I can't say I'm really ready for winter, but what can you do when it snows 4 feet? Go shred, right? Well I figured that it would be the best thing to do, and I can't remember an earlier opening day at Wolfy, let alone one this good. I was a bit skeptical even to the point of buying my ticket, but by the first turn any skeptisism turned to pure bliss. To top it off, there was hardly any lift lines, and fresh snow was easy to find all day long. I can't remember a more fun opening day in recent history. Without a doubt I've got that winter itch and can't wait for the next big dump.
Blotto Photto sticker spotted in the ticket line
Ready to rock
Coverage is looking good!
This guy was about to get all Mikey Leblanc up in here.
I think I only hit like 3 things. Not too bad for October 8th.
It was just too fun shredding so I never really wanted to stop and set up any kind of action shot. This is my attempt at capturing some action follow cam style. Cort Blasting through some baby trees.
Before Dew Tour and after the Grand Prix, I headed out to Vail Pass for a little fun in the sun with Team Manager's, Alex Pashley (Dragon), Kevin Casillo (Spy) and Even LeFebvre (Monster Energy), and the 1st annual TM challenge was born. It was great to get out of the caos of Breckenridge and the contest circuit for a day and just shred pow. How was the overall champ? You decide....
About eight or nine months ago my friend Teddy Hoffman approached me with an idea of starting a splitboarding website. Well eight or nine months later we are getting really close to launching the site, splitboarder.com. We hope to have it up and running by January 1, 2011. Regardless of that, we have been getting pounded with snow the last two weeks here in Breckenridge. Over 50" in the last week alone. It is shaping up to be a great winter and I have been getting out on the splitboard as much as possible seeking out some early season pow turns. I made two trips out on the Breckenridge Ski Area, one time going to peak 9 and one to peak 10. It was almost too deep both days and it is really helping me get the stoke up for the season. I gotta get my days in early because I'm usually too busy in the winter to actually ride. Well I can't say I don't get some good days or at least runs in, but sometimes my snowboard is mearly transportation to and from a said spot. That is why I love a good early season like the one we are having now. Bring on the snow!
Winter came in with vengence this year. I've been hearing the reports from Cali to Washington to Utah and so on over the past few days of some serious snowfall. Yesterday I headed up to Loveland Basin with Nic Drago, Madison Ellsworth and Mike Casanova to see if the reports were true here in Colorado. About half way up to the Eisenhower Tunnel the snow became nuclear. Its was straight up pounding and it didn't stop all day. It was hard riding the chair at Loveland looking down at all the pristine snow covered slopes that appeared more like February than October. For the limited terrain that was open we found pow slashes, trees to bash, mini airs, and even a few rail features in the early-season park. After double digit laps at Loveland we railed back to Breck because our homie Austin Julik-Heine had alerted us that we was in the process of setting up a jib over a river, and we should come shred and shoot it. It turned out to be a really cool feature and we all ended up walking away with bangers. Sometimes I have a hard time coming around to Winter. It usually hits so early up here in Summit County and I'm always wanting a little bit more summer, or even fall for that matter. After yesterday, I'm 100% stoked and Ready! Bring it on....
A huge thanks goes out to John Sellers and Dustin Schaefer at Loveland for taking care of us!
A huge thanks goes out to John Sellers and Dustin Schaefer at Loveland for taking care of us!
The last week of September felt more like the last week of July. Maybe this whole global warming thing is for real? Well, I actually, like any person with half a brain know its getting warmer out there. A lot of the time we don't see these "global warming" effects up here at 10,000ft in Breckenridge, or even down at 8,000ft here on this stretch of the Upper Colorado River. However, this summer and fall was unseasonably hot! This was my last float of the season (we'll see about that) and it was September 28th, but it really felt much more like July 28th. I have to say I wasn't complaining too much. We met some great people on the river and camped with them, which you could say is pretty typical. They turned out to be a mix of musicians, construction peeps and the new owners of State Bridge, a live music venue that burned down a few years ago. They are in the midsts of rebuilding it and decided that the nice weather and hard work had earned them a trip out on the river. I couldn't have agreed more. Good times and a great end of the summer. I guess we can bring on the snow now....uhggg. Yeah I'm still not quite ready.....
DC and I headed out yesterday afternoon to hit up the Ten Mile Traverse, or at least the shorter but more fun route. A short climb up Ten Mile Peak followed by some pretty intense scrambling over to peak 3 and then some really fun scrambling up to Peak 4, and then back down to the car. We made it out about 15 minutes before we would have needed our headlamps. All in all we couldn't have asked for a better day to be out on the peaks and ridges of Summit County.
