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The First Time: A Girls’ Guide

For women stoked on learning how to ride, first off let me say, it’s the only sport that has accepted women into its culture as quickly as, say, kids into skateboarding. Of course, it’s unfortunate that as outdoor women we even need to be compared with a kids market, but the truth is, women don’t usually have their own equipment, clothes, or respect when it comes to sports. That is, until someone “discovers” that there’s actually a market out there for us. Snowboarding as an industry has discovered this.

Getting started though, isn’t as difficult as skiing. First off, the boots are more comfortable and there’s only two edges to deal with rather than four. Other advantages include the clothes and gloves: They’re big and roomy (no stretch pants) and snowboard gloves really do keep your hands warm because of the Kevlar on the outside and the major padding on the inside. As a snowboarder, your hands touch the ground often, so manufacturers have made gloves with extra protection in mind. (Sounds like a Playtex commercial, but it’s true.)

As for respect, you’ll notice it right away. As a beginner female snowboarder waiting in a lift line, you’ll quickly notice that people give you the thumbs up/approval nod, like, “yea, right on, you can do it” sort of thing. Even other skiers will check you out. You can practically see other women skiers’ minds’ thinking, “Maybe I should try that; she can do it.”

And you can. But it hurts at first. My advice: Take a lesson from a professional rather than learning from a buddy or boyfriend. Learning from a friend may just ruin that friendship after you’ve done a few head slams because you’ll blame the friend that’s teaching you for teaching you the wrong way. It takes about three lessons to really discover how to link turns. But once you have it, the “feeling” never goes away–it’s like never forgetting how to ride a bike. Many resorts offer women’s only classes and women instructors. There are also a variety of women’s snowboard camps being offered every season around the country. I think the best camp for women is the Wild Women’s Snowboard Camp, launched by women’s 1992 World Extreme Champ, Greta Gaines, and co-directed by Mary Seibert. It follows a philosophy by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, author of “Women Who Run with the Wolves,” in that women need to break free; that there is a need and obligation for each woman to reach this level and let go. Snowboarding’s a fluid sport that allows you to do just this. Like rock climbing, it’s more about balance and grace than strength and ego. Therefore, women excel.

As for finding the right equipment, here’s a strategy to follow: Don’t let retailers steer you in the wrong direction. Remember what you want even if you only think you know what you want. Even as a beginner, you are your own best judge as to what fits, feels good, and works for your body and style.

HOW TO SHOP

Snowboards: Ask if the length and weight of the board fits your ability level and your own weight and size. If you can pick up the board from the tip when it’s standing on end, it’s probably a good weight. If you can’t, shelf it. Check the pre-drilled holes for binding width and put your feet on them to determine if the board stance has the capability of going narrow enough for you. So many don’t, so check this. Also while you’re standing there, do your feet come close to the edge? If they go over, it’s too narrow–although just the opposite is usually the case for women. My motto: FatBobs aren’t for girls. (Ask K2 if you don’t understand.) Women’s pro-model boards aren’t as rare as they use to be and if you have your choice, why wouldn’t you buy one?

Boots: This gets tricky because feet are gnarly. Take a look at your own bone spurs and you’ll agree. First and foremost, ask the salesperson if the boot manufacturer you’re interested in made the “woman’s model” from a woman’s last. Many won’t know; some will ask what a “last” actually is. A last is the basic mold that is formed around a foot onto which the rest of the boots are modeled and formed. Since women’s calves start lower, and women have narrower heels and wider balls of their feet, a woman’s-lasted boot is a must. Otherwise, you’ll be buying a scaled-down version of a men’s boot and we all hate scaled-down-versions, now don’t we?

Bindings: Try them on in the store with your snowboard boots on. So many soft bindings are too wide and you’ll have to cut the plastic, re-screw, and duct tape them into the appropriate place for your feet. Also, check the width of the binding when buckled in. For two years I had to fill up the excess width of my bindings with twigs so my foot wouldn’t move around. Fortunately, my Original Sin bindings (plug) changed that.

