Wednesday, February 25, 2009

North Cascade Heli Time!

Still here at North Cascade Heli with team Dakine. The trip has been yet another heli trip...no expectations is the name of the game. The sun hasn't been cooperating much, but we've got a few still shots and some fun powder turns. Pollard and Benchetler have been big on the snowball fights and unexpected squirt gun bombardments. This morning my longunderwear's were soaked due to Benchets pooring a bottle of water all over me and then claiming that I did it myself. So in turn, I am wearing one of his clean pair of longunderwear and it feels damn good. He's not the kind of guy that would like this, but he deserves to learn a lesson. I've been sneezing on them even. Don't tell him that.



I packed in a hurry and left my camera cord. So these photos are courtesy of Randy Torcom.



Pilot Seamus doing his thing. (Note: his name is actually prounounced Shay-mus. Weird, I know)



Just waiting for my turn to drop in. Stay tuned for more epic pics and I'm sure stories coming out of this trip. As soon as I get home I'll have some original photos to share.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Into the Wild



Just finished up this book. It's an incredible story and Jon Krakauer does an amazing job relating to Christopher (the young man in which the story is based on). Jon, having a background in climbing and traveling around Alaska, has more of a personal view on the story at hand.

It's a book that made me want to travel on my own and simplify my life. For more reasons than one, but I think the life that Chris led was truly an exploration in every way. He kinda just went with the flow of things, from hitchhiking across the U.S. to canoeing down to Mexico with no plan or end in sight.

This summer when I was climbing in Yosemite I came across a hiker who had everything he owned on his back. He stumbled out of the woods looking excited to see a group of climbers and had a lot to say. He told us he'd be hiking and on his own for the past month. Coming all the way from Spain and selling all of his belongings prior to traveling to the U.S. When we walked away, I couldn't stop thinking about getting rid of everything...and if I could actually do that.

Coming home from trips is often overwhelming with the amount of stuff that adds up in my room. I'm constantly making trips to the thrift store and trying to minimize. I've got a system with my hangers too...they all face one way until I actually wear the piece of clothing. Then the hanger is flipped around and after 6 months whatever hangers haven't been flipped...the clothes are gone. I'm looking forward for that 6 month mark to come around.

Anyways, pretty random, but Into the Wild got me thinking about it a bit more.

We had our first fly day at North Cascade Heli today. The snow was pretty warm and the clouds socked us in by mid day. I think we're supposed to get some snow tonight. Looking forward to it!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Dew Tour



Just finished up with the last stop at the Dew Tour in sunny California...Northstar. It was an eventful week for me working with the powder in Squaw and then straight to training in Northstar.

The course was pretty small, but it was a good time. Wish the jumps were bigger with more pop, but we made the best of it. I think it was a great showing for the women in skiing. Here's the word...

Kaya won. She dislocated her shoulder in practice, but stuck it out for finals skiing without poles and pulling off a sick run. Switch up to switch out of the down box - switch 270 on 270 off the flat box - 3 off the first jump - gap dfd box - 5 - switch 7.

I got second with down rail - 450 off the flat box - switch 5 - gap dfd box - 7 - 5.

Meg got third with a switch up to switch on the down box - switch on 270 out the flat box - switch 1 one the first jump - gap the dfd box - 3 - 5.

Jill stopped a sick rodeo 7. Claudia through a 9 on the last jump.

It was a good time and I'm stoked the weather held out until last night when it started to rain. It's okay with me...I'm out. At the Reno airport right now heading to North Cascade Heli for a week. Looking forward to getting back into the powder and skiing some lines. Also haven't really ever skied much with Pollard and Benchetler. It'll be good times.

Hope it's snowing where ever you are!!!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Powder's on my mind.



Coming home from Colorado was a pleasant surprise. There was fresh snow on the ground and falling from the sky. It was a much needed change from the park. I skied this weekend and up until yesterday morning, epic runs at Squaw. Then it was off to Dew Tour practice at Northstar in the afternoon. Trying to focus on the course and not the powder at home proved to be a difficult task.

After the comp is done on Saturday I'll be heading out to Washington for some heli time. North Cascade here we come!! I'll be joined by Benchetler, Pollard, and Pasty C. Pretty excited about it. But for now...I need to restrain a bit and focus on the slopestyle...wish me luck.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Recycling?

I've just read this article over at Treehugger.com written byKristin Underwood of San Diego, CA. It made me think a bit about where it all goes when you recycle. I've constantly wondered about this, but I didn't think it came down to plastic and other materials being shipped to China and back again for profit. Hmmm...

