Winterized product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of experience based opinion and real-world testing.
ANDROS TROPHY – IS THIS THE BEST SNOW SPORT EVER?
Reading Time: 5 minutes For an unfathomable bunch of reasons, snow sports are about as minor as niche activities get. Couple that with choosing to travel and tour in a motorhome whilst participating in snow sports and you’ll find that there are more people globally building tiny pirate ships in miniature rum bottles than there are people in your tribe. That tribe is our tribe. Winterized. Motor racing is also pretty niche. With the Lewis Hamilton’s and the Ken Block’s of the world filling front, back and home pages, you’d be forgiven for believing that motor racing is a big deal. It’s not. The reason I know this is because after over 15 years working in the sport, I can confirm that pretty much everyone knows everyone or has a mate/colleague who does, and unknown to many, the entire global business that is motorsport is run from a mid-terrace in Paris. What’s this got to do with snow sports? Everything. A few years ago whilst slurping a tepid brew under a leaky tent in a field in Northamptonshire, waiting for a break in the monsoon, I was introduced to the crazy concept of the Andros Trophy. Nattering about crappy weather […]
SKI SEASON JOBS: SKI RESORT TRANSFER DRIVER
Reading Time: 10 minutes Many people dream of doing a ski season and whilst ski-bum #vanlife is one option – there are distinct benefits of becoming a bonafide resort worker, earning actual cash. How about a job as a ski resort transfer driver? As grown-ups the idea of being a 90 hour a week chalet girl or a resort rep for a ski tour operator doesn’t seem to tick the life goals boxes so we asked ourselves the question, what jobs could we do in resort that would enable us to live and work in the mountains for a ski season? Our friends Viv and Jason found one answer to ski season jobs – spending last winter in the Portes du Soleil as ski resort transfer drivers. We decided to grill them about everything that’s involved in being a ski resort transfer driver – is this the kind of job you could see yourself doing to spend a winter shredding the pow? When considering any season long commitment, we think it’s important to be furnished with as much information as possible so a bit of background into Viv and Jason is useful reading. If you’re not into spending the season […]
HAS AUDIBLE REPLACED ROAD TRIP CLASSIC, ‘I SPY’?
As advocates of the old-fashioned road trip, we feel like we’re pretty experienced at in-car-entertainment but it’s changed dramatically since we were kids – podcasts and audible are the new i-spy.
IS THIS THE CHEAPEST WAY TO DO A SKI SEASON?
So you’re thinking of how you’re going to do a ski season but you don’t fancy slogging 16 hour days? Here’s how you can join the legion of seasonnaires, Winterized style.
WINTER VAN BUILD PART 1: NOT JUST ANY VAN BUILD
Reading Time: 5 minutes If you’re genuinely looking for some winter van build inspiration, search ‘winter van build’ on YouTube or Google and you’re probably going to be a bit disappointed. It felt like summer 2017 all over again when we discovered that Google had a black spot in the motorhome skiing department. There’s a generous amount of ‘living in a van in winter’ stuff and the odd credible winter van conversion video but certainly nothing that James or I found particularly helpful or inspiring. The aim of this Winterized Winter Van Build series is to walk you through your own winter van build, warts and all, showing you where you can scrimp, save and splash, dependent on your budget, skills and time. We’ve researched our conversion to death, and James has even donated his beloved VW T5 plumber’s-mate as the test-bed for things that have the potential to go horribly wrong. This is us, as complete newbies, screwing things up, just for you. We’re good like that! If you’re up for building your own snow-mobile and you fancy the freedom of mountain hopping, you can find the blog sign up at the bottom of this page and more details […]
UPGRADES TO THE WINTERIZED WEBSITE
In preparation for the 2019/20 season, we’re starting early with a bunch of upgrades to the Winterized website that are going to make it more usable.
MOTORHOME WIFI VS THE WINTER
Search Google – you’ll find a lot of reviews and user guides to various motorhome wifi products and solutions to getting internet reception on the road.
FULL WINTER VAN CONVERSION STARTS HERE!
If you’re interested in the idea of converting a van into the ultimate winter snowmad adventure camper, you might want to grab the popcorn!
END OF SEASON COMPETITION!
THE SEXIEST PRIZE GIVEAWAY YOU WILL EVER FIND ON THE INTERNET! (Thetford competition for bog and cassette stuff!)
