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Snow Skiing and Boarding Eastern vs. Western Mountains: Things to consider

October 12, 2021

If you are planning a snow ski or boarding trip this winter, there are many options for vacation locations from which to choose.

Skiing and snowboarding tips for choosing the right location

Our store is located in Florida.  Many customers are surprised to learn that we have a snow ski and boarding department thinking it wouldn’t be profitable. The Tampa Bay area on the other hand has a number of ski/boarding clubs.  Some of the largest in the country.

These adventurers outfit themselves, here then travel to the snow.  Read on to learn of their options.

Eastern Resorts:

The closest ski destinations to Florida are located in North Carolina which is reasonable driving distance. This eliminates the hassle of transporting skis and boards on airlines.  Car rental is unnecessary as well.

Eastern mountains tend to be smaller than western equivalents leading to more crowded traffic on the slopes and lifts. To get to larger mountains, one would have to travel further north to Virginia, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. Conditions will include a mix of natural and man-made snow. With elevations being lower, there is less issue with altitude sickness for Floridians, but conditions may not be optimal.

Eastern slopes tend to be icier.  Deep powder is non-existent.  Skiers use narrow skis to make the turns on the icier conditions. You can get that downhill thrill but to get better ski conditions one may want to consider heading west.

Western Resorts:

Most of our customers choose western destinations.  Western mountains get the greatest average snowfallin the United States.  With more snow comes better ski/boarding conditions.  This is where you will find the powder that make the slopes such a dream.  You will want to consider wider skis to float in the powder snow.  The mountains are bigger and provide more room for everyone.

Being that these destinations are further, our customers must book flights to get there.  Once upon a time, it was easier to get your equipment to the resort.  Airlines have made this more difficult.  Skis or board bags will often count as one piece of the checked baggage allowance, and Overweight charges may apply.

To avoid this hassle, many of our customers have chosen to rent, but rental boots are often not a good fit.  This effects both the comfort and control the user gets.  As a compromise, consider buying boots with the help of an experienced boot fitter. The boots will be just right for your feet.  You will have more control and have a better time on the slopes.  Boots will be easier to fit in your luggage and skis and board can be rented at the resort.  Be sure to contact the resort to ensure rentals will be available for you.  You don’t want to get there only to find all rentals have been taken

Get on the slopes:

Wherever you decide to go, be sure to plan and prepare early.  The effects of the pandemic still has supply lines a bit tied up.  Specialty outdoor retail buyers are having a hard time getting everything they have ordered.  This will mean shops will be limited to what is on hand. they have. Be flexible, as they may not have the exact model of any particular product you want. Don’ wait till the week before you leave, or you will be hunting for apparel and gear on your vacation instead of out on the slopes.

If you have any questions, we are here for you.  Call 727-576-4169 or email with your questions.