HISTORY OF SNOWBOARDING

In 1964 a young surf freak called Sherman Poppen was dreaming about surfing the magic winter landscape of the Rockies. As a consequence, he built a surfboard for the snow.

HISTORY OF SNOWBOARDING

THE HISTORY OF SNOWBOARDING
In 1964 a young surf freak called Sherman Poppen was dreaming about surfing the magic winter landscape of the Rockies. As a consequence, he built a surfboard for the snow. His first prototype was an about 1,20 m long plastic plank: two kids' skis bolted together. It was a present for his daughter Wendy which soon was a winner in the neighbourhood.
One year later, in 1965, his idea was put into production: Carried out together with a bowling-ball manufacturer, the now called "snurfer" (=snow-surfer) found its way through toy-stores under the Christmas trees. For the unbeatable price of $15, one million snurfers were sold in the 10 years following, and Mr. Poppen soon began to establish a competition series.  But the snurfer as a mass phenomenon disappeared as quickly as he had emerged from the white surf of the Rockies. Nothing else but the vague memory of an uncontrollable toy stayed in most people's minds. It was close to be the end of a fantastic idea - surfing the winter mountains -if there wouldn't have been blokes like Dimitrije Milovich or Jake Burton Carpenter.
In 1970, Milovich, an east coast surfer, had an idea while he was sliding around on cafeteria trays in the snow of upstate New York. He started to develop snowboards following the example of the new short surf boards. He even used rudimentary steel edges - an idea he soon gave up because he only rode in deepest powder anyway. He experimented with laminating glass and gravel on the board and also used nylon straps. His company "Winterstick" is to be considered as the first snowboard company ever.
In 1975, they were mentioned in American magazines like Newsweek and Playboy, and already in 1976, he threw a swallow tail board on the nearly not existing market.
In 1980, the company was broke.  Jake Burton, a 23-year-old student back then, was completely into snurfing and kept on improving the toy, in order to develop it into a real sporting good. Foottraps for better control, fins for more stability... Jake was always looking for new details to improve his riding.
In 1977, he decided to found his own company in Vermont. Starting with a small edition of "snowboards" - flexible wooden planks with water ski bindings - the small turnover due to the "high" price of $38 didn't look like this might be one of the biggest winter sport revolutions on our slopes, and the base for the biggest snowboard company today. Exactly in the same time, mentioned former skateboard champion Tom Sims, addicted to snurfing as well, started to produce snowboards. Bob Webber developed the famous "yellow banana" board in 1977, made of polyethylene. Chuck Barfoot invented fiberglass in the snowboard production in the following year. Most of the first Boards didn't have any bindings and were featuring a control-leash instead. Still not allowed on the public slopes in ski resorts, the first boarders had to come in at night, walk up the trails, and ride down secretly in order to avoid any penalty.
In 1979, at the annual Snurfer contest held in Michigan, pro snurfer Paul Graves performed a freestyle demo and made the crowd scream by showing four sliding 360s, dropping down on one knee for part of the course, and dismounting off his board at the finish with a front flip. At the same event, Jake Burton Carpenter tried to enter on his own equipment. There were protests about his non-Snurfer snowboard design. Paul Graves and others stood up for Jake's right to race and an open division was created which only Jake entered. He won. In the same year, Mark Anolik discovered the Tahoe City Halfpipe while nosing around behind the Tahoe City dump. Bingo - this became known as the world's first snowboard halfpipe and not only attracted aces like Terry Kidwell or Keith Kimmel but also photographers from the skateboard mags. In the early eighties, even in Europe the first prototypes were glued together. But more and more fans tried to import the US cult boards. One of the first was later president of the ISF, Jose Fernandes from Switzerland, who ordered a board from the USA in 1982 after working on own planks for several time. Later, in 1985, he would also be the first European to got to America for a contest - he got third in the North American Championships in Calgary. Other European pioneers were Tommy Delago from Oberammergau and Petra "Milka" Mossig from Konstanz, Germany, also a later world champion. Ski technology materials improved the gliding abilities of the boards, and later on, the first high-back bindings were produced by snowboard pioneers Flite, founded in 1974. More and more riders took off the fins, and slowly but surely, the "snurfer" turned into a controllable "snowboard" and an accepted sporting good. Already in 1981, Ski Cooper in Leadville, Colorado, saw the first snowboard contest. One year later, the first National Snowboard Championships were held in Suicide Six near Woodstock, Vermont. Downhill racers were timed at 60 mph. In 1985, "Absolutely Radical" came out - fanfare for the first snowboard mag ever, later rebaptized "International Snowboard Magazine". Also this year, models like Sims 1500 FE and Burton Performer finally brought the comeback of the steel edge! European board manufacturers like Nidecker and Hooger Booger quickly had made up their technical delay and in 1987, Jose Fernandes won the Giant Slalom of the "American" world championships of this year in Breckenridge, CO, with one of the first asymmetrical boards - a sign that the European snowboard industry didn't need to fear comparisons with the Americans anymore. German ace Peter Bauer and French guy Jean Nerva were also about to celebrate big successes with asymmetrical boards. In 1987, the first "European" snowboard world championships took place in Livigno and St. Moritz - and this event brought up a great brotherhood of snowboarders from all over the world. A new sport was born. Snowboarding was newer, fresher, younger than anything else on the slope. Snowboarding was a revolution, a tribute to liberty, a new religion for young people. The year after, the international World cup tour was born, won by Peter Bauer just like in the year after. The evolution became faster and faster: rounded tails, hard boots, plate bindings... powder boards, race boards, free style boards... asymmetrical, twin-tip, carving... new disciplines like half pipe, modules and downhill...