Clothes: Of course, individual style is a big factor. But when it comes to comfort, look for pants that come-up high enough so you don’t get snow down the back when you bend over to clip in your binding. Suspender pants are great–especially with ones that go up the sides of your boobs or in the middle; and look that they don’t constrict movement. Practice a tail-grab in the store (even if you’re a beginner) to see that they don’t bind. The other key aspect for pants are drop-seats (to allow for a quick pee in the woods). As for jackets, if the zipper or buttons go up the “wrong” side, guess what, a guy probably designed the thing. Avoid Velcro up by the hood or collar–your hair will get stuck in it.

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The SOL Lexicon: A Dictionary of Snowboard Terms

Welcome to SOL’s snowboarding dictionary. Due to the rapid growth of snowboarding, this text is constantly being edited and updated. If you have any input or questions, please send comments to lee@solsnowboarding.com

To find the word you’re looking for simply click on a letter of the alphabet. This will take you directly to that letters section of the list. Otherwise, scroll away with your bad self.

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Michaelchuck, Dunn Steal The Copper Mountain Grand Prix

In one of the most impressive shows of halfpipe hucking to date, Mike Michaelchuck and Shannon Dunn rode hard and took home the cash from the Chevy S-10 Grand Prix at Copper Mountain in Colorado on January 10. A perfect pipe, reasonable weather and hard competition runs made this halfpipe a true championship event.

The men’s competition was fierce with little room for error, as Keir Dillon and Mike Michaelchuck shared the spotlight–Michaelchuck spinning and Keir rocking the amplitude. In the end the judges were won over by Michaelchuck’s never-ending spinner madness. Pulling his traditional lofty Michealchucks, he added in some seriously tweaked Japan airs and kept his amplitude all the way down the pipe. At the bottom he pulled a rodeo into a huge method grab and then he went straight into an alley-oop McTwist 900 across the finish line.

Keir Dillon stepped up to a new level at the Copper Mountain Grand Prix, finally pulling his runs together when it really mattered. Lofting some serious height in his straight airs and putting in a McTwist, he held his amplitude all the way to the judges’ stand, but it wasn’t quite enough. He seemed happy enough with second though, knowing that coming in second to Michealchuck and beating Ross Powers is a victory in itself.

“The lack of sleep, the hurt knee, fighting with my girlfriend on the phone last night and my alarm not going off this morning really pulled it together for me today,” said Dillon.

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Harware

How much do you weigh?
100 or less 100-129 lbs. 130-159 lbs.
160-189 lbs. 190 or greater
What is your (men’s) shoe size?
5 & Under 5.5 – 7 7.5 – 9 9.5 – 12
12.5 & over
What type of riding do you do most often?
Park & Pipe All Mountain Extreme Carving Race Women’s Kids
How much are you interested in spending?
Under $300 $300 – $399 $400 – $499
$500 or more All Prices
Which type of board are you interested in riding? (If you select “All Manufacturers” be ready f
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Click and Buy.

To order all your snowboard gear online please click on one of the following banners below and you will be sent directly to some of the finest snowboard shops on ye olde Information Super Highway.

If you’re looking for Quality TransWorld Snowboarding Merchandise please click on the Subscribe to TransWorld/The Shop banner at the bottom of the page.

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4th ISF World Championship Halfpipe Results

[Men]

