JA KE WE LCH R I DE SNOWB OARDS.CO M T H E G.O.A.T. # HI G HLIF E
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JAKE W EL C H
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PHOTOS: DECK / WELSH
TABLE OF CONTENTS
R: PARKER DUKE L: SILVERTON, CO P: BEN GIRARDI
10-11 16-19 22 26-27 28-29 32-35 38-39 42-44 46-49 52-59 62-73 74 76 78
OPENING ACT COVER STORY A GRAPHIC STORY: DANIEL CURTIES & SCOTT STEVENS THIS IS THE NEW SH!T HISTORY 801: CHARACTERS: ANDREW MILLER PART-TIMER: BLAKE PAUL ORIGINS: ARBOR SNOWBOARDS CHRIS BREWSTER JAKE WELCH SHOOTING GALLERY HI-THERE: NIRVANA ORTANEZ HI-THERE: CLAY KINAHAN INSTAHAM
WORDS & PHOTO BY KYLE BECKMANN
Aside from standing up, turning is the foremost essential tool in snowboarding. Depending on your athletic prowess, it can take anywhere from two minutes to two weeks to two lifetimes to learn the art of the carve. For some of us, real turns are only made in champagne powder. For others, the dream carve could be on a Monday morningâ€™s fresh corduroy at your favorite resort. But how many of us love a hard bank turn into an SLC street spot with asphalt exposed on both sides of the landing? Especially if that landing happens to be a strip of snow you pieced together for six hours. A hearty cheers to Nial and to all of those who live for the latter, you certainly have a gift that most of us only dream of.
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CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Andy Wright, E-Stone, Kyle Beckmann, Bob Plumb, Aaron Dodds, Pat Sarnacki Tim Zimmerman, Alex Mertz, Sean Black Andrew Miller, Time Peare, Pascal Shirley, Carl Spangrude
CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jacob Malenick, Josh Ruggles, Pat Harrington, Kyle Beckmann, E-Stone
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JEREMY JONES ANDY WRIGHT PHOTOGRAPHED BY
WRITTEN BY JACOB MALENICK
It’s human nature to replay in our minds moments of pain, both physical and mental. The more intense the pain, the more vivid the memory. Overcoming such treacherous times when the pain involves snowboarding can be damn near impossible. I for one have yet to work up the courage to do front boards on anything but the tiniest features because of a vomit-inducing concussion many moons ago. There-in lies the difference between me and the professionals. I am not equipped with the monstrous will and determination that it takes to stand back at the top of a run-in three years later, injury and defeat still alive in my mind, and try it all again. This is exactly what Jeremy Jones did at this famous Ogden street spot. As he stares down the run-in, winch handle in hand, it’s impossible to forget the agony of a shattered ankle, no matter how much time has passed. Fellow video addicts may have thought the whole scene captured in this photo looked somewhat familiar. “When I hit the grid again, my first clip filmed was my first real redirect in CHEERS,” Jeremy reminisces about his first time back to this spot after the injury, “I was on a mission to redeem the ankle, but I never felt fully satisfied. I had to
go back to OG and win!” It’s safe to say that this time around, in his mental and physical battle with such a cold, emotionless brick wall, Jeremy won. This cover-worthy photo went down on a classic overcast day in January. After making sure the gear was in order, the crew, consisting of Jeremy, Andy Wright, Jake Welch, Jeremy Pettit, and Kyle Schwartz, met up for breakfast on this unassuming Utah morning. Despite the daunting task ahead, the mood was good and spirits were high. As Jeremy put it, “Just hyped up! Always a bit anxious about something with size. The speed is funky too on this one, so calculating that is sometimes a head game. That’s why I’m in it though.” When asked about this Ogden hot spot, Jeremy commented, “There’s always bums that talk with you up there and get a little weird, but it’s usually pretty chill. This day it was a homie that just wanted to know how to stay focused and stay off the needle. He was pumped to see the the passion!” After 28 years on a snowboard and 20 years of filming a part every year, there’s no denying the passion that Jeremy has for this lifestyle some call a sport. Even the heroin-riddled homeless of northern Utah can see it. Being scared of something as simple as a front board, I had to figure out the motivation behind such a gnarly trick, especially one Jeremy seems to favor above most others. “I like the feeling.” he states simply, “And I love ollies! I love 180s and I love the feeling of floating. Not sure what the appeal is to me really. It’s just a trick that when built and done right feels so dope to me!” Jeremy further explained the mental game that goes into each and every trick before it goes down; “I mostly just try to get what I think the feeling of the move would be like. Once I have that in my head, I just replay it over and over. Then when it’s go time, I just try to match that feeling as a starting point.” Often times a session is only as good as the people that are a part of it, so being backed by an all-star cast of filmers, photographers, and snowboarding elite, this street session was already set to be one for the books, especially with of the air of redemption that surrounded them. With the experienced and trustworthy hands of Jake Welch manning the winch speed after getting his BS Ollie, and Jeremy Pettit and Kyle Schwartz standing by to get the moving angles at this precarious spot, it seemed all to perfect to round out the crew with arguably the most talented photographer in snowboarding, Andy Wright, in order to properly capture this victorious moment. “I’ve known Andy longer than he has known me,” Jeremy comments on shooting with Andy, “I used to see him, Jared, and Brad mashing from the lift. Those dudes were the rulers to me, local legends! Not sure of the official time of meeting him or even the first time shooting with Andy, and I’ve shot so many times with Andy that I couldn’t count it, but I still feel like it’s never enough.” Undoubtedly many professional snowboarders can share this same sentiment. “It’s just a redirect really man,” Jeremy humbly states in summation, “I had some personal beef with it due to a rocky history, but I pushed through and I get hyped on that, but that’s not for anyone else to really care about. It was my battle more than anything. But the filters did great in making it look legit and Andy’s photo is fire! He’s such a boss and helps huge to make the moves look proper in his photos!” Such an infectious combination of stoke and talent from everyone involved came together perfectly to make this FS Ollie redirect not only possible, but a damn fine cover photo as well.
