McNab Snowboarding

McNab Snowboarding is sponsored by:

32 The North Face

The year round snowboard specialists

Established in 1996 by Professional snowboarder Neil McNab, McNab’s were the first British company to run specialist snowboard camps. Today we have a dedicated programme of Backcountry weeks, Technical performance clinics and Freestyle development camps that operate all year round Winter, Summer and Autumn.

Our courses, camps and clinics have been specifically designed by Neil McNab to meet all your snowboarding demands and cater for all levels of rider from complete beginner right through to up and coming Pro.


Course updates & news

16/05/07 - Kamchatka news and shots.

Just got back from the Kamchatka trip, my last snowboard trip of the season so my winter is finally over (although there is new snow this morning down to 1800m here in Chamonix).

The Kamchatka trip was great, we were unfortunately plagued with pretty bad weather for most of the trip and so only flew for 2 days and ended up visiting local hot springs and amusing our selves around Petropovlosk for much of the time. Whilst the down days dragged on a bit it was agreed by everyone that the 2 flying/riding days provided the most amazing terrain, snow and experience that you could hope to wish for and were well worth the wait.

The terrain in Kamchatka is amazing! This has simply got to be some of the worlds best riding terrain, the 2 days that we flew and rode where up there with the best I’ve ever had, I’d even say that although the first days riding was amazing, day 2 provided some of the best riding I’ve ever done with endless massively long descents, amazing terrain and deep untracked fresh run after run.

The terrain in Kamchatka is provided by the countless huge volcanoes that litter the horizon. With a heli to our selves we could simply pick the mountain and the lines we wanted to ride and go ride them. The terrain is pretty steep at the top, the perfect angle for riding and consistant from top to bottom with runs averaging 1500m vertical and often providing over 2000m of vertical descent and can see you ride right down to sea level besides the Pacific ocean!

With only a short weather window forecast for us we were hard at it for our 2 days flying from dawn until dusk (you can fly until 9pm) and managed to fit the whole Kamchatka experience into our 2 day window, seeing Grizzly bears (with cubs) and riding into active volcanic craters before visiting natural hot springs and stunt flying in the Heli (optional I think but great fun).

In only 2 days riding we squeezed in a staggering 21 heli drops and rode around 27000m of perfect untracked steep and deep vertical descent. If you think that on the Krasnaya Polyiana heli trip we average around 24 drops in the week you can appreciate how much riding we actually fitted in, testament to the standard of the groups riding and everyones commitment.

All in all it was a great trip, if only we’d had better weather who knows how much riding we’ed have managed.

Kamchatka will be now (along side the Krasnaya Polyiana heli week) be a permanent addition to our winter courses calendar (next year scheduled for April) and I’m already looking forwards to getting out ther and exploring more of the amazing terrain that we saw but didn’t get to ride.

We got quite a few photo’s so I’ll be posting them over the next couple of weeks so look out for those.

My next riding will be the ‘Kommunity Suumer Camps’ which are looking busy already, until then I’ll be climbing hard and guiding in these here hills above the Chamonix valley!

More photo’s and news soon, Neil.

28/04/07 - Blind heli boarding!

At the beginning of the season 2005/06 I recieved a phone call from Adil Latif who wanted to do a Snowboarding Heli drop to raise money for charity. Adi, then quickly informed me that he had never snowboarded before and then added that he is also ‘blind’. Now being as it was for a good cause (to aid victims of the devastating Asian earthquake of 2005) and also because Adi is blind but very determined it was very difficult to just say No it’s not possible and I kind of figured it wouldn’t ever happen anyway and so went along with it a little bit. I informed Adi that it was a very tall order for a novice, even for someone who could see, and suggested that first he would should learn to snowboard.

I kind of expected to not hear from Adi and his crazy project again but before long he called again having now tried snowboarding and informed me that he was on his way to Chamonix. Chamonix is probably not the easiest place in the world for a blind novice snowboarder to hone their skills but Adi was determined and on his way. Keith was nominated as Adi’s teacher here in Chamonix and they set to work (with Daniel Lloyd and Grant Gallacher helping him out back in the UK).

Through out that first season Adi was constantly back and forth from Milton Keynes to Chamonix honing his skills and whilst not yet ready at the end of that first winter he was well on his way to making his project a reality and I now had to seriously start working out the logistics of taking a blind snowboarder up into the high mountains heli boarding!

I rode with Adi at the beginning of the 06/07 winter and was very impressed with his progress. As Adi can’t see he has to work totaly on feeling and so has to really ride from his feet up with the correct technique all the time. Due to this he has perhaps progressed with better technique than many other novice riders might and also progressed at a faster rate. After our session we started to talk about heli drop possibilities and slowly the plan started to take shape.

Adi rode on and off through out the 06/07 season and we set a rough date for the heli drop for late April.

I guess I was still living in kind of denial and didn’t really think much about it again until I got the call at the begining of April with Adi asking me what I had planned for him.

I quickly made some plans and put together a schedule where by we could fly up into the mountains, ride, hike, ride, hike and then fly back out. Snow conditions low down wouldn’t permitt us to descend all the way and also the infamous ‘Combat finishes’ from these big high mountain descents would take days to negotiate and so my plan was to fly in and fly out. We’d need a tight schedule and good weather. If the cloud was to come in whilst we where up there we’d be in for a long difficult descent to the valley!

So ‘today!’, we flew from Finhaut to 3300m to the Trient plateau for Adi’s big day. The Heli flight was great as he took us in and out of the crevasses on the way up the Trient Glacier. Keith was up to act as Adi’s eyes and personal guide whilst I was overseeing the whole show and looking after Adi’s camera crew James and Georgia. We rode down into the middle of the ‘Plateau du Trient’ and hiked up above the ‘Fenetre de Saleina’ for the main descent before making a swift hike back up to the drop zone for the heli ride out. A few menacing clouds started to lurk as we hiked back up for our flight out but everything went to plan and Adi got to experience a true ‘Big Mountain backcountry day’.

Adi performed amazingly, the conditions were quite tricky in places but he over came all the odds and suceeded his goal.

Adi’s determination and spirit are inspirational qualities and we should all learn something from an experience like this one.

Adi’s cause is a noble one and you can help make a difference by making a donation through his web site at ‘’ or by texting ‘snowblind’ to 85222.

For me it was great to be able to make Adi’s dream a reality and I’m sure this is just the start of Adi’s exciting snowbarding journey.

I go to ‘Kamchatka’ at the end of the week where the conditions are meant to be epic right now! A great finish to a great winter! Hope you had a good one, Ride on, Neil!