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Front Page » December 6, 2007 » Youth Focus » Carbon County youth gear up for big snow
Published 2,570 days ago

Carbon County youth gear up for big snow


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By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate community editor

In a state that has 13 world class resorts that are described as having abundant terrain, pristine snow and clear mountain skies, it is no wonder that skiing and snowboarding are very popular activities for local youth here in Carbon County.

Thanks to last weekends big storm more than half of the state's resorts are open and starting Jan. 5, locals wishing to beat the upstate traffic can ride the Carbon County Recreation Ski Bus which will depart at 6 a.m. and return home at 7 p.m. during the winter months.

Long known as the state with the "greatest snow on earth," Utah continues to cater to snowboarders and skiers alike, having every resort with the exception of Alta and Deer Valley open to snowboarding on their slopes. Utah recently solidified its place as a top ski spot being named the second best state in which to do business. That merit came due to Utah's reputation as the "up-and-coming Mecca of the outdoor industry," according to skiutah.com.

According to the site Utah is now the home of Rossignol, ROXY, Backcountry.com, Smith, Lange, Atomic, Dynaster, Ski Racing magazine, Solomon and more. With everything from apparel for the casual buyer to high grade professional equipment being made, tested and sold at Utah locations, getting involved in the winter sports Utah has to offer is easier than ever.

Powder Mountain came up with a great way for local youth to involve their parents in a sport that is sometimes thought to be for the young only. On Dec. 15 the Utah resort will kick off the season with a "bring your parent to powder day." The event includes activities for the entire family and offers an interesting twist to the usual buy one, get one free promotion.

According to Ski Utah with the purchase of a full price child's lift ticket the parents skis or snowboards for free.

There is no age limit, children from 6 to 60 are encouraged to bring their parents to Powder Mountain for a great family get together.

The site reports that besides snowboarding and skiing the party atmosphere will be enhanced with music, contests and clinics.

Free introductory rail slide clinics will be conducted by the Snow Sports School's Teen X instructors.

A hula hoop competition and scavenger hunt will keep all ages entertained whether a participant whether a participant or a spectator.

The amount of equipment needed to get started with some winter sports can be daunting but it is important to remember that most resorts rent out all necessary equipment, including an ambulance ride.

Also most winter sports equipment can also be purchased used via the net or at pawn or secondhand shops.

The gear required for a beginning snowboarder includes:

•The board. For this piece of equipment size matters. Bigger boards are recommended for just riding around the mountain. However, for those feeling like they are ready for some tricks, it is recommended that a shorter board be rented or purchased. Length of the board is determined by a person's hight in relation to these tips.

Width of the board is important as well and this will largely depend on the size of the riders feet.

Lastly, flex is variable in boards and the local pro or retailer can give tips concerning this more complicated choice in board type.

•Boots. There are two basic kinds of boots, hard for racing and big carving moves and softer boots made for free styling. Harder boots are recommended for alpine snowboarding and soft boots are recommended for those planning to start by doing some free riding.

•Bindings. Most bindings are non-releasable but new step-in bindings make it easier to attach and detach a riders boots from the bindings.

Also baseless bindings which put the boots right on the board are availible for most boot types.

•Snow pants and jacket. A persons style will be the main consideration here. However it is recommended that new riders make sure and get something with extra padding in the seat and knee region.

•Other gear includes; long underwear for a very cold day, a helmet, scarf or neck warmer, goggles or sunglasses for the intense glare that can come from the snow, sunblock and lip balm.

Beginners may also want to consider wrist and knee guards especially on their first day on the slopes. According to studies at the American Academy of Family Physicians the most common injuries are to the wrist, ankle and knee. They also warned that many of the knee injuries occur when a boarder has only one foot strapped to the board.

Most pros on the slopes say that boarding and skiing can be as safe or as dangerous as a person makes them. Lessons are available at most Utah resorts and are recommended. So whether you are a first timer or a seasoned pro on the slopes the 2007-08 season is looking like another stellar year for those who love to get down and dirty in fluffy powder of the best snow on earth.


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