Top-10 snowboarding brands for beginners and addicts alike. Call them and they'll tell you where your nearest shop is.

1. Bolle, good for goggles. Stockist enquiries: 0181-770 1766

2. Burton, good for everything 01784 251 000

3. Holmes, fleeces and trendy things 0171-221 7495

4. Nitro, boards and clothes. Available from Lillywhite's, SW1 and other major retailers

5. Northwave, good for shoes. Stockist enquiries: 0171-336 6666

6. O'Neill, good for like fleeces, hats, drift pants and bags. Stockist enquiries: 0191-419 1777

7. Patagonia, good for warm jackets and pants

Available in good outdoor stores

8. Quiksilver, Especially good for bags, accessories, T-shirts and fleeces. Stockist enquiries: 0171-836 5371

9. Rad Air, goose down vests, jackets. Stockist enquiries: 0181-960 0005

10. Smith, goggles and accessories. Available from Lillywhite's, SW1 and other major retailers

Top 10 places to board,from Low Pressure's The Snowboard Guide: Europe, and The Snowboard Guide: North America

1. La Grave, France The ultimate test for serious boarders

2. Alaska. The Real Thing for true adrenalin junkies.

3. Snowbird, USA, Known for having the lightest snow anywhere.

4. Chamonix, France Where all the tournaments happen.

5. Saas Fee, Switzerland. You can snowboard up here practically all year round. Wild nightlife.

6. Verbier, Switzerland. Like Saas Fee, but bigger and wilder.

7. Cervinia, Italy. The best snowboarding venue in Italy.

8. Argentina. Lots of snow and high mountains.

9. Hokkaido, Japan. Also has plenty of snow.

10. Wanaka, New Zealand. True junkies go here at the height of the Northern summer.