Christy Sports The Ridge Report
A Blog About Everything Skiing & Snowboarding in Colorado & Utah
selection of snowboard stomp pads

We were all new once- and we all remember the chairlift can be the most intimidating part of getting started. This is especially true on a snowboard, since chairlifts weren’t necessarily built to cater to the boarder. But you don’t have to dread the chairlift ride! Try a stomp pad on your snowboard.

What is a stomp pad?

A stomp pad is a pad made of a high-friction material that adheres to the top of your board. Most snowboard surfaces are naturally slippery, which can be enhanced when the board is wet with melting snow. A stomp pad is designed to help you gain some degree of control over your snowboard when you aren’t strapped in. (like when you’re exiting the chairlift) It will act as a steady spot on which to rest your unbound back foot.

Where does a stomp pad go?

Your stomp pad should be placed on top of your board, just in front of your back binding for easy placement of the foot that is not strapped in. Before attaching the stomp pad, try standing on your board with your boots on and observing where your back foot naturally rests. The stomp pad should lie in the center of your back boot. Some riders like their stomp pads more toward the middle of their boards, some like it up against their back binding. Everybody is different but once you attach your pad, rearranging it probably won’t be an option and you want your stance to feel as natural as possible.

How do you attach a stomp pad?

Your stomp pad will likely come with directions, but the majority are attached in a similar fashion. Stomp pads have a very sticky adhesive on the bottom which, once suctioned to your board, is designed to stay put so it doesn’t fall off while you’re out on the slopes. After deciding where you want your stomp pad placed, you’ll want to clean your board and dry it thoroughly with a material that won’t leave residue behind. Try to avoid getting any particles trapped under the stomp pad. Remove the protector from the underside of the stomp pad and stick it where you want it, ideally leaving a heavy object on it for 24 hours to let it set.

Tip: It’s important to make sure your board is room temperature when you attach the stomp pad. If it has been sitting in a cold car all night, it might not stick. You can use a hair dryer to heat the desired spot on the board as well as the adhesive for extra stick.

Where can you find a stomp pad?

Most local ski retailers such as Christy Sports will carry stomp pads. Or, you can shop them online. Well-known snowboard brands like Burton and Volcom produce them. Or, choose a brand that specializes in stomp pads. Whatever you choose, you can head up the lift or across a cat walk confident in the board beneath your feet!

Staying in Shape for Ski Season

When the flakes fly, nobody wants to hit their first run of the ski season huffing and puffing. That’s a quick way to lose cool points, man. But when the snow is gone and the last resort has closed its final runs, what’s a skier to do in order to stay in shred-shape and fend off injuries for the season to come? We have a few ideas.

Tips to Stay in Shape for Skiing

Hit the Gym

When the snow stops falling, continue to train your various muscle groups with a special focus on legs and core, advice that makes sense when you think about what muscles we tend to flex out on the mountain. Although, we still don’t recommend neglecting your upper body in case you have to dig yourself out of a tree well. In addition, cardio work to build stamina will help you with every aspect of your day out on the slopes, whether you’re skinning up to your favorite run or shuffling to the lodge for après.

Check out some moves from Outside Online to get you started on your off-season conditioning.

Disclaimer: We are not certified to provide personal training advice and you should always check with your doctor before starting any sort of workout regimen!

Try Yoga

Yoga isn’t just about getting in a good head space while you’re yearning for your favorite winter activity. (“close your eyes and imagine snow softly falling..”) Yoga is great for building flexibility and balance, two physical attributes crucial to skiing and snowboarding. In addition, practicing steady breath will make exerting yourself at altitude easier and many athletes claim keeping their bodies limber helps them to prevent injuries. So whether you join a yoga studio or start with short YouTube videos, hop on your mat and do some down dogs and tree poses. Namaste!

Adopt Warm-Weather Hobbies

With an abundance of sunshine in the summer months, don’t spend all your time conditioning in a gym. Step off the treadmill to soak up some vitamin D and take in the scenery. Even better, explore some activities at altitude like hiking or mountain biking to keep your lungs in tip top shape. Keep your connection with nature year-round and find summer activities that can take place on the exact slope sides you traverse down on skis during the chillier months. If you land on the right activity, you’ll stay in shape without even feeling like you’re trying!

Eat Healthy-ish

Less on-mountain expenditure should mean less of the après beers and cheese fries. We’re certainly not suggesting you swear off the craft beer for the summer as some of the best beer festivals take place in the warmer months. We’re just suggesting you follow that beer up with an apple every now and again. Good nutrition is key for keeping your body strong and healthy. While we are not nutritionists either, we are proponents of balance in all things, including diet. Fuel your body with healthy food but enjoy that cookie!

