Do you have mental cravings for the mountains? Do you display addictive behaviour when it comes to snow sports and a psychological dependency on shredding? Then chances are that you have Altitude Addiction and are a Snow Junky who just likes to get high.
When coming off snow this habit can lead to serious withdrawal problems whether you go for only one week or a whole season. If you think you have Altitude Addiction, use our symptom checker. And, if affected, seek immediate treatment.
You can't bring yourself to stow away your skis/snowboard, but have them propped up in the corner of your bedroom.
Gym? Stairmaster? Like wading waist deep in powder but without the pay back of fresh tracks. No thanks.
Just can't be doing with proper, shiny shoes.
Treadmill? You're so on it...the treadmill of commuter life.
You're surrounded by a pile of online ski and snowboard purchases from the end of season Sales, all ready for next winter.
You keep checking how much holiday you have left - and balancing the instant gratification of a beach NOW versus the infinitely preferable delayed reward of saving it ALL up for winter.
You catch yourself staring at your Facebook cover photo of the Lo-Fi mountain sunset from last winter or the GoPro still of your midair backflip.
You click on any links that mention skiing or snowboarding or snow which is, er, why you're reading this.
The only way you can kick the habit of continually checking the calendar and ticking off the days to next winter is to tattoo the start of the season on your arm.
You keep watching park, backcountry, ski and snowboard edits over and over again even though it sucks that you’re not doing it.
You're doing a quiz to see if you've got Altitude Addiction (even though, yep, you know the answer).
You're wearing your 'No Friends On a Powder Day' t-shirt and a beanie even though it's 25°C AND you're at work.
If you're a girl you're wearing thermals - as leggings.
If you're a guy, you're not sure how you can live without zipped side vents in your pants.
You have a La Grave, Planks and/or Born To Ride sticker on your laptop.
You high five anyone you see on the tube with any of the above.
Hot chocolate at 11am? Pfft, why not?
Apres at 4pm? Hmm, tempting.
Jagerbomb at 3am? Hell, yeah.
To quit your job and do the whole season next winter. You've done a season (or two) already? All the more reason...
How many ticks? Most of them? All of them? Then there’s only one diagnosis: Altitude Addiction. And, there is no cure, even when you’re old and your teeth fall out except to get high and go back to the mountains. Repeat after us: I am an Altitude Addict.
But, between winters, there are ways to ease the pain...
Alternative therapy: Have regular doses of manmade snow, cold air and freestyle at an indoor snow centre. Plus take up another extreme sport such as kitesurfing or skydiving. Or go longboarding. Yep, even though you feel like Methuselah in the skatepark and fear your teeth will fall out just thinking about a kickflip.
Quick fix: Have that beer at 4pm, put on the bargain-but-still-extortionate Sale ski/snowboard jacket that you know you'll have gone off by December, grab your ski/snowboard boots that are still in the hallway, turn up the volume on Good Feeling – and dance on that table. Until 3am when it's time for the Jagerbomb.
Short term cure: It's always winter somewhere so take a trip to any mountain that has snow such as Norway in May, Chile in August or the Antarctic in November. Or, why not NZ for the whole summer? Beware: could lead to serious haemorrhaging of your bank account, dismissal from work and/or a friends/family intervention.
Long term remedy: Book your ski'snowboard holiday for next winter. Now. And stare at your confirmation email whenever you feel those Altitude Withdrawal symptoms coming on. No, better than that, double the dose and book two mountain breaks.
Extreme long term remedy: Quit the City job. Learn to be a ski instructor. Head for the hill.
Self help: Admit ‘I am a Snow Junky’ and join Altitude Abstinence meetings at your local pub with like-minded addicts, where you can all down beers in one, do shots and hug it out. Then wake up on a strange sofa under a dog blanket. Standard ski bum behaviour.
Cold turkey: Just suck it up and wait till December.