I tried snowboarding for the first time 2 years ago in West Virginia. During that trip, I learned that when you snowboard you fall a lot and that this kind of vacation needs some planning, planning on the fact that you will fall A LOT. So far this winter, I have been snowboarding twice and had very different experiences.
The first trip was a go with the flow kind of trip. I realized that this trip worked so well with this laid-back style because of the people I was with and the closeness of the mountain. I went snowboarding with Stacy, who is an avid skier, but had never snowboarded so she was a beginner like me. I also went with Caitlin who, like me, was not a snow baby, and had never snowboarded much. So because of this, we did not need to get to the slopes at 7am and could take our time in the morning getting ready. The other reason this laid back style worked is because the condo was 5 minutes from where our rentals, the slopes, and the downtown area. This makes it a lot less stressful to make sure you can get enough done in the allotted time. Because we had everything at our disposal, we did not have to preplan anything.
The second trip I went on was a pretty planned one. This worked out because there were 3X as many people, professional skiers/snowboarders, and we stayed about 30 minutes from the slopes and rentals. For this trip, we were each assigned a meal, so we did not have to worry about finding a place to eat after a full day on the slopes. This would have been hard because we were in the middle of nowhere. It was also nice that we could just relax at the apartment and stay in sweats all night and not get back in the car (cause trust me you will be sore and just want to lay around). Like my last trip, I got rentals in the morning. But because we were further from the rental place, I had to wake up at the same time I wake up for work, and not feel like I am on vacation. Also, because all the other people I went on the trip with gave priority to the quality of the snow due to their advanced experience as skiers and snowboarders, they get up earlier too.
In the end, when planning a trip to ski, remember three things:
1. Who you are going with; beginners or experienced?
2. Closeness to rentals and slopes
3. Food, cause lets face it, that is the most important.