SNOWCHASER: OLD PROS (PART 5)
Eight weeks to become experts at anything rather goes against the 10,000 hours theory, but we’re now the go-to van for crisis management and motorhome maintenance advice.
SNOWCHASER: MOTORHOME SKIING LESSONS (PART 4)
It’s not all bluebird days and snuggly evenings playing backgammon, that’s for sure. Here are a few of the motorhome skiing lessons we learned the hard way!
SNOWCHASER: THE PLAN (PART 3)
Turns out, you do need a plan. For the first bit at the very least. The bit where you get a van, and then fill it with all sorts of stuff that seems critical for survival.
SNOWCHASER: CHOOSING A VAN (PART 2)
Choosing a van for our road trip has caused much brain-ache. Part 2 in the Snowchaser series for Fall-Line Skiing Magazine.
SNOWCHASER: A DREAM UNLEASHED (PART 1)
Guest article for Fall-Line Skiing: SNOWCHASERS Part 1 of 5
10 BEST SKI AND SNOWBOARD END OF SEASON SALES
Reading Time: 4 minutes There are a whopping great fist of reasons to buy your gear for next year in the ski and snowboard end of season sales – in fact, for many of us, it’s the principle reason we have a ‘gear problem’.
IT AINT OVER ‘TILL THE MOUNTAIN BIKES ARRIVE IF YOU’RE MOTORHOME SKIING
2018/19 has not been the greatest of seasons. It makes you realise just how lucky we are to be mobile and just how much longer the motorhome ski season is.
FAMOUS SKI RESORT CLOSES AIRE
Alpe d’Huez has confirmed the closure of it’s aire du camping car and we’re gutted.
LE GRAND BORNAND: COWS, CHEESE AND SKIS
Madder about cows than Milton Keynes, the fabulous commune of Le Grand Bornand is an excellent place to take a motorhome skiing trip.
CHAIRLIFT THRILLS, CLIFF EDGE SPILLS AND THE S.A.S.
Things that give me the willies about winter motorhoming and how I overcome them – from getting stuck on a chair lift to flying off a cliff edge in our van.
EVERYONE NEEDS A PICK-UP TRUCK – FIAT FULLBACK CROSS
If you think you don’t need a pick-up truck in your life, you’re very very wrong. Our winter with the FIAT Fullback Cross.
RENTING A MOTORHOME FOR YOUR WINTER TRAVELS
What, where, when, why and how to rent a motorhome for your ski trip
A BEGINNERS GUIDE TO SNOWSHOEING
Ever thought of Snowshoeing? Do what? But I’m at a ski area, why would I want to do anything different to skiing or boarding ALL DAY EVERY DAY??
SKI HOLIDAYS FOR NON-SKIERS
Skiing or snowboarding isn’t for everyone but there are loads of other ways to enjoy the mountains in winter.
UPDATE FROM LES MONTAGNES
The Winterized 2018/19 motorhome ski season.
DISCOVER BACKCOUNTRY SKIING
Back in the day, we used to call it off-piste now it’s called backcountry.
WHY CHOOSING A VAN FOR MOTORHOME SKIING IS DIFFICULT
We’re a bit niche and nobody in the motorhome industry really knows anything about our needs.
WINTERIZED – THE SECOND SEASON
It’s probably no surprise to anyone who has dipped in and out of our adventures over the last year to discover we’re off again.
WINTER CAMPING IN FRANCE
Winter camping in France – our not-review reviews of aires and campsites across the Alps.
FALL-LINE SKIING SUBSCRIPTION OFFER
Two seasons for the price of one. Fall-Line subscription offer for the Winterized Tribe.
ARE LPG REFILLABLE BOTTLES WORTH IT?
If you’re hoofing it to the Alps in your motorhome, you should consider LPG refillables – here’s why.
MOTORHOME SKIING IN CHAMONIX
Can you take your motorhome skiing in Chamonix? Yes is the answer and there are lots of options open to you from campsites with facilities to aires with none.
YOU COULDN’T PAY US TO GO SUMMER MOTORHOMING
The idea of summer motorhoming fills both James and I with horror. Here’s why.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO MOTORHOME SKI?
This is the long awaited ‘how much cash did you splash?’ blog. An average of €45/each/day… so how did we do that when a week in Les Arcs will cost you €1000?
