I have always felt that the most important piece of snowboarding  kit is your woolly hat, “really!! What about a transceiver, a stonking big shovel or your very own Sherpa?” I hear you all cry; they have to be more important than a woolly hat, and my answer is no, unless the Sherpa can knit.

The reason for this is, yes protection is very well in keeping you alive and un-hurt, but the right woolly hat will get you noticed at that all important après ski bar a little bit quicker, giving you more party time and less queue time, also a good woolly hat gives credence to your wild claims of being a snowboarding god, even if it’s only your first time on the slopes, trust me elbow pads don’t impress like an over size pompom, so get out there, live the dream.

Now here is the hardest part in finding that all allusive, exquisite woolly hat, you will end up buying, stealing and begging your granny to knit it, but once the word gets out you will receive oodles of hats as birthday and Christmas gifts, (take a look at the 1 or 2 hats I have in the pic below) which normally you will never wear, unless you’re extremely lucky or have a relative on the hunt for the perfect beanie too.

load of hats

Once you start out on this quest it will never end, unless you follow some advice.

What style of hat should you go for woolly, beanie, baggy, ear-flapped or non ear-flapped, to name but a few, not to mention the comedy novelty hat [cows, chickens or Christmas trees], that is a whole new can of worms, we really do not want to open, trust me.

The biggest decision to make as Shakespeare once wrote “to pompom or not to pompom that is the question”.

I personally love them the bigger the better, the size of my head if I could, but that is just me, I am also quite partial to an ultra baggy beanie too, but more for walking about to the shops in, as they do tend to slip down and cover my eyes, when I board, which is fine, but terrifies everyone on the slope.

The first hats I set my standard by were the whitelines snowboard mag, free beanies you get when you subscribe to the magazine; the only problem is even though they are normally great eye catching beanies, if I went to a resort that is very Brit heavy e.g. St Anton or Val-d’Isère every man and his dog would be wearing it, so the beanie lost its magical powers no matter how good.

Then I found the web site bargain boards, the sheer amount of beanies they have is staggering, in every style and colour imaginable, including those dreaded novelty hats, but if that floats your boat be my guest.

I would recommend the kask hats for all you skiers, they are wacky enough for you, so you can burn those infernal (I think they are hats?) hats with what looks like your yellow, pink or ginger hair sticking out the top, the cowboy versions of which I will never understand.


Then like an angel Toqueanies appeared and with her magical wand (crochet needle)  ended my quest for the ultimate snowboarding hat and it is called a Toqueanie.

A Toqueanie is a cross between a Canadian Toque and a European beanie.

The reason these hats are so special is because they are all custom hand made by the adorable Danni, so you can finally choose the colours and style of your very own Toqueanie, safe in the knowledge no one else has one like it.

The biggest plus these hats have over all other is they are all free range, as you can see in the pic above, my hat was born outdoors where nature intended, in the wilderness of Canada, so make sure your next hat is free-range and has been able to wander up and down mountains in the open air free as a beanie should and not in a Burton sweat shop, your head will thank me.

That’s all I have to say so far on winter woolly hats, follow my advice and raise me a small glass when you get served first in that après ski bar………………

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