Jackson Hole Snowboarder Magazine 2015

Page 1

Winter 2014 / 2015

Issue Number Ten



The precious Cavaillon melon of France. Exceptionally sweet and so extraordinarily delicious, kings are said to have traded royal treasure for a taste .

PRES E N T I N G GRE Y G O OS E ® L E M E LON T H E FRU I T OF KI N GS The precious Cavaillon melon of France. Exceptionally sweet and so extraordinarily delicious, kings are said to have traded royal treasure for a taste .



editor s note R

ight now it looks bomb riddled in my West Kelly digs, otherwise known this weekend as the official JH Snowboarder Magazine headquarters. For days, art director Olaus Linn and I have been glued to our laptops as a mound of Red Bull cans, crusty coffee mugs and empty bags of Sour Patch Kids assembled around us. But despite our sleep deprived delirium, rotting teeth, and my roommate’s presumable vexation that his home has deteriorated to a central station for crazy people, I couldn’t be happier. Coordinating the moving parts that comprise this magazine is almost as fun as snowboarding… almost. To interact with creative people who, at a moments notice, are prepared to drop everything to communicate their passion through writing, photography, illustration, or design arms me with optimism in the face of a seemingly imploding world. After all, feeling like you belong to something, especially something as potent as the JH snowboarding scene, fulfills one of our basic human needs, so says Maslow. (Though there are times when I lose faith in my peers. For example, when a certain exemplary rider waits until hours before deadline to submit a story that was due in August.) (!) But I digress. In its tenth year, JH Snowboarder Magazine has undergone a sleek redesign at the hands of my intuitive and resolute partner in crime, Olaus, who

Photo: Wade Dunstan

is currently addressing me in a German valley girl accent. Five minutes ago he was an Irishman. Are you starting to get a feel for the level of insanity we’re working with in these wee hours before deadline? During the summer, while snowboarding was just a distant memory in most people’s minds, Olaus and I were scouring magazines and websites in search of inspiration for JHSM’s rebirth. After many hours of deliberation, we crafted lists of how we wanted the magazine to transform, how we wanted a clean design to better showcase our contributors, how we wanted cohesion so that readers could escape into the confines of the magazine, returning to reality only after they had finished reading the final piece – Rich Goodwin’s profound ‘Brah map.’ So Olaus toiled and he dandled and he toiled some more. And now, behold. A polished canvas with heavy metal sensibilities and painstakingly thoughtful design. Illuminated on these pages is what makes us proud to be a part of snowboarding in Jackson Hole. See you in the snow. – Robyn Vincent, editor Mark Carter busts a move on Togwotee Pass in Wyoming.





Alex Yoder explores shades of grey in snowboarding on page 52.






Robyn Vincent - P11

Jeff Moran - P23

Josi Stephens - P45

Jeff Moran - P72





John Rodosky - P12

Iris Lazzareschi - P26



Cam FitzPatrick - P16

Robyn Vincent - P28



Rich Goodwin - P18

Blake Paul - P32



Staff - P20

Josi Stephens - P39



Staff - P21

Kyle Clancy - P42

Alex Yoder - P50

JH Pow Wow - P75



Elizabeth Koutrelakos - P60

Rich Goodwin - P78





Robyn Vincent

Jen Tillotson

Amy Dowell

@Jeep_Chief Images

editor@jhsnowboarder.com ART DIRECTOR


Olaus Linn

Elliot Alston




Halina Boyd - P64 17 ANALOG AFFECTION

Josi Stephens - P66 18 BRODY MAKES AN #EPICMOVIE

Kelly Halpin - P68


Jenelle ‘Shiny Arms’ Johnson

Mary Grossman, Iconic Industries




PO Box 3249

Jackson, WY 83001



Halina Boyd Kyle Clancy

Cam FitzPatrick

Rich Goodwin

Aaron Blatt Jeff Buydos

Chris Cressy

Wade Dunstan

Cam Foster

Ben Girardi

Rob Kingwill

Galen Knowles

Elizabeth Koutrelakos

Willie McMillon

Jeff Moran

Tyler Orton

John Rodosky

Scott Serfas

Iris Lazzareschi Blake Paul

Josi Stephens Alex Yoder

Jeff Moran Blake Paul

Josi Stephens

Austin Smith



Smith X Poler X Austin Smith


Volcan ic






Fiber • M

ervin M

fg. USA

p: Tim Zimmerman

Ultra Natural Course Baldface Lodge, BC


amy dowell ­­– C O V E R A R T I S T –


Amy Dowell’s work is shrouded in dark elegance. Through the use of graphite and ink, acrylics, and ink emblazed on the skin of folks who wait months to be tattooed by her, Amy’s art coalesces nuances of nature, humanity, love, conflict, truth and myth. Her portraits, often depicting faces with penetrating eyes, leave an indelible mark on the viewer. Once an impressionist landscape artist, Amy received a BA in drawing and painting from the University of Wyoming. “I’ve always had and still do have an immense fascination with impressionism and how free and full of life each piece is,” Amy says. “It’s just extraordinary, and unlike any other type of art, in that it makes you feel a part of whatever you are looking at.”

After discovering the portrait and human formwork of impressionists such as John William Waterhouse, Edward Henry Pothast, and John Singer Sargent, Amy found herself focusing on people and portraits. From there her style evolved to reflect her personal experiences. “I feel that in the last four years I have seen the greatest rate of maturation in my work, and I’ve been through a lot in that time, and it’s all leading me to something very exciting with my art,” she says. Cognizant of her surroundings, Amy draws inspiration from the details woven softly in between. “It’s everything I come into contact with on a day-to-day basis really,” she says, “life, people, global affairs, this beautiful place that we get to call home, emotion, and the desire to tap into the imagination and realize

it is capable of anything.” Snowboarding has also secured a steady corner in Amy’s work. You could say it’s somewhat of a family affair. “With my husband Adam being a professional snowboarder and very immersed in the culture, snowboarding is a big part of our lives,” she explains. “Growing up in Jackson, and snowboarding, there is a deep connection with the landscape that forms, and I find that to be reemerging as a huge influence in my work.” A final noteworthy tidbit: Amy and Adam’s “first real date” was the 2011 annual JH Snowboarder Magazine party. “We consider that our anniversary,” Amy says. “This year will mark fours years together.”


13 ­­– I N T E R V I E W –

secrets of the




n some ways, growing up in Jackson Hole is like growing up on an island. Although thousands of miles away from the nearest ocean, Jackson’s vast mountain ranges enshroud it much like a coastline. From the age of about 10 to 14, my friends and I understood very little about snowboard culture as a whole. For us, the world of snowboarding started and ended within the Jackson Hole community. Travis Rice was the best snowboarder in the world and BlueBird Wax and Illuminati Snowboards were the two coolest companies by far. It wasn’t the big name pros of the day like Bjorn Leines or Kevin Jones that we idolized, it was the Illuminati team, guys like Mark Carter, Bryan Iguchi and Adam Dowell. The one thing that made us feel worthy enough to stand behind these dudes in the lift line was the Illuminati decks underneath our feet. For a time it seemed like anyone who was anyone was riding the


red and black boards of Illuminati, thanks to one man who founded the iconic snowboard company: Lance Pitman. With this being a very important issue— Jackson Hole Snowboarder Magazine’s 10 year anniversary—I decided to catch up with Lance to relive some stories from Illuminati’s heyday and a period of time that led to many of the things we take for granted in the Jackson Hole Snowboard scene, this magazine included. JOHN RODOSKY: What was it like to grow up as a snowboarder in Jackson back in the 90s? LANCE PITMAN: We grow up in the place we grow up, and we have little context for what it’s like compared to something else. The town was smaller, the snowboard scene was just getting started. Basically all snowboarders knew each other and just about all of them were skateboarders too. RODO:

At what point did you break into the

professional snowboard world? Did you take the contest or the film route? PITMAN: I got my first nationally published advertisement at age 15 in Snowboarder Magazine. It was an advert for Bonfire clothing. I was into contests for sure. I won quite a few of them as a kid on the intermountain USSA circuit. Filming before the digital revolution was a whole other beast. We were lucky to get to use a camera that shot with any decent quality, and 16mm film was only for the pros.

I was pro for K2 for seven years. In my mind I had already hit the big time. I was a teenager getting paid salary, incentives and travel budget. I made good money for a few years and I think that fed my ego in a way I wasn’t prepared for. I wanted more. When did you realize you wanted to go your own way? RODO:


In the fall of 1999 I was on a

Lance enjoys another Jackson Hole haunt that recently closed its doors: the Glory Bowl Warming Hut.

involved in the process of creating the first issue of JH Snowboarder Mag. What’s the story there?


plane to Switzerland when I decided I was leaving K2 to start Illuminati Snowboards. It came like a bolt of lightning. Inspiration. I started drawing the logo on a coaster that I had in my bag from an airport bar. RODO: To this day I still think it is one of the coolest images for branding and marketing. It has all the essential pieces to make up a bad-ass snowboard company. Was there a time you felt like things were really going to take off ?