A GRAPHIC STORY
DANIEL CURTIS & SCOTT STEVENS WRITTEN BY JACOB MALENICK
The best pro model snowboard graphics embody the spirit and style of the rider they represent, so to put it simply, Daniel Curtis NAILED IT. The eclectic aesthetic that’s unique to each size of the Capita Scott Stevens Pro perfectly captures Stevens’ truly individual way of riding a snowboard. From pictures of his dog, to his favorite TV shows, to overall chaos, this board is, as Scott mentions, “Kind of sensory overload style,” which ironically enough describes what it’s like to watch him when he’s strapped in (or not strapped in). “I think [the inspiration] was to be loud and really pop off the snow.” Mission accomplished. “This board is basically for people that like to ride all terrain and have one board that does everything,” the Massachusetts natives mentions about the board’s personality. “I prefer the 155, I can ride it in any conditions, pipe, rails, or cliffs, etc, that comes in its path. It’s an unbelievably great snowboard!” Being his 4th pro model with Capita, Stevens could be considered a seasoned veteran of the process. “It’s been an unreal experience,” he humbly comments, “I’m honored to have one with Capita.” As far as the freedom to run wild graphically, Daniel took the reins on all the imagery and illustrations while staying true to Capita’s iconic style. This was accomplished the good ol’ fashioned way by busting out a trusty pair of scissors and going to town, grade school collage style. “For this particular one, the ball was more in his court,” Scott said of Daniel’s involvement. “Half of the ideas were mine and half were his. So it’s cool to collaborate on it together.” It might come as a surprise to know that Daniel and Scott have never worked together before. Despite that barrier, this was most certainly an effortless collaboration considering “the whole process went rather smoothly” according to Scott. When you inevitably buy the Stevens Pro after reading this, hopefully from your friendly local neighborhood shred shop, remember to look for the small smiling face of Wayne Campbell buried deep in the collage, because when asked what his favorite piece was, Stevens’ replied, “I’m a huge Wayne’s World fan, so I’m going to go with Wayne.” It’ll be easy to get lost in the minute details and intricacies of Daniel’s work, but as you zone out on the chairlift looking at your own favorite aspect of this hectic masterpiece while a crusty old snow bum talks your ear off about legalizing weed, just remember to actually get off the lift and ride the hell out of it.
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THIS IS THE NEW SH!T 2.
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J2 / ALTA WALL
WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPH BY E-STONE
Asking around today no one could really pin point who the first person was to set up and session the classic spot called Alta wall. As I think back over the years so many sick sessions come to mind. Lots of people would hit the wall and made it close to the top but things got real when the first rider actually made it to the top and successfully stalled and came back in. It might have been Ryan Lougee who made it to the top first or maybe even Jeffie Anderson in 2003. Trevor Andrews aka Triza aka Trouble actually blasted over the top falling over the other side, which is certain death, but luckily he was all good. As the years went on this was always a spot where I seemed to go back to and each time the sessions got crazier. One year Lucas Magoon blasted off the side gapping to a landing creating an all-new way to session the wall. Now its 2015 and riders are popping airs a good five feet out of the top like itâ€™s a half pipe, last season Scott Blum did an insane hand plant on the top and two seasons ago I saw Dylan Thompson do a one footer with his foot firmly planted at the top. Shit two years ago Bode even managed to do an erection plant on it, which for those donâ€™t know, is a head plant. A spot like this really shows how snowboarding has progressed and I think that is the coolest thing about it. You will go and shoot it and something insane happens and you think it will be the coolest thing to ever go down and then the next season someone digs deep and does another never been done trick and blows your mind all over again. It all starts somewhere. Someone had to be that first person to test out the spot. It might have been J2 with this sick layback done back in 2000.
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ANDREW MILLER WRITTEN BY DANIEL COCHRANE PHOTOS BY ANDREW MILLER
Andrew Miller’s photography has become synonymous with the beauty and power of “big mountain” snowboarding. His work adorned the cover of Absinthe’s latest effort Eversince, as well as documented the exploits of Jeremy Jones in Nepal, and has even graced the front of this humble publication. It may surprise some however that these images are a far cry from Andrew’s SoCal snowboarding origins. “Thanks to my dad we were always doing something revolving around surfing, skateboarding, or snowboarding, and winter weekends usually found us on the mountains.” These early years for Andrew coincided with the glory days of Snow Summit parks most notably dominated by JP Walker, Jeremy Jones, as well as many other park riders of that era, all the exploits of which were documented by Mike “Mac Dawg” McEntire for his Mack Dawg Production movies. “I was completely part of that Southern California Bear/Snow Summit scene,” he laughingly recalls “I didn’t know anything about Alaska or real mountains. We’d fast forward through those parts in videos.” While Andrew’s dad influenced his love of riding his mother influenced him in different ways. “My mom was an art teacher so there were always little projects and things like that around the house, a lot of creativity and photography was included in that” notes Andrew “but it was never anything too serious.” Like many, Andrew and his friends filmed and shot photos of each other but it wasn’t until he received his own digital camera for his 18th birthday that the seeds for his future career were planted. “I was taking some classes and had gotten the camera so I took the photography a little more serious, but still my dream and focus was about snowboarding at a professional level. I had some backing and was getting flow from a few pretty big companies and so that is really where my ambition was.” With those dreams firmly in his sights Andrew made the move to Mammoth out of high school to pursue snowboarding full time. Ironically the first year he lived at Mammoth was their highest snow year to date, but powder was not what Andrew was looking for; “thinking back, especially where I am now, it’s crazy to think about that time. I was in Mammoth during their biggest season ever and so bummed that I couldn’t take park laps. It’s almost embarrassing to even say out loud,” he confesses.
