Get Your Shifting Dialed in for the Season

Take a few minutes and learn how to adjust your shifting with Skiershop’s mechanic, Dave Clifford.

Spring Cleaning!

Whether you’re yearning for a warm summer breeze or trying to hang on to what’s left of winter’s snowy slopes, spring is just around the corner. With it will come another beautiful bike season filled with new trails to explore and new toys to play with.

If you haven’t already, you might want to start thinking about dragging your bike out of it’s winter hibernation spot and getting it cleaned up and dialed in for the summer. If you’re not totally sure how to get everything dusted off and lubed up, watch Skiershop’s bike tech, Dave, as he shows you the best way to get your bike tuned and ready to ride!

Whistler Blackcomb Day 1 and 2 Trip Report

Our first two days in Whistler have been an absolute blast!  We were greeted with a surprise snow storm.  What was forecast as a few inches turned into a couple feet.  Our first day was a classic snowy fresh powder day.  It wasn’t the ideal conditions for photos, or visibility, but we did manage to capture a few moments.  We spent the entire day exploring the Blackcomb side of the resort.  We were blown away by the amount of terrain.  We had multiple GoPros rolling on our first day, so keep an eye out for footage later in the week.

 

4 members of our group atop Blackcomb before our first run.

Plenty of snow off the backside of Blackcomb

 

When we woke up on Tuesday, our second day, the clouds and snow had been replaced by crystal clear skis and bountiful sunshine.  We could hardly contain ourselves as we pin-balled around the entire resort.  We started on Blackcomb with a little wind lip session first thing in the morning, then moved over to the Whistler side to continue exploring.

 

4FRNT and Saga rider Willie Nelson lays out a beauty of a backflip

Skiershop GM and RMU and Sick Stickz athlete, Jeff Neagle, followed suit with his own flat 3 Japan

Willie Nelson and Jeff Neagle playing a little game of wind lip follow the leader

 

We spent the rest of the day searching for untouched powder on the Whistler side of the mountain.  If you’ve never been here, there is an insane amount of terrain.  We had no problem finding fresh snow all afternoon, logging multiple faceshots along the way.

 

Jeff Neagle finding some DEEP snow

Jeff Neagle getting even deeper

 

Needless to say we had a phenomenal day.  We rounded out the afternoon with a some olympic action and a last chair run down McConkey’s bowl.  We had just watched Shane’s documentary the previous evening, so it felt like a fitting way to round out the day.

 

Jeff Neagle, fashionably late to the #RoadToSochi party

 

Jeff and Peter dropping the cornice into McConkey's for the last run of the day

 

We’re taking our time to get to the hill this morning, which luckily gave me time to put together this post.  Today Willie and Jeff plan on starting to tackle the infamous Whistler Nintendo XL park.  We’re waiting for the clouds to burn off and snow to soften up before heading up to hopefully log some big jump park footage!  Keep and eye out for some shots!

 

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Five more reasons why you should join us in Chamonix

“Terrain. Skiing. Snow. Food. Fun.” 

Terrain: You’ll get the chance to ski some of the most sought after mountains in the world. These are the lines think about all day and then haunt your dreams at night. They call to you, longing for your skis to grace their stupidly steep slopes. Think you’re up for the challenge?

Skiing: Whether you like to immerse yourself in trees, pound deep powder bowls, or huck yourself off 40 foot cliffs, Chamonix will not only accommodate your skiing, it will improve it. With the help of our professional ski instructors and guides, you’ll have a chance to progress your skiing in one of the most breathtaking environments in the world.

Snow: Do you like skiing powder? If you’ve never skied in France then your only answer should be, “I don’t know,” because you haven’t skied true, world class, French champagne pow pow. It’s kind of like floating through a cloud of puppies and kittens who are playing in a pool filled with cotton balls… If you’ve never experienced it, it might be for the best, because you’ll never want to ski “powder” in New England ever again.

Food: French Fries in sandwiches, mayo on everything, and the most phenomenal baked goods you’ve ever had. They even have pastries shaped like mountains… I mean this food is to DIE for and you get to eat it for every meal. If the first three reasons haven’t been enough to persuade you that Chamonix is worth it, keep in mind that people travel to France specifically for the cuisine… Although hopefully that is your secondary motivation.

Fun: I really don’t think I should have to explain this one but I will anyways… Remember that one day you had where you went out and did that thing that you really liked doing and all your friends were there and all of you were smiling and it was the best day ever? Well take that day, add the aforementioned French powder, food, and terrain, subtract having to worry about the kids or your significant others (unless they come too!), and multiply by 7 (for the number of days you’ll be there) and BAM, that’s how much fun this trip will be. Oh, I forgot about the outstanding wine and cheese selection, so square what ever your previous calculations were, and you’ll have the total amount of fun that you will have on your trip to Chamonix.

Now that you know how much fun you’ll have, CLICK HERE to come with us this year.

If all that isn’t enough proof as to why you should go to Chamonix, maybe this will help. Someone once told me a picture is worth 1,000 words… I don’t feel like doing the math, but all this footage was shot at 60 frames per second (i.e. 1 second=60 pictures), so I’ll just let this video explain what would take me a few days to type.

 

Boone Skis, Made in the USA

Boone is an awesome boutique ski brand based out of San Francisco, CA. The skis are all made using local materials and manufactured 100% in the USA. This helps Boone to guarantee high quality skis, without racking up crazy prices due to importing fees.

 

These skis don’t make sacrifices, trading one characteristic for another, but rather excel  across the board providing nimbleness, power, and predictability in virtually all of their products.

If you’re in the market for a new pair of sticks or just want to learn about one of the most interesting and engaging small ski companies, Boone is definitely worth your time!

Check out Boone skis doing some product testing at Squaw Valley by clicking here.

 

Holy Fluff Batman!

It’s been snowing since yesterday afternoon and it still hasn’t let up! Cruising around this morning was a blast, despite the powder-hungry crowd. The mountain has gotten at least a 10 inches in the past 20 hours, which made for a day loaded with light, soft snow, perfect for laying down some big turns and finally allowing for some tree skiing.

The mountain should be outstanding for the next few days; the good conditions we’ve enjoyed all week are only going to get better after this snowy blessing of goodness. With more fluff in the forecast, Stowe is going to be where it’s at in the coming weeks.

We tried to take a couple pictures today, but it was snowing so hard that it was very difficult to see… Instead of taking the time to really get the shot, we decided to just keep skiing!

Haters Gonna Hate…

It’s time for the Olympics yet again and as per usual, the media has been loaded with Olympic hype. This year, however, most of the stories have been more focused on Big Bad Russia, rather than spreading love for Team USA. Everyone seems so caught up in hating Russia, that they’ve forgotten to get stoked to watch the United States kick some ass.

Media outlets across the US and Europe have been pumping out stories like 15 signs that Russia is not very ready for the Olympics,’ and Winter Olympics a showcase for one man: Vladimir Putin. In the weeks leading up to the games I read only two or three articles about the athletes, where as articles like the ones I just mentioned seemed to pop up every 20 minutes.

I was watching the opening ceremonies last night at a bar, chatting with this couple sitting next to me. They chuckled at the names of the countries they didn’t know, hooted when a member of the Austrian team fell down, and seemed offended when NBC reporter Matt Lauer announced that one of the athletes carrying the torch was, “involved in a relationship with Russian president Vladimir Putin.”

However the most bizarre thing I heard came after the fifth Olympic snowflake failed to convert into a ring. The young woman on my right turned to her fiancé and said, “I bet whoever was in charge of that is going to end up dead tonight. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if they already are.”

Have we really been force-fed so many negative images of Russia in weeks leading up to the 2014 Winter Games that we’ve come to assume that a person who made a mistake is going to be killed? While I’ll agree Putin is a narcissistic homophobe, I think that the flak he and his country have taken in last few weeks has been over the top and against everything the Games are supposed to represent.

Citing problems like “the Olympic flame went out 44 times,” and “there may be loose terrorists,” as reasons for why Russia is not ready to host the Olympics is absurd. That’s like saying it’s Russia’s fault that wind exists and there are bad people in the world…

The Olympic Spirit is supposed to be about “building a peaceful and better world… which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play.”

We definitely haven’t seen that yet. Instead of focusing so much negative energy on Russia, let’s get some positive vibes going out to our athletes. As Tanner Hall once said, “HATERS= HAVING ANGER TOWARDS EVERYONE REACHING SUCCESS.” Is everyone just worried that Russia might put on a better show than we did in 2002? When it comes down to it, does it even really matter what country is hosting the games?

Now is not the time to take issue with Russian policy or its leader. For the next two weeks we should just focus on watching the best athletes in the world compete, then sit back and think, “How the f**k did he just do that?” These games are about coming together to celebrate incredible displays of talent and athleticism, not about politics. Let’s not revert to Red Scare era thoughts just because of where the Olympics are being held…

Sixty Seconds in Chamonix

Chamonix as seen through the eyes of professional ski guide and long time friend of Skiershop, Dean Decas. He joined us last year on our trip to France and showed everyone how it’s done.

Click the link to join Skiershop on this year’s trip to Chamonix! http://www.skiershop.com/chamonix-trip

SIA Denver- What does next season’s clothing look like?

One of the most interesting part of the SIA show every year is seeing what next years color pallet will look like. Clothing trends are a bit more volatile than ski technology, well I suppose ski graphics change every season also, but with clothing the aesthetics sort of are the product. So what’s next season look like? Let’s take a look.

Scott Outerwear

Scott Clothing

Trew, why yes, colors are a bit more subdued.

Trew. Notice the blue jacket to the lower left? You'll be seeing a whole lot more of that color way.

FlyLow, I really dig this. I can definitely see myself wearing this next season.

A bit more FlyLow. Note the slightly subdued pallet... and more blue!

Mammut, showing off their airbag pack also.

Mammut Women's freeride ensamble. Lookin' good.

