Monday, February 28, 2011

Let's Recap

So let's recap the last half of February shall we...

Massive amounts of snow, record breaking in fact.  Statistically Kirkwood ranked number #1 in the world for some time for the most amount of snowfall during these past weeks.  Averaging about 12ft in the last storm, Kirkwood got hit and hit hard.  With more snow on the way, visitors are carrying an extra bounce in their step as they hit the slopes.  Smooth, fresh powder covers every inch of Kirkwood and visitors as well as employees are in search of all the fresh powder they can get!  Lucky enough to head out with Coop and his crew in the early hours of the morning to capture some shots, I got a taste of the waist-high powder that first fell a week ago.  In fact it was chest high for my 5'1 stature.  Working against the winds and with the powder, I was able to catch a stellar shot of Kirkwood free rider Rose ripping it down chair 6.

In combination with the perfect conditions and Kirkwood hosting the North American Free Skiing Championships, it's been non-stop excitement!  With more powder on the way, the season is shaping up to be a successful one.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Park days at the Wood

For some, blue skies and groomed runs is a HUGE benefit.  Chair 5 park is looking large and when there is a camera present boarders throw big!  Spending a few hours posted up on the top of the second jump, some of the park crew along with Kirkwood employees John Stanco and Aaron Rose spent several runs throwin huge for the camera.  The snow was at perfect condition today despite the fact that it's been a few days since Kirkwood's last storm.  Butter is a great way to describe it.  Enjoy these photos along with many more at

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday funday with an added bonus of perfect powder!

You can feel the excitement radiating from everyone...  things just sped up.

Patience pays off.  Already having the chance to take advantage of my much anticipated ride break during work,  the snow is light and deep!  Awesome conditions.  10-14" in the last 24 hours and it's still coming down.  If there is one thing we can promise it is our expectations are always exceeded with the amount of snow that is predicted.  With the amount of snow falling, it will create a perfect coat for the next week of blue bird predictions.  87-92" base depth, add a foot or so of fresh powder and some blue skies and you've got perfect conditions.

Monday, January 24, 2011

pushing past that comfort zone

Lucky enough to experience some awesome terrain, I recently pushed myself on a 3 1/2 hour hike for some  higher and steeper terrain I had yet to see.  Needless to say my throat felt a bit coarse but the bar got raised on my stamina level.

2011 not only has brought more snow but it has brought a new mix of Spring boarding and skiing to the table.  The best way I like to describe spring conditions is getting comfortable in a light shirt and boarding pants and looking forward to that goggle tan at the end of the day.

 For the past week and a half Kirkwood has seen clear skies and blue bird days.  Putting more emphasis on grooming, Kirkwood has stepped it up on making sure more runs than normal are being groomed and prepared for the coming days.  We have the luxury of High-Angle grooming which means those double black almost vertical lines will be prepped and ready to ride down at top speeds.  The upside to spring conditions is the change in shape of the snow.  This is referred to as "Corn snow" or "quasi-Corn".  The snow can be referred to as coarse, granular wet snow.  Though it's January and we still have storms to look forward to, we are currently enjoying a taster of what these spring conditions feel like.  The Corn snow takes on a certain shape during it's melting and freezing state, this occurs best during mid to late morning where after a layer has begun to melt but before it is too wet and sloppy.

Enjoy to clear skies while they last!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

If you dream it, it's possible.

New Years Eve, 125 top notch skiers rode chair 6 to the top just after the sun fell behind the mountains and the single degree weather kicked in.  Hands frozen and camera in hand I prepared myself for a shot that seemed almost impossible to capture in the black of night.  Guiding off of the single light that flickered at the top of chair 6's chair lift, I hoped for the best.  From black to red instantly, 125 skiers at the top of chair 6 fired up 125 road flares.  Within seconds they blazed an organized "S" trail from top to bottom.  Epic is a great word to describe what it looked like.

After making their way down Kirkwood's fireworks show lit up the sky.  Red flares burning all over the snow the crowd looked up to the sky in amazement of an up close and personal fireworks show that let off feet from where they were standing.  One of the best fireworks show I've ever seen!

Parties proceeded after at the bars which completed the night, brought 2010 to and end and a hopeful 2011 to a start.

Starting my new year off right I was one of very few that got not only the 1st of the year but the 2nd as well off.  There was only one answer to the question of how I would spend my time.  Deciding to push myself a bit I blazed a trail off chair 4 up the backside to get higher and steeper...the best way to find fresh untouched tracks.  I enjoyed it so much I did it twice that day.

The crowds at Kirkwood have finally calmed down which means more powder for those that visit.  Best time of year to board/ski is now!  Cheers to the new year and new possibilities!

"If you dream it, it's possible.  Let no one tell you otherwise".

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Rare Earth

"in order to write about life, you must first live it"

Rare Earth, there is a reason why Kirkwood is just that.  26 feet total this season thus far and another 2 feet expected this next week just before New Years.  With a small hurdle to jump last week with some major avalanche warnings and high winds moving people around like rag dolls, Kirkwood is producing what it promises each season.  Epic conditions.

For New Years Kirkwood will be holding a torch light parade run, where the top expert skiers will ride down the mountain with flares during first night fall.  Now that is going to produce an epic photo!  On another note, mountain living has become quite the adjustment...awesome none the less.  Pushing yourself out of your own comfort zone is something I would recommend to everyone.  With a diet consisting of what's available, soup has become my new favorite food.  Living 45 minutes from any grocery store, preparation is key because when the roads close, they close and you're stuck until the snow decides to let up.  Working long hours combined with boarding and the high altitude, demands on ones body become quickly apparent.  Let's not forget after about 10 hours of working, you start to become loopy at work!

Avalanche training classes are coming up and I pretty amped to get out on the mountain and learn the ropes.  

All in all, expectations have been exceeded thus far.

Friday, December 17, 2010


10 days straight of snow... just in time for the holiday season!  It's a bit ridiculous how much snow has fallen and keeps falling.  But then again it's Kirkwood.  With changing weather also comes sickness and I have already had my share of the "kirkwood crud" as they like to call it, where the flu once it hits spreads like wildfire.  Fortunately with one day full day of sleep to recover, it won't keep me from work nor boarding the fresh powder that accumulates everyday!

Jumping on the bandwagon with ZipTahoe, I'll be lucky enough to join the crew on my off days to take photos and get fully trained in zip lining at Kirkwood.

Our new website was launched today as well as the announcement of the backside and full mountain access opening up!  The season has officially taken off.