1 FRANCK Daniel NOR SALOMON 63.5
2 GRUBER Stefan#2 AUT SALOMON 60.9
3 CARPENTIER Brett CANQU AIRWALK 60.5
4 POWERS Ross USA BURTON 60
5 PETRASKA Adam USA BURTON 58.6
6 ROHRER Fabien SUI NITRO 58.2
7 SOMMER Marius NOR K2 56.9
8 DILLON Keir USA BURTON 55
9 LITOVAARA Aleksi FIN ROSSIGNOL 54.7
10 COSTANDACHE Dani SUI NITRO 51.8
11 SIMMEN Gian SUI BLUE WIN 51
12 CHASTAGNOL Guillaume FRA NITRO 50.1
13 SAPPA Daniel SUI RADAIR 48.4
14 KUHLBERG Sebu FIN BURTON 42
15 FERNANDEZ Iker SPA BURTON 40.7
16 CHRISTIANSEN Kim NOR ELAN 36.6
17 FURGER Franco SUI PALMER 25.2
18 VANGEN Klas NOR NIKE 25
19 ARVESEN Espen NOR BURTON 24.5
20 KJELDAAS Arild Brun NOR BRUTALLIC 23.5
21 ROOS Tony FRA EMHM 23.4
22 MICHALCHUK Mike CANAB SALOMON 22.8
23 HITZ Marcel SUI SIMS 22.3
24 HYRY Sami FIN BURTON 22.2
25 MICHAELIS Jan GER BURTON 21.6
26 NORDIN Daniel SWE BURTON 19.5
27 VOHO Pasi FIN SALOMON 19
28 TUCKER Jerry USA BURTON 17.2
29 RUTZ Martin SUI GENERICS 15.4
30 SCHWAB Marco USA NITRO 14.2
31 TETER Abram USA BURTON 13.7
32 HURME Markus FIN K2 10.8
33 ODDEN Jon NOR NITRO 21.2
34 VALLI Pekka FIN K2 21.1
35 KOEFFLER Joachim AUT DUOTONE 21
35 HJELMSTADSTUEN Roger NOR AIRWALK 21
37 GUTTORM Juha FIN NITRO 20.8
38 IMHOF Pascal SUI ROSSIGNOL 20.5
39 LUNDSOER Rune NOR SIMS 20.3
40 NAKAMURA Akihiro JPN BURTON 20.2
41 ALBIN Michael SUI BURTON 19.9
41 SASIADEK Marek POL BURTON 19.9
43 GAFFNEY Scott CANAB SALOMON 19.8
44 PORCHERON-CARRIE David CANQU BURTON 19.5
45 PLOETZENEDER Max AUT NITRO 19.3
45 HAGSTROEM Jonas SWE NITRO 19.3
47 KAUHANEN Petri FIN SCOTT 19.2
47 KALBERMATTEN Frederic SUI BLUE WIN 19.2
49 TYRKAS Daniel GER DUOTONE 19
49 KRATTER Giacomo ITA NITRO 19
51 ERATULI Jukka FIN FANATIC 18.9
52 ALONSO Carlos SPA BURTON 18.8
53 WESCOTT Seth USA BURTON 18.5
54 SCHWAB Roman SUI OVOLMALTI 18.3
54 GOLLER Lukas ITA NITRO 18.3
56 CHARLET Jean-Baptist FRA EMUM 18.1
57 THORESEN Christian NOR BLUE WIN 17.7
57 CLEMENT Alberto ITA BURTON 17.7
59 AINONEN Tero FIN AIRWALK 17.4
60 BRUNNER Therry SUI SIMS 17.2
61 MIGNEAULT Daniel CANQU BURTON 17
62 STAROWICZ Piotr jnr POL BURTON 16.9
63 CIAPPONI Federico ITA ROSSIGNOL 16.8
64 CAVANAUGH Charlie USA SIMS 16.7
65 LAMM Reto SUI RADAIR 16.6
66 HOFFMANN Xaver GER BURTON 15.9
67 KAURANEN Jarkko FIN AIRWALK 15.6
68 KOSKI Markku FIN QUIKSILVE 14.7
68 BENEDEK Boris GER SIMS 14.7
70 KOLAR Gerfried AUT SCOTT 14.6
71 ANDREW Trevor CANNS BURTON 14.5
72 PERINI Francesco ITA NITRO 12.8
73 BRUZEK Pavel CZE QUIKSILVE 12.2
74 DAVIES Leandro GBR MORROW 12.1
75 JONSSON Markus SWE SALOMON 11.8
76 HORVATH David CZE SALEBRA 11.3
76 CRAZZOLARA Werner ITA 55DSL 11.3
78 PETRJANOS Peter SVK BURTON 11.2
78 PHILP Jamie GBR BILLABONG 11.2
80 ROESCH Hans GER — 11.1
81 KELLY Dave AUSNS 10.4
82 TAGLIAFERRI Tommaso ITA MORGAN 10.3
83 MARTINEC Martin SLO FUNSPORTS 9.9
84 RETSIN Romain FRA CHIEMSEE 7.7
84 ABENA Francis SUI SWATCH 7.7
86 BREBRIC Mihovil CRO — 7.4
87 NANTERMOD Guillaume SUI MORGINS 6.7
88 RIEGLER Miklos HUN BURTON 6.6
89 SARIC Davor CRO 6.1
90 BIRMANIS Renars LAT 5.1
91 BIONDIC Berislav CRO ARNETTE 4.7
92 KRATTER Filippo ITA NITRO 4.5
93 DEHNER Jasper GER JESTER 4.4
94 VECLANI Dimitri ITA NIDECKER 4.3

