In typical Whistler fashion, any reason to celebrate is, well, a reason to celebrate. And that goes without saying, that the end of the ski season is a time to revel in all the powder days, the close calls, and the domination of lines that occurred over the course of the winter. The celebration goes hand in hand with costumes, and general tomfoolery… otherwise known as Gaper Day!
According to the Whistler Museum, Gaper Day has been around almost as long as McCoo’s, since 1996 in fact. It started out as “Ski In Jeans Day” and was an opportunity to unleash your on-hill style that has been confined to functional clothing since the snow began to fall. Over the years, jeans turned into more unique style choices like retro snow gear, bikinis, and more recently, animal onesies.
The chance to let loose on the hill and partake in fancy dress fast became a tradition. Since its incarnation in the 90’s, Gaper Day, celebrated on closing day, has evolved to be a local event of sorts. It might not be official, but everyone knows about it and plans ahead. This means booking the day off work and preparing a worthy outfit. So you maximize the season, right until the very last day, here’s a quick list of McCoo’s must-haves for Gaper Day:
- Herschel Fanny Pack
- Sunbum sunscreen
- RipCurl Bikini
- Oakley Prizm Goggles
- Smith Chromapop Sunglasses
- Oakley T-shirt for après
- S’well Water Bottle to stay hydrated
- GoPro Hero 7
- Outdoor Tech portable stereo
Another part of Gaper Day is the celebration that follows skiing. After spending the day in the sunshine on your snow blades, head out for one last après with all your closest ski buddies. Visiting your local watering hole and dancing into the evening is just as much a part of the season send off as the retro ski suits.
Gaper Day is a chance to go out with a bang. Grab your best friends and shred the spring snow, dragging out the season as long as possible. If you find yourself stuck for Gaper Day apparel ideas, come stop by McCoo’s. We’ve been around since before Gaper Day, so we’ve seen it all!
April showers bring May flowers. Unfortunately, we are only going into April and not May. This time of year is known for being rainy but don’t let this hamper your springtime adventure plans. Adventuring in the rain can be just as much fun, you just have to be prepared. This can mean having a plan on what you’re going to do and having the gear to stay dry as well as warm. But there’s more to adventuring when the weather isn’t ideal. Here are some tips for adventuring in the rain.
Make A Plan
Trust us. A trick to making the rain more bearable is determining where you’re going to go and how long you will be out in it. With an end in sight, it won’t matter how wet you’ll get while on your adventure. This is because a warm fire place and dry clothes are waiting for you in the near future.
Bring A Pack
Another trick to playing in the rain is bringing a backpack with extra clothes in it. If a chill starts to creep in, just add a layer or take off the most wet item and replace it. Backpacks are also great for holding snacks, music, and other essentials that make braving the cooler weather that much easier.
It’s In The Socks
Performance socks will help make your rainy day activity that much more enjoyable by keeping your feet toasty warm. They won’t entirely be able to keep them from getting wet but they can help with how much moisture is sitting next to your skin. Check out anything from Mons Royale or Stance.
Wear A Waterproof Jacket
This might seem like an obvious solution but it can be overlooked. Where ever there is moisture, Gortex is the answer. Gortex is a special fabric that is the gold standard for waterproofing. Gortex works by having micro pores in the fabric that let sweat out and block water from getting in.
Bring A Warm Drink
Huddle under a tree and relax for a few minutes over a hot chocolate, tea or coffee. Any of the above can be stored in a thermos and brought in a back pack. You’ll be thankful for the warm up from in the inside out.
Rainy weather doesn’t have to mean that an adventure needs to be called off. Just follow the tips we mentioned and you’re sure to have a good time. For more information on what gear you might need for adventuring in the rain, come stop by McCoo’s.
March is upon us which means spring is right around the corner. And what sits right in from of us, is some of the best adventure time of the whole year. After being cooped up all winter, the longer days, warmer temperatures and sunshine make it all too inviting to get out and enjoy mother nature. To help you get stoked on what’s to come, here is what you should be looking forward to. Get ready to gear up for spring adventures!
Spring Skiing And Snowboarding
Sunscreen and t-shirts are in your future! Spring is all about hitting the slopes with friends and living it up on the mountain. That being said, make sure you’re dressed for the sunshine. This means wearing gear that protects you against the suns rays.