Once we had Guch on the program and survived the first three years I thought we were going to be viewed with a bit more respect, and I think we were. I can’t take full credit for the branding. I had the idea for the name, concept and logo with the segmented pentagon, however, Neil Rankin (Solid Snowboards), who was an early partner, did the actual graphic design work. Together we came up with the first ad. It was the aerial view of the Pentagon Defense building. I told him to put “there’s a conspiracy in snowboarding” as the tag line. PITMAN:

The storefront was a really cool spot for a while. I remember hanging around the shop after school and probably driving you guys all crazy. In my mind it was the height of the brand. What was that like? RODO:

PITMAN: That was the height in terms of sales, exposure, involvement etc. That time was pretty chaotic and awesome. Starting the Jackson Hole Snowboarder Magazine was part of that, and it was the most fun time. Getting to express our version of snowboarding in that format, and celebrate the release with the party each year was all very fun and exciting. RODO:

I never knew Illuminati was actually

PITMAN: The magazine came out of an idea I was envisioning for the new Illuminati catalog. I wanted to make it more like a magazine, with content rather than just snowboard product info and images. We had been shooting with [JHSM co-founder] Jesse Brown a ton and had a lot of great images. Once the idea of selling ad space came into the picture, it just made sense to make it a magazine with its own brand identity. It was about 16K for the entire first production run of magazines. We charged the whole thing on Illuminati’s credit card. RODO: Damn, so you’re a small local snowboard company still in the process of getting its feet on the ground and you decide to pull a $16,000 trigger to create a free local magazine?

“It was about 16K for the entire first production run of Jackson Hole Snowboarder Magazines. We charged the whole thing on Illuminati’s credit card.”

PITMAN: Just before I made the decision to close down I felt like the walls were coming down. It was more of a personal thing though. It was my ego that was coming down because of the transformational inner work I was doing. The decision to close and make a transition was really an outward expression of that inner work, and it was very personal and had to do with my being asthmatic and needing to work on that. The company was actually sort of kicking ass at that time. RODO: So its been seven years since Illuminati closed its storefront, what does snowboarding mean to you now? PITMAN: Snowboarding is pretty much therapy for me now. It’s something I deeply care about and is also very personal for me in how it has shaped my worldview and taught me about the world. I would say I love it more than ever, and also, I ride a lot less, simply because I want to use my energy for other things. No regrets. I’m madly in love with the process of life that has included snowboarding. Tough times and all.

PITMAN: We felt it was a risk worth taking because we had about 70 percent of that cost covered from advertisers who said they were in. I am really glad we started the magazine, and it couldn’t have happened without the hustle and help of Jesse Brown and Kristin Joy who took over the magazine when I (Illuminati) stepped out. I think the mag really brought something fun and meaningful to the community of snowboarders around Jackson.

RODO: Thank you for your time. And thank you for making the decision all those years ago to swipe that credit card. I think in a lot of ways JH Snowboarder Mag creates a similar atmosphere to what Illuminati did, it gives the community a common bond, something to be excited about and contribute to. Keeps the kids stoked and reminds the old guys why snowboarding is still the best. While just about everyone may not have known until now, myself included, we have a huge debt of gratitude to you for turning an idea into a magazine 10 years in the making.

RODO: I think “fun and meaningful” would be an understatement. The mag has been a staple of the shred scene since day one. Illuminati did eventually close its doors, that must have been difficult to see something you had created come to an end.

Raised in Jackson Hole, John Rodosky dips his toes in everything from journalism and filmmaking to global big mountain competitions. @RodoPhoto


Cam FitzPatrick (right), and Kevin Pearce discuss protecting your head in Jackson Hole.



neighborhoods and campgrounds that were my domain. When skateboarding, my parents made me wear a helmet until there came a time when they weren’t watching and the choice was my own. Since a helmet was natural to me, I didn’t take it off. Perhaps I knew what my future held. I suffered a fairly mild concussion during a pipe competition when I was eight. Slamming the transition with the back of my head rendered me woozy for a few days. But that was before concussions were taken too seriously by coaches, parents or doctors. A few days later, I was shredding the slopes like any other Jackson Hole 8-year-old who aspired to be a stand-out rider. At the age of 19, after catching an edge on the lip of the pipe at a competition in California, I was treated to a toboggan ride complete with a C-collar and backboard. Making finals and winning best trick were vague memories that helped soften the blow, but I was out of the running.

Think Ahead As far back as kindergarten, I was given a choice: “You may do your work now or you may do it while the other kids are at recess.” For an active and social kid like me, the choice was obvious. Another choice that is obvious to me is to wear a helmet while riding. While I am thankful that ski resorts give us the freedom to decide based on our own beliefs and experience, it’s my personal

decision to protect my head by strapping on the brain bucket. My parents attached a Styrofoam helmet to my head at a very young age when I tagged along on their biking and skiing adventures. The neon and eccentric stickers made it all the more awesome and I often forgot to take it off when roaming the


Injuries are inevitable and we as action sports enthusiasts know that. Suffering many different injuries and a few blows to the head, I’ve had to be proactive about my recovery, enduring different treatments and learning about the brain’s involvement in pushing the body’s physical limits. I’ve come to understand and appreciate the role of my neurological system. After my most recent head injury this past spring, it has not only changed the way I look at situations in snowboarding but I’ve realized the importance of spreading awareness about brain trauma. See, everyone who has had an impacting injury in a sport can relate to one another. It gives us the power to connect and spread our knowledge. With the support of many different therapies and the dedication to work as hard as I can, I’m now feeling rested and ready for another season where I can challenge myself. I’m hopeful I’ll perform better than I ever have before. Wearing a helmet while snowboarding is your decision. It’s the same as wearing a seatbelt – not everyone believes it will reduce the extent of injuries they might suffer in an accident. A quick review of information on the internet

leads me to believe that there is conclusive evidence to support the benefits of wearing a helmet while riding. It’s encouraging that the action sports world is taking head injuries much more seriously, as they sometimes lead to walking a thin line between life and death. I want to fuel the fire for the youth coming up in the world of snowboarding, that it’s cool to wear a helmet even if idols they look up to choose not to wear one. After a fall I’ve often found myself saying, “I’m so thankful I had my helmet on,” and I know thousands of people can relate to that statement. Wearing a helmet, I truly believe, reduced the extent of my head injuries and I’m glad it was my helmet that cracked, not my head. Knowing what I know now about the brain, I realize I still have so much to learn on and off the hill. I’ll never take that, or the chance to get back to my game, for granted.


On the mend from an injury he suffered in April, Cam FitzPatrick is working hard to get strong for the season. Track his progress on Instagram: @camfitzpatrick

What s your pov?



Trying to decide if a POV Camera is right for you? Take this simple survey and find out!


The Real Renaissance man of snowboarding. Follow him @richiebeats


­­– L O C A L S M A K I N G S T U F F –

emory cooper


­­– L O C A L S M A K I N G S T U F F –

give r Photo: Wade Dunstan

What’s behind the name Give’r?

Photo:Wade Dunstan

Where are you from?

How does snowboarding influence your style?

Tell us about your modus operandi:

Litchfield, CT.

The rush and thrill I feel from snowboarding is the same when I am creating a piece. I feel free and liberated on the mountain, it’s the same feeling when I am collaging, just a different environment.

I start with an image that I would like to recreate as a collage. I will then loosely sketch my vision on the base layer and from there I fill it in with hundreds of torn pieces of magazine paper. My palate comes from images from the magazine organized by color and texture.

What’s your preferred medium to work in? Collage. I get my materials from any magazine I can get my hands on. Mostly fashion and snowboard magazines, but I am really excited about my recently acquired vintage collection of People magazines.

What artist, living or dead, would you shake hands with if you could? Jackson Pollock.

BUBBA ALBRECHT: Growing up, I spent a lot of time in the small town of Killarney, Ontario, Canada. At a young age I was exposed to this term, “give’r,” or give it your all. I learned quickly that if you were going to give’r in some capacity, it meant you were really going to do it – 110 percent, wholehearted, no questions asked.

Our lifestyle brand was born in 2011 with a few custom hats celebrating an eightman crew, seven-day kayaking expedition in Killarney, where a majority of folks on the roster were from Jackson. With the design expertise of Give’r co-founder, Carly Platt, we created a hat with the skyline of the Tetons and “give’r” embroidered below, in tribute to the place we were exploring and the necessity to give’r to make the trip

happen (traveling 2,000 miles to middle of nowhere Canada/heaven). When we all returned home from the trip, people wearing the hat frequently fielded the question, “Hey, what is give’r?” While the hats were functional and fit well, it was the sharp look and intriguing significance of the design that elicited the question. Once people learned the meaning, I had a lot of folks asking if they could purchase the hats. After about 50 inquiries, I knew there was something there. Who is Give’r? BA: Late in 2012, Carly (the original hat designer), Jed Mickle and I came together to discuss taking this Give’r idea to the next level. Could we create a lifestyle brand around this idea of choosing to give life

your all? You feggin bet. So we sacked up, brought together a small chunk of change and put the hammer down for three months, launching the company and learning all that we could in the retail and e-commerce world. In the early days, we all did everything, learning as we went, sharing ideas, working very late and invading roommates’ living areas, basements and general way of life. We launched the online store, www.give-r.com, with two men’s T-shirts, two women’s T-shirts, two trucker hats and our signature waterproofed and handbranded leather Give’r glove. Today we have more than 60 products ranging from tank tops and polarized bamboo sunglasses, to thermal layers and a rad line of beanies and hats.

the new

wild west




t’s about time!” “We’ve needed this!” “I can’t wait!” These are just a few of the comments heard over and over. We couldn’t have agreed more.