“I think when it’s done right it there is just this feeling that most people can’t describe. It’s like it gets you on a subconscious level...” Unfortunately for Andrew injuries derailed his professional aspirations, but his camera provided him with a different path. “I just wanted to stay on the snow with my friends and taking pictures was a way to do that. It was a heyday in Mammoth; the Grenade crew, Mac and Sam Spedale (of Spedelli’s fame), Harrison Gordon, and so many others that I grew up with were just there all the time so shooting became fun and, because I was having fun, I became better at it.” The injury transformation is a pretty common theme among many photographers in our industry but one Andrew doesn’t shy away from, “I blew my knee out pretty bad and just really reevaluated where I was and what I was aiming for. I knew that dream was really no longer obtainable. I shot in the park a pretty good bit and then I got a gig with an online snow publication, SnowRev, and really cut my teeth shooting for them. I spent two years traveling shooting pretty much every contest circuit at the time.” The contest scene started to get mind-numbing for Andrew, and then one single day five or six years ago changed everything about Andrew’s career path. “One of my first experiences in Utah was going to Brighton on one of their typical two foot blower pow days. I was on a little board and although I had ridden powder I had never experienced anything like that, even now talking about it the memory is just so vivid. That single day really set me on a different path.” Andrew knew he had found a whole new aspect to snowboarding and was immediately hooked. It was a new direction with a different set of challenges for Andrew. “There is so much to learn about going into the backcountry; travel, safety, and obviously just learning how to shoot back there as well, but meeting people like Chis Coulter, who helped me build a split, and Shane Charlebois, who knows The Wasatch like no other, made a huge difference. Plus, Andrew adds with a chuckle, the best thing about shooting backcountry is that I get to ride. I mean every photo you see of someone taking ripping turns you have to remember I was taking the same ripping turns right afterwards too. I like to snowboard and I do it as much as I can so these types of scenarios are win/win for me. It was just a natural progression to move to the bigger mountain scene.” With his mind and career now firmly traveling the path of powder and backcountry turns the next progression could only come from one place, Alaska. “It’s the holy grail for big lines, spines, and stable snow pack. Its insane up there, scary but addicting, and there is just this almost brotherhood like camaraderie of riders there. Once you go and you experience it you just kind of understand. It’s is difficult to really put into words.” Thankfully as the cliché goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, and Andrew Miller’s images from Alaska speak volumes. “I feel like my best images come from there and really for me nothing compares. Hanging out of a heli documenting your friends riding these insane faces it really is my favorite places to be.” It has been the past six plus years of shooting in Alaska that has really helped Andrew develop his style. He notes that many first timers in Alaska tend to shoot too “tight”, meaning that they focus too heavily on the rider. Andrew says if anything he may be guilty of shooting a little too “loose” showing huge landscapes with only a nod to the rider. “I like to shoot riders either at the beginning or end of their lines. Each way you can see all the options on the mountain. Up top it makes you think “oh man where is this guy going to go” and at the bottom you can look back and think “oh man he went right there but what if he went left” you know. I want people to look and think “wow what a beautiful landscape, oh man there’s a guy in there too!” I want to pay homage to that landscape.” In an odd set of happenstance Andrew finally found himself back in the park this past season when he was asked to shoot Peace Park. It was an easy adjustment to return to his contest shooting ways with one notable exception, “You know I felt terrible because I didn’t really know a lot of the younger kids,” Andrew tells me laughing at his awkwardness. “I mean I’m out in the back country or in Alaska a lot of the time and I cant just don’t keep up with that aspect of the industry. It was really amazing to see the level of progression since I was involved, but kind of embarrassing that I was having to look up these kids and write their names down.” It’s a pretty ironic coming full circle for a SoCal kid turned big mountain rider/photographer who once had a sponsor me tape hitting street rails in jeans, but Andrew is okay with that.
JESSE BURTNER p: Tim Zimmerman
WRITTEN BY PAT HARRINGTON + PHOTOS BY TIM ZIMMERMAN
For some people, the Wasatch front is more than just a base camp to some of the best snowboarding in the country. It offers something different from a cultural perspective that puts all the things that make them tick into one spot. For Jackson, Wyoming local, Blake Paul, Salt Lake has become somewhat of a cultural refuge. Blake has covered some serious ground in his days, having seen and snowboarded all over the U.S., Canada, Europe and South America, Mr. Paul knows what he likes, whether it’s on the hill or off. Having his pick of some of the best terrain in the world in his backyard that are the Tetons, the Salty City plays a broader role in the life of this twenty-two-year-old snowboarder. “The people here keep me coming back. I always find myself trying to come here for just a little bit, and then I’ll just stay because it’s so much fun hanging out with everyone. The Lick The Cat crew and all the close friends that I grew up snowboarding with are here for the most part. “ Blake has really only known small town life throughout his upbringing. While the small communities and shared passions within the tight knit groups of mountain towns like Jackson can offer a young rider like Blake a solid direction to follow, he admits that mixing it up with simple things from time to time is pretty nice. “For me, being able to get out of Jackson sometimes and be in a bigger town is just nice to experience. Just going around skating downtown and all of that is so cool. I grew up in a small town in Vermont and then my family moved to Jackson, so when I come here it just seems that there is more opportunity to do rad stuff with different people.” Plus, with the ease of getting in and out of our western hub city, its is an ideal place to come and go from at a moment’s notice throughout the course of a season. Blake describes the simple luxuries that he enjoys about Utah during his favorite times to be here. “It is the place to be in the preseason, riding Bonezone with everybody. Also, for late season park laps when you can just go to the mountain and you know that you will always see your friends is rad. The fact that you can go snowboard and then come down and skate, shows it is the place that pretty much has everything to do. “ Although there is no rhyme or reason to his Salt Lake living schedule, there is now doubt that Blake will eventually turn up in town at some point. So whether you run into him in the lift line, at the skatepark or at a friendly Karaoke session, make sure to say hello to one of our favorite part time neighbors.
