Nobody really wants to look like a tourist or do they? I have to admit part of the fun of skiing at the Salt Lake Ski Resorts is seeing what crazy outfits the tourists drum up – the tourists are sort of our entertainment while riding the lifts.
I’m here to help you from being heckled at by the lift-riding locals with tips on how to not look like a gaper. A gaper is a term tossed around the western ski slopes and is defined by the Urban Dictionary as the following:
A gaper is a skiier or snowboarder who is completely clueless. Usually distiungished by their bright colored clothes and a gaper gap, the gap between goggles and a helment/hat. Gapers also do the “Gaper Tuck” which is an attempt at being a ski racer by tucking, however, it is done incorrectly with the poles sticking straight up like thunderbolts and lighting, very very frightning!
If you want to blend in with the locals on the Utah ski resorts and avoid being labeled a gaper, please refrain from wearing any of the following on the ski slopes:
If you wear jeans on the mountain I guarantee that you will get plenty of unwanted attention. Expect whistles from the chairlift and plenty of locals will try to snap photos of you to post on their Facebooks. I guess if you have to wear jeans, just please, please don’t tuck them into your boots.
Crazy Tight Ski Pants
I think at one point crazy tight ski pants were actually cool, but it has been at least 20 years.
Leave your Starter jackets at home (although Packer jackets are okay). No jacket is better than a Starter jacket.
One-Piece Ski Outfits
There is a total double standard with one-piece ski outfits – super trendy with the locals, but totally uncool on the tourists.
Gapers are usually easy to identify thanks to their brightly colored outfits.
Other Ways to Keep From Looking Like a Tourist
Avoid the Gaper Gap – Like said above, the Gaper Gap is the gap between your goggles and helmet. Close the gap by wearing a headband or hat under your helmet or invest in a new pair of ski goggles that fit well with your helmet. If you don’t close the Gaper Gap you will go home with one ridiculous sunburn.
Layoff the Gaper Tuck - Be conscious of where your poles are when tucking. If your poles are up in your armpits your poles are probably shooting straight into the air identifying you to passersby as a 100% gaper.
Tuck like this…
Not like that…
Don’t cut in front of the ladies – I will never forget this tall, anxious, man in an all-white one-piece that kept nudging me in line for the first Tram of the morning at Snowbird. He was freaking that he wasn’t going to make first tram and so I said to him, “Please either quit pushing me or just go in front of me.” He went in front of me – not cool.
Wear whatever you want - Truth is looking like a gaper is totally trendy with ski resort locals. So you can seriously wear whatever you want as long as you are not sporting the Gaper Gap or bombing the runs in a Gaper Tuck. If you are hucking cliffs and emitting flawless telemark turns than you can pretty much get away with wearing anything. Have some fun!