Keep Your Gear in Shape

This doesn’t mean putting your snowboard on a diet or signing your skis boots up for a workout class, but there are ways to make sure your gear is ready for next season. Skis and boards should be cleaned, waxed, and stored in a cool & dry spot. Ski and snowboard boots should also be cleaned, buckled up, and stored in an appropriate environment indoors. Keeping your gear in shape starts with not stuffing it in the corner of your garage with other knick knacks piled up on top.

Try the Red Rocks SnowShape Winter Series

Get ready to ride and slide with this 4-Saturday Red Rocks pre-season conditioning series specifically programmed for skiers, snowboarders and winter sports enthusiasts. Receive instruction from celebrity athletes and enjoy some social events thrown in for pre- and après ski fun! Moguls are really just Mother Nature’s stairs with snow on them, so sign up now and get ready for the chill in the air!

Sign Up Now


Old snowboard on wood floor

We know what it’s like to become attached to a snowboard. (and not just literally) The valuable time you spend with it strapped to your foot while taking in breathtaking views from the lift, the way it carries you down the slopes. But when is it time to break that cherished bond with your board and upgrade to a new snowboard?

The rules for replacing your board differ from those for replacing your skis or replacing your bindings. This is because barring any major damage, your board can carry you through quite a few seasons on the slopes.

What is considered “major damage” to your board?

We’ve seen boards snapped clear in half- that’s an obvious reason to replace your board. Some less apparent cosmetic reasons include minor cracks which can impact the feel of your ride, a lifting top sheet, or an abundance of core shots to your board. Many of these ailments can be repaired, but the damage overtime can become too extensive to fix.

The level of rider you are and the type of terrain you prefer will certainly play into the likelihood of doing irreversible damage to your snowboard as well as how quickly your board wears out. For instant, if you’re a park rider who enjoys hitting jumps, you have a higher chance of breaking your board. If you enjoy cruising down groomers, you and your board might have the chance for season after season of bonding.

What if you just want the latest & greatest?

Just because you don’t NEED to replace your board, doesn’t mean you don’t want to. Snowboard technology is advancing year after year and it’s ok the want the latest and greatest. Some of the evolving technologies include a volume shift to shorter and wider boards, lighter-weight materials (especially in the core), a 3D base construction, and boards built for more sustainability.

You also might not need to replace your board, but might want to simply add to your collection. Different boards have different functions. For instance, powder boards are created for fresh pow whereas split boards are ideal for backcountry snowboarding.

Snowboarders during sunset

Not sure if your board can last another season? Stop by one of our Christy Sports locations and our experts can help you decide if your board is past its prime. Or, if damage done is minor, they can repair it for you so you can enjoy it for seasons to come!


Springtime in Colorado often brings about what some call a “rite of passage” from one season into the next, especially when it comes to skiing and riding. It’s the time of year when we get to see totally rational people – or not – don their wackiest costumes and try to ski, board, scoot, or slide on some other crazy device across a stretch of icy water. Yeah, sure, that makes sense.

The event, which has become not just a tradition, but an annual ritual across North America since the 1920s, is known by many names – slush cups, slush hucks, but most popular – pond skimming. Many resorts throughout Colorado wrap up their winter season with some variation of pond skimming. Test your talent, slip on your best silly costume, and celebrate the end of an epic season. Or, if participating is not for you, being a spectator on the sidelines is just as entertaining.

Whether partaking or spectating, here are a few tips for enjoying the most cheers, laughs, thumbs up, and high fives to this crazy, unique pastime!

Tips for Pond Skimming

Sign Up Ahead of Time

First and foremost, participation is quite popular, so it’s important to register for any pond skimming event well ahead of time to make sure you have a spot on the contest list.  Many resorts have an entry limit of the first 50 or 100 participants to sign up. It would be a bummer to show up day of on your skis, blades, or board, donning your best speedo, water wings, and sunglasses only to find out the list is full.

Pond Skimming Skills Tips

  • Wax your skies / snowboard beforehand – the wax will naturally repel the water and keep you above it.
  • Tips up!! Skis or board flat.
  • Go for maximum speed when you hit the water.
  • Aim straight forward.
  • Have fun!!

