Oh look, it’s Christmas. Again. How did that happen? Yes, I know, the earth went round the sun over and over and voila, here we are, a month till Christmas and a gazillion people to buy for.
If you’re looking for a list of the best disposable gifts for skiers and boarders then you’re in the wrong place. We’re sick of buying more stuff in a world that, quite frankly, is overflowing with stuff. Everywhere we turn we see another ad for stuff that promises to cure our discontent, make us happy, until we hit discontent again and convince ourselves that stuff will fix it.
Stuff doesn’t. As much as we love our gear, it’s just gear and as much as you want to take it with you to the after life, you can’t. Stuff stays here.
If you really want to gift something to a skier or a boarder then the ultimate gift will always be snow and that, like most of anything good in the world, is endangered. So, here’s a gift guide that a true skier or boarder will thank you for – because it’s full of ‘stuff’ that is useful and yet eco-friendly or, better yet, is actively working to save the planet in some way.
Protect Our Winters Membership
Protect Our Winters, also known simply as POW, was founded by Jeremy Jones, who has been noticing the effects of climate change on his favourite resorts since 2007. The team at POW have a huge following, a passionate community and do their best to encourage meaningful action by state and federal policymakers in order to keep their favourite thing – snow – a reality in our world.
They’re currently working across a whole lot of programs, including marches, leadership summits, a riders alliance and plenty more. And the reality is that no other organisation out there is really doing anything about the disappearing amounts of snow out there – so it makes POW’s work all the more important.
You can click here to donate as much as you want, from $1 and up, and even opt to donate monthly should you so choose.
Eco mid layers
Picture Organic Clothing are well-known for being as eco-friendly as possible, using biological and organic cottons, recycled textiles (so 50 water bottles = one jacket) and innovative fibres. Scrap fabric is generally burned, which obviously has a carbon footprint; Picture recover and re-use all production scraps and raw materials from their manufacturing partners and make them into jacket liners.
Ski and board wax that’s good for you
For those waxing their skis and boards at home, buy them some BeaverWax. Created in a candle factory in Ontario, this wax is not only well-known for its quality, it’s also environmentally sustainable, made with eco-friendly additives and carefully hand-poured. It doesn’t hurt that it comes in fun scents like Christmas tree, cotton candy, cappucino and pina colada.
Climate change expedition to the Arctic
If you’re feeling super generous this Christmas, and you want to gift something incredible to someone who’s particularly passionate – why not go for a climate change expedition at the Arctic’s edge?
This once-in-a-lifetime trip involves heading out to the tiny town of Churchill on Canada’s Hudson Bay and volunteering your time helping researchers measure evidence of global warming. Their winter team focuses on assessing snowpack and taking snow samples, travelling between different sites on snowmobile and experimenting a place that truly feels like the end of the earth.
Trips go for about 11 days and are available to book here now at just under the AUS$5000 mark.
Yuki Threads are a favourite among all Aussies thanks to being a local brand who’s doing the right thing. Created out of Mt Buller, they’re an industry leader in responsible manufacturing, partnering with a cooperative who supports small and marginalised farmers. Seriously – these farmers have healthcare, paid holiday leave, skill development programs and plenty of other benefits. Plus they use organic cotton and donate 1% of all sales to 1% For The Planet.
Socks, yes socks
Socks are always getting lost in that magical world where all socks, bobby pins and hair elastics go to hang out – so if you need to go for the sock option, go for a Le Bent sock. Not only are they an incredible ski sock – breathable, dry, not stinky, not itchy – they’re also made from a bamboo and merino wool blend, making it one of the most environmentally friendly socks, made with renewable natural resources. Winner winner Christmas dinner.
Yoga mats that matter
Yoga and skiing go together like turkey and cranberry sauce, so get the yogis in your life a yoga mat made out of recycled wetsuits from Suga Yoga Mats, made in California and helpfully keeping wetsuits out of landfill. Plus they’re well-cushioned and will last you a long time.
A reusable water bottle
A big one, because we all know how bad it is to be using single-use plastic bottles, and all that dry mountain air makes you thirsty. Get one that’ll fit nicely into a backpack and won’t break if you land on it – your favourite skier or snowboarder can use it for plenty of years to come. We love the stainless steel range from S’well.