Making the Team

By Chris / On / In Chris' Blog, PSIA-AASI

Team Coin AuroraI am honored to be selected as a member of the 2016 PSIA-AASI Snowboard Team and to represent AASI for the next four years alongside an incredible team of inspirational educators and athletes.

In the fall of 2004 I moved to Steamboat Springs, planning to spend a winter there between college and “real life.” That all changed because of a conversation at Mahogany Ridge where Scott Anfang convinced me to teach snowboarding for “a season.”

I’m passionate about our organization and the power of the Teams to inspire, influence, and change lives because it happened to me. Standing at the front of the room last night with my new teammates, I couldn’t help but be excited about the incredible opportunity we all have to create that same life change for the next generation of educators.

While I credit Scott with starting me down this path, the saying “It takes a village” has never been more true. In that first season in Steamboat I had a few outstanding trainers who inspired me to make snowboard instruction a career instead of just a job. Through the years that list has expanded dramatically, and I owe so many thanks to the many, many people who’ve I’ve had the opportunity to train with and learn from.

So, to everyone who trained me and trained with me, to all of the amazing people who helped make this a career, to the guests who made teaching snowboarding so fun, to my peers who have been an endless source of encouragement, and to my friends and family who put up with me always talking about snowboarding: Thank You!

And to my new teammates: Let’s bring it!

Getting ready for winter

By Chris / On / In Chris' Blog, Uncategorized

Originally posted on SteamboatGuides.com

By the time I’m done coaching summer camp in mid-June, I’m usually ready for a few months without snow. I switch into summer mode, lakes, boats, wakeboards, bikes, and work, of course. But then that first crisp note of snow in the fall air triggers it, and suddenly, the snow can’t come soon enough.

The smell of snow came early this year, but the snow itself is only just starting to show up. I spent the time rebuilding my childhood winter playground.

For those that don’t know, my wife and I spend our summers in Fairbanks, Alaska. I grew up in Fairbanks, learned to ski about the same time I learned to walk, and started snowboarding at age 10. People think of Alaska as a skiing and snowboarding Mecca, and while areas of Alaska are incredible, Fairbanks is cold, and doesn’t get much snow. Read more “Getting ready for winter”

Airports: Day 1 of “30 Days on the Road”

By Chris / On / In Chris' Blog, Uncategorized

Originally posted on SnowboarderGuide.com

“30 Days on the Road” is a blog series tracking my travel for thirty days in October and November; from leaving Alaska on October 27th until Steamboat opens on November 25th. Due to a series of cool opportunities I don’t have to be back at a “real job” until 11/26th, and after a summer that seemed way too long, I’ll be making the most of my free month with as much snow and snow industry fun as I can cram in. The goal is two-fold, first to get you pumped about the upcoming season, and two to help keep track of time as I wander aimlessly for a month.

Unfortunately, the camera cable was busted during travel today, so photos will have to wait until I can find a replacement.

Day 1 started with my plane taking off from the Fairbanks International Airport in AK at 1:10 am on Tuesday 10/27. After a snow-less fall (see Snow, Damnit, Snow), I moved my ticket up to escape the barren north (and to make the trip to Maryland to visit Gore possible). Monday, the day before my flight, the skies finally opened up and dropped several inches of dry fluffy snow in the hills. Figures…

The flight from Fairbanks to Denver (via Seattle) was awesomely uneventful, dropping me in Colorado at 10:30 am. Within hours the skies darkened, turned to rain, and finally snow. I like to think of it as a welcome home present. After a quick stop for lunch at the always essential Illegal Pete’s in Boulder, I killed some time catching up on emails and then hit the pillow, dreaming of powder.

Next up, snow tries to keep me from getting to the Gore Experience More Summit, in Snow and Gore: Day 2 of “30 Days on the Road”

Go Deeper: The Jeremy Jones Interview Pt.2

By Chris / On / In Interviews

Originally posted on SnowboarderGuide.com

In Part 2 of our interview with big-mountain freerider Jeremy Jones, we learn more about his two-year movie project, Deeper, and his recently announced snowboard company, Jones Snowboards. If you wonder what it’s like to film a big vertical descent without helis or snowmobiles, or what his 2011 board line will be like, this interview is just what you’re looking for.

Read more “Go Deeper: The Jeremy Jones Interview Pt.2”

Andreas Wiig- A Quick Interview with the Backcountry Machine

By Chris / On / In Interviews

Originally posted on SnowboarderGuide.com

Andreas Wiig is a driven, powerful snowboarder who’s smooth style stands out on all types of terrain. Snowboarding first captured Andreas at a young age in Norway where rough snow and ice conditions did not deter him from learning, but instead pushed him to focus himself and thrive in any condition. Now, in his professional career, he takes snowboarding to a new level. He charges anything he is going to hit and does it with machine-like force and precision. Andreas spends time in both Norway and the US and continues to be an inspiration to many worldwide. If you aren’t lucky enough to catch up with him on a snowboard, you may find him bartending in wild Alaska. Read more “Andreas Wiig- A Quick Interview with the Backcountry Machine”

Arctic Man, March 2002

By Chris / On / In Chris' Blog, Uncategorized

Originally posted on SnowboarderGuide.com

Arctic Man is a party; a damn big party. During the weekend, Arctic Man weighs in at around 20,000 people, making it the 4th largest city in Alaska. (Anchorage is at 350,000, Fairbanks at 85,000, and Juneau has close to 30,000.). The original concept was for a team race, the team consisting of a skier/boarder and a puller on a snowmachine. The puller races up a mountain, links up with a skier/boarder, tows him/her across the top, and then the skier drops the rope and books down the other side of the mountain. This is done one team at a time, and the fastest overall time wins the purse for their division. There are men and women divisions for both skiers and boarders, and the total purse was over $100K last year. The race is one day, the party almost a week. Of course there are tons of other events throughout the week; including snowmachine and snowboard big air competitions, and pretty much anything else you can think of. Read more “Arctic Man, March 2002”