Welcome to Grays on Trays®

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.

7 Responses to Welcome to Grays on Trays®

  1. John Newcomb says:

    I’m 50 and been boarding for 12 years heard the grays on trays when we were at 7springs. I love teaching it too, our season is only 3 months usually.

    Peace
    John

  2. This video was filmed on my 60th birthday nearly two years ago and I’m still going strong on my ‘tray’ -enjoy.

  3. Sharper says:

    Just found this site but don’t see how to register. I am a grandmother, will be 70 in March and have been riding since I was 53. We live in BC and our yhome resort is Whistler. Would love to share experiences with other “mature” women … I feel there are not many of my ilk on the hill. Go FLOWS!!

  4. BoardOutOfMyMind says:

    It’s nice to know I’m not the only “not-20″ out there snowboarding! This is only my second year riding. Last season we found that we picked it up rather easily and ended by carving blue trails. We just didn’t want it to end, and so we (my two teens and myself) invested in longboards … we loved it so much, we then bought skateboards and barely got started when snowboard season started again.

    We invested in good (Burton) equip and hit the slopes numerous times this season already, advancing to ‘blues’ and really linking turns while increasing our speed. Because I’m 48 years old, I am always very aware of safety and pretty much cover everything from my wrists to my tailbone. My problem now is that I’ve sprained both knees (minor tear of MCL and LCL respectively) and need advice as to why I sometimes fall onto them. Sometimes I bounce off of them! They are not happy. I’m not a maniac on the thing, I’m just catching my edge sometimes when I least expect it. These are separate injuries; the second happened while attempting to protect the first injured one by landing on my good knee. That ended in a cantaloupe for a knee by my 7th run. I did 3 more after that. I’ve since taken the last 4 weeks off with RICE and light therapy and I’m eager to get back.

    It’s all I think about! I have such a passion for this sport! Working on strengthening my thighs … I do use a personal trainer and am in quite good shape for someone my age. I didn’t simply hop on the board. I know my limits despite everyone telling me I’m too old to do this. I’m just frustrated on catching my edge and slamming my knees. I want to keep things minor and “non-surgical” and I know repeated blows will really ruin my knees in the end.

    Any advice? I’m thinking of going back to greens and working on controlling my board better. I ride a Burton Deja Vu 2012 146 channel board. It feels great but perhaps it’s a bit much for me right yet … or, I’m rushing into things before mastering the basics?

  5. Cathy says:

    Hi !! I am 67 and have been riding on and off for 20 years. Because of an injury that left my with a totally blind left eye..I am a bit “skitish” about riding but last month after 8 yrs off the slopes went snowboarding with my son and grandson and now..I can’t wait to go again…I was happy because by the time our vacation ended I was back on the blue runs.Yipeeeeeeeee !! Snowboarding is the best..I too have a passion for it and wish I could move back to Colorado again. To everyone out there..stay active, keep riding !

  6. Stephen Hannon says:

    In terms of catching edges – be very subtle a lot of the time with your movements on both toe side and heel side – just practice on gentle slopes but watch how very small movements will get you onto the new edge. Speed up movements after a while whereby you change from edge to edge more quickly but just be ‘quiet’ and ‘soft’ with your movements.

  7. Irene says:

    Hi fellow shredders. Its my first time on this site. Im pretty much addicted to riding, I didnt even know it existed until my mid 30s as I spent years in warm climates. Im now in my 40s, though I still feel young. I know the season is almost over but I love meeting new people to ride with and want to go to Chile this summer to ride. I get withdrawal in the Summer. Anyone want to ride the Basin, Loveland pass, or backcountry shoot me an e mail. Happy riding and be safe out there. Irene. PS, My oldest riding buddy is Barry, he is 70 and can ride moguls like a champ!

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