Where's the snow, Revelstoke?
We’ve had a handful of bluebird days up at Revelstoke - it’s been absolutely stunning up top, but I’m getting a bit antsy for snow; particularly after seeing some incredible pictures from opening day at Mt. Baker. Waist-deep powder anyone? Yes, please! There’s about 2cm of new snow on the ground and we’re supposed to get a few more cm overnight, so at least we’ll have a little dust on crust.
I headed to Valhalla Pure on MacKenzie Ave. after skiing today. I’m riding on admittedly ancient Langes from my racing days, and even though I’ve had some work done on them (my friend Greg from the Faction Collective punched them out in a few places this fall while he was working at Snowcovers), they needed a bit more love. Because the plastic doesn’t have some of the same synthetics that new boots do to keep some movement in the cold, they hit about a 160 flex when it’s -30 (maybe an exaggeration, but it’s been hella hard to move them lately). I still love them though - they’re stiff and tough. Might have to cough up for a new pair next season. It’s time to say goodbye. I met Lance at Valhalla Pure - he’s a bootfitter who seems to be a genuinely awesome guy. He was really knowledgable and funny, and I’m excited to try out the mods tomorrow. He spent a long time with me and I left feeling really good about it. He also pointed out something that I can’t believe I’ve never noticed:
When the 4FRNT EHPs are lined up side by side, the topsheets create a picture of Rogers Pass. And here I was just charmed that they look like Pilsner cans. Designed by Eric Hjorleifson, they are definitely a ski I want to try out this season. Check out his segment from Push - this guy is sick.
Go watch his extended part in ‘Claim’ on MSP TV right now! It’s almost painfully awesome to watch. Some of his lines are just breathtaking.
Heading to bed early tonight because we’re having a pre-ski pancake breakfast at the house. John’s a Quebec transplant (via California), so he moved in with a lot of maple syrup. Works for me.
Into the wild
Big mountain freeskiing has always fascinated me. The visceral visages of mountain tops cutting into the sky line like sharp blades, the searing emptiness, and the overpowering sensation of terrifying freedom that takes hold as you stare down from a painfully beautiful mountain peak knowing that another human being is about as far away from you as Heaven from Earth. Where ski racing prizes power and precision, freeskiing strives to tap into the raw creativity of the wilderness. Big mountain skiiers paint death-defying lines on the biggest canvas of all and the best of them are indeed a rare breed. Indeed, few ever match the calibre of a Dean Cummings or Mike Douglas but there are some who relish the challenge: Canadian, Eric Hjorleifson is one of them.
Heralding from the Canadian Rockies (Canmore, Alberta), Hjorleifson clipped on skis at the tender age of two and it would seem that in the intervening years they have become permanent appendages – a fact for which the world of skiing should be eternally grateful. For a taste of greatness, check out the videos below.
The first two clips are from Matchstick Productions’ (MSP) “In Deep!”
The next clip is from MSP’s “Attack of La Nina”.
And the final sequence is from MSP’s “Seven Sunny Days”.
To find out more about Eric Hjorleifson, read his sponsored athlete biography on the Arc’teryx website.