Monday, May 26, 2008

Ark Life

So my first week as a Windell's Snowboard Camp digger has been quite an initiation. All the employees live in a quaint little old motorcourt style motel Known as "The Ark" located about a mile down Oregon Highway 26 from the main Windell's campus area..Years of camp workers have left their mark on The Ark adding to the "flavor" of our living experience. Pretty funny stuff.... There is a flurry of activity around the camp lately as everyone pitches in to make the camp ready for the first session of the summer, coming up quick on June 6.

The fabulous Ark Motel in all it's splendor

Here's some cute graffiti I found on the outside of the Ark. No thanks, I'm good...

The Ark gets it's name from the replica of Noah's Ark out front. The giraffe seems to be giving me a look of, "Haha, if you only knew what you were in for!"

This is my boss.

First order of business, haul all the rail features out of the field, get them out of the rain, strip off all the winter crap that has accumulated along with the paint from last summer and get them repaired and repainted

Luckily we've got B.O.B. (Building out Back), home of Windell's indoor skatepark to get out of the rain and clean up the rails

Boss man, head digger Jason Legge leading by example, grinding rails, but not in the way you would normally think. Note the OSHA approved particle mask....

Jamie Weller and his skate crew have been hard at work too pouring concrete for some awesome new skate features. Nice work homies

Our first night in the Ark, with a few cold ones of course. Young Max aka "Roy" was easily talked into shaving a mohawk

Looking really good there Roy...

Man of many talents, Jason Legge. Double-blind thumb trick shotguns. Nice steez

The Grinch found a good place to hide while we wild out

Legge again, boredom at the Ark leads to Travis Pastrana emulation

Z Siebs finally showed up, after all the work was done, and pounded out this rainy twilight boardslide right out the front door of the Ark

See you next time....

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The (almost) 40 Year Old (snowboard camp) Virgin

It's interesting how it seems like paths that you take in your life can repeat themselves or maybe it's just that you tend to take the same path again and again. Many years ago, when I lived in Maine, there came a time when I had not much money, no plan and no responsibilities. My homey, Chef Al, suggested I try out a winter in Utah at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort. Well, 15 years of epic winter seasons and hot desert summers later I'm finding myself in a similar situation. Not much money, no plan, no responsibilities... Well, I happened to run into a friend of mine a short time ago, Jason Legge, who had just gotten the job of Head Digger at Windell's Snowboard Camp on Oregon's Mt. Hood. He suggested that I give being a digger a try for a season. Hmm... Well, I'm not the typical fresh-out-of-high-school aspiring pro-shred but, what the hell? Why not. And who knows where this path may lead me? Check back in another 15 years and I'll tell ya all about it.

A great stopping point on the way to OR, my friend Cory Smith and his wife Jen's rad home in Sun Valley, ID

A new edition to the Smith Family, Miss Sophie Smith...

...and an old friend, Indy Smith, aka: The Angry Badger

These are their neighbors, The Foxes. Indy actually plays with one of these fox parents, nature is funny... Here's Mrs. Fox with one of the kids

I got to break in my new Kona Unit 29er with Cory, check out the fire damage on the hillside. I was in Sun Valley last summer while these fires were burning, gnarly....

Onward to Portland and another couple of awesome friends, Tony Pereira and (his soon to be wife) Lucy. Tony is one of my first friends that I met when I moved to SLC, we go way back. He now lives in Portland and makes some of the most beautiful custom built bike frames

Next stop, Mt Hood, this is where I'm going to be spending my summer suckers...

Stayed tuned to The Adventure Capitalist as this should be an "interesting" summer. I'm also going to be writing blogs for Windell's Snowboard Camp, I'll post a link when I start them up in a couple weeks so you can waste some more time at work reading them too.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Keeping Out of the ER

After our last backcountry mission on May 1st I figured I'd been out on the sleds for the last time this season. But no, the season that just won't quit decided to give us yet another taste of winter weather before summer takes over. We didn't get the full foot that Colorado received but it was good enough to rally the troops, assemble the machines and snow toys and hit up the Snake Farm. The amount of dirt you have to ride to get to the goods is growing everyday but we pressed on and no one even went to the ER this time.... nice.

We drove right past the normal parking zone and went a good ways up the trail, but we still had to shred some dirt on the sleds

Just to make sure we weren't playing it too safe we decided to bring a giant bow saw

And put it to good use

This spot is so sick for a jump, long steep landing. I'll just drive a couple spikes into this log-jam...

This thing was so sick. Big, smooth, great landing, the sled tow-in was even nice and easy

Siebs killed it again, peep this shot on Transworld's home page

After we seshed the log for a while it was pow skate time again!

Check the looks on Pash and Sieb's faces... classic

Siebs, bindingless surf style layback

Friday, May 2, 2008

May-ry Xmas or May-Day, May-Day!

Do April showers really bring May flowers? Hard to tell this year because the showers in April were snow, not rain, and the May flowers so far have been buried by fresh powder. With BBQ season on hold, what better thing to do than load up the sleds, boards and the pow snow skate and hit one of our favorite zones, the Snake Farm. We rallied at Pashley's house, went over our "safety procedures" and went for it. It was a little dry on the ride out to the zone but it was so worth it. Awesome pow, a fun wishbone tree slide and crazy tricks on the snow skate. Epic May-Day!

Highway to Heber, May 1st? Seriously?

Pash hauls up the pow snow skate, this thing is SO FUN

Siebs feels 10 lbs lighter after chunking a backcountry deuce

High alpine safety meeting

It must have been really cold up there, look at Siebs "breath"!

This was the most perfect pow snow skate run I've seen, and we milked it

My line, no big deal

Me making my line photo: Pashley

Snow surfing? Pash goes off the top like Andy Irons...

...and very nearly rode away from this airwalk. Check back for a link some dope sequences

Siebs was getting so x-treme, snow skate cliff drop photo: Pashley

Siebs handling some May pow photo: Pashley

Seclusion Blaze keeping it safe

Siebs makes a take off and sizes up his snow skate cliff line

Click to enlarge this pic and check my line up high

Heber looking pretty green down there

Well, I guess we didn't keep it safe enough cuz Pash wiped out and I ran over him... with his own sled

Next stop: Heber Valley Medical Center! Yeah!

I think Pash was more upset that I ruined his favorite beanie with blood stains

With friends like me, who needs enemies?

After a stop at the best Mex in UT, Tarahumarrah, Pash's head started bleeding a little again so we went to the hospital and left with a half-dozen staples. Awesome.

Siebs, wishbone tree-slide

Siebs absolutely killing some pow... in May

First of five tries on the extreme snow skate cliff line

If you're squeamish, don't watch this vid. Pash with a smiley face on the back of his head. I suck.

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