December 15, 2011 Features & Images » Feature Story

Gift Guide for the Whistler Typecast 

The Yo'd Out Bro. The Backcountry Nerd. The Sledneck. The Health Nut

click to enlarge features_featurestory2.jpg

Obsession with recreation is what defines most Whistler residents. We are aggressive consumers, our day jobs often only existing to maintain our lavish lifestyle of gravity-fuelled diversions. So at this time of year we are plagued with what to buy each other for Christmas. Pique has a few suggestions — while there will be the odd exception to the following typecasts, the majority of Whistler residents will fall under one or more of the following definitions — so shop and enjoy!

Clothes don't just shield you from the elements; they define you, Yo'd Out Bro. In the veritable fashion parade that is the Whistler Blackcomb Terrain Parks, oversized rules. Think pants around the knees, windshield goggles around the nose and Skullcandy headphones blaring phat beats. Layering cotton hoodies over multiple tall-Ts creates a water-absorbing sponge, perfect for wet coastal powder days and sweaty sessions hiking the half-pipe. Speaking of pipes, with three stores selling paraphernalia in Whistler now, the selection of "tobacco use only" devices is unbeatable.

Secondary accessory

Retro-douchebag sunglasses: perfect for stylin’ on the après patio, or high speed shredding on the mountain.

Survival accessory

Portable pipe: You never know when the bros are going to call an emergency safety meeting, or in the case of a real emergency (such as getting lost in the side country or breaking a bone in the terrain park), dulling the pain with some natural medicine.

The polar opposite to Yo'd Out Bro, Backcountry Nerd dreams of high-pressure weather systems with stable snow packs, far from the throngs of inconsiderate, resort-dwelling Neanderthals (see Yo'd Out Bro). Clothing must be tight (Backcountry Nerd will call it "anatomical") and feature a complex layering system of merino wool base layers and waterproof outerwear. Everything in the pack must be uber-practical, ultra-lightweight and chiseled down to remove those precious grams. Anything metal or alloy can be replaced with expensive titanium (such as a coffee cup) or carbon fiber (such as ski poles or avalanche probe). The best gift you can give Backcountry Nerd this Christmas is a Spot satellite communicator, and if you really love them you'll pay for the first year's subscription.

Secondary accessory

Titanium mug: Lighter, stiffer with folding handles for ease of packaging. Built for someone who is already cutting off the handle of his or her toothbrush.

Survival accessory

Spot Satellite Communicator: Check in with next-of-kin when off the grid and call in the cavalry when a you get stranded or a party member gets a spanked by Mother Nature.

While Sledneck desires the same clear skies and stable snow pack of Backcountry Nerd, the similarities end there. Sledneck despises the granola eating, tree-hugging purists Nerd that kicks up a stink about their 2-stroke emissions or the leaking oils that contaminate the wilderness. Clothing for Sledneck needs to be dark and durable to withstand the abuse and discoloration associated with motorized recreation. Jackets with armor paneling can avoid handlebar injuries such as fractured ribs, or if they really messed up dropping that cliff, a punctured lung.

Secondary accessory

Drive belt: At least one spare belt should be carried with the snowmobile at all times and Sledneck can never have enough spares floating around the garage. One of the somewhat affordable parts associated with snowmobile maintenance.

Survival accessory

Avalanche airbag: These bags are heavy and expensive, just like snowmobiles. The most effective way to avoid death from irresponsible highmarking is to have one of these on your back. Accidental deployment in confined spaces will also add extra comedic value.

Health Nut's obsession with mountains isn't to travel over them, but rather feel the energy from the confines of a yoga studio in the valley. During the summer Health Nut will spend more time outside stretching, meditating and shopping for organic food. Often rejecting western medicine in favor of acupuncture and other holistic approaches, Health Nut will have a pantry bursting with expensive supplements and over-packaged herbal teas. Lululemon gift certificates are a no-brainer,as is a voucher for aback tattoo.

Secondary accessory

Multi-vitamins: Because to maintain a healthy lifestyle you have to eat one of these every day. Right?

Survival accessory

Vegan Cookbook: If your body is your temple, then this book is your bible.

Readers also liked…

Latest in Feature Story

  • Game On

    Put away your cellphone—board games have exploded over the past decade
    • Feb 14, 2020
  • Playing back Peak Season

    Looking back on Whistler's brief brush with MTV cameras, 10 years after reality show Peak Season brought Whistler to TV screens around the world
    • Feb 8, 2020
  • Going underground to understand the yin and yang of carbon in our atmosphere

    How a nearly three-decade long experiment in Colorado is offering clues to how ecosystems respond to global warming, even as it's shut down due to budget cuts
    • Jan 31, 2020
  • More »

More by Vince Shuley

© 1994-2020 Pique Publishing Inc., Glacier Community Media

- Website powered by Foundation