Must Have Item: SMITH Chromapop sunglasses and goggles offer 100% UV protection.
As the snow melts, hiking trails emerge. Trekking through a spring forest is the stuff dreams are made of. Don’t be fooled by the sun and melting snow, the conditions can change on a dime. Be prepared by layering.
Must Have Item: The RipCurl Anti-Series protects against wind and rain.
For some, it might be considered a bit too cold to venture out for an overnight trip; While for others, as soon as the temperatures hover above zero, it’s time to pack up the sleeping bag and tent. Don’t miss a beat by making sure you have enough power for Snapchat and Instagram.
Must Have Item: Outdoor Tech’s Kodiak Ultra is a waterproof, dust & dirt resistant, rugged power bank for your electronic devices.
The clear skies found during the springtime make it an ideal time for stargazing and for that reason, this time of year is also well-known for the Aurora Borealis being highly visible. Throw on come cozy clothes and hit up your favourite stargazing spot.
Must Have Item: A Coal Toque to keep your hair at bay and your ears warm.
Spring in Whistler is incredible but who are we kidding, every season in the mountains is worth experiencing. For even more gear, stop by McCoo’s, your one-stop-shop for adventure.
We’ve all been there. Your phone dies just when you need it the most. It could be right before you’re supposed to meet a friend or worse case, an emergency. No matter when it turns off, it’s an inconvenience. While it’s not possible to completely stop your battery from draining, you can substantially decrease how fast it depletes. Here are some tips to help you save phone battery life while on the mountain.
Avoid Extreme Temperatures
According to Apple, extreme temperatures can play a role in draining your phone’s battery while on the hill and can even cause permanent damage. To prevent your phone from being exposed to cold temperatures, refrain from taking it out while on the chair and keep it close to your body for heat.
Use Airplane Mode
Switch your phone into airplane mode to prevent it from constantly searching for a signal. Whistler Blackcomb does have good service range but there are some areas where your phone might work extra hard for that one bar.
Turn on Low Battery Mode
Turning your phone to low battery mode reduces the amount of power that it uses when the battery gets low. This should prolong what little power you have left.
Dim Your Screen
Adjusting the brightness of your screen can have a huge effect on your phone’s battery life. Dim it when you know you’re going to be away from a charger for an extended period of time.
Be Smart About Your Battery Usage
Uploading that photo to Instagram might have to wait. Many apps drain battery life. You can check which apps are the culprits under settings and in the battery section. If some are worse than others, it might be time to delete them.
Turn off Push Notifications
Push notifications are an apps way of waving at you and also a huge power drain. Stop your home screen or lock screen from lighting up every few minutes by turning off push notifications.
Stop Location Services
Once again, those pesky apps are stealing your battery life. You can optimize your battery life by turning off location services in your apps.
Turn off Push Notifications
Stop your home screen or lock screen from lighting up every few minutes by turning off push notifications.
Know Your Charge Stations
Whistler Blackcomb has many charging stations that can provide you with a little boost should you be running low. Guest Services at Skiers Plaza and the Roundhouse are just to name a few.
If you’re planning on spending the day on the mountain and know you’re going to be using your phone, bring up a battery pack. We would suggest one of Outdoor Technologies many battery packs that come with multi-function options such as a speaker or flashlight.
If you have any questions about using your phone on the mountain and related gear, come in and speak to the experts at McCoo’s. Your one-stop shop for adventures.
Après goes hand in hand with ski season but there really is something special about enjoying a pint in the spring sun after a day on the hill. Connecting with your buds and reliving the best moments of your ski day are all part of the mountain experience. And so is ending up dancing in your ski boots at 2am. So get ready to laugh, let loose a little and après like a boss with these tips!
Pick Your Poison
Pick what you’re drinking and stick with it. Drinking from the early afternoon into wee hours of the following morning leave a lot of room for options but those options might make you miss a day of skiing. Also, stay away from the shot ski…no one ever regrets that the next day!
Eating Is Definitely Not Cheating
Fun fact: Skiing is hard work and burns a ton of calories. Replacing those calories is crucial in order for you to hit the slopes hard again the next day. And, it also enables you to party well into the evening. Grab a quick bite to eat on your way to the bar or even order a round of world-famous nachos while hanging on the patio.
