snow pants are essential in having a good experience. Your snow pants should be waterproof and warm. A quick tip is to tuck your snow pants in your boots, so no snow or water can seep into your feet.
7. Base and Mid Layers
Base and mid layers are worn underneath your jacket and pants. You don’t want to go too crazy on layers because you will be sweating a lot! I would suggest wearing synthetic materials or wool that are effective with wicking moisture and maintaining a comfortable body temperature. You don’t need to bring anything thick because you will end up taking those off.
8. Snowboard Gloves or Mittens
Insulated and waterproof snowboard gloves are also very important. Your hands will be in periodical contact with the snow, so these specialized gloves will protect your hands. Durability is also key, as a typical ride will test the wear and tear of your gloves. I always bring an extra pair of gloves because I find mine getting wet halfway through the day.
9. Snowboard Goggles
Snowboard goggles help battle glare and protect your eyes from the snow and wind while riding. When riding down a mountain, snow and debris can fly against your face, making goggles a necessary piece of equipment. This is why we recommend investing heavily in a good pair of goggles. Our extreme ski mask has built in glare reduction and UV protective lenses to properly protect your eyes and improve your eyesight on any treacherous slopes! No need to worry about being blinded by the piercing white snow or sun, or even frost and snow buildup on your lenses. Click here to check out our awesome collection of masks and goggles.
When you have checked everything off of this list, it is time to ride. All the preparation is totally worth it. Snowboarding is heaps of fun and is potentially one of the most enjoyable winter sports to do! It does take a little bit of practice to get to a good level where you can go at a good speed, but after a few trips, you will be a pro in no time!