Have you ever strapped into your snowboard and headed to the slopes only to find out that the resort you were planning on hitting won’t allow snowboarding?
It’s a frustrating experience that many snowboarders have faced, and the Western ski resort in question is at the heart of this controversy. In this post, we’ll take a deep dive into the provocative policy that upholds a no-snowboarding rule at this resort. You’ll learn about the history of snowboarding at ski resorts, the reasons behind the decision to exclude snowboarders, alternative ski resorts that do allow snowboarding, and tips for those visiting ski resorts that don’t allow our beloved snowboards. So, grab your board and let’s dive in.
The History of Snowboarding at Ski Resorts
Skiing and snowboarding have always been two sports that seem to be at odds with one another. While skiers have been hitting the slopes for decades, snowboarding emerged onto the scene in the late 1960s and early 1970s as a new and exciting way to navigate the winter terrain. At first, many ski resorts were hesitant to allow snowboarding on their slopes, dismissing it as a passing fad or even dangerous.
However, as more and more snowboarders took to the mountains each year, ski resorts began to take notice. In the 1980s and 1990s, snowboarding exploded in popularity, and many ski resorts realized that they could no longer ignore it. They began opening up terrain parks and half pipes specifically designed for snowboarders, and some even went so far as to dedicate entire mountains to the sport.
Despite this acceptance, there were still a few ski resorts that refused to allow snowboarding on their slopes. Reasons for this varied, with some citing safety concerns, while others simply didn’t want to accommodate a new and unfamiliar sport. In any case, this decision created controversy among winter sports enthusiasts and even led to boycotts of these resorts by the snowboarding community.
Today, although most ski resorts allow snowboarding, the history behind the animosity between the two sports still lingers at a select few resorts. These decisions and policies often have long-standing histories that are rooted in personal opinion and experience. Understanding the history of snowboarding and skiing’s relationship at these select resorts can give you insight into why some may still refuse to allow snowboarding.
The Decision to Ban Snowboarding: Pros and Cons
When ski resorts started opening their doors to snowboarders in the 1980s, it was met with mixed reactions from skiers. Some saw it as an opportunity to grow the winter sports community, while others believed it would be a fad that would soon disappear. Fast forward to today, and snowboarding is now a staple at most ski resorts around the world. However, there are still a handful of ski resorts that have chosen to ban snowboarding on their slopes.
The main argument for banning snowboarding is safety. Some ski resorts believe that snowboarders are a danger to themselves and others on the slopes, citing that they have a larger blind spot and are more likely to fall and create hazardous situations for skiers. Another reason is that skiing has a longer history and tradition, and some resorts feel that allowing snowboarding would diminish that legacy.
On the other hand, many people argue that banning snowboarding is discriminatory and outdated. Snowboarding is now an Olympic sport and has a huge following around the world, with many young people opting for snowboarding over skiing. Banning snowboarding sends a message of exclusion and elitism, which can turn off potential customers and harm the ski resort’s brand.
Ultimately, the decision to ban snowboarding is a controversial one and can have both positive and negative effects on the ski resort’s business. While safety concerns should always take precedence, it’s important to consider the impact on the winter sports community as a whole. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternative ski resorts that do welcome snowboarders, so they don’t have to miss out on shredding the slopes.
Alternative Ski Resorts that Allow Snowboarding
Snowboarders have options, and thankfully, there are plenty of alternatives to the Western Ski Resort that bars them from the slopes. One example is the Alta Ski Area in Utah, which used to be a snowboarding-free mountain but lifted the ban in 2019 after a lawsuit. Another resort that welcomes snowboarders is the Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, also in Utah. Located in the Wasatch Mountains, it boasts incredible powder and a variety of terrain for all skill levels.
In Colorado, the Ski Cooper resort is an excellent option for snowboarders. It is located just outside of Leadville and offers a family-friendly atmosphere with affordable prices. The lift tickets are cheaper than the big-name resorts, so it’s perfect for those on a budget.
Those looking for a more luxurious experience can check out the Sun Valley Resort in Idaho. It has excellent snowboarding runs, six mountain peaks, and high-end amenities such as fine dining, a boating lake, and an outdoor skating rink.
Finally, there’s the Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort in California, which is a great option for those on the West Coast. Mammoth has a state-of-the-art terrain park and half-pipe, as well as a 22-foot Super-Duper pipe. With over 3,500 acres of skiable terrain, there’s plenty of space for skiers and snowboarders alike.
There are plenty of ski resorts across the country that allow snowboarding, so don’t let one resort’s ban spoil your winter vacation. Decide what kind of terrain and amenities you’re looking for and choose a resort that suits your needs.
Tips for Snowboarders Visiting Ski Resorts without Snowboarding
It can be frustrating for avid snowboarders to visit a ski resort that does not allow their preferred hobby. But fear not, there are ways to make the most of your trip!
First, take advantage of other winter activities that the resort offers. Many resorts have ice skating rinks, sledding hills, and snowshoeing trails. These activities can be just as fun and exhilarating as snowboarding.
Next, be respectful of the skiers on the slopes. Remember that you are a guest at their resort and they are not obligated to make accommodations for snowboarders. Stay in designated areas for snowboarders if they exist and keep to the side of the slope to avoid collisions.
You can also use this opportunity to improve your skiing skills. Take advantage of ski lessons offered by the resort and challenge yourself to try new techniques.
Finally, don’t forget to get off the slopes and explore the surrounding area. Many ski resorts are located in beautiful mountain towns with great restaurants, shops, and nightlife. Use your time outside of the resort to experience all that the area has to offer.
While not being able to snowboard at a ski resort may seem like a major setback, it doesn’t have to ruin your trip. Follow these tips and you may even find a new favorite winter activity!