The Back To Snow Checklist

Chances are you’re already mentally ready for the snowboard season to begin. Hell, you’ve probably been mentally ready since the chairlifts closed last spring. Unfortunately, your equipment hasn’t been feeding itself a steady diet of videos and magazines for the last few months and might need some work. Now is a good time to dig everything out and give it the once over.

Stickers are very important. Photo: Kurt Hoy.

If you’re getting a new snowboard this season, skip over to the Buyers Guide , make sure to get the dopest thing there and only read the parts of this story that apply to you. If not, get out your board (if you’ve been sleeping with it, maybe just move it onto the floor), and clean it off. Check for any defects, such as delaminated edges. If you want to send anything back for manufacturer defects, do it now, and you may even have it in time for the season. If everything checks out, get it tuned! Even if your edges are sharp and the base is fast, chances are rust has managed to accumulate along the metal. Sharp edges and rust equal tetanus, and tetanus will do very little to help you learn rodeo flips. Use some base cleaner or scrape the base to get rid of any dust or dirt, then treat yourself to a fresh coast of wax. The closer to opening day you wax, the faster you’ll go.

Now your board will ride like new, but everyone will know it’s the same one you rode last year. Get out a razor blade and treat yourself to a new sticker job. Do it right and remove the old stickers first so it lasts beyond the first day. You can also give your board a paint job or maybe even some base tats.

Next, brush off your boots and put them on. Make sure there are no strange bumps or weird pressure points. A certain East Coast icon is rumored to have ridden an entire day with a dead mouse in the toe of his boot because he skipped this important step. Make sure they still tie up tight. If not, they should have come with thin foam pads, which can be inserted under the foot beds now to tighten them up. Get new laces or invest in custom foot beds that will make them ride like new. Most shoe stores sell waterproofing spray for leather, and a coat of it won’t hurt your cause.