After years of chatter within the Jackson skateboard community about how we needed some type of skate contest, the stars finally aligned in June 2013 when Claire Johnson, Lauri Aittola, and I joined forces with Teton County/Jackson Parks and Recreation to give the skaters of Jackson what they’ve been craving. Although our motivations varied slightly, our initial goal was the same: create a fun event that showcased our local skatepark and skaters while drawing attention to the amazing talent, camaraderie and culture that exists in our skateboard community. After getting the green light and dedicated support from Mike Estes and Jill Russell at Parks and Rec, we realized we had our work cut out for us. We needed a name. We needed dates. We needed sponsors.

They call him Rock and Roll Vertone.

How were we going to market? Could this really work? Would anyone show up?

As Claire, Lauri, and I met regularly to hash out the details and create a plan of attack, we realized we had the opportunity to create something so much bigger than simply a couple skateboard contests. With rumors floating around that the Jackson skatepark was going to be torn out,* and the realization that communities with their own thriving skate scenes surround Jackson Hole, we set out to create an event series with a more profound impact than simply stoking out a few skaters with free T-shirts.


“Holy shit, we were creating a ‘real’ community event!” In the words of my dear friend Chris Hessler, our skate series started to suffer from “scope creep.” What was initially a local contest series started to grow into many different and bigger ideas: let’s make this a regional event with skaters from all over the Northern Rockies; let’s involve artists, vendors and musicians; let’s show everyone in the community how dedicated and hard working the skaters in Jackson really are. Our local skate series was quickly transforming into a platform for us to not only stoke out our family of skaters, but also a way to present skateboarding to a larger audience. Our series displayed to the general public the talent, passion and camaraderie that exists in a subculture they don’t know much more about other than what they’ve learned from the X Games. Holy shit, we were creating a “real” community event!

Arrow Bupp travels great lengths for a better view.

We went back and forth on a name and then one beautiful July night, the amazing Amy Glenn nonchalantly suggested, “What about the ‘Wild West’ series?” And so the Wild West Skateboard Contest Series (WWSCS) was born! Claire, Lauri, and I then hit up everyone we knew in (and out of ) the skateboard industry for sponsorship. Before we knew it we had amassed more than 30 sponsors and more than $10,000 in cash

and prizes. That’s when I realized this was actually going to happen. If nothing else, at least we had some swag to give away. Our first series in the summer of 2013 was immensely more successful than any of us had expected. We produced two events, both at the Jackson Hole Skatepark, which saw more than 500 spectators ranging from babies to grandparents who came out to watch more than 50 female and male skaters of all ages and abilities. Skaters came from all over Wyoming, Idaho and Montana to compete in both bowl and street contests. Thanks to Jeremy Tofte of Melvin Brewing we were able to give away $1,000 in cash prizes to our open class competitors and series champions. We had DJs, a band, artists, and food and gear vendors for everyone to enjoy. Jackson’s Mayor Mark Barron and his wife, Wyoming State Representative Ruth Ann Petroff, even made an appearance. For the summer of 2014, Claire, Lauri, and I decided to expand the WWSCS in hopes of reaching a broader audience and creating more of a regional feel for the series. We added a third event at the 5th Street Skatepark in Driggs, ID, and tied in an already existing skate contest in Ketchum, ID. As with the 2013 series, all our events had street and bowl contests for competitors of all ages. With our generous sponsors we were able to amass around $12,000 in cash and prizes to give out, including three oneof-a-kind artworks by artist Amy Dowell (check her work on the front cover), for our series champions: street, bowl and overall. Ultimately, 2014 saw more skaters, more spectators and an elevated level of skating than our first season. We were again able to raise money for two Jackson nonprofits: the Jackson Hole Ski & Snowboard Club and Teton County/Jackson Parks and Recreation. For me, the biggest rewards were that the WWSCS highlighted the insane talent that exists in our local and

regional skate community and it created a gathering for skaters of all abilities, ages and backgrounds to come together and shred. We all made new friends and contacts. We all smiled, high fived and cheered each other on. And we all went home thinking, “It’s about time,” “we’ve needed this,” and “I can’t wait… for next year!”


25 2013 S E RI E S C H A M P I O N S

ST RE ET : J A K E J O H N S O N , J A C K S O N , W Y B O W L : A N DY S K I N N E R , J A C K S O N , W Y

O V E R A L L : A N DY S K I N N E R , J A C K S O N , W Y EV E N T P RO DU C E R S


*At this time, the Jackson Skatepark is NOT in jeopardy of being torn out.


A I O N M F G , A M Y D O W E L L / T H E PA I N T E D L A DY, A S Y M B O L , A VA LO N 7, B E RN , B LU E B I RD WAX , B R A I N FA R M , D RI N K

WAT E R , D V S , E X P O S U RE S I G N S , F OU R 4 P RO DU C T I O N S

For more information, photos and videos of the Wild West Skateboard Contest Series visit WildWestSkateboarding.com or check out the contest on Instagram: @WildWestSkateboarding Driscoll Larrow ruins his base graphic.

#WildWestSkateboarding #WWSCS


T RE E H OU S E , J H W E E K LY / J H S N O W B O A RD E R M A G A Z I N E , J A C K S O N H O L E S K I & S N O W B O A RD C LU B , L A K A I , M I Z U

WAT E R B OT T L E S , P E A K P H Y S I C A L T H E R A P Y, P I N K Y G ’ S ,


V I S UA L S , T ET O N C U T T I N G B O A RD S , T H A I M E U P / M E LV I N B REW I N G , T O R M A C K C U ST O M S C RE E N P RI N T I N G ,






he first time I saw The Sliver Couloir, off of Nez Perce in Grand Teton National Park, I added it to my to-do list. Most people ‘our type’ feel that way when they see aesthetic lines like The Sliver. We patiently bide our time waiting for the right conditions to take shape. In late March it was looking like we could possibly give The Sliver a go. So I headed out with four friends in hopes of pow turns, knowing full well that the conditions might turn us around but not knowing that our actions would soon be scrutinized.

We arrived at Shadow Peak to see two other split-boarders already on their way up. We just waited, watched and ate lunch, letting time slip away. Instead of going straight up the gut, the snowboarders ascended the side on loose gravel and sugar snow – not the normal route for this line. Naturally, we watched and judged and could not figure out what they were thinking. Eventually they were in a position where they could not go up any further. Two-thirds up The Sliver, they dropped in and it looked good. Now it was our turn. It was about 1 p.m.,

which is late, but conditions were holding and the snow was cold. We did about six switchbacks and then began boot packing. The snow was so cold and deep it was more like we were digging through the mountain rather than going up. Wishing I could teleport my verts from my tulle box, it started to make sense why the riders before us took the experimental, untraditional route up the rocky side. Having their boot pack as an option, my group discussed if we should try it. The group split and a couple of us ventured that way for about 50 feet before

determining it was the less favorable option. The slow and steady way up the deep snow was the right choice. There was no movement, no sloughing, just one concern: the heat of the day. We discussed this danger and I felt comfortable continuing up the hike because the snow was still cold, the line was in the shade and the snow wasn’t consolidating. Two friends in the group decided they weren’t feeling it with the time of day and temps. The rest of us felt comfortable continuing forward. Getting to the top third of the couloir, conditions were safe, almost too safe, snow was solid, making me more nervous that the whole width was firm snow and we’d be scraping instead of slashing. At the top was an epic granite-framed picture of the Middle Teton. My friend who was denied this line three previous times due to conditions dropped in first. He did a ski cut across the top and ended up in a complete white room, nothing under his feet moved, only the loose powder that had plumed in the air. To say the least, it was flipping epic! He had about a dozen full white rooms, and there was still enough for the other two of us to get fully tubed as well! It was the most pleasant surprise of my whole season; the best day in a decade. A week later while I was riding the tram my friend showed me an article on his phone –double take! It was a photo of my friends and I hiking up The Sliver. At first I was proud and excited. But as I continued to read the article I realized it was criticizing every move we made, from an outsider’s perspective; someone who didn’t know us or know the discussion that had transpired. I was bummed. I felt thrown under the bus. Reading this judgment-riddled article, however, did put me in check, because while we were having lunch that day, we watched the snowboarders before us and promptly judged them. The only difference is we didn’t blog about it. Now there was a good side to the article, that it was teaching and warning people to be more cautious in the backcountry with route choices, conditions etc. When I look at the article as an educational piece it’s way less offensive. But the level of judgment was a bit too much. As a snow community, we need to know where to draw the line. It’s almost like gossip at the hair salon when avalanches happen. For years we analyze them. Many of us have lost friends and usually more than one to avalanches and accidents that happen in the backcountry. But too often we criticize the dead, saying, “Oh the conditions were this or that; they should’ve known,” These discussions have risen a lot in the last few years with multiple deadly avalanches taking industry friends/co-workers. Many of them experienced and respected skiers and boarders. Just this summer in South America, a friend of mine, big mountain rider Liz Daley, died in a huge avalanche. The same day pro-skiers J.P. Auclair and Andreas Fransson lost their lives in the same range, just 50 miles away.


The fact is we will never be able to tell the dead man’s story and people will make their own choices whether we criticize them or not. The energy put into judging others’ choices is not going to change the choices made. We can use our friends’ mistakes to learn but there’s a fine line; we don’t need to judge and harshly criticize each other as if we are smarter, better, more conservative, don’t make mistakes, or are immune to accidents. The truth is people will make their own choices, and the truth doesn’t care if you criticize, analyze or even believe it, it’s not changing.


