Want to learn snowboarding in India? I suggest you buy a snowboard in India and learn it yourself. Find out snowboard price in India, where you can learn it on your own and other tips. This blog is written on my personal experiences. So, let’s get started.
Ever since I visited Sethan last year, in the winter of 2017, for learning snowboarding in India, I’ve been hooked to the sport. I was, in fact, so hooked that I was watching tutorials on Youtube on what to do and what not. From how to correctly stand on a snowboard to how to wax it — I’ve seen them all.
I got hooked to the sport last year when I visited Gulmarg (one of the popular tourist destinations in India) and saw some people doing it. Looking at them, one thing was clear: I was going to buy a snowboard in India, next year, learn it on my own, and become a pro. So I planned a visit to Manali – one of the top places to visit near Delhi for now – and learned a bit of it. Let’s discuss one thing at a time…
Snowboarding In India
To cut things short, let me tell you… to buy a snowboard in India, you need to do a little work. It’s a challenge, just like buying other sports equipment. Even the most popular skiing locations in India like Auli and Gulmarg have no stores to buy a snowboard. Though you may easily find one to rent, buying is, unfortunately, pretty impossible. Most online retailers moreover don’t sell one.
When I was planning to buy a snowboard in India, right after my visit to Gulmarg, I almost got a sticker shocker after finding that someone in Manali was selling his 4-year-old snowboard for 35,000 Rupees.
“If a used one costs 35k, how much a new one would be” I wondered.
And then Decathlon happened…
Snowboard Price In India
No wonder, Decathlon stores have revolutionized the sport and adventure scene in India. Their products, though may not be of top quality, are at least affordable. They have allowed people in India to try different sports, that they once only dreamed of. I’ve seen kids in my neighborhood, in Delhi, chasing each other on skateboards — something that only felt like a foresighted dream.
So when renting a snowboard in Manali and other places and buying one seemed unreal to me, Decathlon’s Wed’ze came as a messiah in my life.
At only 9000 Rupees Decathlon was selling a brand new snowboard. The binding cost 4000 and the snowboard boots — another 5000. With a helmet costing 1800 Rupees, I was ready with all the necessary and safety snowboarding equipment in under 20,000 Rupees.
[Disclaimer: I wasn’t paid for writing a review for Decathlon, which may otherwise feel after reading this article. All recommendations and experiences are solely personal]
Update 2020: Decathlon has discontinued selling them since 2018. But they are (I have heard it somewhere) going to reintroduce them soon.
Snowboarding In India: Where To Learn
Learning snowboarding in India isn’t tough at all and requires only a few hours of coaching. Once you know the basics (that you can learn to watch youtube vids too) all you need is practice and self-confidence. Though a proper certification will, of course, help you get a hang of it, more quickly and efficiently, even if not, you can learn snowboarding in India by yourself.
When I initially bought mine, I decided to learn snowboarding in Gulmarg — for Gulmarg is believed to have some of the best ski slopes in India. But given the high accommodation prices during winter in Gulmarg and an expensive chairlift, I gave up the idea.
According to my calculation, I was going to bleed nearly 20,000 Rupees in about 10 days for staying and using the chairlift in Gulmarg, on top of an additional 5k as the airfare. When all that seemed a bit too much for me as a beginner, I decided to head to my usual slopes for learning snowboarding in India: Pir Panjal in Sethan, Himachal Pradesh.
Popular for backcountry snowboarding in India, Sethan offers budget accommodation options, costing less than 700 Rupees a day (including all meals) if you are staying for a longer time — say a week or 10 days. I stayed in Sethan for over 10 days and ended up spending just a little over 6000 Rupees, in addition to 3000 Rupees for transportation to and from Delhi.
So after more than 10 days in Sethan, and qualifying myself from a no-snowboarder to a beginner level snowboarder, I spent a total of 20,000 + 9,000 < 30,000 Rupees. In under 30,000 Rupees, I learned snowboarding in India and ended up having my own equipment for life. Pretty sweet, eh?
Further Reading: Backcountry Snowboarding In The Himalayas