Lauren Traub Teton
This website was started in April 2003 because of the isolation I felt
as a "grown-up" snowboarder starting out. When I started to ride, I didn't
know ANY snowboarders except the guy who would adjust the bindings on my
rental board each week. I never dreamed I'd end up having this much fun in
the snowboard world!
As a beginner, I had NO ONE to ask my (ridiculous? naive?) questions
Snowboard shops and staff intimidated me, especially the " 'core" shops. I
didn't even understand most of the stuff I read in the magazines. Sometimes
little kids wouldn't ride the lift with me. My clothes were probably wrong.
I purchased a helmet which someone at snowboard camp later whispered to me
was a "ski racer's helmet." I didn't know my way around the mountains,
having never been a successful skier ( I did try many times to ski since I
was a kid. The "ski bug" just never bit.) But I loved snowboarding and the
challenge of learning and improving, enough to keep soldiering on.
When I was still a beginner, I went on a vacation trip to Whistler in my
early days of snowboarding. Discussing the trail map with a kind mountain
employee, because I wanted to avoid icy steep trails, he understood that I
was a beginner, and he offered to let me borrow his private stash of
snowboard knee pads and wrist guards. This was a LIGHT BULB moment for
me. I wore the knee pads, and now could fall forward as I frequently did
anyway, but for the first time, WITHOUT HURTING MYSELF.
When I got home from my trip I outfitted myself with knee pads,
elbow pads, wrist guards, skateboard impact shorts to protect the tailbone,
and of course a helmet. (OK, maybe the elbow pads were overkill,
but they were included in the Rollerblade set of pads, so I used them.)
I ride in the eastern U.S., where the snow can be hard-packed and icy. I
was falling down a lot. Honestly, my learning curve for snowboarding was a
lot longer than other people's, I think. Maybe because I wasn't a skier or
skateboarder before, or maybe because I was old enough to want to avoid
injury. But it certainly took me longer than the usually quoted "3 or 4
times" to get my board pointed down the hill. I stayed in "falling leaf"
mode for weeks before that.
But I finally DID learn to snowboard.
Every little factoid that people who have grown up with winter sports
already know, was a new discovery to me, and I usually had to unearth it on
my own. I started this website with one article, because I wanted to
share what I had figured out with other beginners. No need for them to
keep reinventing the wheel when it's already been done.
The first article that I posted, entitled
"You Don't Have to
Hurt Yourself to Snowboard" was
the first page of this website, and remains on it to this day. You can also
click "Secrets" on the nav bar to read it. It has been reprinted on over 150
or websites all over the internet. You can see in the photo there that the
pads don't show once you're dressed.
Happily, now, I have a lot less questions, and a lot more friends in
I love riding as much as always, but now it's super fun and a lot less
taxing on my body since I'm not falling all the time. I know
how to get in shape
who in snowboarding, to some extent. I've been going to
for years. And we cover lots of
events each season.
At both places I've met a lot of pros whose pictures you'll find
on the site. (Use the "Search" function that's in the black bar at the top of
each page to find your favorite riders on our site. I've even had a
snowboard fashion makeover.
And I figured out how
to unpack the car after a snowboard roadtrip,1-2-3.
I still wear protective gear EVERY time I ride, including butt
protection. I have found the best
tailbone protection and
snowboard wrist guard on the market (and that's not just my opinion.)
And, unfortunately, I have learned the reality that snowboarding
can be a dangerous sport, with the up-to-date listing of
deaths that we keep each year on the site.
I also know
how to wax
and tune my snowboard and
keep my snowboard
Snowboarding, and writing my
4 snowboard websites have
given me the most fun I've had in my whole life. Just look at the list of
snowboard events we've covered and photos of snowboard pro-riders we've met, on
the site if you need proof. I hear nice things from many of my readers and
that's very rewarding too!
If you'd like to share in my fun, and read my snowboard news and thoughts
straight from the hills, sign up for the
Snowboard Szine (say zeen) that I write.. Past
Or if you're in the Northeastern US, keep up with events and
fast breaking news on my
East Coast snowboard blog
"Snowboard Shorty." There's fresh worldwide
news daily on the site too, on a live feed via RSS.
Most of all, enjoy your snowboarding,
slalom on the NASTAR
course at Whiteface Mountain, NY. Jan. '03
(photo by Seth S. Patterson)
Lauren with one of her medals