What To Wear Pond Skimming

Costumes are always a great way to earn the crowd’s attention. In fact, the duds you choose to wear while pond skimming can really make or break the decibel of cheering you’ll receive. Making it across or “yard sale-ing” into the pond is immensely more enjoyable to watch if the skimmer is wearing something completely ridiculous. Here are some creatively wacky ideas:

  • Scuba Steve – Water wings or floaties add that finishing touch on a “Scuba Steve” theme, while also providing additional protection and safety.
  • Random Collection – This mismatch of random sweaters, ski pants, jackets, and other patchy outdoor wear tells the crowd you are a true individual.
  • Beach Babe – Need we say more? A costume left to the imagination for either gender, and is sure to win both wanted and maybe not so favorable cheers and sneers from the crowd.
  • Here Come the Bride – Bridal costumes get plenty of stares on water, just as they do on land. Throw a groom in there and a couple of bridesmaids and you’ve got a party.
  • American Superhero – And of course, everyone loves a Superhero, whether it’s Superman, Wonder Woman, Mighty Mouse, and yes, even Scuba Steve.

Choose Your Equipment

Equipment rules and regulations vary by resort, so be sure to check out each resort’s website for specific details before heading out. For the most part, though, you can apply the general rule:  “if it slides on snow, you’re good to go!” While skis, snowboards, split-boards, and mono-boards are most commonly used for skimming, other popular toys include: tele mark skis, toboggans, sleds, surfboards, snow blades, snow scooters and yes, even snow bikes. Just be sure to wear extra padded biking chamois!

Snow blades and snow scooters seem to be taking the pond-skimming world by storm these days. Both have a lower swing weight than traditional skis, making it easier to trick and spin and get yourself into all sorts of wacky positions – and of course, more crowd pleasing attention.

Where To Pond Skim in Colorado

While a handful of these resorts have already enjoyed their own variations of pond skimming, Loveland, Breckenridge, and Arapahoe Basin have yet to celebrate their closing days. If you haven’t put away yours skis or that board for the season, we highly recommended taking advantage of this ceremonial ski activity. Cheers to an epic season, we’ll see you out there!

Why We Love Spring Skiing

We’ve experienced quite the year for epic amounts of powder, so hitting the slopes right now might not even feel like it can be classified as “spring skiing.” But, alas, spring has sprung and we’re getting stoked to make turns in the months to come. Here’s why we think Spring Skiing is the bee’s knees:

The Weather

Spring is filled with bluebird days and sun kissed lift rides. Above freezing temps and clear skies make for a highly satisfying day of shredding, if you ask us. But beyond the wonderful weather, spring brings us to the slopes to enjoy



Since most skiers traveling from afar don’t plan their ski vacations for springtime, the lift lines are generally much shorter and the runs less crowded. While tourist traffic is crucial in supporting the resorts and ski areas we love, a locals-only feel can be fun in the months of April and May.


A less busy resort means less congested roads leading up to the mountains. Traffic on a powder- filled Saturday can be borderline unbearable. But enter the spring months and you’ll likely find the traffic lightening up significantly, even when the snow is still falling. A less painful commute to the slopes means a more enjoyable day of shredding.


There is something so freeing about not freezing while flying down the mountain in just a shell. While we aren’t suggesting stepping out in a bikini, especially in the instance of falling, wearing less layers and feeling lighter is awesome. Maybe without having to pack your car to the brim you can fit an extra buddy in to join you on the slopes.

If those reasons aren’t enough to convince you to get on those skies or that board before the resorts close, there is undoubtedly such a thing as a “spring vibe” to be noted. Everyone is laid back and relaxed, getting plenty of vitamin D and S-turns in.

If you’re into late season skiing like we are, here are some resorts in Colorado and Utah that are open past April and their estimated closing dates:spring skiing

Arapahoe Basin– June 2nd

Breckenridge– May 27th

Loveland– May 5th

Snowbird– May 24th

We’ll see you out there! 


Mountain Boarding

Do you crave the thrill of snowboarding all year long? You’re not alone, but you might be an adrenaline junkie. When the snow melts, some adrenaline addicts trade out their snowboards for mountain boards (part skateboard, part snowboard) to participate in the little-known sport of mountain boarding. This activity is essentially snowboarding sans the snow, with athletes riding down grass, dirt, or asphalt.

History of Mountain Boarding

In the early 1990’s, a few avid snowboarders in California came to a realization we know all too well- having no snow is a giant bummer. They wanted a way to reproduce the rush they got from snowboarding during the warmer months without a flake in site, and along came mountain boarding. Jason Lee, one of the inventors of this extreme sport, helped found a company called MBS Mountain Boards in 1993. The following year, the company sold its first mountain board. The sport has caught on around the world, developing its own sports culture and following.

The Board

Known as mountain boards, dirt boards, and even “no snow boards,” these boards are rugged and built for varying terrain. After all, crashing on dirt or gravel is bound to hurt a little more than falling in snow, so riders need a sturdy board beneath their feet.