1990 saw the foundation of the ISF, and nowadays the speed record for snowboarders is set to some mediocre 201,907 km/h, run by Aussie Darren Powell in Les Arcs in 1999. Meanwhile, more than 6 million snowboarders are shredding down the mountains, and they are getting more and more. The "white rush" developed into an Olympic sport with a big but unfortunately divided lobby. Instead of banning snowboarders from the slope (in 1985, only 7% of the American resorts had permitted snowboarding!), ski resorts now are building half pipes and organizing contests and events. A creative hardware and clothing industry is setting new trends in aesthetics and function. Snowboard now is a mass sports. And a worldwide Pro-Tour with great performance can now be seen on TV every weekend. Snowboarders like Terje Haakonsen, Shaun Palmer, Daniel Franck, Martin Freinamedetz, Nicola Thost and, last but not least, the unforgotten Olympic champion of Nagano, Ross Rebagliati, are world stars today. Mega events like Innsbruck's Air&Style attract 40,000 and more people, and snowboarding has set the determining trends of the last years in music and clothing style. Snowboarding is the youth-culture of the nineties ! More than 80% of the kids who practise winter sports choose snowboarding - no wonder snowboards still are the number one Christmas present. And for sure, one day the kids will ask the older generation: "Excuse me granny, but why did you cut your snowboard in two pieces when you were young?"

     
  • Tommyboy From Scotland
    Sent on 07 April 2018
    5th time skiing in Bansko, have been here over Xmas period and Easter break, hasn't always been a lot of snow but enough to ski for five days. It is a good value for money skiing holiday for those on a budget, food very good value and varied depending on taste, some restaurants better than others, again depending on personal taste. Not to sure what the nightlife is like as we stay in our timeshare resort The Balkan Jewel which is 3 > 4 miles out of Bansko, they operate a free shuttle bus but the last one back from town is at 4.30pm therefore going back into town would require the use of taxis. I am sure we will be back in the future.
  • Mitko From Bulgaria
    Sent on 28 February 2018
    Dear all, Borovets is a nice place to be, but it is risky to ski there. The slopes for advanced skiers are crossing the slopes for beginners and the slopes are negligently prepared with icy spots and snow heap places. This all is a precondition for accidents. The ski lifts are maintained all on the surface, they stop frequently and the gondola had to be scrapped years ago. So be careful when skiing in Borovets!
  • Lene willsea From N.i
    Sent on 28 February 2018
    I love Pomporova. Its our home from home.We first went in 2008, the airport was a portacabin and the lifts were a dangling wooden chair.. The place improves year on year. I would highly recommend it. VERY CHEAP once ur there. But with all upgrades the prices to travel are clinbing. Jumped 200 in two yrs.