Don’t Forget To Sleep
If there’s snow in the forecast, it warrants skipping the night out to get a good sleep so you’re ready for the first chair. Après is an awesome tradition, but fresh tracks and face shots will always take priority. Even if there’s no new snow, starting to après right after a day on the hill means it’s okay to call the night early. That’s the secret to being able to do it day in and day out.
Alternate Drinks With Water
Beer, water, beer, water. If you want to feel good the next day and make it back on to the hill, hydrate like you’ve never hydrated before. Sure, you might be hitting the washroom more often but when everyone else is complaining of a hangover and you’re not…it will be worth those few extra trips.
Dress For Success
Nail the après-ski style. And no, that doesn’t mean wheeling out your best cashmere, cat-eye sunglasses and colourful faux fur. It means being able to comfortably transition from being on the mountain to being in a bar. Try layering peices like a plaid shirt and a tee. Also, don’t forget a hat to cover up that helmet hair. To gain more insight into the world of après-ski style, stop by McCoo’s for some real advice.
Since skiing powder becomes a bit harder as spring progresses, it’s a great time to work on your steeze in the terrain park. But if you’ve neglected this part of the mountain all season long, it can be intimidating and downright dangerous to just drop in. The terrain park is an outdoor recreation area containing terrain that allows skiers and snowboarders to progress at performing tricks. The keyword is “progress”. Here are a few tips on navigating the terrain park that will have you pulling tricks out of the bag that you didn’t know you had.
Start In The Beginner Terrain Park
Most mountains have multiple terrain parks, each with different features geared to different ability levels. Depending on your current skillset, it can be either terrifying or tempting to hit the largest jumps you see. To begin with, it’s useful to identify if it is a beginner or expert park, how big the jumps are, and how big the other people in the park are going. This is both for your safety and the safety of others around you. What’s more, starting small lets you develop the basics you’ll need to advance.
Check Everything Out
Real talk: If you’re reading this blog, chances are you shouldn’t be sending features blind. Take the time to do a ride through lap and familiarize yourself with the features you will be attempting.
Learn Park Etiquette
There are a few pretty simple rules you should generally follow with regards to other riders in the park.
Don’t get in the way of park features
This means don’t sit or stand in the run-in, take-off, or landing of any park feature. Always try to keep these areas clear and when you hit any park feature you should try to avoid stopping in any of these areas. If you need to stop, always do it away from park features where you won’t get in the way of other riders.
Don’t follow too close to other riders
You aren’t a mind reader. Give space to the rider ahead of you in the park.
Don’t cut people off, but also don’t hold up line ups
Wait your turn but be aware when it is your time to drop in.
Try not to brake on the landings
Bails and crashes happen, that’s fine. However, try to avoid braking while still in the landing area of any park feature. It damages the features.
Grab A Lesson
It can be challenging learning tricks on your own. For expert instruction, Whistler Blackcomb run park-specific lessons.
Remember, everyone has to start somewhere, so don’t feel intimidated by better riders in the terrain park. It can help to look the part. Come stop by McCoo’s for all the latest gear trends.
Whistler has received 191cms in the past 7 days.
Yes, you did read that right. That’s a lot of powder and for many, it spells ideal snow conditions. We’re talking waist deep, light, and fluffy pow pow just waiting for tracks to be laid into it. Now, as each day passes and the centimeters keep accumulating, you might be thinking, “I need a rest day!” So is there such thing as too much powder? As the ski legend, Doug Coombs would say, “there is never such thing as too much snow.” But in case you’re starting to feel the effects of being a full-time powder-hound, here are some tips to get through the heaviest of storms.
Snow sports require a lot of physical exertion and when you add in pushing through a meter of fresh snow, you’ve just increased your work load even further. To keep up with the demands placed on your body and recover afterward, nutrition is key. First step: A proper breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks that include all the food groups
This is a hard concept to take in but here we go…Pow > après. You see, après will be there all time during the season but the elusive powder, it can come and go. So get it while it’s hot and get a good night sleep to be in optimal condition for shredding the duration that the mountain is open.
You can feel like a million bucks until a dehydration headaches set in. If you’re having difficulty staying hydrated while you’re riding, load up a backpack and drink on the lifts or make sure to drink a lot after a day on the hill. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
If this is your third day in a row, your legs are going to be screaming as soon as you make a few turns. Combat the lactic acid and decrease your recovery time by performing a thorough stretch both before riding and after. Not only does stretching help you recover faster, but it can also help you decrease the risk of injuries.
