Welcome to the Grays on Trays® guide to snowboarding for grown-ups, introducing a sport that’s too fun to leave to the kids. It is an online resource for all snowboarders, but especially adults snowboarders and those interested in trying it out. We aim to offer an informative guide.
Erika Dillman, author of Outdoors Online: An Internet Guide to Everything Wild & Green (Keep It Clean, Keep It Green), has said “Grays on Trays is one of the best introductions to snowboarding on the web–regardless of your age.” — Erika Dillman. We hope you’ll agree.
Why We’re Here
Why a site geared to adults? We enjoy snowboarding, but find that most existing publications dealing with riding aren’t written for adults; they’re written for kids. Read a few of them and you’ll understand.
Learning how to ride a snowboard is hard enough. If you’re a mature adult looking for information about snowboarding, you shouldn’t have to put up with a website that looks and feels like high school. And if you want to indulge in fake hip-hop or a street culture, there are places for that, too. On the other hand, if you want an introduction to snowboarding that you’d feel comfortable presenting to your boss or the grandmother down the street (or if you ARE the grandmother down the street), come join us. You might even say that we’re trying to make snowboarding safe for boring, conventional people with lives beyond snowboarding.
Instead of mocking the achievements of grown-ups–“Grandpas don’t snowboard”–we celebrate them. That’s one reason why we use the phrase “Grays on Trays.” It was first used years ago–the origins of it are now lost to obscurity–by adolescents to insult grown-up snowboarders. But today, we embrace it and relish the chance to blow away stereotypes. One 64-year old snowboarder told the Associated Press, “I love the term. I think it’s the ultimate compliment. If we keep active, we can contribute to the participation. Everybody’s gaining from it.”
What You’ll Find Here at GraysOnTrays.com
Our goal of the Grays on Trays® guide to snowboarding is to help the grown-up rider by providing information, encouragement, and a place where mature riders can meet and exchange information.
If you’re curious about snowboarding but have not tried it yet, know that you’re not crazy for having an interest, and you’re not going through a mid-life crisis. (If you are, well, that’s between you and your deity and your family members.) We don’t try to mimic some sort of snowboarding attitude or culture; we’re just here to encourage the love of the sport and support each other.
So let’s get a quick lay of the land.
Why go snowboarding? gives you some reasons–you guessed it–why people ride. We also let some older riders give you their insights about what is so great about this sport. If you look at who goes snowboarding after 40, you may find someone just like you. You’re not alone!
Snowboarding is unique, yet it’s like some other sports, so you may already have experience using some of the required skills. Still, we highly recommend that on your first day out you take lessons. One reason to take lessons is that you’re more likely to get hurt if you don’t have proper instruction. Consider this and some other facts from the page Is snowboarding safe for older adults?
If you have a lot of friends who are skiers, you might read riders v. skiers to get some perspective on the old and largely passed conflict between the two groups. There’s an interesting history to it.
One great thing about snowboarding is that there is always room for improving your skills, should you wish. One way to improve is to purchase your own equipment. The basics of snowboarding gear gives a quick rundown on the types of equipment. On the slopes, you’ll probably consult a trail map; our skills progression page is a map that tells you how well you are progressing.
As you master the fundamentals, you may wish to experiment with the various styles of riding, which include cruising on groomed trails, riding in the back country, and freestyle tricks in the terrain park. And there’s nothing to hone your skills like engaging in some friendly competition. Of course, snowboarding adults are competing against each other in real life anyway, so if you want to simply enjoy the ride on the mountain, that’s OK, too.
Aside from its on-slope thrills and challenges, snowboarding is an interesting subject on its own. Lots of kids come to this and other sites looking for information about the history of the sport. The snowboarding statistics page offers some interesting facts, including this one: there are over 1,000,000 adult snowboarders. They’re found at any number of the many slopes in our North American resort listing.
Too Fun to Leave to the Kids
That’s the quick review of the site. We hope it is a tool that will help you become part of the growing number of adults who prefer getting out in the winter to sinking into the couch. Poke around the site. Go to our discussion board and meet others who have learned the appeal of snowboarding for grown-ups. Ask questions. Encourage others with you experience. Introduce yourself; you probably have something to offer someone else.
And above all, don’t be afraid to learn. Snowboarding is too fun to leave to the kids.