Displaced from her home in Lake Tahoe and in search of snow, Iris Lazzareschi ended up in Jackson Hole where she has been filming and training for the FWQ and SFS freeriding competitions. @IrisLazz

Brolin takes to the sky in Argentina.


Photo: Ben Girardi


altruistic athlete


t has been said that the American Dream is now but a crumbling fantasy. Opportunities to wriggle from socioeconomic rank and ascend the ladder are shrinking. The gap between the lower and upper class is growing. And it seems our individual power is waning while the corporate machine flourishes. But if you look beyond the land of red, white and blue, you’ll find people in other places with deep convictions that America is still a land rife with opportunity. For these folks, the biggest hurdle is simply setting foot on U.S. soil. And for those that do, their will to succeed slices through our increasing cynicism.

Brolin Mawajje’s story typifies an evolving rendition of the American dream; that it is possible to defy circumstance, that our differences should be celebrated and that we should never lose sight of our past. Born in Uganda, Brolin moved to the U.S., where his mother emigrated years earlier, when he was 12 years old. He traded a difficult life in Uganda with his father and seven siblings for a lonely existence in Boston with a mother he barely knew. But while she worked long nights as a nurse, Brolin unraveled. As he struggled to navigate a new set of cultural norms, he was ostracized by his classmates. In response, Brolin lashed out and school administrators contemplated plucking him from his home environs. It was not until he began snowboarding and subsequently met Phil Hessler, whose family would eventually adopt him and insist he relocate with them to Jackson Hole, that Brolin would carve an inspired path. Now in his senior year at Westminster College in Utah, Brolin is a pre-med student training to be the first Ugandan snowboarder in the Olympics. His journey is the subject of a two-year film project, Far From Home, which recently brought him back to Uganda and will follow him on his quest to shred on the world stage. ROBYN VINCENT: What was it like returning to Uganda after almost 10 years? BROLIN MAWAJJE: Going back to Uganda was like looking into a mirror to my past, and remembering my childhood. Having been in the United States for so long, I think I forgot about some of the harsh realities that exist in Uganda and countries like it. I really saw what my life would have been like had I never came to America. It was a huge eye opening experience for me.

Tell me what it was like to see your father? Who else in your family still lives in Uganda? ROBYN:

BROLIN: It was great to see my father. I wanted to prove to him that I was doing something with my life, and make him proud. It did, however, feel a little superficial and more for the movie than for me. I hope to return to Uganda soon to just hang out with my family, rather than stress over getting the right shot. Almost my whole extended family still lives in Uganda, and it was great to see them after so long. They were all stoked about the project.

29 29

ROBYN: What was life like growing up in Uganda?

For me, growing up in Uganda was all about discipline. There are a lot of kids and families whose parents don’t care what they do. I was lucky that my father was extremely strict even though it wasn’t easy at times. My father saw education as the most important thing; it was all that mattered. I think that is why I take school so seriously.


What were some of the biggest challenges you faced when you moved to the U.S.?



hardest part about moving to the U.S. was adapting to the culture. I had a very thick accent when I first moved, and felt like I didn’t fit in. I also hadn’t seen my mom since I was two years old as she left for America and my father raised me for the first 12 years of my life. I felt like a fish out of water, especially those first few years. It was almost as if I was floating in a dream at the mercy of my circumstances. Snowboarding and skateboarding were what really gave me an entry point to feel a part of something bigger than myself. What were some of the most striking culture shocks?


I arrived on a cold January night in 2004 in Boston. It was freezing! I had never experienced such cold temperatures; I didn’t even want to get off the plane. The next morning I watched snow fall all day.


Photo: Galen Knowles


I had never seen anything like it and was fascinated by it. There was a magic to it. The other big shock was the school, it had hallways and lockers and everything was inside one building. It wasn’t like that in Uganda. In last year’s issue of JH Snowboarder Phil discussed how much you disliked the cold when you first started snowboarding and how he would often find you parked in front of the fire in the lodge with your boots off.


I was used to the hot weather in Uganda. The winter in Uganda is way warmer than the summer in Jackson. The coldest temperatures I had experienced before I came to America were probably in the 80s. It felt like I was stuck in a freezer when I arrived in the East Coast. I hated the cold, but the snow fascinated me.


Tell me about your first experience snowboarding.



first time I went snowboarding was at a small hill in Westford, MA, called Nashoba Valley. I had rental boots and boards and all my gear was too small. I looked like a total kook. I could barely make it a few feet without falling. The first friend I made in America was the one who took me snowboarding. He laughed at me the whole way down the mountain but I was laughing too. During that episode, I realized for the first time since I moved to the U.S. that I had nothing on my mind and was completely absorbed in the present moment. Snowboarding became my escape.

event because the whole world is involved and watching. I have an opportunity to make history as an African. I want to ride in the Olympics because I believe it will inspire people from my home country to go after their dreams and show that your circumstances don’t define you. I think riding in the Olympics will also provide a platform for me to go back to Uganda and make significant contributions to the healthcare system. What kinds of obstacles have you faced at school?


BROLIN: When I first came to America I was constantly bullied and teased for my accent. I didn’t know how to make friends and I had a lot of anger problems. But as time went on things got easier. I’ve always worked hard at my studies and opportunities arose through school. I found belonging through snowboarding and skateboarding. I now attend college in Salt Lake City at Westminster College where I will be graduating next year and am pursuing a degree in medicine. Pre-med and snowboarding are similar because they both take a lot of time. I have had to miss competitions and powder days because of too much homework or a lab that I couldn’t skip. It definitely gets hard to balance the two. ROBYN: Tell me about college life in Utah. Has it been a difficult transition from Jackson Hole? BROLIN: Life in Utah is a blast. I spend most of my time studying, snowboarding, and working out. It is definitely different than Jackson, but it was pretty easy to transition. The hardest part is that not many places have the type of terrain that Jackson has to offer! Transitioning from Boston to Jackson Hole when I was 16 was a lot harder.

Why have you set your sights on the Olympics?



BROLIN: Moving


Olympics are a special


in many ways. When I moved to Lincoln, Massachusetts, it took me a while to make friends and fit in. When I moved to Jackson, I quickly became friends with everyone and was very happy. Moving to Jackson and being immersed in that environment helped me break out of my shell and become who I am today. It also gave me the opportunity to pursue snowboarding in a way I never dreamed possible. ROBYN:

Why do you want to study medicine?

BROLIN: I believe that the main goal of life is to help other people. I want to do this as literally as possible, which means becoming a doctor. I also am intrigued by the human body and enjoy figuring out how it works. I’ve always enjoyed math and science and my father made it his priority that I do well in school. In Uganda, being a doctor is a very respected position and I made a decision very early on that I wanted to be a doctor. ROBYN: What role has snowboarding played in your life? BROLIN: To me, snowboarding is a door to another reality. When I’m snowboarding, nothing else matters. All of the stress and problems of the material world vanish and I am left alone with the mountain. Snowboarding has introduced me to a culture and way of life that I didn’t know existed. I want to take this opportunity to thank everybody for reading this and helping me achieve my dreams.

The Jackson Hole premiere of Far From Home happens February 16 at the Center for the Arts. Visit www.farfromhomemovie.com for more on Brolin and upcoming festival dates. rv

How did moving to Jackson Hole change to Jackson Hole changed me

Robyn Vincent is not sleeping well. Follow her on Instagram: @thenomadicheart


the beta behind the shot W O R D S : B L A K E PAU L



Snowboarding photos run deeper than just the action printed on the page. There’s a story to every photo beyond the rider and listed photographer. Who else was there? Where was the photo taken? What shenanigans happened afterwards? But with the prevalence of social media and the internet, snowboarding photos are fleeting, sometimes receiving nothing more than a glance from viewers. It’s not such a bad thing to have more eyes on your work, but it does take something away. It’s important that things don’t get mundane.

Photos: Blake Paul

If each photo is a story, telling that tale should bring more interest to the image. I’ve always enjoyed talking to my friends about certain shots; getting the behind-the-scenes scoop on the day or the trip. Tapping into that info can bring more authenticity to a photo and appreciation for the work involved getting the shot. This past winter I spent most of my season filming for Snowboarder Magazine’s video project Foreword. I was able to travel around most of the Western U.S. and into Canada with a great group of unique and talented snowboarders, videographers, and photographers. Here are some random images collected from those times and the stories behind them.





Last November I did a month-long tour with Dragon Alliance. Seven of us were cooped up in a van traveling from Salt Lake City, to Mammoth, up to Tahoe, finishing it off in Mt Bachelor, OR. Tyler Orton took this photo around the end of the trip in Bend. It was the perfect way to start off the season, just cruising around with a bunch of close friends. Everyone was super motivated to ride and just generally have a good time. Some of my favorite memories from last season took place during these times spent on the road.

Photo: Tyler Orton

A bunch of the crew was hitting different features in this baseball field area. I didn’t really have anything going on, but kinda spotted this container a little ways away. With not much snow in the area, I just worked on it at a slow pace for most of the day with help from Kyle Martin, Max and Gus Warbington, and Brady Lem. I didn’t really expect the feature to work out too well, just kind of built it to pass the time, in hopes that something would come of it. At sunset it was finally ready to go. My first few attempts had me rolling over gravel in the landing. Then we got the speed right and I was able to ride away ollying on and back180ing off. After the session we all went for Mexican food, sipped margaritas, and danced to the local band jamming in the restaurant.