RIDER | MIKE RAV
[ O ] | E - STONE
WRITTEN BY JOSH R UGGLES PHOTOS SEAN BLACK
There is frequent talk about the need for snowboarding to go “back to its roots.” This notion can have multiple meanings. Some would argue that it’s about not putting your name on scooters for an additional income, others feel it’s about giving the middle finger to establishment—many would agree it’s about going back to the basics of living for the shred. The dudes at The Arbor Collective undoubtedly agree with some of these purist ideals, but their translation of snowboarding getting “back to it’s roots,” is the most literal. And from day one they’ve been doing more than just saying it. From their first years, Arbor has donated a significant amount to environmental initiatives to offset their impact from production, and leave the forests better than they left them. With every purchase from Arbor, its Returning Roots program forwards money to the restoration of Mother Earth. They donate to several organizations, but their primary partner is Hawaii Legacy Reforestation Initiative, which doesn’t just plant a slew of trees in a field to later be cut back down. The organization is rebuilding entire Hawaiian ecosystems by planting the native Koa trees and local plants, as well as re-introducing animals to get the forests to their original state. “Hawaii is the true origin for us, these guys invented sliding sideways. This is the one that gets most of the money, because it’s so close to the heart of what we’re doing,” Arbor’s Founder and CEO Bob Carlson notes. “It allows us to give back to the environment that allows us to go snowboard, and it allows us to give back to the people that started it all.” This notion of restoring the forest is fitting considering Arbor in Latin means tree for a brand known for its environmental efforts and a history of product lines of all wood boards. But according to Carlson, the name runs much deeper than their simple nod to the materials used in the construction, and meaning beyond their conviction for sustainability. “The individuality of snowboarding is the same as an an individuality of a tree. Each tree is different, and just like its lines are individual to the tree, so are the lines you take on a snowboard individual to you,” Carlson says. At 20 years, Arbor’s production has always taken the considered route. From raw materials to the board wrapper, Arbor has always built snowboards in the most sustainable ways available, and always made a point of ensuring they respect Mother Earth. “It occurred to us that no one back then was thinking about the impact that surf, skate and snow was having on the environment,” Carlson says. “We wanted to see how, in our world, we could be part of the solution, rather than sit back and watch it happen.” Doing right by the planet while creating quality products is not easy. Keep in mind, their debut year was 1995, when the public mind was less concerned about sustainability than the latest episode of Saved by the Bell. But Carlson never saw it any other way. “Back then, we asked about sustainable wood and no one was doing it, it was such a foreign idea,” he says. “We finally found someone who supplied sustainably sourced wood products from naturally fallen trees.” After sourcing the wood, they didn’t simply run it through a sawmill and start pressing them. From the no-waste sliced veneers to the bio-plastic top sheets, everything was a slower and more expensive process than its competitors—but the final result is near artist level product lines, almost deserving of signatures on each deck. “What we brought out were the ideals of craftsmanship,” Carlson says. “We’re craftsmen to the core.”
Photo: Pascal Shirley
Because of the complete dedication to quality over quantity and constant mindfulness of Mother Earth, Arbor never experienced explosive growth like other brands had during the late 90s and early 2000s, when corporate dollars started pouring in. “Doing it this way definitely slowed us down. It took us a long time to get up to speed and get going, but having done it this way, we’ve probably missed some of the challenges that other brands experienced,” Carlson mentions. “We never skyrocketed up. We just slowly grew and got better—better at building our boards and better at telling our story.” While the roots of Arbor’s brand story remain the same, it has evolved, just as their all-wood graphics have given way to design-forward top sheets. Former pro rider Sean Black was first welcomed to Arbor as a part of their national team in 2010. After transitioning into the business end of the industry Black has worked his way into the driver’s seat of Arbor’s story as marketing and team manager. He explains, “I already had a history with the brand, and I felt I could have a bigger impact working internally for the brand than I could from the periphery as a rider.” Part of the changes that Black has delivered, involves an almost entirely new team, including living legend Bryan Iguchi, street phenom Frank April and Marie France Roy who, along with multiple accolades in snowboarding, has been making big moves in climate activism. “We align with riders that sync with the brands DNA,” Black says. “We’re investing in people who are investing in snowboarding…not only in our culture but in our environment as well.” Now gearing up to film Arbor’s first team video in the form of a two-year project dropping in 2017, the snowboard collective is about to make their biggest statement to date. By staying mindful of where they came from, and refusing to sacrifice their core beliefs for the latest hype or a quick payoff, Arbor’s steady growth has rooted them firmly as a permanent contender in the industry. “Arbor has come a long way in the past twenty years,” says Black. “What differentiates our brand is a commitment to authenticity that permeates each move we make as the brand continues to grow.”