HOW WE SPENT A SEASON TOURING THE ALPS
Reading Time: 4 minutes It appears that some of you crazies are looking into embarking on your own Winterized Project – which is good because that’s why we started blogging in the first place – to collect information and illustrate how to, and more importantly, how not to undertake a motorhome ski trip.
CLOSED: WIN! AUTOGLYM CARAVAN AND MOTORHOME CLEANER
Reading Time: 4 minutesWD40, Cable ties and Caravan and Motorhome cleaner – The three things that will get you through any crisis
WHICH IS BEST FOR MOTORHOME SKIING – AIRES OR CAMPSITES?
Aires of campsites? Which is for you? Here are a few things about both to help you decide.
TBW: WHY YOU DON’T NEED A SNOW SHOVEL
Reading Time: 3 minutesWe spent hours researching snow shovels before making what was not an insignificant purchase in the lead up to our motorhome ski adventure in the Alps – and you might be surprised to learn, it wasn’t a snow shovel because… you don’t need a snow shovel.
One last run then?
Reading Time: 4 minutesWe’ve got a policy. Nobody ever says “one last run then?”. Never, ever, ever. It’s probably fatal, we’ve never risked it to find out.
Winter wonderland to dirty hole – the truth lurks under the snow
Reading Time: 3 minutesI am vindicated. I knew 200 powder free nitrile surgical gloves would come in handy but I didn’t expect it to be on our penultimate day skiing in a winter wonderland.
5 useful things you didn’t know you needed for your motorhome ski adventure
Reading Time: 3 minutesWe covered motorhome ski essential kit in our blog titled ‘Our Zero BS Motorhome Ski Check List’ which caused consternation with some in the motorhome community. Why? Because we think there are a number of things that people call ‘essential kit’ that’s total nonsense. Our feelings haven’t changed on the topic of glue guns and inflatable mattresses and if you want to read about some of the other daft things people think you should take, check it out here. As a follow up from that blog, and inspired by someone more organised than we are (Wandering Bird – follow her), there are a few things that we have on our motorhome ski road trip that might not immediately spring to mind and you may find useful. Some of them we came across purely by accident, some of them were strategic purchases – all of them are invaluable to us – here they are and we’ve included a few options that were in our short list. Draining Mat This was a gift and honestly, the thought of not having it, or one like it, brings us out in a sweat. You do not have enough surface area in your […]
HOW WE BECAME RED BULL ATHLETES (BY ACCIDENT)
Reading Time: 3 minutesI’m a 39, wine drinking, female. I do not feature as part of a demographic in any of Red Bull’s marketing meetings. James, a slightly unhinged 35 year old male however features heavily on their spider diagrams of targets. They needn’t waste their budget – he’s in. When I was sat in a meeting in Les Deux Alpes a few months ago whilst James turned his hand to skiing with his BFF Reuben and I was informed about an annual ‘thing’ that Red Bull stage in various resorts, nothing registered. And I mean nothing. That information went in the brain file labelled ‘stuff for the kids and plonkers to get involved in’. For a start, it involved bibs. I’m not a bib sort of gal. Sporting some fresh Helly Hansen swag that I’m testing for work (crap job but someone’s got to give it a proper run in!)… I felt no need to cover my mint jacket (complete with life pocket) with some sort of park-rat style basketball shirt. No thanks. It also involves a disclaimer (disguised as a registration form – you can’t trick me Red Bull know this game intimately), some sort of timing tag […]
What we do and #vanlife tips for working and not working on the road
Reading Time: 4 minutesWe’ve had a few people raise eyebrows when we say we left our jobs and hit the road. There are of course a bunch of people who plan long in advance of taking off on life affirming adventures – we do not fall into this category.
A message to everyone at the Caravan, Camping & Motorhome show
Reading Time: 2 minutesTuesday 20th February 2018: Alagna, Italy Just Do It. Do not leave the Caravan, Camping & Motorhome show without a plan as to how you’re going to get yourself a home on wheels. You’re visiting for a reason. Some of you are visiting because you have a dream, some of you are already living it and are inspiring other people to do so. Some of you are meeting old friends and some of you are meeting people you know from their YouTube channels! Everyone’s ideas of what they want to do with their motorhome life differs greatly – from weekend warriors exploring their local regions to others, like us, with a very specific goal in mind – giving ourselves the freedom to pursue our favourite activities. In our case, chasing the best snow around the Alps all winter long. Granted, our story is a little extreme and I know that the idea of giving up houses, packing everything into storage and running away from home isn’t everyone’s cup of tea – but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t elements of what we’re doing that aren’t exactly the same as everyone else with a motorhome. The range of options […]
EVERYTHING IN A MOTORHOME IS A COMPROMISE
We’re not daft enough to think we can live a road vehicle, be it for a weekend or indefinitely, and not understand there are going to be some trade-offs to make.