Photo by DC
ANTPM or America's Next Top Pro Model put on by SNOWBOARDER Magazine on Mt. Hood's Palmer Snowfield just wrapped up, well it did 10 days ago and I'm just getting around to putting this up. A fun week of snowboarding, Cobra Dogs, swimming, BBQin, skatin, long nights at Charlie's and a couple of Snack Attacks too. Truly a fun week and I already look forward to next year. Here's a couple random picks from Govy to the Glacier....
Cobra Dogs. A Government Camp staple...
The first on hill event was the high ollie. Keegan Valika won with this 5'2" Ollie.
The second contest was best jib. Joe Sexton tore it up and won. This is not Joe. This is Chris Grenier.
Huggy. AKA "Salsa Davis Jr."
The third even was spin to win. Clancy spun and won. Seen here.
The new logo
Laura Austin said this photo sucked. Well Laura I think its sick so there. Chris Grenier again.
T-Bird, AKA Bean Fartin from France mid Snack Attack!
Who says if you live in Bear you can't ride pipe? Bradshaw proving the masses wrong.
Who says you can't shoot fisheye from the opposite side of the pipe? Dodds proving them wrong too.
Colorado Black Eagle. Very rare in Oregon.
Chillin on the Glacier is sick. Just drink lots of water and use lots of sunscreen. I paid the price hard.
The final on hill event is the Chinese Downhill. Lots of fun to watch thats for sure.
The final event was the silent auction for Charity. The pros put their boards and what ever else to entice campers and who ever to bid on their stuff. Bradshaw started what could be considered a somewhat "fishy" charity called the Hell's Anglers (It helps supports fish habit in southern California he claims), and was under the assumption that if he won the auction he could donate to the charity of his choice, The Hell's Anglers. So he put 4 boards, some boots, hoodies, etc on the line and won, however it was the overall winner who got to choose the charity not just the winner of the silent auction. Sorry Bradshaw, maybe next year.
Campers chowin down...
More remnants of dinner.
I really like this shot. Just sayin'
High Cascade drying rack.
Pros and one lucky camper.
Not Kobe Bryant
Charlie's closing Party. L2R. Frank Sinacho, Snack Daddy, Bean Fartin
On the last day I headed out to Trillium lake. Just what I needed to numb the pain from the closing party.
Dan Marino in his element
Five Day Float. 80+ Miles. Three Canyons. Two Rivers. One awesome time. Got lucky as some friends of mine had a permit for the Yampa River in Northwest Colorado in Dinosaur National Monument for Memorial Day weekend. This is a one of the most sought after permits in the country rivaling the Grand Canyon and the Main Fork Salmon River. Especially to launch on Memorial Day is one in a million odds. We had great weather, big water and good times with new and old friends alike. Check some photos and enjoy.
Kinda like Jurassic Park. Real Dinosaurs lurking.
Some old and new graffiti in a cave.
Looking the other direction from inside the cave.
Whiskey. Need I say more?
Taking in the view. Notice our boats below on the left.
Guitars are key on the river.
Sunset on the first night.
Typical view from within Yampa Canyon.
Zach and Catherine running Warm Springs Rapid. Maytag Hole is just left of Zach's head. Ya want to avoid that one.
The crew in the lower left. Big wall.
Ben on the guitar.
Another desert sunset.
Split Mountain Canyon and the end of the road...or river in this case.
Immediately following Superpark I packed my bags and headed south to Mexico for some much needed R&R. My leg had been killing me all week at Superpark due to an injury I sustained snowboarding a few weeks prior. I landed my ass and leg on a stump and nearly broke my femur. Basically I got lucky and ended up with a really sore leg and huge hematoma. Needless to say I was a bit over the snow world and needed some sun and beach time. My girl and I flew into Puerta Vallarta to meet up with Gunson and some other Breck people at Gunson's really, really nice condo overlooking the beach. This was our home for the next few days. The party period of our trip was here. Not the best for my leg, but what can you do. After some long nights, rough mornings and margaritas on the beach, my girl and I headed to the small town of Sayulita, 30 miles north. Sayulita is truly a gem of a place. Very low key and relaxed. A mix of fisherman, surfers and American dirt bags, it has a really cool vibe. We ran into some friends down there but mostly did our own thing. Sleep in, mellow mid day breakfast at the Choco Banana with some cafe con leche and some form of burrito or scrambled Mexican bowl of goodness. Then straight to the beach for some all day sun and beers, and then a late dinner and usually to bed. No, we really didn't party too hard and that was nice. Straight up rest and relaxation! Just what I needed. After 10 long days it was back to Breck, where the weather has actually been decent since arriving home. I look forward to returning to Sayulita in the near future. Such a sick spot. And because I was fairly injured I didn't get to surf. Another reason to return sooner than later. We stayed at Casa Los Arcos in Sayulita and highly recommend it to any one taking a trip down that way. A bit more expensive then some places but well worth the extra dough if you are trying to have a relaxing vacation. If you main objective is to surf and bum around there are much cheaper options, however, this place for the price was legit. WiFi faster than at home, 5 minutes to town and the beach, small kitchen with full fridge, pool, etc. No complaints execpt that I had to leave! Till next time.....
