Snowboarders vs. Skiers: Can’t We All Just Shred Along?

by Travis McCullough | December 5, 2023

Skiing versus snowboarding is an age-old debate akin to cats vs. dogs, Pepsi vs. Coca-Cola, or who the best James Bond was. Some would argue that debating this topic is basically like peeing in the wind, and maybe they’re right. What we really want to know is where/when this beef began, how it escalated, if it still exists, and the million-dollar question, can’t we all just get along? 

Origins Of The Rivalry

As snowboarding gained popularity throughout the late 70s and early 80s, the animosity between both sports grew as well. Turns out that the new kids on the block were rubbing the old heads the wrong way.

Most of us have seen this video from the 80s of our favorite mustached neighbors from the north displaying their disdain for snowboarding:

Who doesn’t enjoy lipping off, cracking a cold one, and being a bit of a smart aleck from time to time? If you’ve spent any time on the mountain then you know that these are key characteristics of any diehard shredder, regardless of how many planks they choose to blaze down the mountain on. 

Change can be a scary thing sometimes, especially if you’ve never seen someone blazing down the mountain sideways, but at the end of the day, skiing and snowboarding are all about having fun. Maybe try facing your fears head-on, you might find that they aren’t the end of the world.

Trash Talk

The insults, euphemisms, and gripes between both camps are almost endless, and luckily for everyone involved, most of them are downright hilarious. Let’s take an objective and scientific approach to some of our favorite PG-rated derogatory terms and jokes that have been thrown back and forth over the years.

  • Knuckle Dragger – snowboarder
  • Scrape Ape – snowboarder
  • Two-Planker – skier
  • Gaper – lacking in style, skill, or any sort of clue at all

  • What do you call a ski instructor with no girlfriend/boyfriend? Homeless.
  • If you have a car with three backcountry skiers/snowboarders in a car, who’s driving? The police.
  • What’s the difference between a backcountry skier and a vacuum? Where you mount the dirt bag.
  • What’s the difference between a snowboard instructor and a snowboard student? Three days and an ego.

After hearing stuff like this, how can we not all laugh at ourselves? After all, you must be a little crazy if your definition of a good day involves heading to the top of a mountain only to strap planks to your feet as you attempt to break the land speed record.

So Which One Is Better?

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, whether they may be glaringly right or wrong. We say, different strokes for different folks. So what’s the most important thing to take away here? Just get out on the snow as often as humanly possible. Skiing and snowboarding are great for the mind, body, and soul. Before you tell someone that your dad could beat up their dad, try switching it up and discovering something new. Variety is the spice of life after all! 

Final Thoughts

It doesn’t really matter which sport you choose to devote your life to, as long as you pick one. Find what floats your boat and do it like it’s going out of style. What’s more important is to get those little ones on the snow as early as possible so that we have plenty of future shredders to keep this great debate alive. There’s plenty of snow out there for everyone, so go forth and make sure you get yours.

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