Why ski-in-ski-out is so last season
Reading Time: 3 minutesThere are alternative ski-life options to ‘ski-in-ski-out’ and they come with a host of perks. From going home leaner and fitter to benefitting from cheap ski accommodation and finding secret resorts… this is why we think ski-in-ski-out is so last season.
Welcome to the vlog!
Reading Time: 1 minuteWhilst I’ve been blogging, James has been putting up YouTube videos of our motorhome ski adventure for the last few months so welcome to the vlog! If you fancy a giggle, watch the back catalogue – particularly ‘the one where: James learns to snowboard’ but in the meantime, here’s a look at Châtel part deux. Vlogging is not easy and whilst I’ve spent the vast majority of time running out of shot (I’m better at it now than I was in the beginning), James has really taken to it. As someone who had never picked up a vlogging camera until the day we went to collect our motorhome from Elddis, he’s doing really well and getting a lot out of it… rage, frustration, Tourettes and arm ache mostly. If you enjoy them, please like, subscribe and press the notification bell in YouTube – it helps his ego and makes the pain of editing slightly less torturous! There’s loads more to come so stay tuned!
The ‘new normal’ on our motorhome ski adventure
Reading Time: 3 minutesWe can’t work out if it feels like a long time since we left the UK or just yesterday. Whichever it is, we now have an entirely new normal.
Essential Motorhome Ski Kit: Karcher Window Vac
Reading Time: 2 minutesI can’t remember being this excited about anything since the first Dyson handheld thingy that completely revolutionised dog and stair ownership. The Karcher window vac is awesome. We accidentally brought a Karcher window vac with us – it was very much on the ‘nice to have’ list but got bumped when we panic bought the whole of PC World in the last days before we left on our Winterized adventure. More concerned about out tech needs whilst on our radical sabbatical and my ability to ‘digital nomad’, than the practicalities of living in a motorhome as sub-zero temperatures, getting hold of this domestic gadget somewhat appeased us and convinced us we were fully prepared for life on the road. The less said about that, the better. Gadget Envy Forget the brand spanking new Elddis motorhome (one like this) we’re cruising about in. Our Karcher has been the envy of all our fellow winter travellers. Much to our surprise, we have no need for it at all in the cab of our van. We’ve got a pimp screen cover (kindly lent to us by Van Comfort who saved us from buying the wrong tool for the job when we initially approached […]
3 WAYS TO MOTORHOME SKI – TIPS AND TRICKS
A) Don’t try British sarcasm on the Gendarme; B) don’t try to dry your hair, roast a chicken and charge a drill all at the same time on a three day drained leisure battery; and the classic, C) never eat yellow snow.
Whatever they tell you, #vanlife requires a sense of humour…
Reading Time: 2 minutesIt’s actually pretty tricky to write an explanation to that from perhaps the most idyllic bar/ restaurant in all the Alps (Le Hors Piste, Chatel)! We’re dry, have mains power, speedy wifi and people bringing us amazing food and drink.
East Bound ‘n’ Down – Winterized journey to the Alps
Reading Time: 2 minutesDay 6 and we’re having a cheat week in an amazing AirBnB near Geneva for Christmas… pre-planned so family could come out to join us but it’s the first time we’ve come up for air since we left home in Oxfordshire last Sunday.
Winterized gets snowed in
Reading Time: 4 minutesYou couldn’t write it. We got snowed in at Elddis. Yup. The day we were collecting our van; the day before we were due to have our winter tyres fitted; the day before the day that we were due to do a dummy overnighter. It snowed. Hard. The journey north Elddis is a truly British manufacturer and upholds some of the manufacturing traditions that are rare in modern robot-run warehouses. Friends and family open days and Friday early shutdown, Elddis is the stronghold of a small former mining town in the North East of England. And the nicest thing of all is that having only visited a few times, we really feel like family. Despite having spent five and a half years in Newcastle as a student, 15 years of southern life means that a trip up north is still ridiculously exciting for me and Thursday was no exception. If a road trip past Watford Gap and collecting the motorhome wasn’t enough, as we hit the M18 it started SNOWING…. So here’s where we start to uncover the motivation behind this winterized motorhome ski trip… IT’S SNOWING… if you understand the way in which that statement should […]
What the…..how much loo roll?