 

WOMEN

1 TSCHARNER Martina SUI K2 51.3
2 BYRNES Tricia USA SPOON 50.6
3 KJELDAAS Stine Brun NOR DUOTONE 50
4 SCHWALLER Anita SUI NIDECKER 49.1
5 JARVELA Satu FIN BURTON 44.2
6 PEDERZOLLI Nici AUT NITRO 42.7
7 GLAUS Ariane SUI OXYGEN 42.3
8 BAUMGARTNER Tanja AUT K2 35.7
9 ARPIAINEN Nita FIN ROSSIGNOL 25.3
10 RICKER Maelle CANBC BURTON 25.2
11 RAUTAVA Kirsi FIN DUOTONE 22.6
12 QUIRICI Lisa SUI BURTON 21.7
13 HOELZL Ulli AUT ELAN 20.9
14 HELLMAN Anna SWE SIMS 18.4
15 WARNER Paige USA BURTON 16.8
16 HESSO Minna FIN SALOMON 11.7
17 KONGSGAAD Anne-Malin NOR 19.7
18 MYLLYKANGAS Jaana FIN NO MAD 19.3
19 MASOLINI Romina ITA BURTON 19
20 SCHRANK Daniela GER SALOMON 18.8
21 FISCHER Nicky GER 18.6
22 THOST Nicola GER NITRO 17.7
23 MENTEL Bibian NED DUOTONE 17.6
23 GRONHOLM Sari FIN SCOTT USA 17.6
25 STAEMPFLI Fiona SUI BLUE WIN 17.2
26 ZUREK Natasza CANBC BURTON 16.5
27 SCHWARZ Nevin USA OKEMO MT 15.7
28 COMI Rita ITA 15.4
29 TAGGART Michele USA SALOMON 14.9
30 STEINEROVA Alice CZE BURTON 14.8
31 NIEVES Catharine USA BURTON 14.1
32 BERGDAHL Sophia SWE ROSSIGNOL 14
33 MOLLICA Lauren USA 13.7
34 MCKENNA Lesley GBR QUIKSILVER 13.4
35 PEHRSON Sara USA BURTON 13.2
36 DOBOVISEK Anna SLO BURTON 12
37 THORESEN Christel NOR BURTON 11.9
38 RICHON Pauline SUI ROSSIGNOL 11.3
39 FOLLADOR Alessia ITA KILLERLOO 11
40 PESKO Manuela SUI BURTON 10.5
41 BRESCIANI Silvia ITA NITRO 9.4
42 LOKAR Spela SLO ROSSIGNOL 9
43 PSZOTKA Dalma HUN WILD DUCK 8
44 PLAVEC Ivana CRO 6
PERZUL Alexandra GER SCOTT

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Who Am I?

