An alternative to buying new or renting expensive winter sports gear

by Bennett Tiglao, Seattle Goodwill
February 17, 2017

With plenty of snow falling in the mountains across the northwest, this winter season has been terrific for winter sports and activities. Unfortunately, one of the main road blocks between a day on the slopes and a day on the couch is affordability. First time buyers of skiing and snowboarding equipment know just how expensive gear can be, not to mention the cost of rentals, gas to get to the mountain and lift tickets.

However, there are less expensive options that offer outdoor enthusiasts the chance to get up to the mountains more frequently without the large price tag attached. Seattle Goodwill has a wide variety of winter sports gear at and our eBay store. And every purchase made helps create jobs for those in need by providing support for our free Job Training and Education (JTE) Programs.

Timing is everything if you’re looking to hit the slopes and save costs. Here are a couple tips on when to go:

  1. If you have the flexibility in scheduling your vacation or your day trip to the resorts, opting to ski early or late in the season will cost far less than skiing during peak season.
  2. Keep in mind the highest demand times. Riding during the day, weekends, holidays and spring break will be the most expensive.
  3. Riding in the evenings, during weekdays and avoiding holidays are the best times for lower ticket prices. You will also avoid big lift lines.

Seattle Goodwill has a wide array of winter sports gear. Below is a checklist of what you’ll need in order to hit the slopes.

  • Snowboard with bindings or skis with bindings
  • Boots
  • Goggles
  • Head gear
    • Beanie/Hat
    • Helmet
  • Winter Jacket & Pants
  • Gloves

Snowboarding vs skiing

If you’re thinking about trying snowboarding or skiing for the first time and can’t decide which to try, here are some of the differences to consider:

  • Snowboarders constantly have to sit or exert energy to remain on edge while they are stationary. Unlike skiing, you will not have poles to help you remain upright and standing when you are not moving.
  • Snowboarding is a lot easier on the knees compared to skiing. Knee injuries are not as common in snowboarding as they are in skiing. Snowboarding can, however, be a lot more challenging on your wrists so make sure you wear some wrist guards.
  • Snowboards work nicely in powder while skis are better in bumps and ice.
  • Getting up after a fall on a snowboard is a skill in itself but once mastered should prove to be easier and faster than having to put your stuff together again after falling on skis.
  • Chair lifts can be a little more difficult for snowboarders.
  • Skiing is easier for most people to learn, but harder to master, while snowboarding tends to be harder to learn, but once learned, easier to advance.
  • Skis can be kept on the entire time while on slopes. Snowboarders need to un-strap/re-strap one foot each run.



Bennett spends his working hours as an Admin Assistant with Seattle Goodwill’s Online Department. A jack-of-all-trades and a master of none, he enjoys photography, riding motorcycles and working on projects around the house.

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