This is a quick look at some of next season’s colors. Things are looking a bit ‘toned down’, a bit more subtle. I like it, what do you think?

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What We Use II

This week’s What We Use goes into skis, outerwear, and tips for keeping warm. We talked with Skiershop’s resident female bad-ass, Mar. She’ll give you insights into the gear she uses as she charges everything from gnarly backcountry lines to mellow groomers.

Q: How would you profile yourself as a skier?

A: I like to ski off-trail as much as I can, although this year that’s been pretty much impossible. I like to ski in the woods a lot, I like to ski bumps if I’m skiing on trail, but I also like to do off-resort touring. I’ve definitely gotten more into that over the last year or two. It’s nice to get away from the crowds a bit and get out there into the wild.

Q: What is your favorite ski and why?

A: My favorite ski right now is the ski that I own, which is the Blizzard Kabookie. I find that it’s very versatile; it does everything. I like to have a responsive and nimble ski, and the Kabookie is definitely both of those. It gives me the confidence to take lines through the trees that I might otherwise avoid. There are a few days where I’m out on the mountain and I think, ‘Gosh, I wish I had a different ski,’ but those days are few and far between. It’s fun, it’s pretty… not that that matters but it’s kind of a bonus to me! It makes me have a good time out there, and that’s what skiing is about.

Q: Since you like to get off the resort, do you like using an AT binding?

A: I do. I think there are sacrifices you have to make if you use an AT binding all the time, which currently I do, although I’d like to get away from that. I have the Tyrolia Adrenalin mounted on my Kabookies, which I really enjoy. With an AT binding you’re a lot higher up off the ski which makes going from edge to edge a bit more of a process, and it definitely adds weight to the ski. Also with a long, connected piece of material, you lose some of the ski’s flex pattern, although I think the Adrenalin gives the ski less of a dead spot under the binding. In an ideal world I’d have 10 pairs of skis all with different bindings. But if I’m on my skis and I have an opportunity to go do something that requires skins and AT bindings, I want to go do that. I don’t want to have to ski down, switch skis, and get back on the lift. I ski with a lot of people that don’t wait, so if I didn’t have an AT binding on my ski I’d end up getting left behind a lot.

Q: What do you look for in a boot?

A: Well, warmth for me is pretty much a non-issue because no matter what I do my feet are always cold. However I think that I’ve done the best I can to resolve that issue with the boot I’m skiing in now, the Dalbello Krypton women’s Kryzma. It’s got the Intuition I.D. liner, which has made a big difference for me. I love it. It’s warmer and it fits my foot well, since the whole thing is moldable. I really like the way the boot preforms. They Kryzma comes up higher on my calf than most women’s boots, which is great since I’m tall. This gives me a little more leverage and control over my skis. I like that they flex off the tongue as well as the progressive flex. You just don’t hit that stopping point when you’re really pushing the boot that you get with a traditional two-piece boot. I did put boot heaters in my boots for the first time this year. I feel like a little bit of a weenie… But at the same time it’s not so much for keeping my feet warm, it’s just to keep them from getting frostbite.

Q: How do you keep your legs warm?

A: I don’t (laughs). My legs are always cold when I’m skiing on trail, but I’m accepting of that. I wear long underwear underneath with a shell pant on top. My legs get hot when I’m skiing in the trees but then riding a lift back up they cool off. But I’d rather have a really breathable piece on the bottom to be able to get that heat and moisture off; because once you’re wet you’re screwed.

Q: As an aggressive skier, what do you do to keep your brain from being left on the slopes?

A: I wear a helmet. Every single time, and I never take it off. People think it’s a little dorky, but I really like having a helmet with a visor. Since I like skiing in the woods, I find that I can use the visor to deflect small branches which tends to help me keep my eyes open when I’m skiing through areas with lots of undergrowth… And keeping your eyes open when you’re skiing in the trees is usually a good idea!

Q: Gloves or mittens?

A: Gloves! I can’t STAND mittens! Mittens keep your hands so warm and are so appropriate for skiing in Vermont, but I can’t stand them. I don’t know why, I just really don’t like not having the dexterity. I feel really awkward in mittens. I really like the Mountain Hardwear Jalapeno glove, which unfortunately they don’t make for women… However, I can use a men’s small. They use DryQ which makes them super breathable, so you can hike in them and even if you’re sweating buckets, they’re still warm on the way down.

Q: What’s the most important part of your body to keep warm and how do you do it?

A: My hands. My core is pretty easy to warm back up, but when my hands get cold, they get cold fast, and when my hands get cold, I get grouchy. How do I keep them warm? I ski harder. I ski bumps if I’m skiing on trail or I ski trees if I’m able to. It’s so much more work and that keeps me a lot warmer.

Q: What is the most essential piece of Après ski-wear to own?

A: I think a good pair of Après footwear is the most important thing to have with you. I usually bring my Sorel boots, because they are very warm. When you take your ski boots off your feet are usually pretty thankful, and to put them in something really wonderful and warm and happy and fuzzy is very enjoyable. Besides skiing it’s usually the best part of my day!

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