Thursday, February 27, 2014


Holy POWDER! After getting an incredibly slow start to the season here in the Pacific Northwest, Mt. Baker and the surrounding area finally got the storm it had been waiting for. We received over one hundred inches in 10 days and it was some of the lightest snow I have ever skied! Luckily for me I have a few days off of school, and I may have played a little hooky too. After having doubted this season, my perspective was totally changed in a the matter of seconds into my first run.

These photos are from one week ago when Adam Robert and I got out for my deepest POW day of the season at that point.


I checked my Facebook late the following evening and had a message from Brandon Clabaugh. After three years of anticipation, I got the word that the boys were gonna build up and send the Mt. Baker road gap. My stoke level blew its cap and I think I had a slight erection.

I woke up early the next morning and was on the road by 7am. Driving to the mountain that morning I could feel something in the air. Today will be a good day.

I arrived at the mountain and was greeted with big smiles and daps from my friends Jackson Blackburn, Brandon Clabaugh, Ed Bear and Kevin Curran. They were just as amped as I.

We made it to the site where the gap is usually built and decided to build it in a different spot. When airborne, you have to clear a 40 foot gap to the landing and you are falling about 40 feet down. At your peak in midair you are about 50 feet off above the road.

It took us about an hour to build the jump up to standard. It was a well groomed launchpad, ready for takeoff. As the rest of the crew got ready to hit the jump I ran down to the road and set up for some photos.

Jackson Blackburn launched the first hit. Needless to say he sparked the session off right with a massive, laid out backflip. After that it was on! (I am holding the best images, I'm trying to get some of them published!)

Drew Swisher


Jackson "Squirrel" Blackburn

Young Squirrel
Road Gap Stoke

Campa Kev Cheesin

Brandon Clabaugh

Yours truly

Swisher and Kev

Kevin Curran

Thursday, February 20, 2014


Happy - /ˈhapē/ - Feeling or showing pleasure or contentment

What makes you happy? What is it that you love to do? Have you been doing it recently? If not, how do you feel? If so, how do you feel?

I think the key to happiness is doing what you love, and doing it often; because if your not doing what you love, then what are doing at all? Sometimes there is work to be done or obligations that need to be fulfilled, but everyone needs to make time for doing what they love. Otherwise, life isn't much fun.

Since I didn't get a seasons pass this year, skiing has not been as easy. I still get into the backcountry fairly often, but I can't ski when the avalanche danger is high. It becomes hard when all of my roommates and friends go to ski inbounds and I am left back at home. My head starts going haywire, I get stressed out and I start letting little things get to me.

Luckily, skiing isn't the only thing I love to do. Photographing people doing what THEY love to do is something that I love to do. So when the skiing was bad this weekend and I couldn't go inbounds i followed some of my friends to document them in the midst of their passions.


Bikes are sick. They are a self propelled, mechanized horse that can take you for a delightful stroll by the beach or send you down a braided goat trail, dodging boulders and branches at 30 miles per hour.

Fatigued legs push and pull, steadily progressing our steel steeds upward for another surge of adrenaline. Heavy breathing (mostly from me) can be heard as we finish the last steep uphill before the trailhead. High fives go around as Kristian Duft, Spencer Pikel and I get ready to for the fluid motion of the descent. We duck into the trees and sweep around a corner, tires gripping the frozen ground.

I also went out biking this weekend to help out Cody North with a sponsorship video. Video is for sure my weak point when it comes to media production, so I have been trying to practice it more.

Fly Fishing

10, 2, 10, 2. If you can imagine the full rotation of your arm to the side of your body as a clock, 10 and 2 are the ideal spots to start and stop your cast. This is what my dad taught me. Don't be jarring with your casting, be patient and fluid.

Fly fishing is an art. Casting a fly line probably looks like another boring sport that old men like to do. But, it is far from that. It is a chance to get intimate with other beings and your surroundings. It slows down time.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Art of Crashing

Kkkkssshhhh…. A tree branch catches your tips. Your lofty, joyous airtime is quickly becoming a miserable excursion back towards earth. Impact. Cue exploding cloud of snow. Tomahawk. White, blue, white, blue goes your vision as you ragdoll down the slope. Stillness. Time to assess the damages.

The art of crashing. It isn’t exactly an enjoyable part of progression, but it is a natural part of progression. If you’re not crashing then you’re not trying hard enough.

“A crash is like taking a test or an exam,” Kevin Curran, (aka Camper Kev in the Newschoolers community) said, “you might be worried about the outcome but once its over, you look back and you’re like, that exam wasn’t as bad i thought it was going to be."

Every crash teaches a lesson that can be applied during your next line or takeoff. A little less speed. Be more forward on the landing. Don’t drink so many whiskey gingers the night before…. If you’re smart about how you ski, you will take the time to reflect upon what may have gone wrong. That is where the art of crashing lies.

Luckily for us, skiers have a more forgiving surface to dig their face into than a lot of other extreme sports. That isn’t going to say that rails, ice, rocks and trees don’t hurt just as bad as concrete, but usually we have a little bit of cushion to our falls.

That being said, skier are able to repeatedly crash without causing serious injury to themselves. Usually they can shake it off, get back up and ski another day.

“Crashing is something that we all try not to do, but it is inevitable,” Curran stated. Unless you’re Tom Wallisch or a freak of nature, you are going to fall.

Falling is not often a graceful thing. It can lead to embarrassment, injury and some soggy gear. But, some people are masters of falling. Given the abundace of skier and skill levels these days, people are going down frequently.

There are three different categories of crashers that are out and about on the slopes, make sure you keep your eyes peeled for them in a gallery near you.

The Gapers

                  Watch out. They are coming for you. The gapers are well apt at catching an edge and savagely slamming their dome-piece on some freshly groomed corduroy. These snow swallowing aficionados have the ability to lose all control of motor functions and take out innocent bystanders at any moment. Most importantly, you have to keep a keen eye on anyone riding on skis over 200cm. Those become heat seeking missiles when put in the wrong hand.  

The Flailers

                  The i’m good enough to go really fast, but not good enough to stop skiers.’ The ones that you see going penguin sliding face first down the busiest run on the mountain. They can now even be found in the backcountry, snowshoeing up the skin track or finding slide paths to walk up. They have even been seen going orbital off of side hits, making sure to swipe the feet out from under their friends upon re-entering the stratosphere.

The Avant-Garde

                  These are the experienced shit eaters. These are the ones you enjoy watching without being in fear for your life. They will send themselves off of massive cliffs, ragdoll head over heals four times, walk back up the hill, collect their gear and ride off like nothing happened. These Picassos and Van Goghs are able to dip their tips, frontflip out and come out drinking a PBR. Some even plan on jibbing trees in midair which can turn out to be quite the entertaining debacle

This is what happens when I get in front of the lens