Despite my blog post at the start of the month claiming that if you want to travel on a budget you need to travel hand luggage only, there are obviously some trips where that is just not possible.  A ski/snowboarding trip is one such example, unless that is, you plan to hire absolutely EVERYTHING in resort … and lets face it, that doesn’t exactly constitute budget either.

So in the case of snow travels, it actually pays to buy that extra luggage and take you own gear.  Personally, I have always gone 1x hold luggage between 2 persons (unless hold luggage is included in the price of the flight) so that cost are still kept on the low side.  With little over a week until I hit the slopes for the first time this season, I thought I might just give you a quick peak as to what I shall be taking with me, and carrying on my back around the mountains.

whats in my snowboarding bag

1. Jack Wolfskin coat

I must be honest with you, I actually received this coat from Jack Wolfskin on the basis of conducting a review – perk of the blog.  Normally I take reviews with a pinch of salt, but I have to say that this jacket has proved immense.  Its lightweight, not overly padded, but that works for me as I get uber hot real quick when boarding.  It has handy pockets for storing lift passes, vents at the sides, a hood and is obviously water proof.  Great for hiking, but perfect for me when boarding.  It looks quite nice too.

2.  Mask

Bought on the top of one of Bosnia’s Olympic mountains, and thank god the shop took Mastercard.

Before Bosnia I had never used a mask, I didn’t like the feel of them, how they took away some of my peripheral vision.  I also wear glasses anyway, so fitting a mask over my specs was never going to be comfortable.  But then I boarded in Bosnia, and the snow came down hard.  I couldn’t see 5 yards in front of me and the snow was blinding me, gushing straight into my eyes at force.  At first I tried to just deal with it and solider through, but then it reached a point where I was genuinely worried I might smash into someone else, or that because I was going so slowly that someone would come crashing into the back of me.  Lesson learnt, in the interest of safety my mask in now always in my rucksack and on the mountain with me at all times.

3. Sunglasses (prescription)

Whilst on the slopes I’m not always falling flat on my face, there are times when I like to sit down, order a beer and stuff my face with a bratwurst.  In the interest of looking cool (ish) and saving my eyes from some kind of glare burn (is that even a thing?), I always have my sunnys with me.

They would actually look quite cool to board in, but I’m scared of face planting and breaking them to be honest, especially as I’ve just put them on order so they’ll be brand new by the time I reach France.

4.  Wrist support gloves

Gloves because its blimmin’ cold, wrist supported gloves because I was a very accident prone child, and as a result have a very brittle left arm and wrist.  My wrists can take a bit of a battering on the slopes if I have a bad day.  They’re effectively my shock absorbers if I tumble, so I want to look after them as best I can.  These gloves have a support bar which runs right from the back of my hand, all the way up to the top of my forearm.  They took a bit of getting used to at first, and can be nightmare to get on in the first place, but as of yet I’m not suffered an arm injury whilst boarding, so they’re in the bag.

5.  Ankle and knee supports

See above – accident prone and a very brittle right leg.  Not sure boarding on one leg is entirely an option, best to strap up and try give my right knee and ankle all the help I can.

6. First aid kit

See above – accident prone … plus general mountain safety needs to be taken into consideration.

7.  GoPro + accessories

The future of blogging is video, or at least that’s what I’ve been told.  I actually really enjoy making snowboarding videos, and on snow is one of few scenarios where I don’t actually mind being on camera, even when falling over and looking a tad silly.  Check out a few of my GoPro videos below and let me know what you think.

Accessories wise I pack a head strap mount and what is sadly now know as a Selfie stick.

8.  Iphone

GPS and Instagram capabilities are a must at the top of the mountain, plus in case of emergencies a phone is really quite handy!

Added to the above that I do not take my dslr with me when boarding, alongside my GoPro, my Iphone is my main source of photography as it’s easier to waterproof an Iphone than a dslr.

Bansko

Bansko

9.  Water-2-go bottle

A new addition to the bag admittedly, but the water-2-go bottle is a product I am looking forward to testing whilst in France and Slovenia.  Water and food are always needed when on the slopes, you need to keep but your energy and hydration levels up.  I’ve been told that with this bottle I can pack snow into its filter and that nice clean water will be produced.  Beats having to pay extortionate sums for a bottle from one of the slope side bars, plus I’m unlikely to run out now right?

10. Documents – EU welfare card + insurance

Last, but by no means least!  My travel insurance documents could be the most important thing in my bag.

Thankfully, I have never had an accident whilst travelling which has required medical attention (or I have just soldiered on when I really should have gone to the Dr’s).  Others haven’t been so lucky though, and I know the risks.  Travel insurance which includes winter sports extends to more than just your welfare though, it covers you if the slopes close, if you hire gear is stolen or broken.  It’s really important to have, and doesn’t have to cost the earth.

Obviously my EU welfare card comes with me because I will be snowboarding in the EU this year.  If ever the dream of boarding the Rockies somewhere comes true, it can stay at home.

snowboarding equipment

neil_bansko

Bansko Bulgaria

So that’s it really, just a quick look into some of the key items that come snowboarding with me.  No massively shocking items in there, but hopefully the odd bit of helpful info.