The mountain board starts with the deck. Similar to a snowboard deck, these vary in both size and construction and can fit the needs of different sizes and skill levels. Increasing length will increase stability of the board.

Next, each board will require two trucks, or instruments used to attach the wheels to the deck, as seen on a skateboard. Trucks are also essential for providing the rider with control and stability. Bindings, adapted from snowboarding, keep the rider attached to their mountain board. Velcro bindings are the most common.Of course for the board to get anywhere, it will require wheels. (four of them!) Most mountain boards are equipped with 20cm wheels, while other options exist based on rider preference.

The Terrain

Athletes ride mountain boards down dirt roads, grass, pavement, and bmx tracks. According to MBS Mountainboards all that’s needed is “a 5 degree slope to have enough speed in which to carve,” so the possibilities are endless for riders. The terrain will often be determined by the type of riding, sometimes including park features like jumps and half pipes. (see below)

The Riding Style

While not all mountain boarding styles fit into one of these four buckets, these riding styles are the most common and mimic the varying styles of snowboarding:

  • Freeride: Freeriding shapes up to be a lot like it sounds. This style of mountain boarding is non-competitive with no terrain limits for the rider.
  • Freestyle: Think park here- boxes, jumps, and rails. Freestyle mountain boarding is normally done in a competitive setting and includes slopestyle, big air, and jibbing. (which will sound very familiar to all the snowboarders out there)
  • Boardercross: Boardercross refers to two to four man racing on a mountain board with a designated track, typically made of dirt.
  • Downhill: In downhill mountain boarding, single riders race the clock while navigating down long, steep courses. These timed single-man descents are also often referred to as “big mountain.”

As with any extreme sport, hopping on a mountain board and heading down the hill requires ample safety precautions. While we aren’t necessarily advocating for attempting this risky hobby, we tip our hats to the boarders that just can’t get enough. Who knows, maybe simulating ripping down a pow-packed run actually cools athletes down in this hot, hot heat. Take us back to winter!

Ski Trip Travel Tips

One of my favorite parts of winter is our annual family ski trip.

While we ski most winter weekends (a definite perk of living in Colorado), spring break is when we venture further afield, if not afar, to sample new mountains and new resorts.

While planning a ski vacation should be fun, it also requires some work and attention to detail.

Today, we share some tips for planning your best winter getaway.


We all have lists of ski resorts we’d love to visit. We also have lists of favorite resorts we return to again and again.

When planning a ski vacation, you have to choose between the familiar and beloved and adventuring to a new destination.

Start with who will be going on the trip.

If children are coming, how old are they? Do you need services like childcare or ski school? While almost all resorts have dedicated programs for children, some, like Snowmass and Keystone, specialize in families.

If this is a girls’ trip, is it all about skiing or do you want shopping and spa, too? If skiing will be front and center, you might look into a women’s ski week or camp at somewhere like Alta.

While I’ve obviously never been on a guys’ ski trip, I hear it’s all about skiing, drinking and eating.

So here’s a question for the men: Do you want to be in the middle of the après action?  Or, would you be okay with a more remote resort like Snowbasin, Utah that has great skiing, but no lodging base or nightlife?

Next, ask yourself how many mountains you want to visit. Do you want to stay at one resort and really get to know it or hop between several resorts and sample them all?

In Colorado, this could mean choosing between a multi-mountain destinations like Summit County or picking a more isolated ski town like Telluride.

Make a list of what you want and use it to narrow down your options. Ask your friends for their suggestions and look online for ski resort reviews.

Best Tip for Choosing a Resort: If you have a season pass, check for reciprocal deals with other mountains. You may find that you can ski for free or at a significant discount. This makes choosing the “right” destination a no-brainer.


As with any vacation, you have to know how you’ll get there, where you’ll stay and what you’ll need to bring.

1. Getting There

While driving has some serious advantages (think bringing your own gear and having maximum flexibility), flying can take you anywhere.

Whether you fly or drive, factor in how much time you’re willing to spend in transit.

Do you want to fly into a city and ski the same day? Are you willing to rent a car or take ground transportation to the resort?

If time is a major consideration, look for resorts with nearby local airports. Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Whitefish, Montana come to mind.

Best Driving Tip: Be prepared for winter weather. The Colorado Traction Law now requires passenger cars to carry and use chains (or their equivalent) during some storm conditions.

No matter where you are, check the state department of transportation website or download an app to keep you updated.

Best Flying Tip: Ask the airlines if your skis and boots can fly for free. Rules vary with each carrier, but skis/snowboard and boots are free on United if packed in ski boot bags and ski bags.