 

  • I won an AST pipe this year.
  • East east, baby.
  • A lie ants.
  • Not exactly a spiral.

 


First Name

Last Name

Email (yourname@blank.com)

City (optional)

State (optional)And The Rider Is…

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Mt. Baker Banked Slalom Results.

Pro Men

1 Matt Goodwill

2 Mario Paolo Dabbeni

3 Josh Dirksen

4 Johan Olofsson

5 Rob Morrow

6 Temple Cummins

7 Peter Bauer

8 Alex Warburton

9 Joe McGuire

10 Tyler Lepore

11 Kurt Wastell

12 Ben Wainwright

13 Thomas Ligonnet

14 Akasha Weisgarber

15 Peter Butsch

16 Alan Clark

17 Omar Lundie

18 Chris Owen

19 Mark Friesen

20 Billy Anderson

21 David Sypniewski

22 Marc Simpson

23 Brian Savard

24 Justin Mooney

25 Ian Beer

26 Wes Makepeace

27 Kalei Pitcher

28 Lael Gregory

29 Jamie Lynn

30 Kale Stephens

31 B.J. Kaiser

32 Dave Price

33 Pete Iversen

34 Brandon Ruff

35 Matt Cummins

36 Bobi Rey

37 Javas Lehn

38 Chris Addario

39 Serge Vittelli

40 Peter Strom

41 Jason McAlister

42 Andrew Murphy

43 Dennis Bannock

44 Josh King

45 Jacob Willhelmson

46 Jon Schurke

47 Kai Arne Lien

48 Joe Curtes

49 Pat Abramson

50 Shin Campos

51 Kris Fast

Pro Women

1 Karleen Jeffery

2 Leslee Olson

3 Nicole Angelrath

4 Shannon Dunn

5 Barrett Christy

6 Dawn Fidler

7 Vero Masse

8 Jacqui Berg

9 Jayne Baremore

10 Lee Ann Slade

11 Shephanie China

12 Aurlie Sayres

13 Betsy Shaw

Younger Amateur Men

1 Jason Speer

2 Shaun McKay

3 Cory Meyers

4 Caine Heintzman

5 Ryan Kelly

6 Sean Genovese

7 Terrill Simecki

8 John Laing

9 Derek Adolf

10 Patric Heinzle

11 Shane Moulder

12 Shevak Siekkinen

13 Jason Taylor

Older Amatuer Men

1 JJ Desormeaux

2 Jeff Hambelton

3 Matt Remine

4 Adam Sanchez

5 Scott Nelson

6 Marcel Dolak

7 Peter O’Brien

8 Vance Billings

9 Takuya Waters

10 Will Freeman

11 Brandon Michael

12 Apostolos Karabotsos

13 Andi Felsi

14 Ron Correa

15 Jeremy Bradley

16 Sean Donnell

17 AJ Grabo

18 Erik Hammer

19 Kris Brons

20 Forest Gouin

21 Scott Stamnes

22 Jason Groepper

23 Ole Espelend

24 Stuart Dunkle

25 Matthew Haines

26 PJ Gaerlan

27 Jim Barnum

28 Josh Barrett

29 Johnny Klak

30 Krush Kulesza

31 Joe Florence

32 Jon Hayes

33 Mike Cummins

34 Jason Florence

35 Daniel Wilcock

36 Hannes Albrecht

37 Chris Sanchez

38 Borivoj Kaliban

39 Tom Aichner

40 Josh Root

41 Shawn Hamlin

42 Ryan Conner

Masters

1 Dave Wray

2 Jean Nerva

3 Chris Karol

4 Luke Edgar

5 Mike Cotes

6 Garry Pendygrasse

7 Randy Haugen

8 Tom Hinsterseer

9 Paul Ferrell

10 Stephen Albrecht

11 Michael Menand

12 Adam Brown

13 Markus Steininger

Amateur Women

1 Natasha Khan

2 Siofan Davies

3 Jill Jacobs

4 Krisi Dill

5 Robin Soifer

6 Sarah Taylor

7 Stacy Thomas

8 Kate Fletcher

9 Britt Berg

10 Robin Barber

11 Lauren Abraham

12 Rebecca Osburn

Next Generation

1 Lucas Debari

2 Roger Craver

3 AJ Zopolos

Junior Girls

1 Maria Debari

2 Kari White

Juniors

1 Jay Kelly

2 Matthieu Crepel

3 Brian Tobin

4 Shaun White

5 Shayne Pospisil

6 Hans Jangaard

Grand Masters

1 Jim Taylor

2 Tom Sims

3 Jeannie Debari

4 Bob Barci

5 Vel Dearman

6 Joe Cummins

7 David Basher

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Snowboarding Online || AST – Northstar

“Are these professionals?” asked a woman on the sidelines. And it wasn’t a stupid question. The halfpipe at Northstar-At-Tahoe on Sunday January 31 was pretty ugly, but that didn’t stop Ian Spiro and Autumn Rose from taking the money.

