Sk’ride (ski and ride) into the future with this science fiction now! gear. Hoverboard not included…yet.
Snowboard footwear doesn’t get much more comfy and secure than the Ride Insano Focus Boa boots. Twist the dials on the front and side to independently tighten the top and bottom for a customized fit. Then go all insano in the membrane-o on the slopes. $300, ridesnowboards.com
The light, low-profile Smith Vantage Audio helmet protects you from dying…of boredom. That’s because a built-in, Bluetooth-compatible Skullcandy headset plays your tunes and lets you take phone calls, leaving your hands free to flip off anyone who tells you to turn down the volume. $340, smithoptics.com
It’s not that you’re not a great snowboarder; it’s just…you fall too damn much. Volcom’s Throttle snowboard pants are on your side, though. With a two-layer shell, fully taped seams, a reinforced back hem, and a “stone butt patch,” they’ll keep the cold stuff out, even if you can’t keep your ass off the ground. $190, volcom.com
Skip cluttering your garage with sets of skis for every condition and instead go for the one-ski-slays-all K2 SideStash. A rocker shape will keep you floating on powder in the backcountry, while a squared-off tail will let you rip through crud at the resort. Use that storage space for beer! $950, k2skis.com
Ceramic: not just for pottery anymore. The 750-fill goose down in the lightweight Powderhorn Gunpowder jacket is treated with ceramic yarn to boost heat retention. And pit zips will prevent the après bunnies from raising your body temp too much. $395, powderhornworld.com
The Marmot Summit gloves feature a breathable insert that’s sweat- wicking and waterproof.
Plus, it blocks heat loss from the back of your hand. But our fave tech feature is the one-handed draw cords, which allow you to get ‘em on fast and avoid lift-line faceplants. $100, marmot.com
Designed by Jeremy Jones, the gnarliest big mountain guy in the sport, the Jones Snowboards Solution is one of the first boards to split in two for backcountry use while still rocking magne-traction-subtle ridges on the sidewalls that help you turn and burn in dicey and icy conditions. $800, jonessnowboards.com
THE RESORT REPORT
The cheat sheet that'll help you rock the winter.
Lake Tahoe: Gambler's Paradise
Why go: Endless variety--steeps at Squaw and Kirkwood, park and pipe at Sierra-at-Tahoe, 5,000 acres of everything at Heavenly—and glimmering casinos, of course.
What’s new: At Squaw, freestyle gold medalist Jonny Moseley will lead free tours of his favorite runs.
Slope secret: Lesser-known Alpine Meadows delivers frozen goods without the hype, says Tahoe resident (and Olympic ski-crosser) Errol Kerr. “My favorite run is Beaver Bowl. It’s a big, wide-open 1,000-foot bowl—like a mini-Alaska.”
Après right: “Check out Vex Nightclub at Harrah’s,” says Kerr. It’s got suspended walkways for the go-go dancers. You can watch ’em all night.”
Vermont: Cold Comfort
Why go: Sure, there’s fluffy powder in the West. That’s why the toughest U.S. skiers and riders hail from the East. Vermont = mas macho, and its 41 resorts will raise your stoke as they freeze your face off.
What’s new: Hit Stratton for the redesigned Boarder Cross course, then nearby Okemo, which has Broken Arrow, a new terrain park with natural features.
Slope secret: “At Stratton, take the gondola up and get on Drifter,” advises gold medalist Ross Powers. “Off to the right you can sneak into the woods and find a hidden terrain park.”
Après right: “During the U.S. Open in March, all the bars are going off,” says Powers. “Hit the Green Door Pub for pool, bands, girls, and wings.”
Colorado: Bunny Slopes
Why go: Rocky Mountain all-stars like Aspen and Breckenridge boast beautifully boozy nightspots—complete with well-heeled hotties—on the back of top-rated backcountry, sidecountry, and parks.
What’s new: Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, and Keystone roll out Epic Mix, a smartphone app that lets you track vertical feet skied.
Slope secret: “Ride the Imperial Lift at Breck and hike Peak 8. You’ll find enough powder to choke a donkey,” says X Games medalist Colby West.
Après right: “Breck’s the first big area you’ll hit on I-70 from Denver. When you’re done, the college hotties will be waiting for you in town,” says West. “Ply ’em with cheap drinks at Mi Casa. The Mexican joint, not my house.”
Wyoming: Wide Open
Why go: In 2007–08 La Niña dumped a ridiculous 700 inches of snow on Jackson Hole, and it’s returning this year. You’ll see more fresh powder here than on Whitney Houston’s coffee table
What’s new: The brand-new Stash terrain park at Jackson Hole boasts four runs and
50 features—including a ridable chain-saw-carved moose!
Slope secret: “Hike 15 minutes above the Bridger Gondola and traverse out skier’s left along Sheridan Ridge. Go out the gate and drop into Crags. Not too steep, plenty of trees, and guaranteed good snow,” says shred legend Travis Rice.
Après right: “Hit Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. Look for newbies who don’t realize the altitude versus drinking situation.”