7 Ways To Protect Skis And Snowboards From Theft

There aren't too many things that can ruin an otherwise awesome powder day like walking out of the lodge to discover your gear has been stolen. We like to think that it'll never happen to us but the truth is that it can happen to anyone. Luckily, a few simple precautions will likely deter any would-be thieves from taking your gear, as they typically look for the easiest targets. Don't be one of those easy targets, read on and be better protected this season.

#1 Invest in a lock for your skis or board (or rent one from the mountain). This one sounds like a no brainer, but how many people do you regularly see locking up their gear? In a perfect world we wouldn't need to lock it up but you're much better off safe than standing at the top of the mountain in your ski boots without skis.

#2 If you don't happen to have a lock, separate your skis. A good trick when you're in a bind is to hand off one of your skis to a friend and take one of theirs. Someone looking to steal skis won't want to look suspicious trying to track down the matching ski and then fumbling with both sets so there's a good chance this trick will keep your stuff safe.

#3 Protect your car. Always stash gear out of sight and if you're using a ski rack, ensure it's secured to the car well enough. There's nothing worse than locking your skis to the car rack only to discover both the skis and rack gone when you return.

#4 Mark it up. Mark your skis and board with stickers, your initials and other means to make it unique. This will help you keep track of your board and identify it if it's stolen.

#5 Keep records. Take pictures of your gear and write down the brand, model and any serial numbers you can find. It's always easier to find stolen gear when you have the information and when it is found there will be no question that it's yours.

#6 If your gear is stolen, report it right away. The sooner the search begins, the more likely it is that you'll get your board back.

#7 Consider some of the high tech protective devices out there. Technology can be amazing, there are devices (like the Alpine Hawk) that can monitor your gear remotely and set off an alarm when a thief tries to make off with your skis or board. While we have yet to test this gear, it's definitely an option worth exploring—in addition to the other tips above, not as a substitute for them.