Guest Elisabeth Toft (aka Elevated Locals) is a new contributor to My Worst Advice. A really rad chick living in NYC and shredding mountains whenever she can she gives us some of her best “worst” advice for snowboarding.
Back in the Day
After skiing for 6 years as a kid it was decided that I was to become a snowboarder. Snowboards were fairly new and my dad (a ski instructor) got me a board according to my height, 5’8.
Back then, you would pick the length of your skis based on how tall you were (among other things). This was not quite the deal with snowboards in 1993. I was 11 and I was learning to ride on a 167 Rossignol.
The board was almost as tall as I was, and I could barely make it move. (nowadays I am still 5’8 and I ride a 155). My friends called it the tank.
It did make me strong, and it taught me that if you love something on the wrong equipment, then you love it sooooo much more when you get the right equipment. Go figure.
Worst Advice for Snowboarding
Don’t wear a ton of mascara when you are learning to ride in a blizzard because you think your instructor is really cute.
You’ll just end up looking like a sad, wet, red nosed clown.
Although, you may get a free beer from the Juggalo (Insane Clown Posse fan) with the huge smoking pick-up truck parked next to your dad.
I’ve been riding for 21 years now and if you asked those that I ride with about my best/worst snow advice you would probably get a lot of riding over rocks stories. You would hear a lot of “and the only way out was to ride on sagebrush.”
Some “I know where we are, you just gotta clear that gap” stories.
And maybe a few “Oh, you can definitely fit” tree stories.
I admit it – I hate staying on the runs.
Any time there is even a possibility of the bowls being open or the trees having enough coverage- I’m in there.
“Your Board is a Tool Not A Jewel”
That can be a little harsh on your equipment, so people are always talking about the bottoms of their board or skis and how wrecked they are after a day with me. My response is “You’ll remember those lines. You’ll remember how fun it was to make your own way by reading the hill and the snow, and executing everything just right. You can stay on the trails when you’re 80. Then you’ll reminisce about hopping from snow patch to snow patch in the spring while drooling all over your face. Your board is a tool not a jewel!”
Yeah – high five me – nailed it
K – I don’t really say that, I usually mutter whatever man and then take that person’s beer and drink it.
I try not go into overbearing-you’ll–thank-me-later-mom-holier-than-thou rants in regards to the mountain, you can’t make someone feel how you feel. It might not be that sacred to them. Also, I usually just forget what I’m talking about and wander off.
Just Be You.
With snowboarding, it’s all about your own style. You can ride however you want. You can butter every muffin you see.
You can jib from tree to tree to your buddy’s head.
You can only ride tram laps and refuse to talk to anyone because you’re tooo siiick. Snowboarding is totally self-serving, but it’s also like, seriously the best thing ever. Like ever.
It’s you and the mountain, and its beyond spiritual.
Don’t get wrapped up in the gear or the tricks- just go ride.
One Last Thought…
Oh, one more really important thing –
Here’s some advice that I constantly need to remind myself.
If you have a really big head, and it’s heavy this could be helpful.
I need to remember that when I’m siting down on the chairlift and I bend over to loosen my bindings my giant head could project me forward and make me fall off the lift.
Yup, that’s a thing.
I mean, it’s only happened to me once, but it was in front of a lot of people and it wasn’t like I was 6. It was two years ago.
Good thing I forget things so easily.
See you on the hill!