Take Care Of Your Gear
Not only is your body taking a beating when you are riding every. single. day, but your gear is also maxing out its capabilities. No matter how tired you are, take the time to properly dry out your equipment. When you’re getting all the goods, your future self will be thanking your past self’s actions!
Powder days are the gold of skiing and you have to get out there while the getting’s good. Take care of yourself and your gear to make the most out of the best days of the season.
Spring Break in Whistler is a funny time. The sun is shining but there is still some of the best powder of the season to be had. Do you see the dilemma? How are you supposed to pack with such weather extremes going down? Well, we have made it easy for you by providing a packing list for spring break in Whistler so you can focus on what really matters, après duh!
MyBikini or RipCurl Board Shorts
There is nothing quite like skiing till you can’t feel your legs then recovering in the hot tub afterward. MyBikini and Rip Curl boardies look good, feel good and are right on trend. As an added bonus, this swimwear is built for surfers so don’t worry about it falling down or coming up when your cannon-balling into the pool.
Your phone will your lifeline while in Whistler. Think about it, it’s how you’ll take pictures to create lasting memories, Tinder, or find your friends that ditched you for a pint instead of another run down Dave Murray Down Hill. Better protect it before you wreck it! Strap a HitCase on and forget about water or dropping it- this case makes it bomb proof!
Like you will need to tell time while on spring break but it’s a well-known fact that a watch, especially a classy, metal and functional Nixon watch, provides a great pick up line: “Have you got the time? [Gives the time] Cool, so you have a watch, me too, I’ll be here at 8, don’t be late.”
Trust us, when you get on to the mountain you will think you are Candide Thovex. It’s just the laws of being in the snow, the mountains and on skis. So also trust us and wear a helmet. Smith Helmets are the world’s best helmets and they are designed to take some pretty big impacts but that doesn’t mean the rest of you can!
Armada Base Layer
Don’t let the sun deceive you when you’re on the top of the mountain, it’s going to be cold! Armada Base Layers are fast drying as well as wicking so you can work up a sweat and then cool down without catching a chill.
After a night out on the town, you’ll need a pair of sunnies to protect you from the light and that person you danced with for like, all night. Performace and lifestyle meet in a pair of Oakley Sunglasses. Some styles are now featuring the new PRIZM technology too!
Spring break should be all about having fun! If you missed packing anything or find yourself in a rare (but possible) March blizzard, come stop by the shop, we’ll sort you out.
Action cams. They can capture everything. Maybe it’s your vacation and you want to be able to show everyone at home how much fun you’re having. Or you’re looking for a POV (That’s an abbreviation for point of view for all you action cam newbies out there) addition to your footage to create the perfect edit. Action cams are versatile, compact and insane little pieces of technology. With so many options to choose from out there on the market, we’ve put together a cheat sheet so you can find the action cam best suited for you and your video needs!
Your highest resolution action cam (think crisp, clear images). This bad boy boasts water proofing up to 40 metres and out of all the action cams on the market, the Go Pro takes the fastest burst image capture! Many of it’s other specifications are professional quality so you can create a high quality edit to schmooze the sponsors or just one to post on Facebook!
Time lapse guru? This little guy is for you! Its long battery life of 3 hours and slow burst speed makes it ideal for capturing longer footage. The Contour has also been reviewed as being the best helmet cam because of its super wide viewing angle! To put a cherry on top, it boasts an easy to use system, making it a great purchase for beginner videographers.
This is a great all none little camera. It’s basic and doesn’t require any additional housing to make it waterproof. For those of you looking for sleek, low profile, and light weight the Ion is for you. Finding it so easy to take lots of footage? The Ion comes with 8g of cloud storage so you don’t have to worry about when and where you’re choosing to use your camera!
So go on, find an action cam that you find easy to use, offers the key features that suite your needs and fits in to your adventure so you can relive your Whistler moments over and over again. Have more questions? Head in to McCoo’s and one of our action cam specialists will get you sorted!
McCoo’s Whistler is a retail store catering to the mountain enthusiast. A one-stop-shop for your next adventure from ski & snowboard apparel to lifestyle clothing as well as a whole range of accessories including Whistler’s largest selection of goggles and so much more.