Theo Chocolate began making hot chocolate in 2007, selling it by the pound from its Fremont factory shop. When demand spiked, it started offering more modestly sized portions, and in fall 2012 came new flavors, like the sweet and savory chipotle spice, which combines ancho chilies with the chocolatier’s organic, fair trade chocolate. $13, theochocolate.com

 

 

Magnolia’s Capita Snowboards was founded 13 years ago by snowboarders, for snowboarders. So when it came to developing a new women’s line, Capita called up pro boarder Jessica Kimura. And with the Birds of a Feather FKboard and its unique cambered configuration, Kimura went on to sweep the 2012 TransWorld Rider’s Poll in all three of the highest women’s categories, including Women’s Rider of the Year. $379, capitasnowboarding.com

 

 

In 1992, Ride Snowboards was a Redmond-based three-man operation started by Harvard grad Roger Madison and former Kemper Snowboards execs James Salter and Tim Pogue. Today, it's a multinational brand, and one of few that offers head-to-toe gear. Ride’s devotion to form and function shows up in the Cappel Clampdown jacket, which has practical hand gaiters, fully taped seams, and vented pit zips, but is tailored for the mountains and the streets. $270, ridesnowboards.com

 

 

Dustin Goss has come a long way from selling gloves out of the trunk of his car in the Snoqualmie Resort parking lot in 2002: His Ballard-based handwear company POW—short for Prisoner of Winter—partnered with Nike to design exclusive gloves for the 2010 Olympic snowboarding team, which went on to finish first in the medal count with two golds, a silver, and two bronzes. The Gore-Tex-lined Assault GTX model is guaranteed to keep your paws warm and dry. $110, powgloves.com


 

Capita started out small. But today it’s one of four leading brands under the C-3 Worldwide name, along with high-end hat and cap maker, Coal; Home, which makes Swiss watches; and Union Binding Co. For eight years, Union has been refining its manufacturing techniques—including machine coring and the use of anodized aluminum—to produce lighter, stronger products like its MC Metafuse snowboard bindings, which it claims are the lightest bindings on the market. $400, unionbindingcompany.com

 

 

The KING 5 Northwest Ski Report app—which joins the station’s eight other apps that track everything from traffic to sports—features live coverage of conditions on mountains from Whistler to Mount Bachelor, along with resort information, live webcams, and traffic and pass reports to get you to the slopes safely. The best part? It’s free. Available for iPhone, Android, and Blackberry



Published: February 2013