As we head into what is likely to be another epic winter, thanks to La Niña, we’ve compiled a list of common skier slang. Wondering about the difference between blower and boilerplate? Curious why that guy with the twin tips in the lift line keeps yelling about steeze? Read on.
Refers to ultra-light powdery snow. See also: cold smoke
Very firm, icy, marginal conditions. Not ideal conditions for sending that tricky line you’ve been eyeing all season. See also: Bulletproof, slide-for-life
Faceshots: noun, verb
When the powder snow is deep enough that it hits you in the face while you’re shredding. Bring your snorkel. In a sentence: “I got so many face shots today!”
Usually identifiable by a distinctive and eponymous gap between the user’s helmet and goggles, the quintessential gaper doesn’t know what they don’t know. They usually are rocking rental gear, and may or may not have their jeans tucked into their ski boots. While gapers are oblivious to ski culture, it’s important to remember that everyone was once a beginner, even you. See also: Jerry
Stands for Gaffney’s Numeric Assessment of Radness, Gnar is a game and also a lifestyle.
Heelside hero: noun
A snowboarder who only seems capable of descending on their heelside. Usually seen doing the “falling leaf” down a black diamond while clutching a selfie-stick, the heelside hero seems oblivious of the effect of their riding style on the snowpack. See also: gaper.
Mashed potatoes: noun
Heavy, wet, thigh-burning snow conditions. See also: Cascade concrete.
Radness claim: action
Yelling, “I’m the best skier on the mountain!” before dropping into that sick line. Related: Gnar
If you hear this in the lift line, rest assured that the speaker is (most likely) not talking about their relationship status. Rather, a single rider will often announce that they’re alone in hopes of finding a seat on the lift without waiting through the entire lift line. See also: No friends on a powder day.
Steeze: noun. Steezy: adjective
Style and ease. In a sentence: “Bro, that was a steezy backflip!” This piece of skier slang has since found its way into other outdoor sports, including whitewater kayaking.
To land a jump with steeze. Antonym: tomahawk.
To tumble head-over-heels down hill. Usually an effect of crashing at high speeds on something steep.
Wheel wish: noun, verb
When the chairlift stops and the attachment point of the would-be-wisher’s chair stops on a lift tower’s wheel, it is permissible to make a wheel wish. Standard non-disclosure wish rules apply. See also: pray for snow.
Let us know if we missed anything in the comments!