Photo: Aaron Blatt 02

Aaron Blatt took this in Jackson, WY, in late January. The past few seasons, January has brought blue skies and cold and dry conditions. Sounds crazy, but that’s actually ideal for filming as long as the snowpack stays stable. During this situation it was not. We had spent days building this hip just across from the jump pictured. But due to the landing going directly into a terrain trap and a few slides on a similar slope aspect, we never ended up hitting it. Mark Carter and Bryan Iguchi had been guiding our crew. It’s always an honor to be out with those guys, and to listen to people that are wiser and have spent more time in the mountains. After opting out of the hip, we put this jump up as fast as possible and got the session going. The snow wasn’t lasting long, so today was our only chance to hit something. The wedge was as poppy as ever, stacked nine blocks high. The trajectory of the jump matched the landing perfectly. Lots of insane tricks went down care of everybody that was a part of the session: Hans and Nils Mindinch, Alex Lopez, Mark Carter, with Willie McMillon and Trent Ludwig behind the lens. I had never really done a 1080 before or even had a plan to try one. After hitting the jump a bunch it just seemed like it would work out. I think it took three tries and I was riding away a little surprised.





Photo: Wade Dunstan

See Blake Paul in motion and technicolor in Foreword, this year’s vid from Snowboarder Magazine. And for more shots and stories, follow Blake on Instagram: @blakepaul

We had built this jump two or three days prior to hitting it. This was in early March, back in Jackson for another round of filming in a slightly different zone. After finishing the build, the clouds rolled in. The next day was stormy as well. The area was full of snowmobilers tracking out all terrain in sight. Worried about the fate of our jump, we camped out all day in the clouds telling rednecks not to rope up our landing. That night we stayed in a lodge nearby, planning to hit the jump in first light the next day. Wade Dunstan and Willie McMillon showed up to meet the rest of the crew: Mark Carter, Alex Lopez, Garret Warnick, Hans Mindnich, and Trent Ludwig.

I’ve always seen this zone in videos and wanted to hit this jump. It’s kind of special when you get to ride something you’ve grown up watching. The morning was bluebird and we wasted no time getting out there. Wade snapped this photo on my first hit doing a front three tuck-knee. This was right after Carter landed a front five first try. The session kept progressing until the landing was ripped to shreds. The shots from this jump were some of my favorite from the year. It’s a rad feeling when all the work pays off and the crew walks away happy. bp



Photo: Josi Stephens

finding jamie lynn


amie Lynn is like a cat. He comes and goes as he pleases, actions are reflex and instinct. He is one of those photos where the edges are blurry with movement and the subject perfectly clear, everyone and everything in constant motion while he holds a strangely still center. Despite what folks think that they know, around him there is a calm. This man, a snowboard legend, an accomplished artist, a musician, doesn’t think about what’s going to happen or what has happened, he just lives.

“It’s just a matter of living a completely full and fun life,” Jamie says. “Not knowing makes it interesting, it keeps me moving forward.” That is why he is still here and why, after two decades in this industry, there are still things to say about him.

Jamie’s art is a large part of the core Asymbol quiver, now and in the beginning. His work makes up a good chunk of the original collection assembled by Travis Rice and Mike Parillo in 2009. Inviting him to Asymbol’s new location in Jackson Hole to paint a wall was the next step. The result: vibrating color and dreamy visions. Much like his board riding and music making, Jamie’s art sends it off of the map that he himself has designed. There are nods to his roots and swings



towards a fence that only he sees, the rules, whether he knows them or not, don’t really seem to apply.

trying to paint, or putting themselves directly in my view so that I have to draw them. They demand attention.”

The mural puts all of life’s driving elements – mountains, sun, snow, and water – on a linear plane. His simple, harmonious approach to color and subject is a companion to his snowboarding style – visceral and classic. After all of these years Jamie is still true to these basic ingredients.

Jamie travels with a skateboard, a small backpack, and a guitar. And that is all that anyone really needs to know about what matters to him. The first stop for him was a skate session with Bryan Iguchi that didn’t end until blood was drawn. ( Jamie skates like a demon on fire embracing the burn. Pain does not stop him.) When he’s not on wheels he has his guitar in hand. During his visit in Jackson, there was music for everything; Jamie is constantly strumming.

As Jamie hits the 20-year mark of riding for Libtech the time is ripe for digging into his mind a little bit. The keeper of snowboarding’s evolution, Jamie has seen and done more in 20 years than some will do in a lifetime. Sitting with him and listening to his stories is like gathering around a campfire with those that came before as they share our collective history. Almost immediately all of the questions I had planned on asking went out the window, along with any hope of a traditional interview. Jamie quietly rejects conventional methods, which isn’t to say that he won’t share everything with you. He does. Nestled deep in rambling off-topic conversations were nuggets of info that if put together make a strange sort of narration. “When I was young there was this neighbor kid who had a cat that was sick. I watched him try in many ways to kill it,” Jamie says. “He hung it up, kicked it, and finally drowned it in a sack. It was fucked up, probably the worst thing I had seen at that point. After that I just found myself harboring wounded cats. They would just show up and I’d nurse them back to health. That’s partially the reason that I paint them. Cats just do what they want. Mine usually end up lying down on top of what I am

“Some of what I do is brilliance, some of it, bullshit. I just go with it.” “Music is just as important as the art expression for me. I have been playing with Wes Makepeace (Tittyfish front man), which is amazing,” Jamie explains. “He has the most amazing voice, which lets me focus on playing guitar. Tittyfish is like a variety show with an evolving line-up, most of us have been playing together off and on for a while.” The process of getting Jamie to Jackson, pinning him down for a proper interview, and the subsequent crafting of this article were illuminating experiences. Jamie is like smoke. If you grab at him or try to capture him in any way, he disappears. Every conversation with him, despite any efforts to the contrary, take on a Confucius like form. One sentence from him on any topic is concise and clear enough to end the entire conversation. We never talked about snowboarding, but by the time he left I understood the sport better than I ever have. I suppose that I understand quite a few things better thanks to him. It all just

goes off the rails when Jamie is around. You have to just go with it. If I forgot to ask him about his life long career in the industry it was because it seemed irrelevant in the face of his current existence, his band, his art, traveling, storytelling. “My grandpa Floyd always said, ‘If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit.’ Some of what I do is brilliance, some of it, bullshit. I just go with it.” When the time came to start the mural, Jamie worked tirelessly, sometimes as late as 3 a.m. What I thought was going to be a rock star experience was more like hanging out with your grandpa in his work shed. He tinkers, you drink whiskey and get high off of spray paint fumes. On the way to the airport I told him about a quote I had just heard: “The richest places on the planet are the graveyards. That’s where everybody takes their dreams, their wishes, and they die there, undone.” To this he replied, “I am leaving nothing for the grave. I am going to spend every part of myself before I get there.”


Oregon born, raised by the sea, Josi Stephens is a writer of words, designer of clothes, doer of things at Asymbol, lover, fighter and renaissance woman. @mustang_josi

Photo: Cam Foster / Asymbol



Jack Wiley throws a crippler in the setting sun at Wednesday Night Lights.

P H O T O S : J E F F M O R A N / J H S C F R E E R I D E P R O G R A M , W I L LY

After 76 years, our little town ski hill is finally growing up. Snow King has been sowing the seeds during the last few seasons to become a real training ground for aspiring young athletes. With its weekly Wednesday Night Lights contest series, expanding terrain parks, and unique natural terrain features, the King is undergoing an overhaul that will introduce new amenities for everyone. The Building Our Base campaign (BOB), which has raised almost $3.6 million dollars of its goal, is a collaboration of Jackson Hole Ski and Snowboard Club and Snow King’s management to facilitate major changes at the King. This project has allowed Snow King to install a state of the art snowmaking system as well as an upgraded, more efficient lighting system that uses 40 percent less energy than previous lights. The result will be an earlier opening date for our Town Hill with improved alpine race training and a world-class terrain park. “The improvements to Snow King will double the amount of slopestyle training my athletes get every season,” noted Jeff Moran, director of the Jackson Hole Ski Club Freeride Program and former pro-rider for K2 Snowboards.

king reigns



design and build and I will be acting as Snow King’s staff pro while working with its team of new park attendants. Our goal mimics that of the BOB. campaign -- to make sure the young rippers who are the future of our sport don’t have to travel early season or attend schools in Utah and Colorado in order to compete against riders who enjoy top of the line terrain parks at their home resorts. (Imagine playing basketball games against other teams when you only have half a court at your own school.) Kyle Clancy riding switch in Snow King’s All Natural Terrain Park. Photo: Willie McMillon

See you at the Town Hill this winter, where we’ll be catching air every day and night right downtown. Be there or be square.


