The Carver's Almanac: Resources for carving
Top Carving sites
- BomberOnline includes
a forum, reviews, tutorials, and a classifieds section for used
- Freecarve.com is
a good site for carving Q and A.
in English and French. They manufacture
a specialized carving board, the SWOARD ExtremeCarver.
Regional carving sites
You can meet up with other carvers by connecting via a regional
carving web site. Carvers are generally evangelistic, so you should
have no problem getting advice and tracking down gear to borrow
or buy. If you surf sites in various languages, you can use Babelfish or Langenberg to translate.
You also may need to select a local character encoding to see
special characters: Select View -> Encoding in Internet Explorer
to set the text encoding.
- SwissCarving. A great site that includes photos, videos, and profiles of resorts in Europe that are good for ExtremeCarving.
- G-Force Carving, in Greece.
- CarvingUp, in Italian; quite extensive info/videos/fotos.
in Russian. ExtremeCarving style with a FAQ, photos, videos, and forum.
- Carve.ru, in Russian: Forum, articles, and a Russian translation of The Carver's Almanac.
a forum for people who carve in the Lake Tahoe area.
- Hardbooter.com for Utah carvers. Their Utah session
page has links to a travel guide for carvers visiting Utah.
- Ontario Carvers mailing list
in Finnish, also with English and Swedish forums.
Also see the Flegmatic carving site with photos and videos.
a Swiss site, in English and German. They manufacture two specialized
carving boards: the #ONE, and the #TWO
- Frozen-Backside, in German.
- Alpinepunk, in Swedish.
Also a retailer for F2 and Bomber.
- Korean extremecarving club
- AlpineRider, in
- SpeedAndCarving, in Korean.
- Soul Boarders,
- Raceriders, for
French Canadian carvers.
- Chacaltaya, a Dutch
Their motto is "We are Chacaltaya, resistance is futile, you must Carve"
- Sigi Grabner's website has a forum.
- Carveitup.net, a
Canadian carving site with a mailing list.
- CarvingBoard, in Czech
Regional snowboard sites which often include carving discussion
General carving info
Blogs, Home pages, photo galleries
Japanese Carving sites (Set your browser to use shift-JIS text encoding)
- In English and Japanese
- In Japanese only:
- Mac's Room
He puts a plastic sheath over binding bails to eliminating the gaps between the boots and bails. He also shows power coils, which are additional springs that can be used with Head boots, available for sale.
- A good index of Japan carving links
- A good blog on Virus boards
- PureCarve Lab
- Real Carve
- Soul discussion
- Tuning and riding tutorials
The Russian Connection
There are quite a few carving articles available in Cyrillic,
some of which are familiar translations from English. You may need to set your browser to use Cyrilic text encoding.
The Old Bomber
There were a few threads on the now-defunct old Bomber forum
that are archived here:
There are two Japanese magazines that have extensive coverage
of carving with a lot of meticulous step-by-step how-to photo
Nippon, published by Ski Journal, often has extensive carving
coverage. They have almost no advertising:
December 2003, #03
- 7 pages: Interview with Peter Bauer with a photo spread
- 5 pages: Tips for hardbooting in powder
- 3 pages: Hardboot carving tips
- 8 pages: Mechanics of turning in hardboots
- 9 pages: Alpine carving buyers guide for '04
- 3 pages: Coverage of the FIS '03 world cup in Sapporo, world
rankings and schedule of races for '04.
February 2004, #04
- 14 pages: Carving and racing techniques of Dejan Kosir, with
a photo spread
- 14 pages: Advanced tuning techniques for different types
of boards (race, freeride, freestyle), for different areas of
the hill (carving, halfpipe, park, etc)
November 2004, #05
- 17 pages: 4 steps for carving: positioning, weight transition,
edging, and open / closed stances. These are 4 out of the 9 steps
- the next 5 will be in issue #6. These photo spreads are a companion
to the Carving Master 2 DVD, which shows all steps.
- 7 pages: Snowboard racing, with interviews and tips from
- 4 pages: '05 Board buyer's guide
- 26 pages: There is a carving competition. Carvers turn around
pylons and are judged for their carving ability. Includes carving
tips and step-by-step analysis
- 8 pages: Tuning, stance, base material
November 2004 supplement
||This issue is "Mathieu Bozzetto's Snowboard
Carving Method". 132 pages of freecarving and racing techniques.
Plus he goes over the techniques used by other pro riders.