Reading Time: 2 minutesAnyone who has been following our blog will know by now that we are ridiculously lucky. From being loaned our motorhome to getting a whole heap of equipment lent or gifted to us, we are very aware of how fortunate we are.
Finding an alternative ski holiday
Reading Time: 3 minutesIf you search ‘alternative ski holiday’, you’re going to find lists of less common ski and snow sports destinations – little know off-grid Norwegian towns, remote Italian mountain villages and the fast growing resorts of Western Europe. And yes, that’s one alternative to the traditional European Alpine ski holiday but if you’re looking for something really different for your 2018 week in the snow, the are lots of options to consider.
Luxury travel – what does it mean?
Reading Time: 2 minutesIf you stick ‘luxury travel’ into google, you’ll find names like Cox and Kings, Abercrombie and Kent and Elegant Resorts filling the first pages with 5 star hotels and first class flights. Click through to ‘images’ and you’ll find two dominant colours and pictures that are almost as toe curling as the touched up front covers of glossy fashion magazines.
Guaranteed snow every ski holiday
Reading Time: 2 minutesFeeling disgruntled about the snow-lotto you play when booking your precious week in the mountains? Fancy spending some time touring the alps? Perfectly happy with negotiating a few switch-backs and stomach-lurching cliff edge roads for guaranteed snow?
Reading Time: 2 minutesThis trip can’t really get much better. Our road trip proper now starts with a bonafide boat trip. Not only are we moving to the mountains this December but we’re doing it in some style.
Meeting The Grey Gappers
Reading Time: 2 minutesI’ve spent nearly every birthday for the last 11 years at the NEC in Birmingham and I’ve learned a few survival tricks in that time. Show-shoes – flat and squidgy. Caffeine – consume well in excess of your RDA – a dangerous amount is optimum.
Winter motorhoming – we thought we invented that
Reading Time: 2 minutesHonestly, we genuinely thought we’d come across a secret way to travel which was only known to a very small handful of nomads and hippies. We thought we invented winter motorhoming (evidence here).
“IF IT’S GOT TYRES OR TESTICLES, IT’S GOING TO GIVE YOU TROUBLE”
Winter tyres are essential for motorhome skiing trips regardless of the law.
#AdventureMiles and value exchange
Reading Time: 2 minutesTo put you in the picture, we’re giving up our jobs (or at least James is – I perhaps naively think that I can ‘digital nomad’, vin chaud in one hand, laptop in the other, smoothly gliding through a snowy pine forest with planks stuck to my feet), and we’re heading off on the adventure of a lifetime.
Winterized and Fall-Line Skiing
Reading Time: 2 minutesTurning our trip from a ‘jolly’ into a radical sabbatical was never the plan, not really. It wasn’t until we had buried ourselves in the internet for two days without coming up for air that we realised we had an opportunity to put something together that might offer value to other people looking to road trip around the Alps in winter.
#vanlife is mostly an endless discussion about excretion
Reading Time: 2 minutes Declaration: We do solemnly promise, that from this day forward (unless something truly hilarious happens (which will undoubtedly only be funny for one of us) there will no further potty chat… winterized #vanlife vows.
38 TEASPOONS, 5 QUICHE DISHES AND THE £10K SKIP
Reading Time: 3 minutesJust over a year ago [in May 2016], I was mindlessly watching British weekend staple viewing Sunday Brunch, and they were interviewing the author James Wallman who was plugging his book, Stuffocation: Living More with Less. By the end of the day, I’d ploughed through a good chunk of it and had one of those life changing moments.
ANDROS TROPHY - IS THIS THE BEST SNOW SPORT EVER?
For an unfathomable bunch of reasons, snow spo
SKI SEASON JOBS: SKI RESORT TRANSFER DRIVER
Many people dream of doing a ski season and wh
HAS AUDIBLE REPLACED ROAD TRIP CLASSIC, 'I SPY'?
As advocates of the old-fashioned road trip, w