Check out our top 2016 picks for eco ski and snowboard gear that will keep you warm as you shred down the mountain… without melting the glaciers!
While the sky isn’t (literally) falling, the world’s top scientists agree that the planet’s glaciers are indeed melting. Thankfully now with eco ski and snowboard gear we can cut our carbon footprint while making fresh tracks in the snow.
Here are 8 amazing picks for top performing eco ski and snowboard gear:
1. Niche Snowboards
Since 2009, this Salt Lake City-based snowboard company has been giving shredders light, responsive, snappy, and durable snowboards where each manufacturing choice is considered for sustainability including the use of : bio-resins, basalt fiber, hemp, sustainable wood cores, recycled bases, sidewalls, and edge material.
2. Arbor Snowboards
Arbor Snowboards uses sustainable materials in their boards and helps preserve the Koa forests of Hawaii through its Returning Roots program. Arbor sees a connection in the surf/skate/snow community stemming all the way to Hawaii 1000 years ago when surfing was invented and the stoke of gliding across water whether liquid or frozen began.
3. Liberty Skis
All hail to the many wonders of bamboo. Limber and durable, Liberty Skis has used this sustainable eco-friendly resource to make its laminate cores for more than a decade. The company attributes the “snap” in the ski to bamboo that creates an “energetic lively feel”.
4. Kingswood Skis
This husband and wife team make all their skis with 100 percent bamboo cores and sidewalls. Each pair is customized to the skier’s level and made to order. Now, that is a bespoke ski experience! After searching for the endless winter, Alex Herbert – a 14 winter season ski veteran – settled in New Zealand and started Kingswood Skis. Retired skis are donated to disabled skiers. And recently Kingswood Skis were audited to determine their environmental impact and emissions, which they promptly offset.
5. Faction Skis
Based in the freeriding meccas of Verbier, Switzerland and Breckenridge, Colorado this company was built by skiers for skiers. Faction works closely with Gear4Guides, an international nonprofit organization that “empowers ski and snowboard mountain guides and instructors in emerging winter sports tourist destinations.” The company uses FSC certified wood and flax fiber in the cores. Even heat from a manufacturing furnace is reused to supply heat to a nearby town. As they say, it’s a continual process to reduce carbon footprints and Faction is working with BComp, EntropyResins, and Accoya and is currently testing wax-free bases.
6. Save The Duck OuterWear
If you’re looking for a down alternative, this is it. X-Games Gold Medalist and animal lover Kaya Turski says, “I really appreciate being able to keep warm while saving the ducks!” Its patented Plum-Tech technology won the the Vegan Fashion Award in 2014 by PETA and its water-resistant and breathable winter sports line features LAXY™ “a bi-elastic innovation that allows for greater movement during sports.”
7. Acel Thermal Compression Socks
When it comes to snow sports, you not only want to save the glaciers but also your energy. Especially, if it’s your first day back on the slope! The thermal aspect of Acel’s socks keep you warm while the compression helps your muscles last longer and recuperate faster. That and a long soak in the hot tub!
8. Ibex Outdoor Clothing & Patagonia Baselayers
When gearing up for all day in the snow baselayers are key to keeping body heat in while letting your skin breath. Patagonia Merino Air baselayers are specially spun to be lightweight and incredibly warm for high impact sports in the cold. While Ibex’s line of baselayers also made with (not itchy and sustainable) Merino wool covers the baselayer gambit from bras to leggings and pullovers. Merino wool in general is naturally odor-resistant, breathable and moves with you as you hit the slopes.
When you go eco for ski and snowboard gear, you can leave more fresh tracks in the snow… and less of a carbon footprint!
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Photo of Young Girl Snowboarder in Motion via Shutterstock. Other image credits: @kayaturski, Faction Skis, Abor Snowboards, Niche Snowboards and Kingswood Skis