Photo: Pascal Shirley
CHRIS BREWSTER INTERVIEW BY DANIEL COCHRANE PHOTOS BY ALEX MERTZ
I first met Chris Brewster a few years back when he was living in SLC and riding Brighton Resort as much as possible. One thing that stood out about Bruce was that he had mad passion for riding in his heart and plans of snowboarding stardom in his head. I think over the years the passion has remained although the plans didn’t always stay on script. Honestly though in many ways that makes me respect him on a more profound level. Mikey Leblanc says the definition of selling out is not being true to yourself. When the cards were on the table for Brewster he chose to stay true even if it meant that it would cost him what he thought he wanted most. Don’t be fooled by this short interview, there is a heavy lesson to be learned in these few words. Stay gold Bruce…
This past season you were part of Brendan Hupp’s End Search project. One of the first things I want to ask you about that project is how well it went according to plan? You know actually it went pretty well. You guys had a pretty specific itinerary as to when and where you wanted to be. That held up despite the lack of snow in most places? Yeah it really did. They way it worked was Hupp came into Haines with the van and got on the ferry to Bellingham. Then they came to Seattle and I met up with them and we rode the PNW for a little and got some legs. Then we went to Whitefish, Montana to J-Rob’s parents house for like 10 days. We filmed some street in Whitefish because there was no pow and then we went on to Salt Lake, which also had no snow. So we stopped through at SIA and at this point we knew we were charging east because there was no snow anywhere in the west. So we went towards Cleveland and got a few clips but at that point
east coast was really getting pounded so we set our sights on New York both the city and Yonkers. Then of course we headed to Boston. At that point I was low on money so I left the van and went back home to Alaska. The rest of the crew though they kept on through Quebec back to New England and even back across country to Tahoe, with a little trip to SF for a skate mission and then called it good on the season. So despite the less than stellar conditions you guys just pushed on? Yeah pretty much you know. How did filming with Hupp and the homie crew differ from some of the other more mainstream projects you’ve worked on like Think Thank, 32 Ammo, TWSnow etc? Well its different in the sense of, like if you’re getting huge checks and you have these big sponsor pressures it puts a different light into your snowboarding. Like Hupp and I we grew up on Think Thank and like
mini shred, but we want to get scared too you know and honestly we just like to party. We want to get shots and then get some party on at night you know and for that a project like this has a lot less pressure. They called me the principle motivator, which I have no idea how I earned that, but yeah I like to get shots and then party and for that mentality a homie video is definitely less stressed. Enjoying the road and all those experiences is more of a focus than making a huge video. Hupp has tons of footage but he wanted to keep the video pretty short and not over done. When I was talking to some of the Milo homies about doing your interview they agreed on one thing; you have always wanted to do what you’re doing right now. You wanted to get some sponsors, film video parts, and spend your winters snowboarding. Looking back over the past years how did it play out in real life vs. how you had it all planned? Oh man, first off I don’t like conforming. I have two sponsors DWD and Gnarly mostly because they are homies you know. I’ve had other sponsors but there were some insane pressures. Like I filmed for Transworld, and yeah it wasn’t my best season, but I had sponsors that dropped me because they wanted a bigger better part. It’s depressing you know because I put everything I have into my parts so it really made me take a step back and reevaluate. I have a lot of other interests from cars and motorcycles to any number of other things. Snowboarding isn’t my only interest. It is fulfilling on a personal level, but I don’t think snowboarding as a whole is really saving the world. It’s a pretty white collar, rich guy, upper class sport you know. I think there people who really perform under that kind of system sponsor wise but others don’t. I didn’t and still don’t. I’ll always snowboard but man I don’t think you’re going to see me at HDHR on that death course first thing in the season just to make some sponsor happy. I’d rather do my thing and have my few sponsors be hyped than do their thing and me be bummed. So looking back you’re in it for you vs. jumping through the hoops and you’re willing to have less backing because of that. Exactly. Where I got mixed up was in the selling yourself. The people that are making a lot of money have agents and these personas and that kind of freaked me out. I’m not into that whole aspect of the industry. I think a lot of pros kind of lose sight of themselves pretty quick because they get caught up in that machine with out even realizing it. To me that isn’t what it should be about so I made that decision to break away. Well then lets wrap this up on a positive. Who is doing it right? What are you stoked on in snowboarding? Well obviously DWD and Gnarly because they understand exactly what I was just talking about. Keegan, holy shit his Absinthe part was amazing. He is an amazingly talented kid and he has that same outlook I do which hurts and helps him you know. Absinthe was sick; VG was fire this year too. Actually this year was a really good video year. I don’t know I’m kind of jaded now and a hater (laughing). All the SLC crew of kids coming up, the Alaska homies, and speaking of SLC I want to shout out Milosport as well man it’s a great shop.
JAKE WELCH INTERVIEW BY DANIEL COCHRANE PHOTOS BY T-BIRD
Second chances in life are rare, and second chances in snowboarding are almost unheard of. Jake Welch got both and has taken those opportunities and run with them with a renewed sense of purpose. It’s been two years since Jake re-emerged from a dark period in his personal life. We caught up with one of Ride Snowboard’s newest professionals to talk about getting back in the game; the pitfalls, the ups, the downs, and ultimately the personal redemption of two very distinct careers in professional snowboarding.
