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REPORT: SIA - State of the Industry

SnowSports Industries America (SIA) released it's annual Snow Sports Market Intelligence Report on Thursday giving an overview of retail sales, trends, consumer behavior and participation. 

A few statistics that stand out: 

  • 2013/2014 was a $3.6B season, up 7 percent in dollar sales and up 4 percent in unit sales, despite the drought in California.
  • More girls bought snowboard equipment this year; junior girls snowboarding equipment sales grew 37 percent in units sold and 36 percent in dollars sold.
  • Alpine equipment sales totaled $547 million for the 2013/2014 season, up 3 percent in dollar sales. 
  • There are 7,351,000 snowboarders in the Unites States with over 80 percent 34 years of age or younger. 
  • 617,000 alpine skis and 414,000 snowboards were sold during the 2013/2014 season. 

Full report: 

Sam Collentine | OpenSnow

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VIDEO: Faces of Dav - The Engineer

What does it take to succeed in the ski business? 

For Chris Davenport, a critical part of the recipe has been the integration into the industry itself.  In the second episode of Faces of Dav, Chris travels to Asolo, Italy and Salzburg, Austria putting himself through the production process for the first time.


Putting on his engineering hat; Chris tries his hand at building his own pair of Scarpa Freedom SL boots and Kastle FX freeride skis.

Like any good pair of skis, they are only as good as they perform on the snow. To test his handy work, Chris hits the Dolomites of Italy to test-drive the new equipment in the famous Holzer Couloir.

Check back on November 6th, for the third episode of Faces of Dav as Davenport explains what it’s like to be a professional skier and father.

Watch episode 1 here:

Sam Collentine | OpenSnow

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GEAR: Chasing Storms In Style

This article is brought to you by They like our snow forecasts, and we like their knowledge of gear. So we work together to bring you details on the best stuff you can buy, and they help you earn cash back on purchases. Win-win-win-win, or something like that!

You can’t bribe the sky; trust us, we’ve tried.

Weather patterns are indifferent both to warm-hearted prayer and cold, hard cash. Sometimes your local mountain is doomed for desert-like dry spells while neighboring states boast double-digit snowfalls.

Stow away in a cargo ship, try your thumb at hitchhiking or bridle a Black Bear (honey bribes are your best shot).  No matter how you get to the mountains, tote a gear bag that handles the trip.

Fully featured, heavy-duty bags are airborne armor, while cheaper, less beefy options fit short-haul road trips. Here are four Active Junky-approved ski and snowboard bags when you’re ready to flake out.

Basic Protection

Dakine Pipe Snowboard Bag: 

A basic board bag available in 157 cm and 165 cm sizes, the Pipe Bag protects primarily against scratches and dings. A shoulder strap simplifies slogging and there’s room for a pair of boots and helmet. Additional padding is non-existent, though the 600D polyester is surprisingly durable.

Best For: Board storage, short car trips or domestic flights.

Earn cash back on the Dakine Pipe Snowboard bag

K2 Simple Ski Bag: Tubular Transport

K2’s stripped down bag comes in two versions, 175cm and 195cm, and a shoulder strap makes for easy carrying. Totally tubular in shape, the cylindrical zippered bag is free of overwhelming straps, unnecessary features and a jaw-dropping price tag.

Best For: Minimalist travel, durable performance.

Earn cash back on the K2 Simple Ski Bag

Deluxe Defense

Rome Cache Snowboard Bag: Passage To Paradise

Wherever you roam, the padded Rome Cache Snowboard bag safeguards your quiver, no matter how turbulent the flight or pot-holed the drive. The 162 cm size can handle most powder boards while the two-layered “coffin construction” allows for protected multi-board storage; the Integrated Board Scabbard separates boards from gear.

Best For: Multi-modal travel where rolling is important (and camo is favored).

Earn cash back on the Rome Cache Snowboard Bag

Dakine Concourse Double Ski Bag: Tip To Tip Protection

Trekking to fabled Niseko, Japan powder, Chugach steeps or a nearby legendary resort warrants extra ski protection. Rolling in on two urethane wheels and fitting two pairs of powder skis, the airport-ready Concourse (185cm or 200cm) features three internal organizational pockets for boots and gear.

Best For: Full kit protection including poles. 

Earn cash back on the Dakine Concourse Double Ski Bag

Sam Collentine | OpenSnow

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TRIP: Mystery Ski Adventure

What if you could embark on a journey following elusive snowfall across multiple regions, skiing fresh powder daily? Would you be up for it?

NextGreatTrip and the Mountain Collective have teamed up to offer you just that with the Mystery Ski Adventure. 

Starting on February 6th, embark on a 5 day / 4 night powder quest beginning in Aspen, Colorado. Kickoff the weekend at the Limelight Hotel Friday evening, enjoying fine food and beverages. Spend two days experiencing unprecedented access to Aspen Snowmass’ terrain. While you hit the steeps and deeps with a professional ski host, the team here at OpenSnow will keep a close eye on the snow forecast. 

At the end of your two days in Aspen, NextGreatTrip will transport you aboard a private jet to the Mountain Collective destination with the best snow conditions. The next two days will be spent skiing in the best available conditions with your ski host. At the end of your four-day powder paradise, NextGreatTrip will fly you back to Aspen. 

Sounds pretty awesome, right?

Here are the nitty-gritty details....

Each Mountain Collective guest will receive:

  • Round trip charter flights between Aspen Snowmass and the mystery destination, with an option to continue on to Denver (Centennial Airport)

  • Mountain Collective Pass, valid for the 2014-2015 season

  • Four nights of lodging - two in Aspen Snowmass, two in the mystery ski town

  • Entertainment and exclusive insight from trip host & professional skier

  • Unprecedented access to the slopes - first chair each morning

  • VIP party in Aspen on Friday night, February 6th

  • Complimentary breakfast each morning

  • Complimentary in-flight drinks and appetizers

  • Ground transportation between the airport and hotel within each destination

Complete "Mystery" Itinerary: 

Besides Aspen Snowmass, here are the possible Mountain Collective "Mystery" Locations: 

  • Jackson Hole, Wyoming - Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa

  • Alta/Snowbird, Utah - The Cliff Lodge & Spa

  • Mammoth Mountain, California - The Village Lodge

  • Squaw Valley / Alpine Meadows - Resort at Squaw Creek

Come February, this is where you'll want to be. The team here at OpenSnow will have the hand-crafted powder forecasts, NextGreatTrip will provide the flights, and the Mountain Collective will serve up a first-class mountain experience. I mean, why wouldn't you just go for it?

Further details and pricing:

Sam Collentine | OpenSnow

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PODCAST: Joel on MTNmeister

Our Founder and Colorado Meteorologist, Joel Gratz, recently sat down for a podcast with Ben Schenck of He discusses everything from how was started, the gear that he uses on the mountain, to a forecast that still stumps Joel to this day. Something he calls the "Steamboat Surprise". 

Sam Collentine | OpenSnow

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