January 2005, #06
- 15 pages: A companion to the Carving Master 2 DVD, showing steps 5-9 for alpine riding: eye point,
edging point, turn control, transition control, middle &
- 12 pages: analysis of racing technique from top pros
- 1 page: world cup snowboard coverage
Magazine issues a single carving supplement each fall titled
- Lots of pictures.
- 8 pages of carving tips, including Vitelli turns, Interviews
with three alpine industry leaders.
- 11 pages: Alpine buyer's guide for '04.
- 12 pages: Carving skills.
- 10 pages: Coverage of current alpine racers.
- Lots of photos.
- 9 pages: analysis of Mathieu Bozzetto, Nicolas Huet, and
Sigi Grabner's riding style, including graphs showing how the
pressure changes during the turn.
- 4 pages: Covers a step-by-step how-to for 7 tricks on a carving
board: 1-foot carving, switch carving, ollie to carving, ollie
to vitelli, heel side hand slide 360 in bank, tail spin 270 stop,
and tail press spin.
- 4 pages: a complete expose on grooming machines, how they
work, and the different brands
- 14 pages: Alpine buyer's guide for '05.
- Lots of 2-page photo spreads
- 16 pages: Highly detailed techniques used by 4 different riders for carving and racing
- 5 pages: tips for BX racing.
- 13 pages: Alpine buyer's guide for '06
- 5 pages: tips on how to set up a stance, from the SettingMaster
- 3 pages: tricks on an alpine board
- 4 pages: waxing tips for racing
- 4 pages: common technique mistakes of alpine riders
- 9 pages: A list of 43 retail shops that sell carving gear.
- 11 pages: photos of carving on a huge mountain
- 4 pages: They interview Sigi about his new line of SG boards.
- Lots of 2-page photo spreads
- 3 pages: a pitch for a carve camp sponsored by CARVE magazine
- 4 pages: new carving products for 2007, including the IBEX
bindings that use the Burton molds, and the Active Flex lifter
- 20 pages: extremely detailed step-by-step carving instruction,
showing all aspects of carving. Illustrated with photos of Sigi Grabner and
Mathieu Bozzetto. Includes stance, equipment adjustment, force
- 6 pages: interview with a Japanese racer Shota Yada
- 10 pages: Alpine buyer's guide for '07
- 4 pages: plyometric workout routine for carving
- 10 pages: photos and results of alpine races
- 2 pages: New Zealand TravelBlog
- 3 pages: profile of Sigi and Mathieu
- 9 pages: A list of 43 retail shops that sell carving gear
- 5 pages: photos from the Olympics in Torino
- 4 pages: profile of Koji Sugimoto
The Pro Rider Magazine is published yearly by the AASI,
and may have alpine skills articles from time to time.
You might be able to get some tips from the better ski magazines
like Powder, Ski or Skiing.
The Snowboard Journal
is a quarterly magazine printed in September, November, January, and March. It's first issue was January
2004. Similar to The Surfer's Journal, it has very little advertising
and does not sell out to the corporate marketing forces that are
behind the jibber crowd. Carving has gotten some
exposure in a few issues:
- 2004 Issue #1: Victoria Jealouse carving a deep
trench on page 95.
- 2004 Issue #2: A few mountaineer riders hike up
Greenland's Karale Glacier on splitboards and ride down in hard
- 2004 Issue #3: A shot of Shannon Melheuse carving
a turn on a race board at Vail on page 80, a small pic of Damian
Sanders in the pipe with Koflach boots on page 83, and a shot
of Mark Fawcett surfing really low in powder on page
- 2004 Issue #4: No hardbooting whatsoever, despite
sending a photographer to the SES '04 in February.
- 2005 Issue #5: There is a huge carving shot on pages
92/93 from SES '04 Aspen: Scott Ubrick nailing a ultra-laid heel side
- 2005 Issue #6: A huge carving photo spread - 8 pages
of shots taken at Ajax Mountain during the 2004 SES. The article
consists of snippets taken from a Bomberonline thread discussion
- 2005 Issue #7: No readily identifiable hard booting, except for a North Face ad.
- 2005 Issue #8: There is a shot of Damien Sanders doing slopestyle in Hardboots on page 94.
- 2006 Issue #9: Nothing
- 2006 Issue #10: Page 26: A profile of early snowboarding history in New Zealand, which shows some really ancient boards (all symmetric) used with hardboots.
- 2006 Issue #11: Nothing.
- 2006 Issue #12: Nothing. Though, there is one thing tangentially related to carving: Prior took out a full-page ad.
Articles on carving
- Cindy Kleh wrote the article "S'thorne
manufacturers make their mark" in the Summit Daily News
that included info on alpine board manufacturers in Colorado.
