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Snowboarding in NC is one of the best outdoor activities you can do during the winter season. Riding down a snow-covered mountain on a snowboard while getting to see picturesque landscapes is something you should definitely do once in your life. Snowboarding in NC is a great opportunity for you to go out and enjoy a great winter day.
Whether you are visiting North Carolina during the winter or if you are just living there, you should definitely check out the snowboarding or skiing place there. The Blue Ridge Mountains extend over many states that are at the east of the U.S, including North Carolina. These are the mountain ranges where you can go snowboarding, skiing, or snow tubing.
Snowboarding in NC is one of the top vacation activities along with ice skating, polar plunge, winter hikes, watching the Christmas light in Biltmore, and others. The ideal months for ski season start from November and end in early April.
There are many good snowboarding areas in North Carolina, but we will get to know the best 6 best places that can be visited by both first-timers and professionals. But first, let us get to know more about the winter sport and its basics for the first-timers.
All About Snowboarding
History and Origin
Snowboarding is a winter sport in which a person rides down a snow-covered slope or any other surface while standing on the snowboard which is attached to his or her feet. This sport can be played as a recreational sport or competitive sport, according to one’s choice.
The idea for snowboarding came from various other sports like skiing, skateboarding, and surfing. According to many, snowboarding was first invented in 1965 by Sherman Poppen, an engineer from Michigan. He invented a toy for his daughters that included tieing two ski boards together and attaching a rope in the front end to control the speed and stir the contraption.
The girls would stand on the board and slide down the nearby hill. Poppen’s wife named the toy ‘Snurfer’, neatly combining the words snow and surf. This is the reason Poppen is often dubbed as the Father of Snowboard. Soon it became popular among his daughters’ friends and soon he licensed the Snurfer under a manufacturing company, named Brunswick Corporation.
A million snurfers were sold throughout the decade. Soon ‘snurfing competitions’ were held at the local level and national level during the 1960s and the 1970s.
The modern-day snowboard was inspired by the contraption Jake Burton Carpenter came up with. He made the snowboard by using a flexible wooden board with a pair of foot traps to secure his feet. This early design is now a dominant feature of all modern snowboards.
Through the years, snowboarding became popular among the masses as well as sports enthusiasts. It became part of the Winter Olympics Games in 1998 and in 2014 it became part of the Paralympic Winter Games.
Today, the snowboard looks like an oversized version of a skateboard without any wheels. One side of the board has foot traps to bind the feet of the rider to keep him or her balanced. The shape of the board is similar to an hourglass due to sidecuts. This sidecut on the snowboard could be shallow or deep depending on the type of board.
The size of the snowboard when you go snowboarding in NC will be given according to your height. But the average size of the snowboard is 10 inches in breadth and 5 feet in length.
There are nine types of snowboarding: Freestyle, Slopestyle, Freeriding, Jibbing, Alpine snowboarding, Big air, Half-pipe, Boardercross, and Snow racing. All these styles are known by professional snowboarding athletes and those who follow snowboarding competitions.
But if you are going recreational snowboarding in NC with your friends and family, these styles would not make any difference in your experience and fun. Still, you should keep in mind the safety instructions when you go snowboarding.
Most snowboarding accidents include head injuries, wrist and ankle sprains, fractures, and more. This might happen if proper precautions are not taken. You need to wear and take proper gear to avoid any injury. You and your companions might also be accompanied by a professional instructor who will look into your snowboarding experience.
The instructor will take you through step by step procedure like choosing the best possible snowboard for you, taking care of your gear, finding your leading leg (it is the leg which will help you to guide the snowboard), and taking you to the top of the slope via a ski lift.
Before going snowboarding in NC you should also learn the basic techniques and procedures that your instructor might tell you, so listen carefully.
5 Best Places for Snowboarding in NC
After getting a brief history and some basic information on snowboarding in the bag, let us see the 5 best places for snowboarding in NC.
1. Sugar Mountain Resort
The Sugar Mountain Resort is a ski mountain resort where you can go ice skating, skiing, snow tubing, and snowboarding in NC. It is located at Sugar Mountain Drive near Sugar Mountain and it is the largest ski resort in North Carolina. Anyone under the age of 4 will have free entry and others are charged with a lift ticket fee of around $25-$77.
They offer different types of slopes for snowboarding and skiing. There are 7 easy slopes for beginners and kids. There are 10 medium difficulty slopes and 4 hard slopes for the experienced ones. Freestyle terrain parks are also available.
Snowboarding lessons are available for ages 8 and above. The resort also offers private lessons for a group of people and also has several discounts for large groups of people. The resort also organizes many events like Sugarfest, Winter Music series, and other exciting events, which you should check out besides snowboarding in NC.
2. Wolf Ridge Ski Resort
Wolf Ridge Ski Resort is one of the most popular ski resorts for snowboarding in NC and other winter outdoor activities like skiing, snow tubing, and mountain biking. The ski resort is located at the Valley View Circle, near Mars Hill. You can also reserve a room for you and your friends and family at their comfortable lodge.
The prize of a ski lift ticket is estimated to be around $24-$78. It is free for children of the age of four and under and for people who are 65 and above. There are different slopes with different difficulty levels that are four easy, nine medium, and two hard.
They also offer very comfortable lodgings for anyone interested in staying at the resort. This is one of the good options if you are traveling with kids and family.
3. Beech Mountain Resort
This is the ideal place if you are interested in snowboarding in NC. It is the highest ski resort (and the grandest resort too) in North Carolina. You can find the resort at Beech Mountain Parkway, Beech Mountain. They have great offers for groups, kids, and weekday visitors.
Their chairlift tickets cost around $23-$77 depending on which kind of slope you want to try. They have three easy slopes, seven intermediate ones, and four hard ones. Keep a lookout for the discounts they offer on rented equipment and lift tickets.
Other things that you can do besides snowboarding are ice skating at their ice rink, snow tubing, and others. They also have new chairlifts for you to travel upward. Public and Private lessons on skiing and snowboarding are given to groups and kids if you are willing to take one. They have some lighted ski trails if you want to ski or go snowboarding at night.
4. Cataloochee Ski Area
The Cataloochee Ski Area is a magnificent and impressive ski resort for snowboarding in NC. It is known for its terrain park and snow tubing park. The ski area is located at the Maggie Valley near the Ski Lodge Road.
Skiing and Snowboarding lessons are available for those who require them. Ski lift here costs around $23-$73. It is free for kids under 4 and adults older than 65.
They have eight, seven, and two slopes of the difficulty level of easy, medium, and hard respectively. They have one lighted slope for snowboarding and skiing at night.
They have also an impressive terrain park and tube world for visitors, which you should definitely check out.
5. Appalachian Ski Mountain
Out of all the ski resorts we have talked about, Appalachian Ski Mountain takes the cake when it comes to places for snowboarding in NC. This is due to its impressive size, design, and other perks.
The lift ticket price is estimated to be $23-$73, depending on what kind of slope you choose. There are lessons for skiing and snowboarding provided by the staff, which you can attend. They also have a fully lighted ice rink, which you can enjoy at both daytime and nighttime.
They also have different slopes with different difficulty levels, three easy, three intermediate, and three hard slopes, so choose accordingly. All the slopes are lighted during the night
Snowboarding in NC
So if you are planning to travel somewhere during the winter, go to North Carolina. Snowboarding in NC is one of the best adventures you can embark on a beautiful winter morning.
All the snowboarding equipment and gear will be available and can be rented from any of the above places mentioned. If you are snowboarding in NC for the first time, we recommend that you take an instruction program before the ride. So, get out of that blanket and go snowboarding to enjoy a fantastic winter day.
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