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Destination Recreation: Winter Gear Care Tips - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Destination Recreation: Winter Gear Care Tips

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SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Jake Cameron knows a thing or two about storing winter gear. He's worked at the Alpine Shop in South Burlington for 14 ski seasons.

"Skiing is my life. It's what we do," he says.

When it comes to skis and boards he recommends getting them tuned.

"A storage tune, which is pretty much the same as a tune you're gonna get in the shop," he says.

First the bases are flattened through a special machine. Then the edges are sharpened on another device.

Wax comes last, but it's this step that makes a storage tune unique.

"A storage tune we usually use a little more wax than we would a regular tune," he explains.

The thick coating of wax is left on for storage, preventing the bases from drying out, and the edges from rusting.

"Rust is the most important thing to watch out for because it can ruin a ski pretty quickly," he says.

This means where you store your skis is important too.

"You want to store them somewhere that's nice and dry, so most of my stuff stays in my bedroom or my closet," he tells us.

This is a great example of why it's important to store your ski equipment properly. These skis, last summer, were stored in a moist basement. What happened is all of that moisture got to these skis, and caused them to delaminate, making them useless.

Another critical part of skis are the bindings, which are built with springs. During the winter season these springs are set to have a lot of tension.

"The end of the season what we recommend is reducing the indicator value all the way down so that the spring doesn't have as much tension in it," Cameron says.

Cameron says that this can extend the life of the binding. But, when winter returns...

"You have to remember to take it to a certified shop to have them readjusted in the beginning of the season," he says.

Boots need some love too. According to Cameron, boots should be stored with the buckles fastened. If you don't do this, you could run into some issues.

"You're gonna come back to a boot that looks like this and the plastic will be folded, and the boot won't fit easily," he says.

Once the boots are buckled, and the liners are dry, simply store them in a dry environment.

When it comes to clothes, they should be cleaned according to the directions on the tag. Cameron says products like tech wash provide some additional benefits.

"It's not gonna hurt any of the high end fabrics that are in our outdoor gear. And it's also going to restore some of the water repellency," he says.

Put your freshly laundered winter clothes in a dry place, and you're ready to go for next season.

But some of us, including Cameron, aren't ready to do this quite yet.

"My season isn't over for at least another month, month and a half," he says.

The beauty of the storage tune-up is that come next winter, all you have to do is have the extra wax scraped off, then you can hit up the mountain.

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