As the temperatures in the Northern hemisphere drop, we trade surf for snow, and what better place to be for winter than Europe. Not just for the rich and famous, snow sports open their chilly legs wide for all to enjoy.
We are talking snowy alpine peaks, warm apre bars, daggy one-piece suits, ski goggles, and the ridiculous tan lines that come with them. Within this pristine pass-time, however, there is some serious rivalry; skiers vs. snowboarders.
So we’ve put together a comparison of the smartly-suited, elegant skier and the baggy-clothed, chilled-out, snowboarder.
Slimmer pants, a fitted ski jacket, eisbar beanie, and matching scarf and gloves, matching goggles. More plain and simple colors.
Knees and legs
Ice and bumpy terrain, flatter areas. Easier to learn but harder to master.
Nordics created skis to get around, go hunting, and for military ops.
Alpine, Freestyle, Park, Nordic, Military, and others
GNAR – Gaffney’s Numerical Assessment of Radness (see the movie of the same name)
Snow-bunny – an inexperienced female skier who’s more into sitting at the cafe with a coffee looking cute than actually getting better.
Snow scum – boarders who don’t give a damn about the rules aka snowboarders
Bros and Big air – friends and a good deal of time in the air during a jump
Dicks on Sticks – Usually heard coming from a snowboarder's mouth
Ski-Bum – Seasonal workers who work more on a hangover than they do for money.
Apre Ski – Means “After Ski”; copious drinking after riding
Baggy pants, loud clothing, beanie with bright colors, and pom-poms in all the right places. Backpack for beers.
Wrists, collar bones, and knees
Picking up the opposite sex. Powder and tree runs, jumping off shit. Harder to learn.
Invented by Sherman Poppen as a toy for his daughter, or maybe a surfer just got lost
Park riding, Jibbing, Freeriding, Freestyle and Freecarve
Pow – Deep snow, the reason to get out of bed in the morning
“Dude, that was epic pow!”
Shreddin’/Ridin’/Cruisin’ – to ride
Basically the snow equivalent of surfer lingo
Stomp/Bail – succeed or fail at a landing
“She just stomped that landing.”
Jibbing – sliding over objects that aren’t snow (eg. trees, rails, a skier)
Taco – to fall over a fence/rail so your body folds in half.
Scorpion – Falling forward so your legs come behind and hit you on the back of the head
Ski-Bum – See Skier's terms
Wanks on Planks – A response from Skiers when referred to as Dicks on Sticks.
So there you have it, it’s now up to you to decide which team you are on; a boarder dude or dudette or a skier bro or bro-ette… and then get to the snow.
One thing we know for sure that both sides have in common is the love of Apre Ski, a daily ritual in which they both unclip, loosen up and pickle themselves in a wondrous mix of Jagermeister, beer, schnapps, mulled wine, and pretty much anything they can get their hands on.
No matter the side, you will be up on the bar dancing arm in arm with your forgotten rival singing songs you don’t understand.
If you are looking for a snow holiday with more bang for your buck, try Andorra on for size. This tiny tax-free principality sandwiched between France and Spain offers great snow and smaller crowds.
For weekend trips leaving from Barcelona, check out Stoke Travel. Be sure to stock up on tax-free booze while you’re there, especially the 90% unnamed alcohol that will get you on your way in one swig.
A wicked weekend skiing and boarding with Stoke Travel in Andorra only two hours from Barcelona. For a free beanie book with the code BACKPACKER (valued at €15)