Jake you’ve been “back” for a couple of seasons after being absent for a few years, which in the snowboarding world is an eternity. Was there any adjustment for you coming back? Was there anything new or different in snowboarding to get used to? Honestly for me the biggest change was within myself. I mean taking those few years off and getting my life back under control and getting myself into a position where I felt stable with myself made that change. During that time I still snowboarded plenty, but just for myself and with no pressure you know. At that point I never thought I’d be snowboarding again as a job. Then when I came back, well what REALLY happened as far as “coming back” was Pat hit me up during the filming for Mr. Plant, and he was looking for someone to go with him and hit some urban stuff to round out his part. This was a bit more gnarly things you know, and I just kind of went out of the blue. I went on that trip with no expectations, no one was paying for me to go, no one was looking for clips from me and I was just like what ever happens happens. We both had an awesome trip and that kind of started the whole thing. So it wasn’t really a planned thing it just kind of happened. Anyway I think honestly what is different between now and the years before is my approach and the whole mental aspect. I think in the years before I put so much pressure and stress on myself to live up to certain expectations and do certain things. Then taking this time off and stepping away made me understand that someday snowboarding as a job is going to come to an end. I mean for me basically it had. So in those couple of years going back to school, getting a normal job, and all of that helped me see past snowboarding. You know when I was a kid it was all snowboarding and I never saw anything after that, but now I do and it makes me approach snowboarding in a different way. I don’t place any stress or pressure on myself, I go to have fun and I go because it is fun. I do what I want to do vs. putting all that extra stress and pressure on my riding. I think snowboarding as a whole has been trying to get back to that mindset anyways. Obviously there are still trendy things but with all the different avenues you see a lot more people riding to their own beat. Yeah exactly and I think it’s awesome to see guys like Stevens and Rav just out there completely doing it their way you know. They snowboard without trying to be like the person next to them you know. They snowboard how they like to snowboard and that’s what its really about. Snowboard the way you like and it reflects who you are and that’s rad. You mentioned the Mr. Plant project but the past couple of years you’ve also filmed with VG for Mayday and Snowboarder’s project SFD. How has it been different filming with various crews as compared to the years of filming team vids with Forum?
That was a thing in the Forum days. We did team videos so it was always with the same group of people for years and years. There was part of me that loved it because I knew the guys; I knew how we all worked, and all of that. At the same time though I felt like I was missing out on a lot too. I felt like I didn’t get to know a ton of people in snowboarding because we pretty much excluded ourselves you know by working on our own team projects. There were so many other awesome snowboarders and projects that I wanted to do as well. Every year I would hit up Forum about other little things but of course I was always obligated to their projects first so the other stuff never worked out. So with Mr. Plant Pat and I obviously had a long history of working together so that was easy. We kind of have the same eye for features and what we like to hit. This is why I think he thought of me when he wanted to go on those urban trips I talked about earlier. So that’s always nice to film with Pat, but these last couple of years going out with different people has been such a nice breath of fresh air. I love riding with a ton of new people and getting to meet other riders and see how they see features and how they snowboard. That’s been a huge thing for me you know to help me open my eyes to different ways of looking at things because other riders see things differently, and to play it out at a spot and feed off of that has been great. I love it even though it can be a little weird at first when you don’t know someone and that initial awkwardness but you know we are all friends here, we are all doing the same thing, and here for the same reasons. The last few years that Forum was around you had a run of bad luck injury-wise. I remember specifically thinking of that when I heard Forum was gone and thinking that it may be difficult for you to find a sponsor because of the injuries and how they prevented you from filming the
part you were capable of. Looking back now, was that time off, although stressful, really a blessing because it allowed you to really heal your body as well as your mind? Yeah there was definitely a streak of three or four seasons where I really struggled injury wise and that definitely hurt my opportunities and potential for growth. Honestly though all of the personal stuff with my marriage ending and stuff happened literally days before we got the word about Forum so I was already checked out anyway. I didn’t care about snowboarding at that point I just wanted to try and save my family and all of that so even if there were potential sponsors I wasn’t in a place to do that. I was a wreck and just had to take some time. The blessing came from having a year left on my Forum contract which gave me time to kind of work all of that out in my life without the added pressure of money. At least I had that paycheck coming in to keep my head afloat and pay the bills. So yeah when Forum went out I was already checked out. It’s crazy to think about that now. I mean I know there was so much stress but really just walking away may have saved your career in the long run. Yeah totally. There is no way to say anything for certain but looking at it from where I am now I am super grateful for going through that. Of course going through it I thought my life was over and I felt like everything was falling down around me but now I am really grateful for those experiences. I’ve learned more about myself and about life in general in the past couple of years than I had my entire life before then. I just had to deal with some real shit you know.
Is that something you try to pass on to other kids or peers? I love to help wherever I can, but I donâ€™t have a certain kid under my wing or whatever. I was lucky enough to have that in a couple people like Eddie Wall for example. He really showed me the ropes and brought me up. I hope I can do the same, kind of give back you know.
I just remember experiencing all of that and just taking this huge breath of fresh air and thinking “I have REALLY missed this.”
