Snowboarding in a Global Pandemic
3 min read

Snowboarding in a Global Pandemic

After spending three days on the slopes in early/mid December I’m hopeful for the 2020/21 snow season
Snowboarding in a Global Pandemic

There's a lot that's changed with the global pandemic, I haven't stepped inside a grocery store in 6 months for one thing, and I've forgotten what it's like to wear a real shirt to work, but one thing that hasn't changed is the desire to get outside—but how we go about it has.

I spent a couple of days at Sunday River at the start of the 20/21 season (as part of a group trip with BSSC) and did a day trip to Loon Mountian a few weeks later, and I'm glad I did, there's a bunch of things that are different but taking the opportunity to spend some time outside, and get some exercise was well worth it.

So what has changed, well obviously the lift queues are socially distanced, which is relatively easy given everyone is wearing skis/snowboards which keep you few foot apart to start with, then there's masks required in the lines and staff reminding people to wear them which is appreciated.

On the chairlifts it's "Arrive together, ride together" and lots of poeple riding the lifts solo, I expect it'll make for longer lines on peak days and I did share a few times on 4-seat lifts where we could each have an end seat, but for the most part, I like the 1-person, 1-lift dynamic.

All the lodges are closed, or almost closed—I think Sunday River had limited indoor seating for people eating there, but there's no bag storage or changing spaces open; that worked fine for me—I changed in the Jeep, or my room, and went back there for food / drinks etc. There's also no social aspect to group trips, which made it kind of strange, I basically only interacted with other people from BSSC when we ran into each other on the mountain, bit of a shame but I'll take safety over social activities for a season any day.

Finally masks were worn almost everywhere, the one exception was when actively riding but all three days I was riding were pretty chilly so people had face guards on anyway. I personally chose to wear my three-ply medical mask under a neck gator (to keep it dry), which kept my face warm but did result in a lot of condensation on the inside—that seems like a small price to pay…

Overall I had a fun few days, I got to do a bunch of runs, and the weather was great—it'd have been nice to have some social aspect particularly on the group trip, but we're in the middle of a global pandemic—if you get a chance to get out there this season I'd recommend it, just remember a spare mask for when your first one gets covered in snow 🏂