The Ski And Snowboard Season

Last modified on November 5th, 2009

It’s no secret that I’m not really big into winter sports. I’ve always liked them, I’ve just never been an active participant. As a kid, I went a few times with my parents back when they were still together I believe, but I didn’t really go all that much in high school or university. In fact, I’ve only really been snowboarding once, and that was Dec 31st, 1995 I believe (I remember because I was so insanely sore for the following New Year’s Day).

In university my friend Dustin used to go night skiing all the time. I always though it was pretty cool that he would just load his car up in the evening, disappear for a while, and by the time he was back, and a few beers that were ice cold in the fridge waiting. I have a gym pass in Chilliwack here, and I go from time to time, but I’d like to do something a bit more active in the winter, and skiing/snowboarding seems to be a pretty good idea.

I’m about to replace the tires on my car, and I’m actually thinking about getting a performance all-weather tire (which is different than an all season tire — all-weather tires use winter tread styles but use all-season rubber, so you get a hybrid of both). Putting true winter tires on my car would be great from a “don’t crash into things” perspective, but not on the wallet. So I think the all-weather tires would be a good compromise (since my car is pretty crappy in the rain, and absolutely horrible in the snow right now). But really, my car is made for this kind of stuff, so I’d love to finally start to use it in that capacity.

From Chilliwack, getting up to Hemlock or Manning would be fairly easy on the weekends (about an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes normally). Right now, I’m leaning towards a season’s pass at Hemlock. I doubt I’d make it up during the week very often, so I’m probably just going to get an evening pass for the weekends if I get one (Thurs to Sat). If I want to do a full day, I can always pay for that when I go. But really, I could easily take off early on Thursdays and head up for the evening once and a while. Plus Friday/Saturday nights are open game as well. Hemlock seems more appealing to me since it’s accessible from Vancouver as well, which means I could meet some friends up there from time to time. And from what I remember during the odd school trips as a kid, it was a pretty decent hill.

A season’s pass for night skiing/snowboarding at Hemlock is only around $220 I think, so that’s not bad at all. I’m sure I could rent for a bit and figure out what I like, and then maybe get something. But it might be a fun way to pass time in the winter while getting a bit of exercise.

6 responses to “The Ski And Snowboard Season”

  1. Tyler says:

    We picked up a 1 day/week flex pass for Grouse this year. It was $149 which is a crazy deal. Cypress due to its ties to 2010, was a disappointment to us so we won’t be getting out season pass there this year. We’re looking to try out some of the other mountains too such as SilverStar, BigWhite, Mt.Washington etc. We’re also putting on new winter tires too as they are definitely better than all-season ones!

    Are you going to do Skiing or Snowboarding? I snowboard, and this will be my 3rd season doing so. I LOVE it! A bit of a learning curve at the beginning. Once I got the basis, and my muscles learned I love it so much more. I’ve heard skiing is easier at first but takes a longer time to get better, whereas snowboarding is hard the first couple times then its easier as you progress. One of my instructors said after level 3 you can easily teach snowboarding to others. This year I’m up to the level 5 area I guess. But we’ll see, I too have been doing more exercises so hopefully it’s even more fun.

    I had a chat with one of the reps for Hemlock and the road is all paved now. No need for a 4×4 in the extreme winter he said, though the RCMP, if they are up there, require you have at least winter tires or chains. Though Hemlock would be cool to try out one day too, they’ve expanded their ski area.

    Ok I’ll stop writing a blog post here 😉 If you do go up to one of the local mountains, let me know! Would like to meet up with ya for some snow action!

  2. Keira-Anne says:

    I don’t really recommend the “self-taught” method. It’s not impossible, but I find that snowboarding can have a pretty steep learning curve. Take a few lessons or grab a well-ridden friend (you know what I mean). It would be well worth your time and money.

  3. Duane Storey says:

    Yah, I’ll probably take a few lessons, or get a few people to give me some lessons. I managed to completely rock the snowplow action on the board last time.

  4. Keira-Anne says:

    Nice – the trick to carving is to understand the physics of it. Your back foot is your rudder, so like driving stick, find your happy place and it’s all downhill from there. 🙂

  5. VancityAllie says:

    You should definitely do Hemlock!

    However, I just wanted to suggest that you go for a day pass instead of a night pass for the weekends… reasons being…

    – It’s a lot icier (and colder) at night… this is not much fun for a beginner and definitely not fun by yourself. Also more likely to get injured on the hardpack
    – Hemlock is one of those places that is best enjoyed with fresh snow (powder)… this is usually only available in the mornings 🙂
    – If friends come out to visit you, chances are they will want to go during the day instead of the night
    – Hemlock has pretty limited night runs
    – It’s not that much more expensive for a day pass 🙂

    Keira is right though, better not to do the self-taught method 🙂 I’d be happy to teach you and I’m sure many of your friends will too! I bet lessons are pretty cheap at Hemlock as well.

  6. Tyler says:

    Yea like Keira and Allie mentioned, take lessons. I wouldn’t have been able ride without them. Granted all my friends ski and don’t ride. My sister had her friends try and teach her on the top of Whistler (one was a skier the other couldnt figure out a best way to teach her). She snowplowed all the way down. Her friend was like.. Stand up and go! Yea good advice 😉

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