I think you see that with some riders you know a real giving back aspect, and that’s not to disparage riders that don’t do that. I totally understand having a “in it to win it” kind of attitude. The career window is short so I can understand how some may forego that mentor type route, but the ones that do it seem more fulfilled. Yeah for sure I totally get that. It is a short window and some day this road will come to an end. I know now snowboarding doesn’t last forever. Looking back are things I wished I had done different you know, maybe go to school in the summers. I would have thought more about life afterwards. That is one thing I wish I could tell everyone you know. Like yeah we can snowboard and we can make a living off of it for now but don’t only focus on snowboarding. Figure out what you want to do after and plan for that because the day will come when snowboarding is gone and you’ll be completely lost and not know what to do. Honestly that’s where I was when everything happened to me you know. I hadn’t gone to school after high school and I didn’t think past my immediate career. Then all of a sudden I didn’t think I would be snowboarding any more professionally so I jumped into school, got a job, and was just like “ok I guess this is what life is like now,” you know. Coming back and getting that second chance, I am so grateful and I don’t take a thing for granted this time around. I know I am super fortunate to take that time off and come back on the level I have with video parts and all of that. So you’re no longer going to complain about shoveling steps at 3am in sub-zero temps? Oh man exactly. I used to just hate all of that and getting beat up and taking falls. Even traveling, I’d go to these amazing places and on down days just sit in the hotel you know hanging out. Completely not appreciate what I was given. I had been to so many cool places and I could have seen so much, but I DIDN’T. So now when I get to go to cool places I really try to appreciate it. On down days I’ll go explore even if I have to go on my own you know. I want to get the most out of everything, see what I can, and experience what I can, soak it all up and just learn from it. I remember the first Mr. Plant trip with Pat and we were at some big dam in New Hampshire and I was just taking the time to experience it, especially since it was the first trip I had been part of in years. It’s so surreal to get to do this with my really good friends, in the middle of nowhere, its beautiful, it’s snowing, and I get to snowboard. I just remember experiencing all of that and just taking this huge breath of fresh air and thinking “I have REALLY missed this.” I tried to keep that feeling in my mind you know all of last year when I spent months in Europe filming in Austria and Switzerland. There were so many times I’d just sit down and just look around and take the time to really appreciate the second chance I was given and not take a single moment for granted. Well I think that is a great lesson for anyone reading this because if you’re reading this you’re probably in a good situation compared to a lot of the suffering in the world. Everyone out there should feel grateful to have the luxury of worrying about snowboarding. Oh yeah for sure. If there are bad days I just let them roll off you know instead of really getting upset like I used to. It could always be worse, much worse, like sitting at a desk all day. Well congratulations on everything over the past few seasons and its really great to see you come into such a good place personally and professionally. Well thanks a lot. Thanks to you guys for letting me tell my story, and most importantly thanks to all of my friends and family who really supported me. Without them there really is nothing.
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BJORN LEINES WYOMING BACK COUNTRY AARON DODDS
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CHRIS GRENIER QUEBEC, CANADA ANDY WRIGHT
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GRIFFIN SIEBERT SNOWBIRD, UT ANDREW MILLER
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AUSTEN SWEETIN BRIGHTON, UT BOB PLUMB
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LIZARD KING BOULDER, CO BOB PLUMB
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MAX WARBINGTON OGDEN, UT TIM ZIMMERMAN
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ELENA HIGHT BRIGHTON, UT TIM PEARE
WRITTEN BY JACOB MALENICK + PHOTO BY PAT SARNACKI
Nirvana Ortanez lives life on a string. Her day-to-day is a perpetual balancing act that only someone with her impeccable style and moxie can pull off. Originating from “The Whale’s Vagina, California” (San Diego for the uninformed), this self-proclaimed nerd divides her time carefully between intensive schooling, taking over the yoga world (follow @nirvana_yoga), working with the finest meats and cheeses, and an adorable Siberian Husky named Desna, not to mention friends, family, and of course, loads of impressive snowboarding. Even before white flakes were flying, she was handling all manner of tools with the best of them at the Bone Zone in preparation for the Wasatch’s best winter to date. Her unwavering work ethic and determination helped lead to the creation of the collective talent known as Jetpack, and has since taken smart phones and internet browsers by storm. Like the illusive Sasquatch, Nirvana sightings this winter will be spread far and wide as she continues her takeover, one Brighton lap, one Bone Zone feature, and one pow slash at a time. Name: Nirvana Ortanez
Define Your Style: Ocean style?
Favorite Trick: Millers.
Age: 24 Years Snowboarding: Quite a few years now.
Life Off the Hill: School! Haha Currently at the U for Psych and a Human Factors & Ergonomics Certificate. When I’m not being studious it’s working, yoga’ing, hiking, art’ing, or hanging with the friends.
Home Mountain: Brighton Resort.
Single or Taken: Taken.
Inspiration to Start Snowboarding: My family! I grew up surfing with my dad, but my mom doesn’t swim, so once my little brother was old enough we tried snowboarding out. We loved it. That year the whole fam got season passes and went every weekend... haven’t turned back since. It was a hobby turned passion.
Dream Job: The answer to this question has eluded me for years – I want to be able to snowboard forever and to be with the people who have continued to inspire and keep me in snowboard world. So, I’d say a job that allows creativity, ability to do a little research, be with friends, travel, and all the while get paid to do said job.
Proudest Moment: Seeing my mom’s photo and interview in a yoga mag. Also, the day Ananda passed me up on surfing – the kid tries airs now!
Sponsors / Shout-Outs: Amanda Hankison cause you make all the things happen <3, chicks of JetPack #alwaysandforverdonna, Nikita Clothing – Jenna you’re a bo$$, Smith Optics thanks for protecting my retinas, Celtek, SOY SAUCE NATION, the family unit back home, and all the friends that have been there and supported me through the thick and thin you guys rule.
CLASSIFIEDS SEPTEMBER 2015
TRAILER PARK FOR SALE Large trailer park for sale. Tenants are typically well behaved. Three trouble makers named Ricky, Julian and Bubbles are a headache. But other than that, great opportunity to own investment property!
AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL Looking for your new career? Look no further. We are looking for Air Traffic Controllers to start immediately. No experience is required. All training is done on the job. Drop resume off at the airport or call Denise at 801-333-4444
FOR RENT 1 Bedroom Property has been completely renovated and has granite counter tops. Great location in the 9th and 9th area. Looking for long term responsible tenants. Dogs are accepted, cats are not. $900 per month. Does not include utilities. Neighbors fight a little and you can usually hear them through the paper thin walls! Please call my cell phone at: 800-hotline-bling. EXCELLENT INVESTMENT Newly Redone Duplex units. Both units have 2 beds and no indoor bathrooms. Units have a shared outhouse in the backyard! Great view. Call Brenda to set up a time to take a look! 501-969-7777 NO MONEY DOWN We help buyers to purchase their home with ZERO MONEY DOWN. Sound too good to be true, it is! Call to hear more! 901-442-9631
OFFICE SPACE Large downtown location available. 15 enclosed office spaces and in a great location. 8,000 SQ/ft. Space is haunted and was a old hospital. Wouldnâ€™t recommend staying past 6pm. Please call today to schedule a showing between 6-9pm. 801-999-0012 COMMERCIAL LOANS We will consider applications on the following properties types: -Strip Clubs -Russian Massage Parlors -Hot-line Call Center -Churches
Saga Outerwear is looking for Professional Snowboarders to join our team! Previous snowboarding experience isnâ€™t required, but would be nice. Must be able to film once a week and MUST get along with skiers. Please only apply if you are willing to risk life and limb for minimal pay! Please visit www.sagaouterwear.com for more info. GENERAL MANAGER Local restaurant looking for a General Manager. MUST HAVE MANAGEMENT EXPERIENCE. Must be comfortable managing junior level employees as well as the Kitchen staff. Hours vary and working weekends is required. Salary is not competitive, but free food is offered. Please swing by and drop off a Resume in person at 7769 S 450 N900, SLC, UT. SECURITY Mall looking for security guards. Must be trained in some sort of martial arts training. Please be comfortable riding in golfcarts and busting kids for skateboarding. Must be is shape and wear UFC branded apparel! This is a full-time salary position. $25/hr + healthcare and free mall pretzels. Call Stan at: 801-888-9621 NEW JOB TIRED OF WORKING FOR $9.75 a hr? We offer great opportunities to everyone. Pay starts at $7.50 a hr! Call: 801-444-9633
SERVICES ENGLISH CLASS If English is a second language for you, please contact Julio for English lessons. Non-Students are welcome. $25/hr. Please call 801-334-7751 POOL BOY Woman looking for strong pool boy. Must be willing to clean the pool with your shirt off. Hours are flexible. Stop by and apply in person, Green Meadow Assisted Living Home, SLC, UT, 84225 STUDENT LOANS Do you need a student loan? We provide all kinds of options to assist you financially. Paying them back is hard and the rates are insane, but trying getting a job without a degree! Call us today! 800-get-paid. TINDER LESSONS Did you miss the tech boom? Dating got you down? We offer lessons on how to set up the perfect tinder profile. Our experts are well versed in Tinder dating and have been perfecting the craft for years. Please contact: 801-803-9607 Ask for J. HOUSE CLEANING No time to clean up your sloppy roommates messes? Beer cans and pizza boxes everywhere? We provide a large range of cleaning services. Our housekeepers are shifty so hide valuables before letting them inside! Call Paula: 805-855-3245 PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR Think your girl is cheating? Your boo on Tinder? Maybe your neighbors dog is pooping in your yard? Maybe your kids are texting and driving? Call Larry today and get to the bottom of these questions. I have over 40 years experience as a PI and have solved cases all over the country and can help you today! These services are most affordable than you think. Call me at 801-582-3333
WRITTEN BY JACOB MALENICK + PHOTO BY CARL SPANGRUDE
If you’ve ever seen a ridiculously dreamy brown afro bobbing and weaving around Brighton, you’ve encountered the magic of Clay Kinahan. His life’s journey began on the shores of Newport Beach, CA until one fateful day 15 years ago when his family made the permanent migration to our beautiful state. Since then, this Cinnabon enthusiast gave up a life of professional baseball to pursue his snowy passion. With Charles Barkley and Beyonce at his side (his dog and cat), Fifty Shades of Clay has been making a name for himself both on and off the hill, not only with his raw talent, but also through his infectious personality and impeccable work ethic. Keep your eyes glued to the slopes next time you find yourself cruising up Crest Lift; you’re bound to catch a glimpse of this majestic creature in his natural habitat. #dreamyhair #camomakesmesexy #kony2012 #freeice #SaltysTeam #HARRYFOREVER Name: Clay Kinahan
Define Your Style: Lazy and fast.
Nickname(s): @_clayslc_, Fifty Shades of Clay, Fitty, 50SOC
Favorite Trick: Nose press.
Age: 23 Years Snowboarding: 15 years. Home Mountain: Brighton Resort. Inspiration to Start Snowboarding: When I was 6 or 7, I saw people snowboarding at Brighton the first time my parents took me skiing. After that, I’m pretty sure I never touched skis again. Proudest Moment: Choosing to snowboard and not ski.
Life Off the Hill: Working and skating mostly. Dream Job: Marine Biologist. Sponsors / Shout-Outs: Salty Peaks, DVS, shout-out to all my friends, you all fucking rule! Thank you to Carl Spangrude, my filmer/best friend. This wouldn’t happen without you! And a huge thanks you to my Team Manager, Jake Malenick, for making this happen and for everything else you do. You are the fucking man.
Row 1. Arbor Snowboards @arborsnowboards 2. Andrew Miller @andrew_miller 3. Chris Brewster @brucevapes 4. Jake Welch @jakewelch