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Old 08-25-2010, 01:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Newb questions about gear

Hi I'm trying to organise a snowboarding trip for myself and a few friends. We're all complete newbs.
Was just wondering if any of you guys could let me know exactly what gear we will be needing and somewhere we can pick it up relatively cheap. We will be renting boards and boots so it's mainly the clothing I'm after. Also anyone have any idea of a good hotel or chalet in Val D'Isere? Any help would be much appreciated.
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Old 08-25-2010, 02:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fundamental View Post
Hi I'm trying to organise a snowboarding trip for myself and a few friends. We're all complete newbs.
Was just wondering if any of you guys could let me know exactly what gear we will be needing and somewhere we can pick it up relatively cheap. We will be renting boards and boots so it's mainly the clothing I'm after. Also anyone have any idea of a good hotel or chalet in Val D'Isere? Any help would be much appreciated.
A lot of resorts rent out gear like pants, jackets, helmets, etc. as well as the board and boots so you might want to check that out. The typical line up of gear for a boarder as listed below.

Board
Bindings
Boots
snowboarding/ski socks
if its real cold. First Layer pants and top
Snowboard pants
Snowboard Jacket
Gloves or Mitts
If its real cold : neck gator/face protector
Helmet(preferred for newbs) / beanie
Goggles
Other suggestion but not going to keep you from the hill are : sunscreen, a snowboard tool, goggle chamois, whistle, trail map, radio/cellphone, a snack bar, cash to tip the instructor(check local customs first), tissues (runny noses suck and not everyone knows how to do a snot rocket)


sites you can hit are
www.evogear.com
www.the-house.com
www.ebay.com
or use a google search www.google.com


P.S. if you never/evers to the sport I suggest a lesson for at least the first day.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If you aren't sure how cold natured you are, or what the temps will be when you ride.. its best to go with the 3-layers.

Base layer - Essential. Your base layer is usually a skin-tight layer made out of a plastic/polyester material that will wick sweat away from your skin and dry quickly. Popular brands are Underarmour coldgear, Hot chilis, layer 8, etc. It is usually a BAD idea to use a cotton base layer because it will absorb sweat and retain the liquid for the entire day, which means you'll have to endure wet, clammy clothing against your skin the entire day. Expect to pay between $20-$50 for a base layer shirt or pants.

Mid layer - Optional. The mid layer is used to help keep heat in, while still being 'breathable'. Polyester fleece jackets are the most common types of clothing/fabric used for the torso. Some people like to use hoodies or sweatshirts. Again, it is better to avoid cotton so that the mid layer doesn't absorb and retain any sweat or melted snow. The mid layer doesn't have to be water-resistant, but some people use their mid layers as cold weather jackets when they aren't on the slopes.
Warm-up pants or 'track suit' pants are what are usually used for mid layers on the legs. A mid layer fleece will cost anywhere from $10-$80 depending on the brand.

Outer-layer/Shell - Essential. These are the snowboarding (or skiing) pants and jackets that you'll find at a ski shop or on websites that carry snowboarding clothing. The better brands will have ratings for how waterproof the item is and how breathable the item is. See this sticky for explanations on wind/water resistance. The purpose of the shell is to keep the wind, water, and snow out. Better brands have extra features like zippers that open panels allowing more air to flow in on warmer days, extra pockets, lift pass holders, goggle compartments, built in chamois or balaclavas, etc. It is usually better to NOT buy a shell that has thermal insulation built into it so that you aren't stuck with a really hot jacket on a warm, sunny day (layer up for warmth instead).
As a beginner, you want a jacket/pant shell combination that is at least 15k waterproof with a snow skirt and fully taped seams/zippers. This is because as a beginner you will be spending a LOT of time picking yourself up out of the snow. Nothing is worse than being wet & cold on the side of a windy mountain.
Shells will cost between $50-$120 for a jacket or pair of pants. You can usually save some bucks by buying clearance from last season.

Gloves - Do yourself a favor and get a decent pair of waterproof gloves with removable liners. Decent gloves will run you ~$45-$65. I wouldn't bother with the wrist guards unless you are particularly clumsy or plan to spend a lot of time at the terrain park.