The View from Gunson's spot in PV
You don't see that many working pay phones in the US any more
Typical street trash
On the job
More pay phones
There is just something about this. Can't put my finger on it...
Mural in PV
Cab rides home in PV
Gunson ready to set sail
PV from the sea
The view from our room in Sayulita at Casa Los Arcos. Not bad, eh?
I would hate to work for the electrical company here
Wash them hands
Sailboat with Sayulita in the background
Horses on the beach in Sayulita
The Choco Banana. The jam for Breakfast
Walk in barefoot, buy a beer for 10 Pesos and drink it on the curb out front. Doesn't get much better
The same sailboat in Sayulita
And another door
Kids & OXXO
Typical afternoon in Sayulita
Dance Dance revolution
Last night in Sayulita
Legends past, present and future. Carter, Rice, Warren Miller, Justin Timberlake, Scott Schmidt from left to right. Thats what the Yellowstone Club is all about though. Well sorta, but you sure do feel kind of special just hanging around there. I mean the first person we met when we arrived at the "Warren Miller" Lodge at the Yellowstone Club was indeed Warren Miller. It was weird for sure, but so dope at the same time. And talk shit if you want, this man changed the face of "snow sports". Believe me when I say we (the industry as a whole) probably wouldn't be making and basing our winters around making snowboard/ski movies if this man hadn't done what he did for so long. Seriously things would be way different and I have much respect for him. And to have Scott Schmidt guide us around the mountain was a little unreal. I mean he also changed snow sports forever. I mean do you remember the iconic black and yellow North Face suit he was famous for wearing dropping 100' cliffs in back in the early 90's? Straight up amazing, and again much respect. Or maybe it was the insanely meticulous customer service, complimentary what ever you want or whole mountain to yourself mentality of this place. With sick terrain I might ad too. Either way this was probably one of the raddest two and a half days of my life and I will definitely be back sooner than later. If you ever have a chance to, visit this place, DO NOT turn it down. You will forever regret it. Probably the biggest challenge you will face is re-adjusting to normal life after you leave.
Yesterday I made a good last minute decision. I headed over to Monarch Ski Area with Pashley, Pashley's better half Erin and Gary Wyman. Having driven past this place hundreds of times and never stopping in, it was nice to finally check it off the "to do" list. We showed up to Bluebird skies, an almost empty parking lot and tons of fresh snow to track up. I have to say this place is pretty darn sweet. From the road you might not think too much of it. Probably what I have been telling myself for years, but man am I glad I finally stopped in. Like Wolf Creek it gets a lot of snow, however I have to say that there are more sustained pitches than Wolf Creek, less flats, the lifts are shorter and therefor you can make many more runs on a better pitch. There was also a lot of varied terrain for popping ollies over trees and rocks, and there was hardly any one else out on the slopes to compete for the freshest of lines with. All in all I had a blast and look forward to making it back down that way soon! A big thanks goes out to Greg Ralph in the Marketing Department for taking very good care of us! Enjoy some pic....
Headed out of Breckenridge early, but hey it's only a two hour drive, so not that early
So, if you read my previous post from Monday I was heading back up to the Bonnie Bell Cabin for a few days of snow, beer, whisky and shredding. Well the shredding didn't really happen as much as I would have liked but that'll come soon enough. The real goal was to test our new snowcat (which passed with flying colors) drink some whiskey, watch the snow fall, and maybe even get some turns in. So stoked on the new cat. Well it was actually built in 1964, but its new to us, and it absolutely kills it, especially since we got it for free. It rallied up the steep road with supplies and about 7 or so people no problem, and it had to break trail, in the dark, in a snow storm. SO STOKED! The next day we ventured out a bit but only to find avalanches everywhere. We managed to kick a few off our self's too. Mostly small slides in the sense that they weren't traveling very far, but some of them sporting 4-5' crowns, so in the same respect, the mountains demanded respect. Finally, by Wednesday the skies cleared, and everyone eventually trickled back to society. Skylar and I decided to stay an extra day to take care of some repairs on the cat as well as the cabin. I managed to take a late afternoon solo tour to make some turns. Its nice to pick a line from your living room, skin to it, and shred down back to your living room. This will never get old. Dusk fell, and more whiskey was consumed. Sleep, then breakfast, and then work on getting Skylar's sled working which had some frozen fuel lines. Even with a nice sunny day, things happen slowly at 12,000 feet. Finally after damn near pulling 1/2 the sled apart, standing it up on its side, shaking it, we got it started. It too was time for us to head back to civilization. Leaving this place is the hardest thing to do. I can't describe what this place means to me. I feel very, very lucky to own such a property. I Can't really describe it, so until next time, enjoy some video and more photos and stay tuned for more.....