Close the door on your way out, 2016 – here at WL Towers we’re already looking forward to next year, when things can surely only get better. It’s therefore time to peer once again into the bottom of the teacup, and see what lies in store for the next twelve months.
In both of the last two years, we actually got a prediction right, (pyjama bottom steeze in 2015, emojis replacing voiceover in 2016). That makes us at least as accurate as most professional pollsters and analysts have managed recently, so we might as well take another crack at it.
Here are the things that we’d be utterly un-shocked to see occurring in 2017. They may seem far-fetched, but if 2016 taught us anything it’s to expect the unexpected.
Besides, with step-ins making a comeback, all bets are off.
Snowboard Bans Re-introduced
More than anything, 2016 was the year of ‘Us vs Them’ – so if current attitudes prevail, don’t be surprised to see more mountains join Alta, Deer Valley and Mad River Glen in banning snowboarding outright.
It’ll be a return to poaching, high-speed ski patrol pursuits, and some absolutely brutal name-calling. And you thought 2016 was bad...
Vail Resorts Buys Trollhaugen
Vail Resorts Inc’s manifest destiny marches on. After adding Whistler to their portfolio in 2016 – where it joined the likes of Keystone, Park City, Northstar and Perisher – the mountain moguls will this year turn their attention to Trollhaugen.
Expect the low-key Wisconsin park Mecca to get a sleek corporate makeover, and for lift pass prices to soar to $150 per day – but hey, it’s worth it, right?
Contest Riders Get Nasty
In-keeping with the general level of discourse in society, the gloves will finally come off in the world of competitive snowboarding. Forget the high-fives – in 2017 it’ll be all about mind games.
So it’ll be out with: “Ah, y’know, it’s just cool to be out here with these amazing riders, I’m so blessed"
And in with: “Of course I won – did you see those other clowns? Embarrassing stuff, low energy. Thank God I was here so that the place wasn’t a total shit show. Ask these people, they know. I tell ya folks, I’ll be winning so much you’ll get sick of the winning. It’s gonna be great."
Also, as it’s a post-truth world, people will insist that it totally wasn't a boot grab, and that the video replay proving it is just another example of the media's biased agenda.
Leash Straps Back In Fashion
In this brave new world of mitts and bib pants, guessing the next fashion trend has become a total crap shoot. We’re going to swing for the fences and say that by this time next year, the snowboard leash strap will have made a storming comeback.
For those who never experienced them the first time round, a leash connected your binding to your boot, or leg, and was therefore one of the most unnecessary items of snowboard gear ever devised. Still, it didn’t stop some resorts from insisting you had one before letting you on a lift.