Goggles - Perfect goggles are hard to find. Ideal goggles seal on your face low without pinching your nostrils (which is annoying when you're breathing heavily), offer good visibility and do not fog up easily (and clear quickly if they do get fogged). Get either an additional lens or additional pair of goggles so that you can swap out depending on whether you ride on a sunny day or a cloudy day. Unfortunately, you probably won't figure out what kind of goggles are best for you until you've put in a lot of time riding. Goggles cost between $40-$200+.

Optional Gear -
• I would recommend a balaclava to protect your face from the elements (wind, snow, sun). $15-$40
• I would recommend a helmet to protect your head from hard slams (especially on hidden ice patches). 'snow/ski' helmets are ridiculously priced. Even a wal-mart skateboard helmet will absorb enough impact energy to protect you. $30-$180.

Backpack - handy for holding extra goggles, snacks, and a drink/drink bladder. Convenient for at least one person in your party to have one

Those are the basics. You'll figure out the rest after your first trip

Last edited by Tarzanman; 08-25-2010 at 03:43 PM.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks a lot.
Would you recommend renting pants/jackets/gloves as well as boards and boots? It would be a lot easier but I keep imagining that they would be filthy and stinky. I really couldn't handle that.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I'd recommend buying all of those items and boots. Rental boots work, but having your own pair is way better, comfort wise and stink wise. At least it's your own stink. Outwear deals are not too hard to come by. I'd look for items that have at least 10k waterproofing. Gore-Tex is nice, but it also costs more. Don't forget a flask for your favorite poison and a small case for your weed...
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Especially in the learning phase icy days or "go for it" days the use of padded shorts and wristguards under the outer shell...to keep riding after you smash youl tailbone on that icy patch you missed... and keep riding.
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Well I used to BMX so I'm used to dealing with a few falls

Thanks for all the info guys.

Can i bug you one last time and pick your brains for a reliable tour operator/hol provider. I want something thats just all-in inc passes etc. I don't really have the time to keep pi55ing around with this person and that person.

thanks.
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fundamental View Post
Thanks a lot.
Would you recommend renting pants/jackets/gloves as well as boards and boots? It would be a lot easier but I keep imagining that they would be filthy and stinky. I really couldn't handle that.
It depends on your budget for the trip. If you think you will have more than just this one trip over the next three years buying a lot of your own gear makes sense. If this is the only trip for the next three years or you don't think you will pick it up on a regular basis then renting makes sense. I listed a rough price range for gear.

In USD()= suggest price point
Board - 150.00- 1400.00 (300.00)
Bindings 90.00 - 350.00 (150.00)
Boots 90.00 - 400.00 (160-250.00)
snowboarding/ski socks( 15.00ea)
if its real cold. First Layer pants and top (fig 30-40.00 per piece)
Snowboard pants 80.00- 350.00 ( 150.00)
Snowboard Jacket 90- 600.00 (150.00)
Gloves or Mitts 20-120.00 ( 45.00)
If its real cold : neck gator/face protector 10.00-60.00 (25.00)
Helmet(preferred for newbs) / beanie 10.00- 300.00 (60.00)
Goggles - 20.00- 200.00 ( 40.00)
figure if you rent board boots and bindings that gear set-up will be around the 450.00-600.00

you can cut into this by looking for sales, buying used, using gear you already have. My recommendation is if you think you will keep at it longer thatn this one trip( i believe you will love it) then buy the gear and look at more of the intermediate gear as it is made better and will last longer.

If you decide on boots make sure they feel nice and snug with no pressure points.
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
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With snowboarding, I would buy all of the clothing, especially boots. Except for gloves, the one thing that will instantly ruin your entire day or trip are boots that don't fit well. On my last trip, one guy grabbed his roommate's boots instead of his own. They didn't fit his feet... he quit early that day and spent ~$250 on new boots that night at a shop.

Your feet need to be comfortable and warm. You will be on them all day. Even if you cheap out on all your other gear, do not cheap out on boots. Get something that is very comfortable. I lucked out and found some that fit me well for $80.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fundamental View Post
Thanks a lot.
Would you recommend renting pants/jackets/gloves as well as boards and boots? It would be a lot easier but I keep imagining that they would be filthy and stinky. I really couldn't handle that.
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Old 08-26-2010, 11:22 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Good info. I have a plan now and am about to tackle the booking. Thanks a lot for the help guys.
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