Wednesday, January 30, 2013

It's Back!

Back for 2013 is the red bull divide and conquer. In 2012 team the fulldudeman took the top spot on the podium. This is one of the best events I've ever done. Trail run, Mt bike and white water kayak all in the promised land of North Vancouver BC. Last year the mt bike course on the day was one of the craziest things I've ever done. The course was just shy of two hours and its on some of the most legendary trails of the north shore. I cant wait for the race. The Fulldudemen have registered and are good to go for 2013. we must defend. win or hospital. 
last years race on you tube.
yeah reg now. get your free shirt. 

last year, waiting for the hurricane of pain.  

I was cleaning sand out of my ears for 2 weeks after the race last year. 

Monday, January 28, 2013

The pow is back!

On Sunday Mel, Nate, Etsell and I dusted off the skis and loaded up the car to find the goods at the Coquihalla. We chose Needle peak and the the back bowl. We wanted something a little higher in elevation and something treeline but not to thick. Our thoughts were that in the trees it would be dust on crust and anything in the alpine would be wind slab town. I think we played it very well cause we got some awesome turns and had a great adventure.
Mel chases down a ACC group of 8.
We hit the skin track and once we reached the ridge we ran into the acc, a group of 8 out to steal our pow. However our group on the day was very quick and we were able to break trail for them on the downs. Good work team.
The ridge just  before the back bowl always get so much cross wind. 




"back country" skiing?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Dirt Bag Royalty

In the world of outdoor clothing there is a king. His name is Yvon Chouinard, and he is a bad ass. Now 74 years old his company, Patagonia, is one of the most successful in the industry. Patagonia is also a leader in environmental issues across the globe. I have a couple pieces of Patagonia clothing, its unreal stuff, and I will have it forever. Mel's favorite piece is the down sweater and she wears it 24/7. Toby was in the "bro" loop for a couple years and everything he owns is Patagonia. Connor shows off his tight glutes in the guide pants every ski trip. Yvon makes some unreal gear that brings a huge smile to the hardest of hard men.  
crushing pints, wearing green sweat pants and covered in babes. Yvon is my hero! 
To all my single guy friends out there, maybe you just need to wear sweat pants more often? chicks dig sweat pants, old dirty sweat pants with food stains on them. Worked for me, plus its just to uncomfortable to wear jeans. Just look at Yvon, I bet those pants are 30 years old and get worn everyday.   

I've had this jacket for 5 years. when its cold out this is my favorite piece. 

when its to cold to wear flip flops these kicks are my go to! 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Mt Harvey

On Saturday Melanie and I decided not to do any big trips and just stay local. After reading every trip report known to man we decided on Mt Harvey just up from Lions Bay. We were able to get a lazy start and the drive up the sea to sky is always fun and beautiful. Mt Harvey is on page 41 of the John Baldwin book. Its quick access and friendly skinning make this an awesome place to ski. The summit is 1620m and just below that there is some awesome skiing in an old clear cut with the north side of the lions right in your face. The drive still took about half hour from North Vancouver. We parked at the trail head at 240m. There is limited parking so we had to park down the road a bit. But well worth the adventure.
aww, cute eh. I look short. 
All smiles at the trail head, we had to walk with our skis on our backs for about20min. After that it was just an easy old logging road for skinning.

spring skiing in January.
We stashed our running shoes in the woods and let the party begin.

this way.

Canada eh! check out the sweet igloo. 

howe sound in the background. 
The road ended in this huge clear cut. The final push to the top is a little exposed and with the afternoon sun baking the south facing snow we decided to play it safe and not do the final push to the top. Besides the skiing in the clear cut was awesome corn.

view of the top.
The real story of the day is when we stopped at our high point and Mel's ski took a solo run. We watched it drop like a km in distance down the hill over the horizon and into the abyss. So lucky we found it! It took some air and lawn darted into the snow.

Juneuary corn. Living the dream.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Mt Laughington Solo Mission.

They say if you want something good you have to work for it. In today's world of back country skiing, "back country" areas often look like the mall on back friday. I would say on a good day you would not see a single soul besides the animals, and thats just what I got last week on Mt Laughington in the Chilliwack river valley. Mind you 1300m of skiing on gravel roads is some hard work and will turn you into a hard man.

Mt Laughington is on page 166 in the John Baldwin book. To all my city friends, you should check the chilliwack river valley out, lots to offer. The summit of Laughington is 1800m. From Vedder crossing it took me 32km and just under 30 min to drive to the parking area located at 440m. Im really glad I drive a beater car cause the last 2km on the bench road were a little nuts with huge ruts and branches slicing the paint on my auto.  
just me and the animals. 
From 440m to 1400m its all logging roads. The first half was really easy skining and after that I had to really work for it with some hard trail breaking. At the end of the gravel road there was 10-15cm of frost hoar. It felt like I was skiing in broken glass.

on the top of Laughington. Slesse is at the tip of my ski and Baker is on the far right of the photo. 
After 1400m and the end of the logging road you go up these really nice alpine meadows to gain a ridge and then the summit is 1800m. It took me 2hr 10min from the car to reach the summit.

skining up the meadows with Welch, Folly and the Still behind me. 
Once I got up there the skiing was really fun and I did a couple runs in the awesome hoar frost.

lucky for me these are the only Bears I ran into. 
I kinda bonked and had to pull out the Gummi Bears. Zellers was having a blow out sale on everything and I cleaned up on anything I couldn't have as a kid. I have so much candy in my possession right now.

The hoar frost was just awesome.

hello kitty? 
Anyone know what this is? It walked on my tracks after I went up the road and before I came down. Crazy. looks small. maybe a bob cat? I think I could take it?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Crushing Life

Im having a great week. Mid week last week the Coq got about 100cm snow in 36hours and the Avi danger was high. On the weekend it was full blue bird and just gorgeous!

Saturday Melanie and I went over to Nak and due to a lazy Coffee drinking non alpine start we didn't have to break trail. The skin track was very deep and had a ton of switchbacks. My kick turn is now crazy good.
deep skin track.
I won last weeks G3 "show us some skin" contest. Winner winner chicken dinner. Just dont google show us some skin.
new ski straps. 

patagucci model.
Sunday we headed up Neddle. Another beauty day. This time we had to deal with a couple of split boarders. Nate and Brett had an unreal day of powder slaying. I've never seen Needle so skied out. It looked very in bounds by the end of the day.
skining into the light.

On the way home we hit Home Restaurant in Hope. I normally get the works burger but on this fine day I went with a clubhouse sandwich. Oh Mama Cita! Nothing like a good old feed bag post skiing.
getting ready to feast.
I guess you cant ski everyday so Mike Levy and I played some squash. Its been like two years since I've last played but it was Mikes first time ever. I was a little rusty at first then I got it back. Im ready for a battle with Brad Rogers now, bring it.
mike playing with his balls

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Home Sweet Home

On our way home from Rossland we made a couple stops. First stop was Silver Star to get that family friendly feel and take in some awesome skate skiing with the in-laws. Then we stopped at the Coquihalla to take advantage of 25cm fresh snow. There had been about 50cm over the last couple days and when we dug a pit that top 50 was sliding off just by me isolating the block. We kept it safe and skied low angle trees. When we got home we read this report. humm.... Mel and I did a different skin track then the one this happened on. We saw a group of 3 others, this was that group. Crazy!
Coq Parking lot, Please dont limit your stay to 1hour. "ricky, you should see if that guy will take your car?" Melanie Vaughan. 

Fueling the fire. 

laps in deep snow in the trees is my fav! check out the pillows! 

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Kootenay Pass

I've only driven through Kootenay pass a couple times. Once I was on my way to the crowsnest pass to ski with some coffee roasters, the other time was on my way to Fernie to race mt bikes back in the glory days. Kootenay pass is almost at 1800m so its get the first snow and the last snow as far as hwy access touring goes. It was hard to step away from watching Duck Dynasty at the Casa Alpina but the lure of powder got me again. It took us just over an hour to drive to the pass from Rossland.
Mel taking a water break
Being our first time to the pass and the province not getting any snow in a week we figured we better get some local input on what was good and what was not. I was able to track down one of the Avi forecasters and get some good beta. North facing was what we wanted and we found lots of it.
Mel getting after it. 
From what I can make out on the map we skied a couple laps of Crags to Monk Creek, then a couple laps of Baldy Rocks North. All was in the shade and the snow was very good.

view down to the car. 

parking lot at the pass. 

stopped in Salmo for coffee. 

We went to Misty Mountain Pizza in Rossland for dinner and found Brian's card on the wall.  

Yeah the room smells so good right now. 

Rossland Day Two

For our second day in Rossland I contacted Brain Coulter to ski with us. Brain was heavily involved in the bike industry before I got there. We kinda met on facebook and just like everyone else I've ever met from Rossland hes a really nice guy and took Mel and I out for a great tour up Mt Elgood. It was another awesome day for weather with it cloudy in town but after a couple hundred meters of elevation we were above the clouds and living the dream.
real food touring lunch is key. 

Mt Elgood is the high point on the 7 summits trails. Its the first real view point where you take all those photos with your phone a email them to your buddy's who are not with you. 

Brian and Mel above the clouds. 

With no new snow in a long time it was good to have the local tour guide to find the goods. here Brian shreds the goods. 

Mel and I figured we better not be lame and hit up some proper apres so we went to the hill and hit up Rafters for some beer and nachos. they were both very very good. Unlike Whistler we didn't see Maverick from top gun.  

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Best Ski Town in North America.

Its been a busy couple weeks. I moved, worked like a dog and did an impressive ski with Kanga at the Coquihalla. But yesterday Melanie flew in from North Bay Ontario, I picked her up from YVR and like true champions we drove straight to Rossland. We are gonna live the dream for the week and ski the dry powder of the Kootenay's in North America's best ski town.
My car is the real champ. It just keeps going and going. I better not say to much about it cause I still need to get er home. 

Today we skied cutblock peak. We skied some east facing shots in very good snow. 

First day on my new planks. Brand new G3 Manhattans
I rocked my last pair of G3 Manhattans for 3 years. They were a bomber ski and are still crushing it. However I have to keep up with the Joneses and the result is a very merry Christmas to me. I think they put a tiny bit more early rise in both the tip and tail and this is a very fun ski. Only one day on it so far but I'll say more after a couple more ski missions. Plus the graphic is really cool and it has neon green on the sides. Just killer.

Melanie getting above the clouds. 

Lunch Time.