Cindy wrote an article on the alpine snowboard industry and is
shopping it around to various magazines.
- Nils wrote the online article "The Return of Style"
- Chris Klug wrote an article "Sit Down for Power,"
which gives tips for carving a heel side turn, in the March/April 2004 issue of
Skiing. In a nutshell: when entering the turn, lift your toes
up toward your kneecaps to get higher edge, then pressure your
knees forward and into the turn to get your butt over the carving
- The Denver Post did a brief write-up of the 2006 SES. It was published on Wednesday, February 22, 2006.
- The Bend Bulletin did a writeup of Doug Dryer's 252 cm long 'Big Kahuna' board. It was published on Monday, December 25, 2006
- Transworld Snowboarding had a short article on Rosey Fletcher's Bronze metal PGS win at Torino in the September 2006 issue, page 58. . It also includes a sidebar with brief info on alpine gear and a list of manufacturers (they forgot Bomber). Prior to this issue, TWS did not have a photo of a rider in hardboots since 1998.
One manuscript stands out: "Snowboarding: A Practical Manual" a self-published book written in 1993 by Erik Beckman, a snowboard instructor at Sugarloaf. It's about 60 pages, and focuses almost entirely on carving. Chapter 13 is enlightening, since it goes into the bone/joint/muscle kinematics needed to execute cross-through turns on steep ice. To inquire about the status of the manuscript, contact:
Many other snowboard books include a few pages on basic carving,
but none of them cover it in sufficient depth to be useful. Here
are a few examples:
- "The Snowboard Book" by Lowell Hart: There
is a short chapter on basic carving technique. Hardbooting is
also sprinkled throughout the book, since Lowell always appears
in plates when demonstrating technique.
- The AASI Snowboard Manual, which can be purchased
from the AASI
website. The book has a few pages of basic carving instruction,
and the accompanying video also shows the basics.
- "The Illustrated Guide to Snowboarding"
by Kevin Ryan: There are a few pages of basic carving instruction.
- "The Complete Snowboarder" by Jeff Bennett:
There are a few pages of basic carving instruction.
- "Snowboarding Experts" by Christof Weiss
is often recommended for carvers, but we wonder why. The book
does not go into any depth as far as carving or racing techniques.
You might be able to get some tips from the better ski books:
- "The Physics of Skiing: Skiing at the Triple Point"
by David Lind. This highly technical book goes into great detail
on the physics of skiing and the dynamics of a carved turn. It
also covers snow structure and base material properties.
- "The Skier's Edge" by Ron Lemaster. It
covers the physics of how ski performance is affected by body
dynamics. Also includes physics of binding setup and canting.
- "The Athletic Skier" by Darren Witherell
covers a lot of detail on ski setup like fitting, canting, alignment,
etc to achieve optimal balance when carving on skis.
- "Skiing and the Art of Carving" by Ellen
Post Foster, for carving on skis.
- "Skiing Mechanics" available from the
Claw Skis web site. In-depth
mathematical analysis of ski dynamics.
The UK-based World
Snowboard Guide is one of the few books that includes carving
information in their resort descriptions. The info isn't very
complete or accurate, but it's better than nothing. They also
have info on summer boarding.
There are none. In carving, there are more opinions than there
are facts. Plus, even the facts are opinionated. Actually, there
is a laminated FAQ:
Print this out and hand it to people on the lift when they
start pestering you with questions.
|Snowboard Carving FAQ
|How is it different from riding a regular board?
||There is never any skidding involved, only carving
on the edge.
|Is that board good for ice?
||Yes, if you want to carve on ice without skidding, and if you are very skilled.
|Are those ski boots?
||They are snowboard race boots, which have more ankle flex.
And they're more comfortable.
|Is that a monoski?
||No, a monoski has bindings side-by-side, which is not nearly
|Is it difficult to learn?
||It's no harder than other board sports.
|Is it harder than regular snowboarding?
||It uses the same skills as freeriding, just in different
ways. Plus, you get to face the direction you are going.
|Does that board go fast?
||The G-force from carving an arc keeps my speed in check.
|Are you in a race?
||Nope. Today I'm going for perfect arcs instead of the fastest
|What does it feel like?
||It feels exactly the way it looks.
|Why do you ride one of those boards?
The Final Carving FAQ
There is actually one more FAQ: The Final Carving FAQ, and it makes sense of all other carving information. It is a bit of wisdom conjured by Patrice Fivat:
Carving is not theoretical, it's empirical
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