Kyle Clancy is a professional snowboarder and intermediate writer. @Clancy_Kyle

Brittain Goddard competes at Wednesday Night Lights. Photo: Jeff Moran/JHSC Freeride Program

What this means for you and me: Shredding after work or school on a fully lit slope, plenty of snow for terrain park features and filled in runs regardless of weather. Ever notice those long lift lines at Snow King in the evenings? Me neither. Better lighting means no more shadows, less residual light leaking into the night sky and more visual on the snow. The new lights are optimal for night filming too. Night skiing here is like nowhere else in the country. While you’re riding the lift, glance back at the town of Jackson gleaming in the night with that unique Western feel and you’ll know what I’m talking about. It’s romantic. I said it. Snow King’s terrain park is also in good hands. We’ve got J.P. Martin, veteran park builder and owner of Parkdiggers.com, handling the initial

Let’s be honest, Snow King doesn’t have hundred foot cliffs or a tram. But what it does have is the potential to offer a snowy skatepark with obstacles for all levels, killer parking, affordable passes and nighttime turns. Did I mention killer parking?

Guns blazing on the King. Photo: Jeff Moran

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culti vating


Delicious variety at eight locations in Jackson Hole


Photo: Wade Dunstan



print. That is what makes the history of Asymbol more than just a cool story. That is what makes it art. I sat down with Travis to discuss the community he nurtures so tirelessly and the future of Asymbol. Over a tasty glass of rosé we set about getting to the bottom of it (or at least to the middle). Asymbol has had some major changes this year; mainly the fact that it now has a home in downtown Jackson that is open to the public. What has that meant to you? JOSI STEPHENS:

Photo: Wade Dunstan


he life of Travis Rice has a lot in common with ‘the hero’s journey.’ The simple explanation of this plot line goes like this: We have our unassuming protagonist, he or she is called to a challenge (by either god, lover, tribe or all of the above), the task is considered impossibly insane, they then proceed to go through fire, they fail, get back up, and after much tribulation, they do the undoable. It is the oldest story in the book. Literally. Travis’s tales are well documented and remarkable by any standards: the X-Games, his unfettered Wyoming upbringing, That’s It That’s All to The Art of Flight, Super/ Ultra Natural, the Christmas luge, and his landmark vision with Asymbol, the fruits of a hero’s journey.

Travis touches art at the Asymbol Gallery in downtown Jackson.

TRAVIS RICE: I continue to realize that it is a work in progress and will always be one. You need to keep an open mind because as an entity you have to listen to it and adapt to how it changes. More than anything I hope that the space can continue to empower and support artists and creative expression. JOSI:

Those that know Travis speak of his bootstraps work ethic, uncompromising vision and generosity. Those that don’t know him consider him to be superhuman, crazy, or a combination of both. He is all of those things and more. It is specifically the ‘more’ part that is the most interesting element of any human, especially Travis Rice. The difference between an enduring legend and just a cool story is the art of it; the details that add color to a moment, giving it life, allowing it to exist outside of context. A large piece of Travis – the ‘more’ part – is a fierce love of art, specifically the things made by our community of snow, water, and street loving people. That is where this part of his story begins. The desire to connect the art with the art lover was the challenge part of

How has Asymbol changed?

the journey. Building a company around and geared towards a demographic that most markets consider unimportant, that is the impossibly insane part. Inevitably the trial by fire is where the core of Asymbol, an art gallery founded by Travis and artist and snowboarder Mike Parillo that began on the interwebs, was forged. There have been failures and tribulations aplenty; leaving the only thing left, doing the undoable. The end of this tale is far from written (though it is never really about the end anyway). These are the conditions where Travis and his team shine the brightest.

JOSI: On that topic, where do you see the artistic content of Asymbol heading?

It is unlikely that anyone could have imagined the art of our idols hanging on gallery walls or that a young blood would spend his allowance to cop a Jamie Lynn

TRICE: Our focus is currently to continue to support and work with this incredible talent pool that we already have. There are absolutely some artists that I have been able

TRICE: Aside from the new space and products, internally it has evolved greatly. I have been busy on the film and have brought in a partner, Alex Hillinger, to help run things. Alex, along with Ashley Rice and Cam Foster, are leading a group of extremely competent individuals that I trust. We have empowered an incredible team that handles things behind the scenes, which is another element that gets us one step closer to reaching our goals.

to work with over the years that I’d love to see in Asymbol, but we have such an awesome group of people that we work with already. I want to stay true to our roots and where we come from. I think that we have more work to do with empowering our incredible list of talent that we represent currently. While working with already accomplished artists and photographers is in the cards on the longterm timeline, I think that before we go there we want to focus efforts on the people that have taken a chance on us. What can people be expecting from the gallery in the months to come? JOSI:

TRICE: I would say our big thing for 2015 is that we’ve been working on and plan on a couple of original shows coming to fruition.

Locally, the idea is to have more of a show schedule, as well continue to support the artists and photographers of our community, which we already do quite a bit with the imaging side of our business. A lot of people don’t realize it but we have a full professional level imaging and print studio under the floorboards of Asymbol. JOSI: Who/what in the art world is inspiring you at the moment? TRICE: Andrew Schultz, Jeff Peters…I am inspired by the people that I personally interact with, artists that speak to my lifestyle. I just finished this incredible project with Jackson artist Tim Tomkinson, who is also one of the most gifted artists that I know. I am now an ambassador to

the state of Wyoming and one of the first things that Tim and I did was create three original pieces of art for and in tribute to my home. The art will be on a limited edition collection of snowboards this year. It’s been a really fun project that will lead to bigger things in the next few years. JOSI: Is there a correlation between the physical and business adventure for you? TRICE: Yes, absolutely. I am grateful that the majority of my life has been spent on the physical, and beyond, adventure. I’ve discovered that in the great outdoors you can’t really get ahead dishonestly; you have to put in the honest and conscious work to make your dreams and goals a reality. Often times there is no shortcut. In the business world there all kinds of weird little crafty ways you can slime your way through it but the result will reflect that energy. I have learned most of my lessons from adventures in the outdoors. Those same principles are applied to the business side of what we do. JOSI: When mapping out this interview I asked a few local folks what they would like to know about you. The prevailing question was, “What fires you up?” And so…

Follow-through really fires me up. It’s so easy to come up with ideas and whatif scenarios, that’s just a part of the creative process. But I think what really motivates me is the prospect of seeing those things through. Because when you put all of your effort into something and you don’t finish it, it becomes more of a weight and a burden than this awesome and inspiring concept. Pretty early on, in snowboarding especially, you know if something is achievable or not. Sometimes you see things through halfway, but you never know if something is going to stall out or be unattainable. Inevitably you learn from everything that you do and often times you learn way more from when you fail at doing something than when you succeed. If something is super easy, you TRICE:

breeze through it without a hiccup, while it feels great when things work out like this, I don’t find that you take much away from it. Have there been any major lessons along the way that are shaping your approach to Asymbol and your brand as a whole? JOSI:

TRICE: I tend to find that if you do things in the workspace for the right reasons and put in genuine effort it seems to have a way of carrying that energy into what you are working towards. Whatever it is that you are doing, whether it’s creating a unique item or product or simply doing some menial task, whatever it is, the broad spectrum, you inevitably put the energy that you do the task with into what you produce.

“I’ve discovered that in the great outdoors you can’t really get ahead dishonestly; you have to put in the honest and conscious work to make your dreams and goals a reality.” JOSI: You say, “When you do things for the right reasons.” What did you find to be a ‘right reason’ when moving forward with your creative endeavors? TRICE: I have found that just like a flourishing ecosystem you need symbiosis in all areas of your workspace, from those that are doing the work to the consumer on the other end. If you can get it to a place where it’s beneficial to all those involved, I find that it ends up shining through in the end.

winter on the road filming and all of the summer… not at home. We’ve been working for six or sevens years towards the goal of sailing into the Pacific and we spent five months doing just that. Traveling with wind power – in a completely different setting than the one I grew up with here in Jackson – is definitely a huge passion of mine. It is completely similar yet so starkly different than what I do during the course of the winter. JOSI: Do you prefer one to the other? Sailing or riding? TRICE: No. And I’m glad I don’t have to make that decision. JOSI:

What is on the horizon for you personally?

TRICE: Deep snow, hard work, happy places, happy faces! REPORTER’S NOTE: When asked about the forthcoming Brain Farm film, Travis graciously declined comment. (What we do know is that it’s coming and that it is going to be good.) REPORTER’S SECOND NOTE: In the spirit of ace journalism I posed the ever-relevant question of “Boxers or briefs?” Travis prefers ‘My Package,’ a hybrid of both that provides unbelievable comfort and structure.


JOSI: Let’s catch the world up a bit on where you have been and what you have been up to this past year. Let’s have some highlights.

From 30,000 feet, most of my time has been put into the movie I’m working on with Brain Farm, we are about halfway through it. I spent the majority of all last TRICE:


Oregon born, raised by the sea, Josi Stephens is a writer of words, designer of clothes, doer of things at Asymbol, lover, fighter and renaissance woman. @mustang_josi

Travis mellows out with a switch backside 540 following Ultra Natural in Nelson, BC. Photo: Scott Serfas






n snowboarding, much like other aspects of life, we want to get better fast. The time we take to learn the basics is usually limited because we’ve seen others do it better and we want to feel the same. Our progression requires the basic skills, but it is rare that we focus on mastering the basics, taking time to really understand step one. In my time spent with Taro and the Gentemstick crew, I learned a lot about simplicity in all facets of life – food, family, equipment, interaction and design. When Taro was younger, he would fish with a hook on his fly as his grandfather had taught him. At one point he removed the hook and just cast the fly to admire how the fish interacted with the water and the fly. Eventually he would go without a rod and glean the same satisfaction just by watching the fish swim and catch food.


