Japan is usually a sure bet for powder – but how are things going this year? Photo: Valérian Ducourtil by Matt Georges
Once the days gets shorter and the temperatures drop, it’s only natural to get excited about snowboarding – hence why most snowboarders are already frothing at the mouth by late September, even though most of us don’t get the chance to actually do any snowboarding until the New Year.
Still, good things come to those who wait, and January is finally here. Dead Christmas trees line the pavements, gyms are full to the brim with well-meaning resolution makers, the skies are full of eager shredders on their way to the mountains, and the season is well and truly underway.
“If you’re about to head to the mountains, here’s what you can expect to find – and if you haven’t booked yet, maybe this will point you in the right direction”
Or is it? Depending on where you ride, it might feel like Mother Nature is playing a particularly cruel joke on snowboarders, or that the Grim Reaper offed the Snow Gods at the tail end of his 2016 killing spree. We’ve seen a lot of beautiful snow shots on the interweb in the last few weeks, but we’ve seen some horror stories too.
So where’s good? For answers, we’ve taken a look at the world’s key shred destinations – excluding Australia, New Zealand and South America, for reasons we really hope don’t need explaining – and weighed up how their season has panned out so far.
If you’re about to head to the mountains, here’s what you can expect to find – and if you haven’t booked yet, maybe this will point you in the right direction: