Archive for 2014

Top 7 Ski & Snowboard Camps of Summer 2014

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

By: Warren Miller Entertainment
June 4, 2014

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For most passionate skiers, jetting off to winter while the northern hemisphere languishes in the heat of summer is both an exotic luxury and a non-negotiable, must-do bucket list item. When it’s your lifelong dream or if you just need a little more inspiration to dig out your gear while everyone else heads to the beach (again), ski camps of all sorts abound, and not just for the kids.

We’ve rounded up and broken down a few of the most highly regarded camps, for all ages and from far-flung ones to those you don’t even need a passport to access. Not only do summer ski camps offer a welcome taste of winter, but a chance to choose your own adventure, up your game, and ski with some of the industry’s most accomplished athletes, including NASTAR athletes and Warren Miller Entertainment film stars, up close and in person.

1. Ingrid Backstrom’s Women’s Freeride Ski Camp, August 1-8, 2014
Chillan, Chile
For women only, all ages, advanced intermediate or higher

For the ladies only (sorry boys), Ingrid Backstrom is holding her popular freeride and backcountry ski camp for the third year in a row. This year, Ingrid and organizing partner PowderQuest have moved the location from La Parva, outside of Santiago, to the spectacular southern Chile ski resort of Nevados de Chillan. Backstrom, who will again be coaching with fellow professional skier Leah Evans (founder of Girls Do Ski), says that Chillan is one of her favorite places to ski in Chile. Famous for powder skiing through mossy, old growth forests, abundant untracked lines in both the off piste and resort-accessed backcountry, Nevados is a perfect place to up skills in gorgeous, playful terrain, so that you, like Ingrid, can effortlessly and gracefully outski the boys. As an added bonus, thermal springs dot the landscape, and South America’s best ski bar – SnowPub – awaits in Las Trancas.

2. SASS Global Travel: Sessions run from August 2 – September 6, 2014
Bariloche, Argentina
For ski and snowboard, adults, men, women, separate under-18 sessions, advanced intermediate or higher

Sass Global travel is known for running some of the best and most adventurous backcountry ski and snowboard camps in the heart of Argentina’s stunning lake district. The company focuses improving skills out in the Alta Patagonia backcountry, and is based at the Cerro Catedral ski area. SASS gives clients an extensive choice of dates, unlike most other camps in South America that only run one session per season. Available programs run from 8 days to 36 days, and offer something for both the under-18 crowd as well popular adult sessions. SASS’s staff roster includes male and female ski and snowboard pros, guides, including WME’s Michelle Parker, who says the camps are so fun to coach, the terrain so fabulous, and the other coaches and clients and so wonderful, she can’t imagine doing anything else with her summers.

 

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Snowboard Sustainability – Made in Vermont

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

By: Roger Lohr
April 24, 2014

Burton Snowboards in Burlington, VT is working to make snowboarding sustainable well into the future. Burton is the dominant snowboard product company, and this commitment to sustainability can be an example for other businesses in the snow-sports world to emulate.

Two fronts for sustainable efforts include an environmental focus on the full impact of Burton’s operations such as product design, development, manufacturing, packaging, and shipping, and a social focus on the people who support Burton, including factory workers, employees, dealers, riders, and communities.

The environmental focus is generally known in the world of business where each decision takes root with an eco-influence. Since 2008, Burton has focused on improving not just the use of sustainable materials, but the process as a whole. From the production of snowboards and outerwear to luggage and apparel, Burton incorporates a sustainable perspective everywhere possible.

For example, recycled plastic bottles are transformed into pellets spun into thread to create fabric. The bluesign Restricted Substance List has been applied across all Burton factories and product teams are working to get as many bluesign-approved fabrics as possible into Burton lines in future seasons.

In 2012, Burton unveiled an enhanced manufacturing code of conduct and an extensive restricted substances list associated with the company’s finished goods factories and key materials suppliers. Audits of Burton suppliers are now being conducted to evaluate and address Burton’s social and environmental compliance with applicable global regulations and industry “best practices.” A social compliance policy is in place that ensures contracted factories uphold Burton’s standards and meet targets for continuous improvement, and supplier contract clauses deal directly with working conditions.

Ali Kenney, Burton’s global sustainability director commented “We’re seeing great progress throughout our supply chains. We’ve been able to reduce packaging dramatically, we have factories all over the world collaborating with us on an environmental facilities assessment, and we even have factories coming to us with new ideas around sustainability.” Burton has also included an employee-run environmental committee dubbed EPIC (Environmental Protection, Integrity, Conservation) that focuses on fun ways to improve the company’s impact on the environment.

Burton has placed in the top two spots in the Vermont alternative-commuting challenge and has received the silver ranking for a Bicycle Friendly Business by a national bicycle organization. The facility has showers, a secure bike shelter called “The Wheelhouse” and 15 loaner bikes for anyone to use around town. Community-building experiences, like free bagels for alternative commuters, group rides to work, and an annual competition for the most creative commute encourage, green commuting. A partnership with the local transportation agency offers free bus passes to all employees. Carpoolers get preferred parking with the slogan “Two or more, closer to the door. Carpool, fool.”

There are 18 composting and recycling stations throughout Burton’s headquarters and a group sorts through all of it to determine the progress toward zero waste and educate employees. Organic vegetable plots are available on site for employees, who want space to grow their own. More than 6% of all employees tend plots.

In the mornings, Burton employees are offered complimentary organic fruit from a local food co-op and organic coffee and espresso from a Vermont coffee roaster. They’ve also partnered with a local company that supplies locally made organic hand soaps to employees.

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How to Store and Protect Your Skis/Snowboard in the Off-Season

Monday, March 24th, 2014

By: Willi’s Ski Shop
March 24, 2014

One of the most common questions we field around this time of year is how to properly care for and store ski equipment in the off-season. This is an important topic as it has an impact on the condition of your skis before your fall tune up, as well as the longevity of your equipment in general.   In this post we will cover where you should store your gear, how you should prep it for storage and why it is important to do so.

What is a Summer Tune Up?

Willi’s will complete any repairs that are needed, grind your base, sharpen the edges and apply a summer wax. A summer wax is when we melt wax onto your skis/snowboard and completely coat the base/edges. Unlike a typical wax we DO NOT remove the excess. It is instead left on your base as a protective barrier against drying out, corrosion and dirt. In the fall come back to see us (and check out all the cool new stuff we’re getting in!) to have the excess wax removed from your skis. There is no additional charge aside from the original summer tune and you will be ready to head out on the hill!

Why Do I Need a Summer Tune Up?

Preventative maintenance is an essential part of making sure your winter gear lasts a long time. Keeping the edges rust free and preventing the base from drying out will help ensure your equipment has a long happy life. Dry bases can be ground down to fresh material and rust can be removed from your edges, however pitted or deep rust may not all be able to be removed. Also any rust on the edges means we will have to grind your edges more than we would have to for a normal sharpening. The same goes for an overly dry or worn base. If we need to grind a thicker layer of material away, ultimately it will shorten the life of your skis/snowboard. The best way to ensure longevity of your equipment is to make sure that you are taking measures to protect it during the off-season, as well as during the winter!

Where Should You Store Your Skis/Snowboard?

Ski/Snowboard storage location is an important part of the equation when it comes to keeping your equipment in the best condition possible. Ideally you want to keep your gear somewhere inside your house, in an area that is both temperature and moisture regulated. A cool dry place such as a bedroom, coat closet, or displayed in your man cave are great locations. You want to avoid leaving your gear in a garage, attic, shed, backyard or unfinished basement. These types of locations will not adequately protect your gear from rust and other issues that may result from too much moisture. If a storage location is too hot, it can lead to de-lamination of your skis or snowboard by heating up the glue that binds all the layers of the gear together.

Ski Storage Do-Dont

 How?

Another frequently asked question about off-season storage is how to store your gear. The first item to address on that topic is should your equipment be standing up or lying down. Either way is actually fine! If you want to lay your skis/snowboard down and slide it under the bed, that is a perfectly acceptable solution. If you would like to stand them up in the corner of your bedroom or in your closet that is also a great way to store them. The main trick is to make sure that your gear is not covered up by piles of boxes, other sports equipment or anything else that may bend the skis/snowboard out of shape.

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New York Announces Launch of Ski Bus

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

By: SAM Info
March 11, 2014

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the launch of the ‘I Ski NY’ Bus, a new, dedicated bus line to 13 upstate ski mountains from New York City and Toronto to begin service for the 2014-2015 winter ski season.

Currently, only two mountains—Hunter and Windham Mountains—are consistently serviced through bus transportation out of New York City. Both of those mountains have established relationships with New York City tour operators to bring busloads of skiers and snowboarders upstate on weekday and weekend trips.

Under the new plan, the State will provide bus service to 13 different mountains from New York City. Additionally, when the established New York City tour operators are not going to Hunter or Windham, the I Ski NY Bus will make the trip. The plan also includes a secondary market from Toronto to expose western New York ski areas to the same transportation opportunity.

Trips from New York City will be offered to 13 different mountains:

In the Hudson Valley/Adirondacks/Catskills regions: Thunder Ridge, Belleayre, Plattekill, Hunter, Windham, West, Gore, Whiteface and Catamount Mountains. In the Central New York region: Greek Peak, Toggenburg, Labrador and Song Mountains

Trips from Toronto will be offered to six mountains in Western New York: Bristol, Holiday Valley, Titus, Kissing Bridge, Peek n Peak and Swain Mountains.

“New York is home to some of the best winter resorts in the world, and with more operating ski areas than any other state in the nation, the region is the perfect winter getaway,” Governor Cuomo said. “With some of the best ski slopes, snowmobiling tracks, hiking trails, and scenic views, we want New Yorkers to know they should stay in New York and all out-of-state visitors to feel welcome to partake in all that Upstate has to offer.”

“We think this new program will have a positive impact on our overall skier visits,” SANY president Scott Brandi told SAM. “Making it easy and affordable to get to the slopes is our primary goal.”

A Snowboarding Event You’ve Never Seen Before

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

By: Larry Earvin
March, 4, 2014

red-bull-event-imageRed Bull Double Pipe will be 180’ wide and 550’ long, making it the largest halfpipe ever built.

With janky halfpipe conditions being a red hot topic in snowboarding right now, Red Bull has decided to take snowboarding to the next level. In the coming weeks Snow Park Technologies will be building two perfectly groomed halfpipes side-by-side. The event will be the first of its kind in snowboarding.

March 19th-23rd Red Bull Double Pipe will take over Buttermilk Mountain in Aspen, Colorado.

Dual pipes will allow the riders to transfer from pipe to pipe utilizing all that is available to them including rails, wallrides, channels and other unique features. Not only will the riders be encouraged to use both pipes they will also be judged on their style, creativity and overall use of the course.

Double Pipe Dimensions

The Red Bull Double Pipe in total will be 180 feet wide, 550 feet long and 22 feet tall with an approximate 4 foot wide spine located in between each pipe.

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Extreme sports mark changing of U.S. Olympic guard

Monday, February 24th, 2014

By: USA Today
February 24, 2014

1392812531006-USP-Olympics--Snowboarding-Men-s-Parallel-Giant-Sl1SOCHI – For the U.S. team, the Sochi Games signified an end of an era. Goodbye, ice queens. Hello, flippie hippies. See you later, pucks and sticks. Nice to meet you, slopes and rails.

As 17 days of competition came to a close Sunday, this much was clear: The face of the Winter Olympics no longer wears skates. Twelve of the USA’s 28 medals came from freestyle skiing and snowboarding, including six of nine gold.

The U.S. Olympic team had never won a medal on every day one was awarded in the Winter Games, and through 14 days in Sochi, the Americans were poised to do that. But the men’s hockey team failed to show up in Saturday’s bronze medal game, losing to Finland 5-0.

If only the kids in baggy pants with a language all their own had competed in the Games’ final days, perhaps the USA could have gone out with more of a bang. Instead, Russia ended this cold war with a flourish — sweeping the podium in the men’s 50-kilometer cross-country ski race Sunday and winning gold in four-man bobsled to secure the top spot with 33 overall medals and 13 golds.

BRENNAN: In an upset, Sochi pulled off the Olympics

SOCHI: 14 unforgettable Olympic moments

For decades, figure skating was the marquee event of the Games. In Sochi, the U.S. men and women figure skaters had their worst collective finish since 1936. Speedskating has been the USA’s most successful winter sport. But the short-track team left with one medal and the long-track team exited empty-handed, complaining about their suits.

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Win a dream trip to Alaska with Chris Davenport

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

By: Protect Our Winters
February 12, 2014

Win a dream trip to Alaska with Chris Davenport from protect our winters on Vimeo.

All you have to do is make a $5 donation to Protect Our Winters (POW) to be entered here:

The Chris Davenport Ultima Thule AK Adventure

Contribute $5 to Protect Our Winters – and be entered to win three days of guided expert skiing and advanced mountaineering with Chris Davenport at the Ultima Thule lodge, deep in Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, ” the last true wilderness on earth”. Multiple entries are allowed and encouraged – every $5 is another chance to win. Advanced skiers only, please.

Winner’s package includes:
• Black Diamond – Legend Gloves, Alias Pack, Compactor Ski Poles
• Smith – Touchstone sunglasses, I/OX goggles, Maze Helmet
• GoPro – Hero 3, Black Edition
• Spyder – White Spyder Collection Outfit
• Boxes of POW’s seasonal bars from Clif – Pumpkin Pie, Iced Gingerbread and Peppermint Stick
• $500 towards travel to Valdez, AK where you’ll fly to the lodge via bush plane

Contest ends on February 15, 2014. Package for two guests, 4 nights, all inclusive, April 20th-24th 2014. Transport from Valdez included.

Olympic Preview & TV Schedule

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

By: SBC Skier
February 6, 2014

The 2014 Winter Olympics kick off this Friday in Sochi, Russia, and in case you’ve been hiding in a snow cave for the past few years, Halfpipe and Slopestyle skiing will be making their long awaited and highly anticipated Olympic debut.

sochi, russia, olympics, winter olympics, sochi olympics, freeskiing, freeski, skiing, ski, halfpipe, slopestyle, sbc skier

Many of the athletes (particularly on the Slopestyle side of things) have already made their way to Mother Russia, where practice began yesterday on the large and in charge Slopestyle course, which consists of three elaborate and creative rail sets followed by three massive, big air competition-sized jumps.

olympics, winter olympics, sochi olympics, slopestyle course, slopestyle, halfpipe, freeskiing, freeski, skiing, ski, sbc skier

Photos from Downdays.eu

Мой проезд на олимпийской трассе Слоуп стайла 2014.Olimpic Slope style corse gopro 2014 from Alexey Sobolev TV on Vimeo.

POV video of the Olympic Slopestyle course.

Here’s a look at some photos of the Slopestyle course that have been floating around the Internet over the course of the past two days, courtesy of the athletes who’ve been riding it…

kaya turski, kim lamarre, canadian olympic team, olympics, winter olympics, sochi olympics, slopestyle course, slopestyle, halfpipe, freeskiing, freeski, skiing, ski, sbc skier

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HELP SUPPORT OUR U.S. PARALYMPIC TEAM!

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

By: Adaptive Spirit
January 28, 2014

SFB-0417As Adaptive Spirit prepares for the organization’s 19th Annual Event – bringing together all areas of the cable television industry to benefit paralympic snow sports – we’re always looking for the support of the snow sport community.  Whether it be valuable donations of snow sport equipment and related items for our robust silent auction, or sponsorship and in-kind donations, Adaptive Spirit relies heavily on the generous support of the snow sport community in making our Annual Event such a huge success.  Proceeds from the Annual Event go directly to fostering the competition dreams of Paralympic athletes.  Adaptive Spirit will celebrate it’s 19th Annual Event this coming April 3 – 6 in Vail, CO.  Over the course of Adaptive Spirit’s history the event has grown over ten times in attendee size and has raised over $7 million in support of the U.S. Paralympic Alpine, Nordic and Snowboard National Teams. To find out more visit www.adaptivespirit.com.

Burton Brings Snowboarding to Gym Class

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

By: Burton Snowboards
January 22, 2014


Gym is already most kids’ favorite class. A much-needed break from sitting still all day, a good way to get some exercise, and a way to burn off all that pent up energy. Burton’s been working to change the way schools look at physical education by introducing a snowboarding program that helps teach the basics of balance, core strength, and agility. Allen Brook Elementary near Burton’s Burlington, VT, headquarters was the first to get on board with this new program, and recently debuted it to an excited group of kindergartners.

riglet_PE-featuredWith Burton’s teaching tools like Riglet Boards and Riglet Reels, combined with balance boards, Twister-like grab mats and more, kids get to experience snowboarding’s movements and get exercise at the same time.

One of the driving forces behind the program, VP of Global Resorts, Jeff Boliba, talked a little bit about where the idea came from and where he sees it heading in the future.

“The idea for this program was actually developed by my son, Jeffrey, for his 8th Grade Challenge at Williston Central School. He wanted to give kids an introduction to snowboarding in physical education class. The 8th Grade Challenge is designed as an opportunity for students to give back to their community, and they get to decide what type of community service he or she would like to become involved in. It’s a chance for students to take on a more active role in their community, reap the benefits of volunteer work, and grow as a person.”

“Riglet snowboarding has allowed us to take the weather and winter out of introducing new kids to snowboarding, and a way for kids to be physically active at school. I see this allowing us to make snowboarding more accessible and to help us build participation. For the PE Program specifically, we started with Allen Brook Elementary in Williston, VT, and we’re launching it in Lafayette, CO at Pioneer School later this month. We have plans to launch the program in California and we plan to eventually expand to more school in North America, with a global expansion for 2015.”

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