Article below.

We've reported in the past how the US and others ship waste (especially e-waste) to China for demolition and recycling. Add Canada to that list, who shipped over 20,000 tonnes of mixed paper each year for the last two years, reports the Ontario Star, not to mention another 10,000 tonnes of milk jug plastic to South Korea. Canada made $600,000 and $800,000 respectively for the last two years and hopes to start sending disposable coffee cups to South Korea too, but is this type of recycling sustainable?

Depending on the locale, some municipalities in Canada let residents co-mingle recycling for ease of residential recycling, but this means it must be sorted and resorted and resorted. If its still too dirty, it can't be recycled in Canada, but facilities in China have an extra layer of employees who can clean and sort through this layer of recyclables.

Toronto's Solid Waste Department acknowledges that in the long term shipping waste around the world is not sustainable and hopes that eventually local paper mills and recycling facilities will be able to keep the materials local. Currently items are loaded on a train and driven to the coast where they are then stacked on boats, given several weeks to ship to China and then unloaded onto trucks and driven to recycling plants. Others feel this current system is just a "necessary evil" until communities develop their own recycling facilities. This ongoing loop means that currently items are shipped for breakdown in China, the materials are then repurposed into new products that are then shipped and sold in Canada, and then disposed of and shipped back to China.

Soda Pop



Lawrence Yang of San Francisco made a funny out of the new Pepsi logo.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Water Consumption



I'm still entranced by the book Earth From Above by Yann Arthus-Bertrand. It just so happened that we have a copy at our house right now and it's been my bedtime reading for the past few nights. The into to the book has some interesting numbers, one of which I thought I would share.

Distribution of water consumption in the world.

-One person in France consumes between 150 and 250 liters of water per day. Only 2 liters of this is used for drinking. Therefore, less than 0.5% of the water treated for drinking is in fact drunk.
-The average Kenyan uses 4 liters of water per day.
-One person in New York consumes 680 liters per day.

Think about this next time you take a bath, flush the toilet, and wash dishes.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Aspen to Keystone

After the competition, we had one last family dinner at the Olenick's. Molly cooked up an amazing pasta dinner with Alfredo and Bolognese sauce, two of my favorite combos to mix together. We had our friend Lil' Sport there (remote control cooler) to supply us with our beverages. Seeing as we were all relatively tired from the big week, we kept it somewhat mellow, however Keri and Luke weren't into the mellow night...they decided to antique everybody in the house who fell asleep. Nice one Keri and Luke...I still have flour in my hair.



Family dinner thanks to Molly and Big A. You guys are great! Thanks for putting up with all of us.



Rub the Budha's belly!! Maybe that's how Molly keeps it together.



Henrik has the same photo on his blog. Packing up to leave Meg's and head to Keystone.



Megamo!



Henrik!



All ready to go!

AI in Kenya

I posted a link before, but here is the video. Enjoy!

An Update from A.I.



The trip to Meru, Kenya made by the Alpine Initiatives Team was more successful than we could have ever imagined. We were able to complete the kitchen for KACH, as well as start working on the Bio-Intensive garden.

We are very excited about the addition of the garden, as it will provide food for the children as well serving as an educational tool. The children will be responsible for the gardens and will learn the bio-intensive organic farming methods.

Not only did your donations help to build the Kitchen and the Garden, but it also provided jobs for 15 locals. The AI team was extremely humbled by the local workers as we worked about as hard as we have ever experienced. We helped the locals build the kitchen with limited tools and absolutely no power tools. It was amazing!

Another very special part of the experience are the relationships made between the the AI team and the Local workers and Children. No words can accurately describe the beauty of these relationships, but be assured they are beyond special. Upon our departure the workers told us we are no longer white Americans and black Africans, but now we are brothers.

The AI team was very privileged to have this experience and we were honored to represent all of you as we set out to touch and brighten the futures of those who live in a world very different than ours.

The true impact of wha
t we accomplished was felt when we witnessed the smiles of the beautiful children we all will be responsible for helping to feed. Son Once again Asante Sana Sana!

Please enjoy the attached video to see what we have all become a part of. For more information about AI's endeavors and more pictures please visit us at www.alpineinitiatives.org

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Pretty Good.

Finally, the finals of the women's and men's slopestyle happened today. With the weather holding out until literally just the end (when it decided to make it rain), the wind howling up top, and the light getting flatter by the second, it all went down.