If you pack your boots in a duffle bag, or your skis in a box, you’ll pay. Plus, you have to check both skis and boots. We tried to fly with just boots and got dinged.

2. Sleep and Eat

Resort websites often have links to extensive lodging and last-minute deals. But for some trips, renting a home through a service like VRBO might be better.

Make a list of what you need and want.

Do you need a kitchen? How many bedrooms and bathrooms? If you’re staying off-mountain is there a shuttle or public transportation? Are there slopeside or ski-in/ski-out options?

Best Lodging Tip: Check out lodging in nearby communities to save money. For example, stay in Basalt if Aspen is too pricey.

Or take an urban ski trip. Stay in Salt Lake City (the Salt Lake SuperPass scores discounts on tickets and lodging) and commute 30-40 minutes by car or bus to four world-class resorts.

3. Gear

We recommend taking your own boots if you can. But leaving skis/poles or snowboards at home can make life much easier (especially when you’re trying to fit everything and everyone into a rental car or SUV).

Best Gear Tip: Make your life easy with ski and snowboard rental delivery services like Door 2 Door from Christy Sports. Reserve everything you need online. When you arrive, a ski tech brings the equipment and fits it to you at your convenience.


Online planning is key to maximizing fun and limiting ski vacation hassle. Study resort websites to find out what activities and special events are available.

Save money by purchasing lift tickets in advance on resort websites or from vendors like Liftopia.

Also, reserve lessons, dining and other special events (perhaps snowshoeing, a snowcat dinner in a remote cabin, or a western family BBQ) in advance to avoid disappointment.

Best Overall Tip: Be flexible. While it’s good to plan ahead, don’t schedule every moment and be prepared for changes. It’s a vacation after all, not a marathon. Whether you’re traveling with friends or family, let everyone set their own pace and agenda.

Then reconvene each afternoon to share stories, photos and fun (with an emphasis on fun).



Packing for a trip is difficult, but packing for a ski trip can be a daunting task. It can seem impossible to know what you will truly need to enjoy the mountains. Whether you are packing your own ski equipment or renting on arrival, skiing and snowboarding requires a lot of gear! If you are planning to travel to a mountain paradise during Spring Break, here is a list of essentials for spring skiing warm weather.


Ski Jacket:  Pack a windproof, waterproof ski or snowboard shell jacket for spring .  If you are snowboarder, a longer snowboarding jacket will help to keep snow out.

Ski Pants: Make sure to pack waterproof, vented  ski or snowboard pants.

Long Underwear: Non-cotton base layers are recommended for under your jacket and other layers of insulation. Spring skiing weather can be unpredictable to plan for the right amount of layers.

Additional Insulation: Pack a down, synthetic, or fleece jacket or vest for under your ski jacket to provide extra warmth in addition to your shell jacket in case the weather happens to be a little colder. Spring weather can be a challenge being able to find the right balance between cold mornings and sunny afternoons!


Gloves: A good pair of waterproof, thick gloves is essential. Regular knitted gloves or mittens won’t cut it in the snow.

Neck Gaiter: Shield your neck and chin from cold and the sun!

Goggles: Help protect your eyes with ski and snowboard googles from the snow refection and choose a pair that has a venting system so they don’t fog up. Darker lens on googles tend to be best for sunny days.

Helmet:  A No Brainer! This is a crucial piece of mountain safety and your safety.  Just about everyone wears one these days. If you don’t own a helmet, you can rent one if needed.

Ski Socks: Different from your everyday socks. They are typically made of wool and designed to regulate body temperature and wick away sweat and moisture.

Winter Hat: A good winter hat or beanie will provide extra insulation and covers up your helmet hair so you can easily transition to the hot tub or après!

Sunscreen / Lip Balm: This is crucial when spending a day on the mountain especially in the springs at higher elevations where UV rays magnifies and reflects off the snow.  Goggle tans aren’t that cool when you look like Homer Simpson.


Gather up your skis, snowboard, binding, poles and boots! Depending on where you are traveling to or for how long, might determine if you want to bring your own gear or rent ski and snowboard gear.

If you are planning to travel with your own gear, it’s vital to pack it in a padded ski and snowboarding travel bag to prevent damage or broken as they get tossed around during the journey.

Other Items You Might Need:

Sunglasses: They are great for when you’re sitting outside on a bluebird day or for walking around town.

Hand and Toe Warmers: When it’s a really cold day on the mountain, these can be a lifesaver.

Camera: Don’t forget the camera or GoPro! You won’t want to miss out on capturing those action shots.