As if the pipe wasn’t enough of a problem, it snowed all day and the flat bottom was a bog during qualifiers. It was so slow that most riders weren’t even getting above the lip. This included rippers like JJ Thomas, Ian Spiro, Greg Goulet, and Jeff Billo.

“In this kind of pipe you’re going to have to get creative,” said Greg Goulet. “There is really nothing else you can do.” And Greg did just that, busting out solid skate-style lip tricks including air-to-disasters, nose “grinds,” and finished off with a 20 foot nose manual on the deck.

JJ Thomas, the winner of last week’s halfpipe event at Snowmass Colorado was have a rough time in the qualifiers. “You just can’t get any speed in this pipe,” Thomas said. “Travis is going to hook me up for the finals.”


 

Everyone wanted what Travis McLain had because he only rider going off in the pipe. He was consistently going five feet out and it was obvious that he had a secret weapon. What Travis had was super fast wax; the same wax that he used to take second place in GS the day before. McLain placed number one in the qualifiers with his wax and probably would have won the contest if he hadn’t shared a little with JJ Thomas and Ian Spiro.

With the new wax Spiro and Thomas were able to turn up the amplitude in the finals. On the first run JJ Thomas might have had a little too much speed and folded on the second hit. After than he just rode straight down the pipe. Spiro turned in a solid 33.4 to take the high score of the first run.

In the second run JJ Thomas rallied with a 33.5 and took the lead for a moment, however, Spiro answered back with a 33.8 and took the contest. Travis McLain finished in third.

In the women’s competition Tara Zwink was ruling early on. In the first round of the finals she scored a 25.2 and everyone thought she’d run with it. Autumn Rose had other ideas. On her final run she hooked up a 25.5 to win the contest. Kirstin Bedard finished in third with a 25.0

The American Snowboard Tour continues February 19, 1999 at Bear Mountain, California.

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Snowboarding Online || Mt. Baker 1999

I’m not quite sure when this race really got started. It sure wasn’t when the first of the Masters division exited the start shack for an official time on Thursday afternoon. Maybe it was months ago when all the berms start forming in the halfpipe. Or it could have been when they started shoveling the constantly falling snow out of those berms a few days ago.

Was it yesterday when the competitors were treated to 28 inches of light new snow to “train” in? I like to think it was when that first run is taken with the friends you only seem to see at this event. Whenever this race really got started, it is truly the start of something special.

At around 9:00 am on Thursday morning Gwyn Howat gave the announcement that for the first time in fourteen years the race had to be postponed. The howling wind coupled with an extremely high avalanche danger closed the whole ski area, something Gwyn said she had never seen in her thirty-five years of living here.

Being the champs that they (every employee, ski patrollers, race volunteer, etc. . .) are at Mt. Baker, they figured out part of a solution. At noon they started chair four so the masters, women’s pro, and men’s pro could have their first qualifier. From the bottom of the chair you could see a fracture about four feet deep, running fifty yards or so across a mellow three hundred-foot trail. Needless to say all racers were told to stay on the groomed run next to the course.

