Welcome to the Porters Sports Blog. We will try to keep you up to date with our Lake Tahoe thoughts and also rants about other stuff too.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Argentina Part I

Las Lenas, always a beautiful sight but looking a bit on the bare side for this time of year.
 

On August 11th I said goodbye to my sandals, jumped on a plane with luggage full of winter gear, and headed to the southern hemisphere in search of snow. Actually, truth be told I wasn't really going to be on a mission in "search" of snow as I was suppose to spend my entire month in Las Lenas. But as we skiers crave the powder oh how things can change. The first part of my trip was to meet up with Sweetgrass Productions and get in some skiing with them for their project on South America. We met up alright, but the conditions this year in Lenas are appalling. For example, most of the terrain that is accessed right off the Marte lift has been/still is closed, proving to be a very frustrating experience for anyone who knows what they are missing out on. I still had hope though, as did the Sweetgrass crew, because right after my arrival a storm arrived, perfect timing! The moment it went blue we energetically headed out to the backcountry accessed part of Lenas. It was a beautiful day, but the snow was ankle deep. The storm proved to be underwhelming.

Will Cardamone enjoying a run in Cerro Martin.

After a hearty discussion it seemed that the only reasonable thing to do was to head down south to Bariloche, where a storm looked to be a brewing. The next morning we packed our cars (which was an amazing feat in itself as the cars are so small and we have so much gear) and set ablaze on Route 40 with a sense of excitement brought on by the tantalizing thoughts of deep powder. The drive, though long, is absolutely mesmerizing. For example, there are the Andes to the west and volcanoes peppering the whole stretch, and sometimes the Earth seemed as though its landscape was carved into the resemblance of the Moon's. Of course there are tons of cattle, sheep, and goats along the way, but if you pay attention you will also see intriguing creatures such as the flamingo... my eyes were glued to the window the whole time! We made it to Bariloche and the storm is hitting even harder than we anticipated. Over a meter is expected, and it's suppose to storm all week. That will be the next update so stay tuned...
Packed up and leaving Lenas, Bariloche here we come!
 
The stunning sights along the way made for no-brainer pit stops and play time.
 
The Rio Grande
 
The rock up close.
 
An interesting juxtaposition: flamingos in the middle of the Argentine desert.
 

 

Volcanoes can be seen on the entire drive.
 
Just another magnificent sunset in Argentina, seems to be quite the norm down here.

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Thursday, July 29, 2010

River Rafting in Alaska

Going in deep with our guide Brad.
 

During our 2 week trip to Alaska Cody and I decided to break up our bountiful fishing adventures with some river rafting. We headed to 6 Mile Creek and met up with our buddy, Brad Cosgrove, and the NOVA rafting company crew. The river was running high, so high that we hadn't been able to go the week before because it was over the limit. Cody and I were excited to say the least, the more hair-raising the experience the better, no?! But a high river also meant that the water was going to be FRIGID. All that extra water was coming from the hundreds of inches of snow melting off the mountains. Brutal. I sound like a sissy but I'm telling you it was REALLY cold water and as the pictures demonstrate, we were taking a lot of it on. Holy cow we had a blast! There are three canyons that you raft through, and they're loaded with class IV and V rapids. Thanks so much NOVA! The crew were all really friendly and bad ass, which is a great combo in my book for a guided service. If you head to Alaska during the summer and are looking for an adrenaline filled experience go rafting with NOVA. It's totally worth it! CLICK HERE to check them out.

This was another group in the water with us. I don't know them but this picture is worth a thousands words, or maybe just a particular two- OH SHIT!
 
 
There's always another rapid coming up, hence Cody's happy face.
 
 
 

There's nothing quite like front row view when rafting, not that I can see much here.

 

Yeah! The fun never stops!

 

This rapid must have been so good it turned me into a Japanese anime character.

 

 
*Thanks to NOVA for providing these pictures

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Monday, June 07, 2010

BAJA!

Cody surfing Zippers

At the end of the ski season I headed down to San Jose del Cabo, Mexico with Cody for our annual de-thawing surf vacation. This time of year the East Cape of Baja sees a ton of swell, which is a great way to get into sufing shape for the summer real quick like. Not only did we have great surf, wonderfully warm weather and plenty of cervezas to keep us refreshed, we also had a slew of other ski/snowboard buddies in the same area code with the same intentions. It made for a heck of a good time!

 
Oh I'm happy alright- Beach, check. Bikini, check. Beer, check. Relaxing between surf sessions, priceless.
 
Chris Benchetler getting some at La Roca.
 
Pep Fujas writing love letters, as you can see it's a fairly inspiring place.
 
Cody working on impressing his lady. I dig it.
 
Hanging at Las Olas, a place overrun with Squaw locals.
 
Plenty of animals to see in and out of the water.
 
