First Tracks at Sunshine

Mother nature has finally cooperated for Sunshine, and having the day off I decided to hike it seeing as how work has me on until next wednesday.  Got some first tracks on the 14cm in last 24hr and 34 in last 4 days.  A long hike up Strawberry lift twice and up Standish once gave me my fill of fresh lines and though was a pain in the ass hiking that far, having the entire hill to yourself (more or less) is pretty rewarding.

Some Rocky Mountain Sheep on the access rd greeting me on the way

Some Rocky Mountain Sheep on the access rd greeting me on the way

Decent coverage on the first hike up, but some rocks sticking through

Decent coverage on the first hike up, but some rocks sticking through

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Pray to the Snow Gods

November 10th, 2008

Well it’s been pretty a pretty mild start to our season so far, and the snow hasn’t exactly been blanketing us yet.  Everyone seems to be broke here in Banff, and it’s really quiet around town, nothing to do here at the moment other than watch shred vids and build small patches with whatever snow is around.

Mt Rundle sunrise

Mt Rundle Sunrise

This week, however in and around Banff is forecasted to get some snow, and if my favorite site is correct, then Sunshine is going to get some decent snow around 25, Kicking Horse will get pounded too with 40ish, as with most resorts as a nice looking storm is coming in.  Tonight it was already snowing in Banff, which is a good sign!

banff-lake-louise-nov-9-2008-077

Mt Rundle Sunset

So do the snow dance and pray to the snow gods, and the snow will come for the Canadian Rockies soon enough…  And take what you can get for now, as Lake Louise is open with 1 run 1 lift, I ended up going there this weekend, will be posting with Frontlipped with the story as part of a season kickoff, so check that out.

Banff Elk

Banff Elk

Fresh mags, vids, and soon tracks

The shift has oficially started, migration towards the best snow was inevitable for me as my obsession with snowboarding grows, and now I am at the foot of the Rockies hoping to score me some endless powder this winter.  Yes the pre-season is in full swing with new mags, flicks, products, events all coming up on the radar daily, it’s a matter of trying to keep up with the news instead of scouring the net for any.

During the summer snowboarding is usually a distant memory, and I might throw in the occasional shred flick or go wakeboarding, nothing really compares to that feeling you get when you know the snow will soon fall, and first tracks will soon be yours.  Well finally IT’S HERE!!!!  To prove this to myself I ended up giving the board a full edge tune / wax and spent a good few hours while watching shred flicks and getting my bindings stance juuuust right.

Currently, here is a list of a few random things that I’m currently stoked on in snowboarding, and is keeping me fueled until the season oficially begins.

  • Stepchild Downloaded – new web-only 30 minute installments from the team, first one just launched.  It provides an interesting view on their season, filling in all the gaps in between filming, contests, etc.
  • New boards! So many beautiful new boards, not that I can afford new wood this year, but if I could it would most likely one from the new Stepchild lineup (new pow sucks won a tw good wood award), or from Never Summer industries.  Love their designs and would like to try out a reverse camber board one day.
  • New flicks!  This season I won’t have as much disposable income as last, but still plan on buying at least 2 of the new lineup of films.  Will be tough to choose, but at least there will be some previews for me to check out beforehand.  For some good previews check out the sept TWS mag.
  • Big Screen Shows: Burton ‘It’s always snowing somewhere’ plays October 16th in Calgary ; Alterna Action Films ‘Knockout’ is October 15th downtown.
  • New mags!  Have grabbed as many as possible thus far, finishing TWS’ first edition, SBC’s product guide edition, and just grabbed Document Snowboard and Snowboard magazine – don’t miss the article about Todd Richards in that one, good stuff!

See told ya winter is coming look how much snow is atop Mt. Rundle

09 Season is Coming… Stoked!

Well, this summer has flown by for me, with 3 different jobs at different times, moving / driving across the country, and now coming to rest right at the foot of the rockies, it’s been a pretty interesting summer.  Right now I am living in Calgary, with a friend, while Adam is still in ON hoping to get out here in time for the season.

If anyone has a place in Banff or knows people who might have vacancied hit me up because depending on whether or not I get a job on-hill, might be looking.

