Checking in from the top of Vail Mountain with a conditions update for the President’s Day weekend!
I recently sat down with George Thomas for the new PSIA-AASI Rocky Mountain “First Chair” Podcast. The podcast is a new project focused on Skiing, Riding, Certifications, Professional Development, and Mountain Lifestyle. If you’d like to listen in as George and I chat about snowboarding, the national team, and everything in between, check it out below.
Meet AASI National Demo Team member Chris Rogers who joins us to discuss his roots in snowboarding, how he got into teaching, what it was like to go through Team tryouts and how his teaching philosophy has developed throughout his career.
There are already 16 episodes with a guest list that include Nick Herrin, Scott Anfang, Ron LeMaster, Joel Gratz, Charlie MacArthur, Ellen Post Foster, and Dave Gregory!
Over the summer I took on the role of Chair for the Rocky Mountain Snowboard Education Committee. In a recent article for the PSIA-AASI Rocky Mountain newsletter I explained what the committee is and our vision for continuing to evolve the snowboard education process…
Here’s an excerpt:
It’s been an awesome few years for the Rocky Mountain division, and as we plan for the next few, I’m excited to introduce myself as the new Snowboard Education Committee Chair.
So what is the snowboard education committee? It’s a question I’ve heard a dozen times in the last few months, and my answer changes a bit every time. Essentially, it’s a group of seven passionate, dedicated volunteers, who’ve been elected by the RM Education Staff to continue the development of our division while holding to the national standards and maintaining the quality we’ve all grown accustomed to. The committee is largely responsible with balancing feedback from our members, member schools, the RM office, and national standards while maintaining a level of consistency, honoring our past, and looking to the future.
Check out the full article on PSIA-AASI Rocky Mountain’s website: http://www.psia-rm.org/the-scoop/sliding-sideways-rocky-mountain
By / In Gear/ On
With Burton’s big reveal of the Step On, snowboarding’s worst kept secret of the last year is finally official – the step in binding is back.
For the last few decades, many of us have been deriding step-ins. They were heavy, clunky, unreliable, poor performing, pieces of junk that were just as likely to accidentally release as they were to ice up and refuse to attach. Similar to binding “advancements” that swivel the front binding, add levered brakes, or automatically close the ankle straps, step-ins were just another great intentioned, but overly complicated invention. As a result, they were unable to compete with the simplicity, weight, and reliability of traditional straps.
Despite the disdain mainstream snowboarding threw at them, step-ins found a niche of die-hard followers that put new liners in their beat up old boots, search for replacement binding parts online, seek out gear at garage sales, and post in forums about their love for step-ins.
Can you tell the members a little bit about yourself?
I was born and raised in Fairbanks, Alaska, where long winters make for a natural introduction to snowsports. My parents say I learned to ski before learning to walk. After graduating from high school, two buddies and I bought an RV and spent three months riding at more than 30 ski areas in Canada, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, and Colorado. That trip launched me into a career in snowsports, first in journalism, then in snowboard education. I live in EagleVail, and manage ski and snowboard school training at Vail Mountain.
By / In Chris' Blog/ On
Summers in Colorado are amazing, and sometimes it’s hard to find the time to sit down and actually write about them. My most recent adventure was backpacking in the James Peak Wilderness.
A relatively quick drive up to the Moffat tunnel and then a 5 mile hike gets you to Crater Lake (one of many in the area – a good thing to know if coordinating a trip with others) and Mirror Lake. While this area can get crowded, there were only a few other overnight campers during this trip. Read more “Backpacking in the James Peak Wilderness”
In the few short years since GoPro took over the Mountain Games at Vail, it’s transformed into one of my favorite events hosted in the Vail valley.
While we host all kinds of winter events in Vail, and the Burton US Open is one of the highlights of the year, the GoPro games manage to pull together a large and diverse group of athletes and fans that wouldn’t congregate in one place except for an event this big and eclectic. Honestly, the best part of this event isn’t any specific discipline (although SUP Cross was amazing to watch and I plan on entering next year), but the energy and excitement of the crowd and the collection of people.