This, in short, is the Gentemstick philosophy. We are the fish. Taro’s boards are designed to facilitate the most natural interaction between man and snow covered terrain. When it comes to riding the boards, the simple act of turning is not just a stepping-stone toward going faster or learning tricks, it IS snowboarding or, as they like to call it, “snow-surfing.” For me, the acceleration of a beautiful turn on hard pack is akin to riding three feet of powder or three seconds spent flying through the air. One of life’s major hurdles is learning how to simplify our existences. But when we do, we not only understand how we exist, but why.


We had a ride waiting for us at the bus stop… but I blew it and got off at the wrong one. I guess we needed a nice long walk after the four-hour bus ride.

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0 2 E D U C AT I O N

Birds have different wings for different kinds of flight. Over time they have adapted and evolved to survive in their habitats. Some soar at high altitudes scanning for prey. Others fly low and move quickly feeding on flora. Snowboards, like birds, are shaped out of necessity for certain applications. Every shape has a purpose, allowing the most natural interaction between man and nature.

0 3 E X P L O R AT I O N

Snow is my church, the board is my vehicle, we come to the hills to escape all the people.



0 4 P L AY

After returning home it took a while for the full weight of the experience to sink in. The language and cultural differences that existed on the surface had opened a door to a unique and deeper level of interaction. Turning on a snowboard was our shared communication. At the end of a run, nothing else needed to be said. Left to Right: Waji, Ken Miyashita, me

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Rip Zinger (pictured here) introduced me to Gentem, to snow-surfing and to Japan. The way he lives, equal parts beautiful and hilarious, is infinitely inspiring to me.


There is much to come this year for Alex Yoder, too much to say. The best way to know is to join the journey... on Instagram: @yoderyoder

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145 N. Glenwood St. Jackson, Wyoming



fear and loathing in cooke city

ooking back, I think I was out of my mind. I don’t know what provoked me to leave Jackson during a huge storm, but seven hours later, I was driving delirious and 350 miles away. I couldn’t tell if the sulfuric smell emanated from my body or my surroundings, but the moment I got out of my Chevy Cavalier, I knew I was in a different world. The sign read, “Cooke City, Montana: Population 140.” I told him I was coming in a letter I sent around Christmas. The lack of phone reception and internet made it impossible to reaffirm plans. Six cars line the dead end street, but I can’t find a parking spot amongst the hoards of snowmobiles. I enter the lodge my friend, Travis, claims to be residing in, but the front desk rings empty. Twenty men line the bar; a nest of door keys tells me it isn’t very busy. A woman appears behind the doorway, her lips are moving. As I walk closer, I see a hole in her throat, and she speaks through a voice box. I silently curse all the cans of chew I ever touched and ask if she knows my friend. “Oh yeah, he’s one of those crazy ice climbers,” she smiles. “Check room number zero one.” I wander past myriad unlabeled rooms smelling of stale cigarettes unable to find room number zero one. My search continues outside until I spot a herd of snowmobilers staggering in the shadows. I retreat to my car for safety and doze off. A little puffball of hand taps through the snow on my windshield and takes me inside. Dazed, I enter a tiny hotel room Travis shares with his friend, Dustin. Soggy ropes hang from every corner and the room emanates a faint smell of mildewed boots and unwashed polypropylene. I carve out a


little nook for myself on the damp carpet and promptly fall asleep. We go to a great breakfast joint at the end of the road. Actually, it’s the only breakfast place at the end of the road. Given the low price of the meal, I prepare myself for a gut bomb but am pleasantly surprised by the tastiness of my huevos. It all seemed like a strange trip: that this restaurant existed, that it was so delicious, that I wanted to vomit.


I L L U S T R A T I O N S : K E L LY H A L P I N

Maybe I was starving. After finishing my coffee, I head to the bathroom and am surprised to see my many options. I spy a toilet, a set of curlers, and a tanning bed. Tanning suddenly seems adventurous and intriguing. I’ve never been in one of those fake sun boxes before, but it suddenly seems as necessary as the toilet. It would feel so nice to lay down again. By noon, we break a trail through

seemingly monotonous lodge poles and find ourselves in below-zero temps at the bottom of a beautiful piece of ice called Hydromonster. There’s a sparkling ice cave in the second pitch that seems like a tempting relief to my sweats and fever. The chills kick in; my hands shake as I watch Travis send the second pitch. “You’ll be fine,” Travis tells me. “You aren’t really climbing ice if you aren’t leading ice anyway.” I tie in and throw my tools into the ice. Spindrifts fly from the top of the cliff into my face. A sudden urge tempts me to let go of my tools, my breakfast, my body. Cold hands bring me back into reality.

“What the hell is wrong with me? I’m on top rope. Why is this so hard?” I don’t remember the top. All I know is that I had a strong urge to faint at the bottom. We splitboard out in pale winter light, getting our skis caught on downfall and clumsily soaking our boots in creek puddles. Fluorescent lights advertise the only restaurant open late in the night. The menu offers a variety of burgers with explicit names I knew were disgusting but had no knowledge of how or why. I settled for a Hot Carl. It was as good as it could have been. I leave the same way I came, not knowing my departure until I find myself on the road, in a delirium, hypnotized by the still falling snowflakes. A prolonged rest stop enters the timeless realm. Thoughts of elk and wolves having dance parties fill my dreams as I lay in Boiling River Hot Springs. A park ranger awakes me to inquire

if I’m intoxicated. He lets me go after I pass the Breathalyzer, then points his finger at me to leave immediately. The time was after dark, and I could be charged with loitering. I keep moving, floating down the black and white road in my little blue car; my wipers are my music and sing me songs to keep my eyes open. Upon my return to Jackson, the doctor tells me I have the flu. Maybe I was sick the whole time, but its possible that Cooke City

exists in another realm of reality. The only thing that’s true is that nothing is certain, and my favorite part of ice climbing is when it is through.


Elizabeth Koutrelakos The joy of the Tetons ultimately brought Elizabeth Koutrelakos to the range nine years ago, and she has since vowed to never leave.

­­– S H O R T S T O R Y –

snowpocalypse WO RD S : H A LI NA B OY D



he snow falls on the ash-covered mountains and gnarled tree stumps. Gray figures fade to white and the landscape takes on an air of purity. But as chimes echo in the distance, I am reminded that this dream will not last long. It’s time to start my morning chores. Goodbye my beautiful snow, my beautiful mountains. One day we will reunite. It’s December 1, 145 A.B. (After Burn) and our cavedwelling colony, Earth Conscience, is not only surviving the post-apocalypse, we are thriving. Almost 10,000 strong with 71 expecting mothers and 23 elders nearing the end of this life cycle, including the son of our tribe’s founder, Silius. Every Saturday night we gather in the pantheon and the elders tell stories of pre-burn days on the Earth’s surface. My favorites are Silius’s. His parents were snowboarders from a long lineage of mountaineering enthusiasts. He told stories passed down from his ancestors of snowboarding in the mountains of Jackson, WY, and the sensation of powder under your board and over your head; the beauty of snow falling on the trees and the peace it offered the mind. By 2042 A.D., global warming had won. The Earth’s scorching average temperature had risen to 153 degrees Fahrenheit, drying up lakes, frying farms, eradicating most food sources. Dust storms encompassed vast swaths of continents. Mobilized by the Earth’s inability to support human life, the Consumer Conscience Tribe had been colonizing Mars for decades and was on its last leg of transport flights by 2049 A.D. My tribe, however, couldn’t bear the idea of abandoning our planet; to move on to the next planet and leave Earth

as a landfill of our past. So we built down, discovering caves and underground fresh water lakes and rivers in the heart of the Nevada desert. By 2051 the dust storms had grown in such strength and magnitude they entombed Earth in perpetual darkness. That spring our tribe retreated to our underground world, cutting off our connection to the outside indefinitely, ready to wait out the apocalypse. It’s December 21, 145 A.B., the mark of Winter Solstice. The surface forecasters are predicting a break in the dust storms, and even a chance that sunshine will peek through the clouds that have enshrouded Earth for 145 years. This means I get to feel sunshine for the first time! Silius has a collection of snowboards he has stashed away for our one-day return to Earth’s surface and he said I could use one for the celebration! Words cannot describe the excitement I have to wear a snowboard on

my feet and the ability to express a creative freedom like never before! As our torches guide us to the two feet thick concrete doors that have served as our guardians, I reflect on my intent for the solstice and what I will burn in our sacrificial fires. I buckle into my snowboard and I realize that snowboarding embodies what once was – an environment that was so pristine and symbiotic. We have learned so much, how incredibly destructive Mother Nature can be when humans meddle with her balance. Hers is a force that shouldn’t be reckoned with. As I feel the edges of my snowboard cut through this soft and seemingly innocent dust, I realize just how far we have to go till the day we can emerge and live on the surface of Earth again. I think of my future children and what world they will live in. I can only dream that they will wake to greet the sun every morning surrounded by family,


fresh water, gardens of food and once again living harmoniously as a creation of Mother Nature. hb

Two-time women’s pro champ of the Dick’s Ditch Banked Slalom, big-mountain shredder Halina Boyd is stoked to join the Jones Snowboards, Nikita Clothing and Shred Optics team this year. Follow her on Instagram @hbombtheoriginal



analog aff ection

here have been many, many times lately where I have wondered how I ended up writing mostly about snowboarding and the culture that surrounds it. It isn’t really that interesting to anyone who isn’t directly attached to it and holds no obvious relevance to the well being of the world. By some strange stroke I landed in this tiny universe of folks who place the highest premium on recreation and the cultivation of a life that ensures it. That is not to suggest


I L L U S T R A T I O N : K E L LY H A L P I N

that I don’t thrill in it. I do. Life just seems to have this funny way of putting you in the path of what you need, regardless of what you thought you wanted. With the lions share of my words written about snowboard life in the bag there is no choice but to give in. This is what I love. These are the people I love. And most interestingly, there is more gold in these hills than I had ever dreamed.

point to tell you how much he loved your review of his movie, then you have lost the plot. It is my hope to never lose the point of why this sport matters in our sometimes joyless, always cynical world. This is a universe in which legends are real people who stand next to you on the tram, share beers and talk story, very few lines separating us.