First Aid Kit: A long day of skiing can make for some pain. It’s good to have a kit on-hand with Advil,  also for a possible hangover!

Oxygen: Altitude sickness can put a real damper in your vacation, so upon arrival purchase oxygen.  Traveling to higher altitudes can cause altitude sickness because lower oxygen levels. Boost Oxygen provides a great all-natural and safe solution! Stop by one of our retail locations to pick up 95% pure oxygen and feel better if the altitude hits you.

Boost Oxygen

Winter Clothing: Planning on staying at a resort for a couple days, will also require bringing warm winter clothing and snow boots for strolling around town to enjoy après ski and restaurants!

Packing for a ski vacation can be challenging, but hopefully with our list of essentials you can enjoy your time on the mountain and worry less about the items you might have forgotten.

Are you are ski vacation pro? Are there any items you would add to our list?

Skiing and Snowboarding's Hottest Couples

We all follow the latest news from celebrity couples like Kim and Kanye or Kate and Will, whether we want to or not, but what about the couples in our own world of skiing and snowboarding? Here are the hottest celeb couples in skiing and snowboarding couples:

Mark McMorris and Coco Ho1. Mark McMorris & Coco Ho

About Him: Mark is an 11 time X Games gold medalist, and an Olympic bronze medalist. He competes in snowboard slopestyle and big air and throws down every time. He hails from Canada and was the first person to land a backside triple cork 1440.

About Her: Coco has some distinctions of her own as well. As a professional surfer from Hawaii she has won countless awards and even had some film appearances. She and Mark can be seen on social media supporting each other at their competitions and shredding the mountains and the waves.


Bobby Brown and Nicole Gallen2. Bobby Brown & Nicole Gallen

About Him: Originally from Denver, CO and the first skier to win two gold medals at a single Winter X Games in slopestyle and big air, Bobby is known for his style. He also posts funny vine videos, check those out.

About Her: Nicole is a Colorado native from Telluride, CO, so you know she can mob on skis. One time, she took a fan photo of me and Bobby at Dew Tour, so yeah she’s super nice.


Jamie Anderson and Tyler Nicholson3. Jamie Anderson & Tyler Nicholson

About Him: Tyler is an up and coming professional snowboard from Canada. Most recently, he got second place at the LAAX Open. Keep an eye out for him on the podiums.

About Her: Jamie Anderson is one of the most decorated female snowboarders in action sports. She’s never missed the podium at Winter X Games and won the first gold medal in slopestyle at the Winter Olympics in 2014. Jamie has been driving women’s snowboarding since she was a teenager and she’s not taking her foot off the gas anytime soon.


Chas Guldemond and Drea Guldemond4. Chas & Drea Guldemond

About Him: Charles ‘Chas’ Guldemond is a professional slopestyle snowboarder. He’s competed in pretty much every major event in snowboarding, and is one of the sports most seasoned riders.

About Her: Drea is a very passionate hair stylist (maybe the reason Paul Mitchell sponsors Chas?). You’ll notice her hair is always on point. She’s also the proud mama to Rocky Guldemond (Yes, after Rocky Balboa. How awesome is that!).


Torin Yater-Wallace and Sarah Hendrickson5. Torin Yater-Wallace & Sarah Hendrickson

About Him: Torin is a pro freeskier from Aspen, CO. At the time, when he was 15, he was the third-youngest male competitor in X Games history and took silver in halfpipe.

About Her: No stranger to the podium herself, Sarah Hendrickson is a professional ski jumper and world champion from SLC.


Which pro ski and snowboard couples do you like to follow? Share with us in the comments.

Maybe you are new to the sport of skiing or you have been a ripper for years.  Either way, as with any sport, there is a certain lingo or language you have to master in addition to the actual fundamentals, in order to sound like you are in the know beyond being able to “walk the walk”.  More skiers and riders are jumping onboard each year leading to ‘ski speak’ phrases and terms being ever-changing.  Save yourself the trouble of embarrassment when talking with a local on the lift or in a random conversation après ski.

Below are some terms and sayings – some classics and others newer to the ski lingo list:

Après Ski: Literally speaking it means ‘after ski’, yet it refers to forms of entertainment and nightlife at a ski resort which can be just as eventful as a day of skiing.

Backcountry: Skiing outside the resort boundaries that is not patrolled or controlled for avalanche dangers.

Blue Bird Day: A beautiful, sunny day on the mountain with blue skies after an overnight snowfall – one that many consider a “perfect” day for skiing.

Bombing: Going extremely fast, often recklessly and out of control downhill with no regard for yourself or others.