With the typical wet Mt. Baker snow falling we raced. The times weren’t posted when we finally left the White Salmon lodge, but common knowledge was that Peter Bauer had the fastest time in Men’s Pro with Josh Dirksen a hundredth of a second behind. Temple Cummins, Thomas Ligonnet, Rob Morrow, and Brandon Ruff put up some notable times.

In betting news, Javis Lehn and Billy Anderson took me for $25 and $75 respectively. Karleen Jeffery once again dominated the women’s pro with a time that embarrasses a lot of the men. Once again I must comment that the times weren’t officially posted and I didn’t hear all the times. Sorry if someone ripped and I missed it.

On Saturday morning it was still snowing. About 22 inches had accumulated overnight. All the divisions had their qualifiers, but because of time restraints not all were run twice. To keep it fair in the divisions that only ran the course once, everybody advanced to the finals. In the Pros, Mark Friesen and Aurelie Sayers were the fastest.

I rode with Temple Cummins and Billy Anderson for most of the day, and like everyone else we were kinda pushing it (more them than me.) With all the snow, people were able to start doing lines that are only imagined in the early fall. We’re talking some heavy stuff. The gnarliest thing on Saturday had to be Wes Makepeace’s experience over by Willows. As Wes was peaking over a pillow to check a landing, he happened to see a pair of gloves wiggling in his landing. In order for Wes not to land on them, he had to hang on a branch and swing out to a different pillow. Then after almost slipping, he jumped safely next to the gloves. After thirty minutes of digging Woes got the kid out ALIVE. The kid had rode down blindly got stuck, took off his board and jumped down in a panic. What if Wes hadn’t found him? What if he had just jumped into the chute with out looking? Has anyone learned anything from this story? Don’t be STUPID.

Saturday night was party, party, party, but smart kids sleep before a race. I don’t really know what happened to the crazy hicks that showed up at the party where POP was playing. I don’t know about them trying to pick on little kids or one of their bloody cowboy hats being passed around as a trophy. Maybe it’s “Baker Justice.”

Race day. Another 20 inches of snow. Stress. I don’t know what was going on. I was too stressed on my $250 dollar bet with Billy Anderson.

Racers run the course twice, the second run’s time is kept a secret. You don’t learn who has won until the awards a couple of hours later. Riding with Peter Strom, Johan Oloffson, and Ari Marcopoulus in waist deep powder through the trees took some of the anxiety away, but not all of it.

All the winners got the coolest jackets on earth. The am winners got tons of prizes, and boots from Vans. The pros got paddles and drums that were made and painted by a local artist Shaun Peterson. Amazing Native American art that is worth more than any money any race could ever offer.

A little secret about the Banked Slalom is if you show up at all you won. Matt Goodwill is the man. He broke his ribs at the Winter X Games and still beat everyone. The results didn’t lie and excuses like I had only ridden fourteen days this year didn’t help.

By the way, .1 of a second cost me that $250.

Wait, the race isn’t over!

Guess what, on Monday it snowed another 23 inches and most everyone (even some who have “real” jobs) stayed. The race isn’t about whom is the fastest; it’s about friends and experiencing special times with them. I ain’t getting sappy, that’s just what the Baker Banked Slalom is about.

I experienced (mostly watching) some hairball lines and big drops with Shin Campos, Eric Leines, Tyler Lepore, Temple Cummins, Jamie Lynn, Dave Lee, Wes Makepeace, Johan Oloffson, Peter Strom, Thomas Ligonnet, and a host of other people you’ve never heard of.

Tuesday was another 17 inches. Maybe the race was over today. People were bailing, responsibilities called. If today was a contest, from what I saw, Temple Cummins and Peter Butsh won. Scott Stamnes and Patrick Butsh were second by a hair. The four of them were doing some of the steepest, most exposed shit I’ve seen since Carter Turk.