On the snow, wear it all
BEAVER CREEK – Does the outfit make the priest? Maybe not in church, but for some skiers and snowboarders, fashion is a big deal on the snow.Take Travis Tyler Hill. He was hanging out at Beaver Creek with his snowboarding buddies wearing neon yellow baggy pants; a green, red and yellow belt; a white ’70s-style ski hat (yes, the one with the big pom pom on top that seems to be cool again); and an the obligatory MP3-player headphones hanging out of his pocket. “It makes me more stoked. If you look better, you shred better,” says Travis, who’s been riding for five years. “Also, the better the music, the better you ride. Whatever it takes.”The pros know the ropes.
Though recently arrived to the Vail Valley to work as ski instructors in Vail, Elise Savard and Miranda Foord could pass as any old time local. They’re wearing comfortable ski pants and technical-looking parkas with hoods – and, of course, a CamelBak that provides them with water without having to make bathroom stops in between those runs on Grouse Mountain.”You can have the looks and the comfort,” says Foord, 27, an Australian national who lives in Avon. But being comfortable doesn’t mean you can’t be cool. As soon as she’s done skiing, Foord pulls her baseball cap of her pocket.”I’m not concerned with helmet hair,” she says, “With long hair you can always pull it back, but I like wearing a hat.”More than her looks, Savard says she’s more concerned with how many layers she’ll wear.”We put too many clothes on,” she says. “We need to get use to this temperature. I’m used to skiing in Quebec where it is really cold.”
While Hill, Savard and Foord get ready to hit the black diamond slopes with their “we-know-wha- we’re-talking-about” kinda gear, Al Lawaor, of Peyton, Colo., is taking his first steps on skis wearing blue jeans.”It’s beautiful weather, so I’m not cold,” says Lawaor, 36. “I haven’t fallen yet and gotten wet.”I expect to, soon,” he adds with a laugh. “When I planned my trip to Beaver Creek, I was more worried about how fast I’d end up going and not being able to stop than what I was going to wear. I have waterproof pants I use for rafting that I forgot to bring. I will try them next time … if I survive.”Then, there’s Rob Lane, a snowboarder from Denver dressed as if he were a soldier in Iraq. All camouflage, from head to toe – literally – in a one-piece suit he got for $20 at Surplus City. He’s even wearing a camouflage bandanna.
“I picked it up because it’s cheaper to get than any of the high-end stuff and this is what the military uses. It’s good for a lot of different types of environment and it looks good,” says Lane, 33. “I only have money to get a good board, boots and bindings,” he adds.But unlike Hill, Lane doesn’t feel he has to have the look to ride well.”It’s all about the ability,” he says.Nine-year-old Christopher Enriquez of Minnesota says his mom, Lisa Enriquez, picks up the ski clothes for him.
“Skiing is fun and I want to look fun,” he says. “They look cool, they have spiders and stuff. I like the details.”Lisa Enriquez, 43, who was wearing baggy black ski pants similar to her children’s, says she’s happy the days of thigh ski pants are over.”This style is fashionable and functional,” she says.Before heading to the slopes after a quick latte break, Foord shares a story.
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“When I worked at a retail store in Whistler, some clients would buy a very nice one-piece suit,” she says. “They’d go out skiing on their size-10 suit for the day because it was comfortable. Then, for the apres ski, they’d put the same suit one size smaller, just so they look nice.”Staff Writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Vail, Colorado