Bunny Slope: A slope perfect for beginners to learn basic techniques.  Typically found at the base area of the mountain and accessible by a magic carpet or tow rope.

Champagne Powder™: Light, dry, smooth powder snow trademarked by Steamboat Resort.

Chutes: A steep and narrow section of snow between rocks. Definitely an expert-only run!

Corduroy: Resembling the fabric because of the grooves – it’s when the trail is recently groomed by either a snowcat or grooming machine.

Crud: Lumpy and hard snow conditions with slippery ice patches.

Dump: A slang term to describe a huge snowfall of fresh powder.

Death Cookies: Gravel like ice chunks that cover a run, waiting to catch your edge.

Earning Your Turns:  Skinning or hiking up a mountain and skiing down. Not riding a chairlift.

Eat Wood: When a skier or snowboarder comes face to face with a tree… Ouch, that has to hurt!

Face Shot: No, this is not a drinking game… It’s what happens when you’re in powder so deep that snow sprays you in the face each turn.  Icicle eyebrows anyone?!

First Tracks: Being the first to ski or ride the fresh powder before anyone else does. Bragging rights!

Flat Light: When dim light and gray skies make it difficult to see terrain change. Be careful of surprises.

French Fries: Skiing with your skis parallel to each other. Not pizza!

Freshies: Untouched and untracked powder. Skiing freshies is how we would all like to spend our day on the mountain!

Gaper: One who is new to the snow sport game and does not generally understand proper on-mountain manners, apparel or techniques.

Shred the Gnar: Derived from the word Gnarly… One who skis or rides challenging trails or conditions which are measured on a level of coolness, excitement and danger.

Grab: To hold on to a part or your snowboard or ski while being in the air.

In-bounds: The skiable terrain inside the boundaries of a mountain resort. Opposite of Out-of-bounds.

Jibb(-er,-ing): One who skis or rides across boxes, rails and other non-snow surface items.

Liftie: A slang term for one who operates the chairlift.

Magic Carpet: Conveyer-belt like surface lift… If you step onto this it will easily take you up the bunny hill slope.

Mashed Potatoes:  Heavy and wet snow.

Pizza: A termed used for teaching beginner skiers technique where skis are slanted at each other like a slice of pizza to snowplow down a slope. May also be known as a wedge.

Pow: A shortened use of the word powder… typically fresh, fallen powder.  A daily wish in the mountains and the perfect ski conditions!

Ripper: An impressive and accomplished skier or rider.

Skins: Straps of fabric attached to the bottom of skis to allow climbing uphill without slipping backwards.

Shredder: One who rides with advanced skill and is accomplished.

Traverse: Skiing or moving across a slope horizontally, instead of straight down to keep speed down on a steep incline.

Whiteout (adjective): When visibility is almost impossible; typically caused by heavy snowfall, fog, or flat light.

Yard Sale (verb): Resembling that of a yard sale. When a skier loses their ski equipment and gear including skis, poles, hat, gloves, etc.  Their gear is scattered across the slope… collecting all your items may be the worst part!

Feel like you are ready to ‘talk the talk’ with a local? Maybe or maybe not, but at least you can fake it ‘til you make it for now. While this is not the entire “ski-speak” dictionary, it’s a good place to start to be able to include terms into your vocabulary. The next time you find yourself caught in a conversation on the mountain with rippers, shredders and magic carpet riders, you’ll sound like a pro!

Did you have a favorite ski term? Or is there one you think we should add to the list? Share your favorite with us in the comments below.

Burton Riglet

Let’s set the record straight – Kids do not have to learn to ski before they can snowboard anymore.

There seems to be this unwritten law that kids have to learn how to ski first. All too often I catch parents saying that their son or daughter is taking ski lessons “so they can learn the basics” and then they will let them decide if they want to switch over to snowboarding when they’re ready.

As someone who didn’t start snowboarding until I was a young teenager, I wish my 3-year-old self would have known how to express to my parents that I was born to be a snowboarder. Learning how to ski first did not make learning how to snowboard any easier. I still fell – a lot. I still got frustrated, and I still had to start from the beginning.

Although, when I started skiing, they didn’t make snowboards small enough for kids my size. So, if I wanted to join my older siblings on the slopes, I had to get on two planks.

Burton Riglet SnowboardsThanks to Burton Riglet snowboards like the Burton Chopper and the Burton Smalls, kids can now learn to snowboard without having to ski first. The Riglet snowboards start as small as 80cm and go up to 130cm, and the Smalls snowboards go from 125cm to 145cm.  That pretty much means that as soon as they can walk and balance on their own, they can snowboard, but the Riglet age suggestion is 3 to 6 years old.