Shred mags have hit the shelves – already read Transworld’s first issue back-to-back while bored at work (watering lawns… lots of downtime), and just picked up SBC’s buyer’s guide issue (which is basically just a full issue, with a buyers guide included, as opposed to TW stand-alone guide which I didn’t bother with. Plus im broke so who needs a buyers guide?)  Also grabbed Document Snowboard 50th issue.

Shred vids are coming soon enough, have read a ton of good reviews, notabely Forum’s new release ‘Forum or Against ‘Em’, Absinthe Films – Ready, and of course Double Decade from MDP.  I suspect the amazing season experienced throughout most of North America should give birth to some pretty awesome shred flicks.

Also if you want to know what’s going on with the Canadian snowboard scene check out Frontlipped, on my blogroll as they update pretty frequently with various info from a Canadian perspective – right on eh!

Nice view

Anyways that finishes my random snowboarding thoughts as Sept rolls in to Calgary and it’s about 4 degrees already here, and seeing that snow already sticking to the mountains really solidifies the fact that the season is a knockin’.  PB

Kerns Road Jump

February 2008

Finally posting these pics… Some of our best action shots from 2008, when there was enough snow in the city to build a jump. Fortunately for us, when we arrived at Kerns road, a local lookout spot where kids get up to no good, there was already a jump built in the spots we had thought of. All we had to do was beef it up a bit, which was easy with the fresh snowfall.

Building the table-top jump

Building the barrel kicker

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Revelstoke Mountain Resort Inaugural Season

It’s not too often that a new resort opens, especially one as epic looking as this place. Although they have been open for cat and heli boarding / skiing for years now, but this season starting Dec. 20th, 2007 have opened with lifts as well. I have a feeling this place is going to blow up, especially considering the impressive stats it claims, and epic looking pow accessible by three ways, cat, heli, or lift.

 

Ridiculous Stats:

  • Extension of the gondola from the upper village to the village base, increasing the vertical by 885 feet. With a total of 5,620 feet, Revelstoke Mountain Resort will have the longest lift-serviced vertical descent in North America!
  • Construction of a new, high-speed quad chairlift in the North Bowl area, opening up an additional 900 acres of intermediate terrain (ski runs and tree skiing), as well as 300 additional acres of expert skiing.
  • Extensive glading and trail cutting throughout the resort’s ski terrain.
  • Purchase of two snowcats (one winch cat and one grooming cat).
  • Expansion of Revelstoke Cat Skiing’s terrain to 2,210 acres.
  • Increased glading and run development within the existing 500,000 acres of Selkirk Tangiers Helicopter Skiing’s tenured terrain.

Image courtesy of the Revelstoke website

West Trip Day 5 – Lake Louise

Well I have been pretty lazy with updating this blog but am going to be getting back into it, as it looks like I’ll be heading out west… That didn’t take long after the trip, did it? This will allow me to be there come October, and get out to the resorts in person to apply and get set up for the winter season. Should be good, and I’ll most likely be posting from my cross-Canada road trip 🙂

For now, here is our 5th day of the trip, 3rd day boarding. Decided to hit up Lake Louise as Sunshine only had a bit of new snow, and we knew we’d want to see the Lake at least once. We knew they did not have as much snow, and some first-hand reports said it was downright icy. They were right. This added onto the fact that we were hung over, and super tired from the past 2 days of ripping it @ Sunshine, basically turned the day into an icy shitshow, but it was fun nonetheless – the views alone were worth it.

Animal Bridges

These bridges are for the wildlife… They don’t fuck around when it comes to conservation in Banff National Park!

Enter… Le Gondola

Top of the bowls… We found small amounts of some untracked here, but had to work for it.

Top of Ptarmagin, since I was feeling like ass, took a lot of scenic shots here.

It didn’t take long before we hit the bar… Had quite a bit of time to kill before that bus too.

The lodge… This shot turned out pretty sweet I thought.

This crow was creeping me out… Looking all picturesque and shit…

Finally some clouds cleared up just before we hopped on the bus. It was a looooooong bus ride back followed up by some nice cold Grasshoppers waiting for us. Thus concludes our Lake Louise adventure, it seems to be an amazing resort with lots more vert than Sunshine, but typically worse snow conditions, as it’s reputation had advertised. I can see why the locals say though, on a big storm day if both resorts got hit, you’d want to come here while it’s still good. Sunshine, on the other hand, keeps the snow soft & fluffy for much longer.