Like many of us, seeing the temperature soar in Australia means it is also time to wax your boards, pack your wheelie bags and head north in chase of that Fourth Phase spec snow!
Conditions in places like Japan, North America, Canada, etc. are significantly different to Australia and New Zealand and to make life easier there is a few things you can do to ensure nothing gets in the way of enjoying that waist deep pow!
Boards - Although definitely not a necessity, getting a powder specific board will ensure on those epic days you're getting the absolute most you can out of it! Powder specific boards will always have an increased surface area, especially toward the nose of the board giving you extra drive and float through the deep stuff, ensuring you're staying on top of the snow rather than sinking into it! There is a million and one different shapes, each differing slightly to the next. Call us on 03 9470 1822 or send through an email and we can help decipher which board is best for you!
Goggles/Lenses - Theres two bits of equipment we always recommend people to invest a little more in when purchasing gear...boots and goggles! No matter if it's a blue-bird powder day or you're on your dream snowboard, if your feet are in pain and/or you can't see where you're going, then you're not going to enjoy yourself! Heading overseas (Japan especially), sees the need for a 'low-light lense'. Every goggle manufacturer has an option for those low light conditions, and they're a necessity when riding in low-light conditions! 9 times out of 10 we can get lenses for your existing goggles!
Thermals - Definite necessity for the north!
Thermals will regulate your body temperature to keep you toasty on the chilly days, yet dry as your body temperature rises when you're working for the pow! Not to mention they're perfect in enabling you to wear a pair of jeans out for dinner! A life saver from as little as $29!
Outerwear - We wouldn't say it is imperative that you update your jacket and pants for northern hemisphere wear, however you should ensure that they are going to provide enough protection from the cold, whether it be ambient temperature or the dreaded wind chill! 10K waterproofing is an absolute minimum for most northern hemisphere conditions. Most people will tell you that a higher rating is a must, however the colder international conditions are actually much drier. Coupled with some decent thermals, 10K is fine. A lot of our staff wear 10K everywhere and have never had a problem, however if you're worried about getting cold, have a hunt for some 15K, 20K or higher rated pants and jackets!
Board Bags - Again, not a necessity, but makes life a whole lot easier to transport your snowboard and all your snow gear! We recommend a padded boardbag when travelling on flights to protect your gear from damage (aka. being thrown onto conveyer-belts in airports!). However, even the standard board sleeves like the Burton Space Sack are great for those on a tight budget, they'll still fit a board with bindings attached, boots, jacket, pants, goggles, helmet and gloves - basically everything you need to snowboard!
Face Mask - Compulsory. With temperatures dropping as low as -30 you're mad if you don't have a face mask! Whether its a pull up neck warmer or a full balaclava, as long as you have something to hide behind when the wind picks up you'll be fine!
Need some more advice? Shoot us an email, give us a call or pop in and see us!