  • Neo From United Kingdom
    Sent on 15 February 2018
    The hotel it’s a brilliant idea however there are aspects you would be surprised to stumble upon We arrived late at night about 10pm. Greater by a very polite hostes she kindly provided us with prepacked sandwiches as the restaurant closed at 9pm ( we called in advance to ask if such is possible especially when you have young ckranky from long travel hours in multiple travel vechicles The room very spatious. Bed cover had some suspicious sticky stains that absolutely horrified me at the thought that my children could possibly put their tiny hands on to that. One of the bath robes provided had a black stain on its back, the other bath robe had its pocket thorn out and just hanging. There was a massive flaky, mouldy, damp patch in the corner on the ceiling. The toilet was leaking on the floor. Breakfast food was cold and rancid with a queue for pncakes quite long and very impatient as pancakes was the only food that you could have still warm. Boiled eggs were cold and so hard the yolk was dusty . Fried eggs were dry... won’t even go to details about the rest of the food. As the drinks offered to be purchased by the restaurant aren’t the healthiest of choice for children (all the juices on choice contained added multiple preserving agents and colourants) we asked if possible to have some tap water. It proved to be a terrible mistake, we were told that yes but we would have to pay for it, then told that if they bring a jug for us everyone else will be asking for it, then he brought a manager who was more rude than the server and plainly put it that even if we have children asking for water we would have to buy bottled water and she is not prepared to give us water for free, unnecessarily often stressing the ?free’ word. There are far more many good things that are good about this hotel. It’s main let down it’s restaurant staff who are poor hospitality professionals and frankly plain rude.
  • Nigel Buckle From United Kingdom
    Sent on 17 December 2017
    I have stayed at the Orlovetz for 6 out of the last 8 years and will be returning in 2018 for another week. It has become my 'Winter retreat'. A modern hotel that stands out due to its prominent position and its design. The rooms are comfortable and warm with plenty of wardrobe space and an area to relax. The safe is in the wardrobe, which is really useful for your valuables. There is a decently equipped gym, a small pool (though you can also use the larger pool in the Perelik as well) a Sauna and massage treatments, great for those aches from the first days of skiing ! The restaurant was made larger a couple of years ago and now accommodates more guests. Both breakfast and dinner are buffet style, the food, in general, is of good quality and there usually at least four different options at dinner. There is a small bar in the lobby area and a Piano Bar on the top floor that has stunning views across the surrounding district. As it is the sister hotel to the Perelik there is a tunnelway that links the two and saves you going out in the snow if you choose to use the alternative facilities provided there. One of them being 'The Pub' (previously known as the Pampi Bar) plus a couple of night clubs and a bowling alley. Also as the Orlovetz is just across from the Schnezanka it is only a short walk to Daks Bar, often used as the first mornings meeting place for your ski passes etc.,which is a lively night spot with live music and very popular. In all a great Hotel within a great small town, try it , Pamper yourself !
  • Liz From England
    Sent on 19 November 2017
    I went with my daughter January 2018. I was a cheap half board flights included and we wasn’t expecting much.... but what a fantastic week we had!! Stayed at the Lion hotel which is about a 10-15 minute walk to the slopes/town. A free shuttle is provide by the hotel. The hotel and staff are lovely. The food was always varied and hot. My daughter and I are vegetarians and in only two nights were we disappointed with the choice - but we heaped up on pudding so didn’t go hungry. Am lucky enough to be going back in 2018.
  • val From United Kingdom
    Sent on 15 February 2017
    group of us just back from borovets.we arrived 4th feb 2017 and departed 11th feb.had a great time.hotel rila was fab.great gym and spa.food was good.ski school was great.we had a really good instructor Martin Hristov.he was really good with everyone took time to try and learn everyone.we all had a great time thankyou.will be back next yearx
  • Alison From England
    Sent on 15 January 2017
    I wonder if the poor review is really about the Winslow Elegance. We have been going for years. It does not serve food and never has done. However, the spacious accommodation is for self-catering. We have always found it to be clean and we have always found that the reception staff can not do enough for you. We are looking forward to our next visit in February, 2017, Bring it on!!
  • RobJ From UK
    Sent on 01 January 2017
    Had a great week over xmas there - Hotel Lion was great, didn't see any lift queues but I did get there early. Easy blues for the most part, not loads for the advanced skier but great for beginners and families. I had more fun here than Chamonix last year at the same time. Bottom line ...manage your expectations... it is more than value for money but don't expect Whistler.
  • Pepa From Madrid
    Sent on 24 August 2016
    Un citio presioso pero todo lo demas mentira.la comida,el personal muy mal.No lo recomiendo a nadie.Es una publicidad engañosa.Y de All inclusive nada.No se dejen engañar por las paginas web.Por desgracia en Bulgaria todavia el consumidor no es nadie.
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