If you've ever thought about toking on the slopes, you'd better be prepared before you strap on your skis or snowboard. That's the advice we got from Olympic Snowboarder Ross Rebagliati, who won gold for Canada at the 1998 Winter Games in Nagano and caused controversy by becoming the first Olympian to come out of the cannabis closet.
Here are Ross' tips for a successful sesh on the slopes.
1. Prep your stash before hitting the slopes.
Ross says the first step for a successful ski-and-smoke is to roll your joints ahead of time.
"I always pre-roll," he told Civilized. "You won't forget your papers if you pre-roll it. [Laughs] A stoner's life. You've got the joint, but you forgot the lighter. Or you got the lighter, but you forgot the weed. Or you got the weed, but you don't have the papers. Or you forgot the whole thing. It's the only drug where the biggest problem is forgetting to bring it."
2. Pack a reliable lighter
The only thing worse than forgetting your papers is getting tendonitis from flicking your Bic to no avail on a windy day.
"I like to have those little butane lighters that are wind-proof so you can light it right on the chair lift," Rebagliati said. "The Bic can be a bit problematic."
3. Keep your stash dry
Of course, having a good lighter won't help if your joints get soggy from wiping out in the snow. So forget baggies and invest in a waterproof container.
"I use those Medtainers," Ross said. "They're pretty good because they're waterproof and they're a grinder, and you can throw a lighter and some papers in there. I like ones that are a little bit flatter so it's good for your pocket."
4. Keep it simple
If you don't want to worry about bringing all that gear, you could invest in a durable vape pen instead.
"I've been using vape pens recently," Ross told Civilized. "I have this new shatter pen with a nice dish and a super powerful battery. You just load it up with shatter. You can use it with certain gloves on or off, wind or no wind, or in a snowstorm. That could be the future for on-hill dosing. There's no kit, no lighter, no worries."
5. Location is overrated
Ross had a quick answer for every question except which slope in the world is best for toking.
"Well, any ski slope is good for that," he said. "Wherever I am, I like to dip into the trees somewhere and listen to the woods and smoke a joint. That's my favorite thing to do."
But Rebagliati does enjoy some resorts more than others.
"There are a few secret spots in Whistler that I haven't been to in a while. And I'm finding more here in Okanagan that I haven't discovered before. But in Europe, there's tiny ski resorts in Austria and Switzerland that nobody's ever heard about that are the coolest places ever. I think that's what I miss the most about not being on tour — going to those unheard-of ski resorts in Europe."
And he says having a puff on the slopes is easier overseas nowadays thanks to the European Union.
"I remember a long time ago, before the European Union, every country had its own border at the time, so it was impossible for us to travel around with weed," Rebagliati explained. "If we were in Austria, we could hook up in Austria. But if we went to Italy, we'd have to hook up again. So there was this one time we were in Austria, but our weed was in Italy, and we didn't want to risk bringing it into Austria, so we left our weed in this abandoned castle in Italy. And every day after training, we would drive just 15 minutes over the border into Italy and get high as fuck in the old, crumbling castle, and then come back across the border all high. So funny. Nowadays with the European Union, you can just drive around without any borders."
So Brexit is a huge setback for cannabis culture.
Olympic snowboarder Ross Rebagliati enjoys a bowl on the slopes in Kelowna.