If you want your little to love snowboarding as much as you do but you want to try it first, Burton hosts a series of Riglet events during January, which is Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month, with the goal of getting more kids into snowboarding. They offer free Riglet demos and snowboarding lessons, and even have mini terrain park features for the tots to learn on. See upcoming Riglet Park Events:

If you can’t make it to an event, Christy Sports has you covered. Riglet snowboards are available for rent or purchase at select locations, because we want your kids to love snowsports as much as you do.
Teaching Kids To SnowboardBurton Kids Snowboard









Did you have to ski before you could snowboard? At what age did your child learn to snowboard? Share your stories with us in the comments below.

Where to buy a ski condo in colorado

While the word vacation evokes palm trees and white sandy beaches in some minds, others flock to the vast mountains of Colorado for snow chasing and thrill-seeking.

Purchasing a ski condo in Colorado is not only glamorous and exciting, but also a massive milestone that provides a long-term investment strategy. Even if you’re not paying for your Colorado condo in all cash, loan restrictions since the housing market crash of 2008 are tighter than ever, so acquiring credit under today’s standards says a lot about one’s financial profile.

Whether you’re buying your vacation home with a mortgage or can afford to put down all-cash, determining a location that best fits your budget and lifestyle first is key. Colorado offers endless winter sporting opportunities across the state, but consider the following top cities, which vary in price, to purchase your real estate retreat.

Steamboat Springs

Buying a vacation condo in Steamboat Springs isn’t necessarily inexpensive, but won’t cost buyers millions, as compared to other opulent ski towns in Colorado. The average list price on homes for sale in Steamboat Springs was $790,008 for the first week of December. About two hours south sits the town of Breckenridge, where the average list price is slightly higher than Steamboat Springs at $903,204. Searching for condos in Breckenridge might be better suited for individuals with larger budgets and a desire for seclusion. The population in Breckenridge is just 4,648, compared to Steamboat Springs which has 12,100 residents as of 2013, according to the U.S. Census. Keep in mind, popular ski towns feel crowded during peak vacation and holiday seasons, and an abundance of visitors shifts the vibe severely.


Vail is one of the most popular destinations for skiing in the United States, and it’s lodging and mountain pass prices reflect its unparalleled popularity. According to Vail Daily, roughly 400,000 people purchased some sort of Vail Resorts’ pass in 2014 alone, totaling $200 million in revenue for the company. With so many vacationers flocking to Vail, the local real estate market is hot. List prices on homes for sale in Vail in early December were at an average of $2,867,488, pricing most house hunters out of the Vail market. If you’re looking for another upscale mountain town but can’t quite afford Vail, consider searching for condos in Avon, where the average list price is currently $1,566,184.

Crested Butte

Crested Butte is located in Gunnison County, a former coal mining town with a population of just 1,487. Crested Butte is only a 12-mile hike from Aspen via the famous West Maroon Pass, or alternatively, a 100-mile drive over the Elk Mountains. Although it’s located so close to Aspen, Crested Butte is much more affordable in terms of real estate. The average list price for homes in Aspen is $5,167,856, making it highly unaffordable for the typical buyer. On the other hand, the average listing price on homes and condos in Crested Butte is much lower at $534,386 – a more practical figure for the average American.


Crave the Boulder lifestyle but can’t afford the price tag? Dillon is only an hour and a half drive southwest of Boulder, and is a great market for those searching for condos on a tighter budget. Plus, with Lake Dillon providing 26 miles of shoreline, the town offers boating and sailing in the summertime. The average listing price on Dillon homes for sale is currently $796,960, whereas the average list price on homes in Boulder is $1,115,019. Dillon is in close proximity to Copper Mountain, Keystone and Breckenridge to satisfy your snow sport needs in the wintertime, giving you the best of both worlds.


Once you’ve settled on a setting and closed on your condo, it’s time to deck out the interior of your new abode. Including warm accessories such as fur throws, knit pillows and nature-inspired décor mimics the atmosphere of a mountainside resort without compromising the aesthetic of the home. In fact, organic schemes mixed with clean, minimalist lines helps keep condos cozy but modern, so you achieve two looks simultaneously.

If you’re considering a remodel, or purchasing a contemporary home, incorporating rustic, lodge-like décor helps balance out rooms so interiors don’t feel overly cold or uninviting to guests and residents alike. And, since eclectic schemes mix many different styles, you’ll target a wide range of buyers in the future when it comes time to sell. You won’t have to worry about home staging or rearranging your current living situation to appeal to those interested in purchasing a ski condo in one of the aforementioned Colorado hot spots.