It may not be winter yet but that first snow is just waiting to fall. And when it does, you're going to want to be on early season skiing like white on...well, snow.
Making sure you're completely prepared with all of your ski or snowboard gear and equipment is just as important as making sure you're in the right physical shape and all your old injuries have healed. Because you never know—an early snow might show its face at any time and we all know how rewarding it is to make those first tracks. When you're ready to go at a moment's notice, you won't be sitting at home kicking yourself while all of your friends are enjoying the first, fresh snow.
Here are some ways to make sure you have all your gear in order to get on early season skiing:
Pick Your Peak
This may be your most important lesson. Choose your ski or snowboard mountain of choice for the year way ahead of time and get an early bird season pass. Practically every mountain hikes up their rates the closer you get to high-season so much that purchasing early will save you enough money for a new snowboard or pair of skis.
Check Your Outerwear
No one needs to buy new outerwear every year—it's way too expensive. But examine every little nook and cranny of your pants, linings, boots and jackets for rips, tears, missing zippers and the like. Doing this early will give you time to send anything off to get fixed in time for the first snowfall or replace anything if you need to. Make sure your boots still fit and if you have orthotics, make sure they're still comfortable.
Check the Little Things
Make sure you're not missing pairs (that goes for inner and outer gloves and socks) and that you have several different kinds of gloves and hats for different conditions—breatheable for balmy weather and warm for cold days. Have a breatheable hat, a warm hat and one that covers your ears. Keep a checklist and make sure everything's on it—right down to your balaklava and toe warmers, if you use them. Having a surplus of the little things will ensure that you never have to put on anything wet. And stock up of different types of wax; you never know what the first snow will bring.