If you are not star struck when Jamie Lynn picks up the phone or Jeremy Jones makes a

There is one thing, however, that is being made clearer as I move forward in this realm. Unlike so many other lifestyles, this one is hardly made better by the over sharing and under connecting of social media as a whole. Initially I was just as caught up, it’s hard not to be. There seems to be this wide-open window into the lives of people that you admire and through this portal you become integrated into their worlds, or more honestly, the tiny fraction of their worlds that highlights the good stuff. And you in turn do the same for everyone else. It feels good, it looks good, and it sounds way better than the complete truth of life. (Which, for me, is that most pictures I see of myself suck ass, a good portion of the time I don’t have a clue what I am doing, and I don’t know myself half as well as my feed implies.) When I set out to define and understand the work of Asymbol’s gilded roster of artists, there were no rules or methods to aid me. It was my luck to be assigned as my first artist to write about Jamie Lynn. It took a few hours of internet research to realize that there was nothing new or terribly interesting written about him out there in the ether. He, like so many others of his generation, is a ghost, a phantom that shows up in the


oddest places and never when expected, never on time. I internally named my task The Search For Jamie.* It is way too defeating to admit how many times I called, texted, emailed, and sent smoke signals in his direction. No selfrespecting lady would ever go to these lengths, even for a legend. For the first time in my life, the mantra, ‘it’s my job’ overtook my wounded pride; the campaign had to keep on. After many days of this I finally saw his name on my incoming call list. It would be a lie to say that I wasn’t pissed or that I didn’t curse him, I did. But what I would come to know after this experience was this: there is no substitute for human interaction. While the minutes ticked by, Jamie talked to me about many topics: art, his life, how he felt about things in general. Most of this I have forgotten but what I do remember and the notes I took would change the way I think of art and connection. The conversation we had could not have happened over email or text. I never would have understood his thoughts on things so completely without being able to ask questions in real time. My irritation with his lack of web presence was about as ill founded as it gets. He doesn’t need to post pictures of lunch or shots of him interlaced under the arms of babes; it doesn’t add to his worth or place in our culture. Jamie, like many others, came up in a time when phones hung on a wall, our faces flesh colored, not green with the glow of an iPhone screen, hands free to hold and eyes forward to see life as it happened. His version of linked-in, however flawed it seems sometimes, is when two people plug into each other, not the wall. I am not completely hopping on the

“Technology bad! Old times good!” bandwagon. In front of me is a 27-inch iMac, an iPhone 5s, and a shiny new iPad. I would die without email or Photoshop and my Instragam hours logged are severely high. Yet I know that there is no room for black and white thinking these days. In the grey zone is where life really starts to happen. When I need to talk to an artist now, I just call them. It is surprising how many actually answer. (All of them.) When we talk, I learn so much more about who they are and what their intentions sound like. The connection is so real that when we meet face-to-face it feels like seeing an old friend. This new realization has changed my life. The best things happen when we get together and make memories in the flesh. Snowboard culture is about community and brother/sisterhood. We rely on each other for our lives – trust must be had.

replacement for actually connecting, especially now as life speeds up so fast and time is still so very short.

Hanging on one of our walls in Asymbol is a shot by Vernon Deck depicting a heavy posse of riders crisscrossing down a hill. Their faces are all obscured; they could be anybody, which makes this photograph about everybody. That feeling of joyfully riding with your friends – nothing staged or contrived – it is the rush that we live for, it is the dream that we chase every time that board is strapped on. Thank god that Deck was there to capture this moment; it is the essence of what snowboarding is and the vision takes me to a magical place. But whether this shot existed or not, these moments happen to us and they are imprinted on our hearts like words on a page. It is increasingly easy to put the gram before the experience and that is what eats away at our golden moments. In this industry a hand shake still counts and knowing someone who knows someone still gets you a job. This way of life is a fading art and what is left is precious. Let us use social media not as

Oregon born, raised by the sea, Josi Stephens is a writer of words, designer of clothes, doer of things at Asymbol, lover, fighter and renaissance woman. @mustang_josi

My search for Jamie Lynn, with all of its continuous twists and irritating turns, woke me up to what I have been missing. You. I don’t need to see what you had for dinner, though it looks real yummy. I do not know you better because I read your Dalai Lama quote, though it’s real talk and I agree with it. To quote 70s music critic Lester Bangs: “The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what two people share when they are being uncool.” Let’s get uncool together.


*EDITOR’S NOTE: Read more about Josi’s search for Jamie Lynn on page 39.


Rich Goodwin small bio


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Caleb Kern taps in.

dropping next


Caleb & Wyatt Kern


Photo: JHSC Freeride Program



ne of the biggest pleasures I’ve had over the last 10 years writing for this mag is the opportunity to introduce so many up and coming JH rippers to the world through these pages. I’m especially excited about this year’s Dropping Next recipients not only because they remind me of the fun, competitive rivalry I had with my brother Adam when we were coming up snowboarding, but also because, like my brother and I, they are “Dirt” transplants from the Live Free or Die state of New

Wyatt has a nose for rails. Photo: Chris Cressy

Hampshire. Allow me to introduce Caleb and Wyatt Kern. After years lapping the big and unforgiving parks of Waterville Valley, NH, the Kern brothers made the migration west to Jackson Hole in 2013. Before ever taking one run with these dudes, I could tell they were on a different level. After meeting them for the first time, it was abundantly clear that both Caleb and Wyatt embody that one quintessential ingredient needed to make it

big in snowboarding: passion! It makes perfect sense seeing as they come from a family of six who all live and breathe snowboarding. And like so many successful snowboarders, the Kerns’ parents, Lisen and Jason, balance that perfect mix of being 100 percent supportive without crossing into the dreaded “soccer mom/dad” realm. After only one year on the Jackson Hole Snowboard Team, Wyatt and Caleb have



Caleb Kern Age: 14

Stance: Regular

Strength: Big park jumps Wyatt Kern Age: 11

Stance: Regular

Strength: Rails & jibs

proven themselves as two of the most driven and talented shreds the program has ever seen. Throughout the 2013/14 season, they racked up one podium placement after another in almost every event they entered. This earned them each an invite to USASA Nationals, an event they were already well acquainted with. Although Caleb was out for part of the 2014 season with an injury, he still managed to claim the JHSC Freeride Program’s 2014 Best Style award based on the smooth and confident approach he applies to every feature on the mountain. Whether it’s his first try ever or he’s just working out the kinks, Caleb not only makes snowboarding look easy, he makes it look REALLY good! After a season of leading the charge no matter what terrain he was riding and adding one new trick after another to his already stuffed bag of tricks, Wyatt was awarded the honor of

the Freeride Program’s Top Gun / Standout Snowboarder of the Year. At only 11 years old, Wyatt is the youngest shredder to ever earn that title.


With a full season of competitions on the books for 2014/15, The Kern brothers share a burning desire to push themselves as far as they can go. I’m confident you’ll be seeing and hearing a lot more about them very soon. They won’t be hard to spot, they’ll be the kids half your size going twice as big.

For more information, photos and videos of the Jackson Hole Ski & Snowboard Club Freeride Team visit Facebook.com/ JHSCFreerideProgram or follow them on Instagram: @JHSCFreerideProgram.

Wade Dunstan gets barreled. We don’t talk about the Renegade Rally.

The crew chooses their line..

praise pow wow P H OT O S : JAC K S O N H O LE P OW WOW

Conceived by veritable shred ambassador Rob Kingwill, the annual JH PowWow is a jampacked week of snowboard-centric happenings. Considering all the skier love swirling around the Village on any given day, we relish in this week of snowboard demos, special talks, parties, music and more when some of the headiest characters in the biz touch down, March 9-13. Oh, and testing a custom made Franco Snowshape (Mikey Franco is the man!) in the side country, in the park and on zee corduroy, remains a highlight of my winter.

Jeff Moran is leader of the (free)ride world.

Wednesday Night Lights

Rail Jam Series



Snow King Mountain Resort Feb 18, 25, Mar 4, 11 2015 / 5-7:30p All Ages / All Abilities / Snowboard & Ski

Wade Dunstan flips out while testing in Tensleep bowl.

Everyone is really sad today.

Last year’s Chief of the PowWow was Jeff Grell, inventor of the highback and amazing storyteller.

WildWestSkateboarding.com Summer 2015 Jeff Moran tests the tail grab function of his board while testing in Rock Springs.

Legendary park digger JP Martin tests a new Gentem.

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­­– T H E L A S T W O R D –


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