The FUN crew hanging out on the East Cape: Chris, Kimmy Fasani, myself, Cody & Pep

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Friday, June 04, 2010

Squaw Local Arne Backstrom Passes Away

Squaw local, Arne Backstrom, passed away yesterday while skiing in the Cordillera Blanca region of Peru. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Backstrom Family. Arne will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

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Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Snowboard Slopestyle On Track To Be Next Olympic Event | TransWorld Business

Snowboard Slopestyle On Track To Be Next Olympic Event | TransWorld Business � Transworld Business.

Ulrik Badertscher at the US Open. Photo: Nick Hamilton

Ulrik Badertscher at the US Open. Photo: Nick Hamilton

Fresh on the heels of snowboarding’s record shattering viewership at the Vancouver Games, the international ski and snowboard community is coming together next week to push for the inclusion of Slopestyle and Team SBX on the 2014 Olympic billet in Sochi, Russia.

In order to be included in the Olympics, a sport must first be in two world championships overseen by an international governing body (in this case FIS) and representatives from the U.S. Ski And Snowboard Association (USSA), New Zealand, and Canada are all petitioning FIS at it’s biannual congress next week in Turkey to include slopestyle and team SBX in the 2011 World Championships.

“With the FIS meetings in Turkey next week, we are hoping that Slopestyle (and Team Snowboardcross) will be approved as new FIS World Championship events,” says US Snowboarding Program Director Jeremy Forster.

“Adding slopestyle to the Olympics is a major initiative for us,” Forster told TW Biz last season. “Slopestyle needs to be established within the FIS World Cup, then World Championships before it can be considered for Olympic inclusion by the IOC.” The first step of this plan came together in January 2010 when slopestyle was included as part of a Canadian World Cup event.

If FIS approves the proposals from the three nations next week (check out the Congress book for more) to include the disciplines in the 2011 World Championships, then it will be up to the IOC to decide if they will be included in the Olympics, a decision it is expected to make sometime in 2011. With a chance to give Shaun White two nights of prime time coverage in 2014, it seems like a no brainer.

USSA released a new strategic plan last weekend to focus its attention on events that are most likely to make the 2014 Games and it is placing a major focus on slopestyle, while disbanding its Alpine Snowboard Team (did you or anyone you know watch the alpine race events?), leading to speculation that the race disciplines will be axed.

Stay tuned for news from the FIS Congre

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Monday, May 31, 2010

TC fun @ Squaw Valley USA



 
Some late park laps at squaw featuring Will Wesson, Ian Compton, and Nicky B.

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Monday, May 31, 2010

Porters Tent Sale Season is upon us!

That is correct kiddies it is that time of year for us here at Porters. We are kicking it off on June 12th with our warehouse tent sale out at the Truckee airport. So if you live in the area or if you will be up for the weekend make a point to come on over and save some money on great winter gear!

2010TentSaleFlier


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Monday, May 31, 2010

Tailgate Alaska, from the Mind of Iris:

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

Tailgate Alaska

 

I always knew I would make it to Alaska someday to go snowboarding, I never knew how it would happen but now it has.
 
In the fall I wrote down my goals for the year and one of them was to make an Alaska trip happen. In the second half of the winter I got an invitation to compete in the King of The Hill competition in Valdez Alaska, during the snowboard festival Tailgate Alaska. When I got his invite and started talking with one of the event cordinators, Nick Perata, alot about how to make it work, talk with sponsors, and get something together for the trip. I knew I was going to make it, some how and some way even though logistically it totally didn't line up I just knew, deep in this crazy world of mine, that it was going to become an amazing reality.
 
Between finding out and leaving for a trip in Canada, where I'd be on an RV with no cell service and barely internet, I had asked my good friend IJ what he though about having a raffle to raise money to do this competition and trip during a DJ show called Bass Heavy, as soon as I asked he was down for the cause like Santa Clause on Christmas Eve. Thats when I started making moves to plan for my trip and a fundraiser. Trying to plan it with almost no communication having the first night of fundraising go down in less than a week after getting back, and figuring out getting people to go, being the night after Saint Patty's day. There wasn't going to be just one night either, which was awesome but a little bit crunch time style since the second night of raffling was going to be the night before I left!  I was going to raffle off everything I could possibly get from sponsors and every extra thing of value I owned to stoke people out on buying raffle tickets so I could get to Alaska. I raffled off Signal snowboard each night, Smith sunglasses, Bula beanies, gloves, lift tickets, back packs, t-shirts, snowboard lessons, and other randomness that got donated. Long story short, I ended up with just enough money to buy a ticket there and back, and be on a shoe string yet workable budget, borrowing a little bit more from some good buds, to make the trip of a life time happen. At this point in my life, I was so broke that it was beyond worrying about, a place commen to the crowd I roll in but once I was in Alaska, it all was worth it, and at that time, nothing else in the whole world even mattered. I knew it all would work out, no matter what, cause it already did and there I was, on the trip of my life, exactly where I was supposed to be, in Alaska.
 
For 2 1/2 weeks straight not a day went by that I wasn't so obviously stoked to be in Alaska, everything could've went wrong and I don't think it would've phased me. I caught a ride with some friends from Anchorage over to Valdez to stay the night in a hotel then the next day we went up to Thompson Pass. I scored a spot in a wall tent, set up my zone and hung out, it was a gray day, but there was 2 feet of fresh in the parking lot and I was so over stimulated with all the cool folk and new friends to hang out with that I didn't even have time to notice you couldn't tell where the mountains stopped and the sky started cause it was just all gray. Man, I thought I knew what flat light was, and well, really, it just has a totally different meaning there.
 
The first day it was blue I  was just checking stuff out, stoked but mellow, until I got up to a ridge to hike Berlin wall, thats when up out of my gut came sounds of stoked that I have never even heard come out of me before and I couldn't even stop them from screaming out of me! It was so majestic that not any combonation of words could describe it and not any amount of the best photos could portray it. Wow, remembering that feeling will always remind me that in the mountains are where my heart is and in them will always be home. I was hiking with my friends Ben, Moss and Paul, we were chosing carefully what run to take down, it was hard because our preception is so scewed up here because everything is so much bigger than you think. We decided on this bowl the had two wide chutes surrounding a good sized cliff band, ro sham bo'ed for first drop, Ben won, dropped in, made us all jealous, then Paul went, makin a bunch of sweet carves. Moss and I were left, Moss dropped in and after about four turns we all heard this huge crack and I just saw him go down and start doing a back stroke trying to get out of the avalanche that was heading staright over the cliffs. He was able stay above it and stop himself about 20 feet from launching off who knows how high to the abbyss, and I was just standing at the top, helpless, shaking and screamed when he was ok. He made his way down and now it was my turn. This was the only time I was shaking when I was in Alaska, I hadn't experienced anything like that, I couldn't believe how thankful I was that Moss was ok, I don't even know, or want to know, what it was so close to being. My friends radioed up that it was clear, and that the avy chunder wasn't too bad on the way out, and that I could just drop into where it crowned and that riding the slide path down was the safest choice. A peace of mind came over me after taking some calm deep breathes, and I dropped into my first line in Alaska. After that I decided; there are no warm up laps here, get focused, plan, step into the zone, be on your game, and get on your board and charge. That is how my first day riding in AK started.
 
This day was not only the longest day and best day of riding on this trip but the best day of riding of my whole life, so far!;) after Berlin wall we went to Python bowl and did Python Proper then up to Berlin wall proper all the way through the clit down to base camp, about 3000 or so feet later. Riding these faces and areas made me feel like I was born to be a mural painter and but my whole life had only had small canvases to work on until now, when I could finally express my art in the way my body had been craving since I started.
 
I came to Alaska to make huge fast turns, catch some air and be blowin out of the water. On the day of The King of The Hill it was completely blue, one of the most beautiful days we had up there, and perfect for competition. The conditions of the venue were safe, fun, and some killer spots of good snow, you just had to find it. I had been there for a week once this happened so when I woke up it seemed like a normal day, well, normal for being in Alaska. You could see me milling around camp, doing the morning stuff, getting my gear together, stoppin by RV's to say good morning and see what they were doing for breakfast and the plan for the day, making my own breakfast, stoppin at the porta-potty, double, triple and quadruple checking my pack for everything I'll need and that batteries were good on transceiver, putting on a ton of sunscreen and gettin the stoke on. When we got to the venue I hadn't been checking it out days before or anything just picked my line when we got there. I was debating between a couple but one of them I couldn't quite tell if I would lose a bunch of speed on the windlip or not so I chose the one that had the reasons for why I was here, plenty of room for them too, a little air, to huge fast turns, funneling through a chute then pointing it to bottom. While I was waiting for my turn I got to see Travis Rice do his run from the top, as soon as he launched off the first cornice I knew he was going for the run I was checking out but couldn't quite figure out, and blowing it out of the water, charging. Did one long toeside carve into the windlip and did a huge back seven, stomped. I was gaping out, I just watched my favorite snowboarder in real life and it was even better then I thought, so good. I was stoked I chose another line too cause, someday, yes, I want to ride like him and what he rides but I'm definately not there yet! Before it was my drop, two people had gone down in the area I chose but I wasn't too worried about it because they made too many turns, and I wanted to make about 3, where they had made 6 or 7. I dropped and made my way down, executing my run just how I had planned, dang, it was so good going fast, and again, there are no warm-ups, drop-n-charge! Watching the rest of the competitors was so fun, I think everyone there would agree we just saw the most top level riding in real life that you could even fit into one day, totally timeless, the revival of The King of The Hill.
 

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Friday, May 28, 2010

TC Fun @ Squaw Valley USA

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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Skydiving 1



 

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