To some of us, the weather outside can be frightful, but to many, the sight of fresh snow is downright delightful. Snowboarding is one way to get out of the house this winter and enjoy the powder in one of the best ways possible. For those new to snowboarding, I’ve highlighted a few basics today that will help get you started this season.

If you’ve taken some lessons and think that snowboarding may be right for you, shopping for boots is the best place to start. Your feet and their comfort need to be top priority, so taking a little extra time to ensure the right fit when shopping for boots is smart. Also, if you’re going to splurge and spend extra on any component of your snowboarding experience, your boots is where you should do it. A little more money for a bonus feature here or there is well worth it and you’ll be glad you made the choice later. After you find a solid pair of boots, then find good bindings, and then a board.

When it comes to picking your first board, it’s important to consider your style. Look for one with a good amount of flexibility, narrow waist, and a shorter edge. Such traits will also transition easily as you progress in skill and begin making sharper turns or do more freestyle runs.

Whatever your style, it’s good to get into the habit of waxing your board often, usually every other trip or so. Applying fresh wax will make your board ride faster and will also make it more resistance to from any abrasion caused by harsher snow or ice.

One more trick I’ve learned is that your hands will stay warmer in a pair of mittens than in gloves. Keeping your fingers in contact with each other rather than isolated from each other in gloves will keep them nice and toasty, so if this is an issue for you, mittens are the way to go.

Like camping, fishing, or hunting, you should always let someone know where you’re going when you head out to the hill, especially if you’re going alone. If you’re hitting more isolated locations, take an emergency locater, a GPS, and a small shovel. Accidents can happen and on the mountain, they can happen without warning and have devastating effects. Be safe, be smart, and have fun this season if you decide to carve some powder during your winter break!

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