Feels pretty good to win the first comp since about a year and a half without competing . I was looking forward to getting a chance to compete on the X Games course and putting a run together.

Luke did an incredible job on the mic, Shay a stupendous job with the photos, and Molly an impecible job with the cooking. I'd also like to say that I fulfilled the 10% rule with my first stop apre ski to supply the house with plenty of party time. Since I'm pretty much over bars after Vegas, a nice dinner at the house with some friends is suiting.



10% to all of my amazing friends. I love my friends.



Henrik is pretty tall with these quad tees layered out to the knees.



Luke had to give me a little bump up onto the podium.



Phil Casabon layed one down today...I thought, was without a doubt in the finals.



This is how I feel right now. Pretty happy.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

B.A. Points

Today was yet another day of practice for the women competing in slopestyle. We've been sneaking in between the guys heats to get a few more runs under our belts. The course is pretty sweet and is great when there is enough speed (unlike women's slopestyle in X Games).

Today, Keri and I got a little too excited during practice. Keri came up short on the cannon box and bashed her knee to her face and I went to big on the first jump and due to the quickness of the course I didn't have enough time to pull off before I was on the second jump doing a flat spin off the side of the lip to flat. It was awesome.

Molly Olenick was kind enough to supply Keri with some super glue for her chin hole and myself with some iodine for my mouth rinse. It was fun times and we both walked away with some B.A. (BAD ASS) points...all smiles and ready for tomorrow.


Photo Cred: Shay


Photo Cred: Shay again.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Aspen



Why else would you come to Aspen?



Some Aspen.



Aspen.

Sweet Post. Good talk.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Earth from the Air

Just came across these images from the movie by Yann Arthus-Bertrand (Earth from the Air). It features 8 hours of areal photographs of planet earth. There's also a book, but I kinda like the idea of turning you're television into a frame, rather than having it on in the background of restaraunts. Anyways, I like the photos.









Foosball

After two days of nice weather for training at the Aspen Open the competition began. Today was men's pipe qualifiers. I chose to stay home and catch up on some life (receipts). I started when my friends left the house and finished when dinner was ready. Pretty much all day of converting currencies and sorting papers.

After last nights extreme Foosball tournament, I was pretty sore. It was a bit intense seeing as how I was shaking at the end of each game, but Meg and Byron walked away victorious. Check Byron's interview out on Freeskier.com and read about Meg and Keri fighting over him.







video

I had to upload this video. Keri's got this thing with her leg that I thought was pretty funny. Kinda like the face that a drummer might make mid set.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Traveling days.



-book flights
-timing is necessary to get a ride
-start getting sleep now because driving all night takes it out of you
-from competition back to the woods of Canada
-eat healthy
-take vitamins
-wheat grass
-garlic
-SLEEP!
-stretch
-drink lot's of water
-this never gets old
-spontaneous living
-beacon, shovel, probe...no more easy packing for park trips
-kendama
-call mom and dad
-RECEIPTS!
-start over.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Mike Hornbeck a.k.a. Hurricane

Lot's of you have probably already seen this, but Hurricane is pretty sweet these days. Check it.




Keystone to Aspen.

After spending a day in Tahoe and realizing that there wasn't much snow at all, I decided to come out to Aspen to compete in my first comp since 07. Pretty excited about it. It's the Aspen Open which takes place on the X Games course...well kinda, they changed a few things (took out the down flat down and filled in the transfer gap).

I skied for a day in Keystone, which was awesome as always, and then packed up and headed to the Olenick's place in Carbondale (where I will call home for the next week). Just before leaving Keystone, the super French Canadian Kim Lamarre baked a little good bye cake. So we indulged and hit the road.










Sunday, February 1, 2009

Alpine Initiatives Video Short of Kenya!



I'd like to encourage all of you guys to check out Alpine Initiatives video update of their trip to Kenya.

Click on this link: Alpine Initiatives to direct you to the video.

Enjoy and check this link: Alpine Initiatives Website for more information.

Congrats!

Just wanted to congratulate my girl Angeli in her first victory of the year. She took down the competition this Saturday in Park City for the World Cup Half Pipe. After breaking her collar bone earlier this season, she's back in action and obviously she's got game. When she sent me a text yesterday to let me know the results I let out a little jump of excitement during dinner and turned a few heads.



Ang is one of the girls that stands out to me in the pipe. She's super smooth, goes big, isn't afraid to try new tricks, has an amazing attitude about life and about skiing, and is a great person to talk to.



Congrats girl!