Wednesday, December 1, 2010

SMS Snowboarding: This Show is On The Road Again

Every year is different in it's own way. Some years are more different than others. This year we left campus at 3:30 am. Earlier than any previous departure. We also made that departure with 6 winter term athletes (another record, and one that bodes well for the future.). Most importantly for me among differences, this year Copper Mtn. is off to it's best winter start in ten or twenty years depending on who you ask. It's the best snow we have hit for a fall camp.
That's six "full" seats!
So we had a tired flight that brought us west quickly and early in the day. 21 riders traveled from Albany and met up with four more at the airport. 7 more were already here. 32 is the biggest fall camp athlete total I've seen. Good snow and big numbers in tough times and we have to be feeling pretty good about being back at the first Halfpipe to open in the united states once again this season. Today I saw recent alumns Joe Mensch and Alex Bayer, as well Global snowboarding stars Ellery Hollingsworth, Lizzy Beerman and Louie Vito. Louie wants an SMS NXTZ if anybody can make that happen...The right place at the right time. I said it last year and that's the last hackneyed expression of tonight's blog.("shred" and related forms are not included, i.e. "shredtastic").
Rolling up from the airport in three trucks and a fifteen passenger van from Denver to Summit County we narrowly avoided heavy snow at Loveland pass while Ian Kirk and the senior's plus Phoebe established themselves in Frisco at the Shaw Family House. Everybody else is checked in at the Telemark Lodge at the Copper Mtn. Resort Lodging. Our digs are perfectly located within walking distance of the main base and we checked in without a hitch. Actually Ross and Scotty checked us in. I was late leaving the airport as Jaime Charron's bag was stolen at the frontier baggage claim area. His first board from a sponsor and some dirtbag made off with it. I hope the karma train is rolling straight downhill before it hits.  After our arrival and unload, we walked over and picked up our seasons passes,  grouped up for our annual Fall Camp Arrival Team Meeting.
The Boss Welcomes Everybody to Copper

This morning's weather report was calling for negative ten in Frisco so I met as many kids as possible at the lobby door this morning and lobbied for more clothes. At the top of the first chair my wax thermometer read 1.1 degrees f. so we got off pretty easy. I was perfectly toasty in my DC puffy jacket and pants, and of course my SMS NXTZ kept my sensitive skin protected. The SWIX was keeping my incredible new LIB TECH Travis Rice sliding fast on the dry cold snow and man am I grateful for all the help we get from ours sponsors...The dev crew suffered only one lost pass and tested the edges of the resort's open terrain for the a.m. runs. The snow is great and we are getting used to the best pace for the team to function. Tanner Pentony and Owen Barth are getting their first big taste of keeping up with a competitive group while new winter term students Jack Griffin, Andy Tousignant, Zander Raith and our only girl Liz Hernandez are bringing their experience and surprising skills to join Mason Geils and the SMS development vets JP McArdle and Scott Swietzer. Yes Liz is the third of the famous Hernandez Family and fully capable of carrying the torch for the female gender in this gang. We had a great first day. We saw the Elite Team and Am team kids everywhere and mixed with them throughout the day. I know the crew was pumped and honored to have Chris Tierney and Mike Perle join us for for our last two or three laps. Pete Cerulo and Dan Landy also shared their stoke with the young bloods after lunch.
The snow is better than last year mid winter here and better than most februarys in most places. Stiff corduroy, dusty edges and a worldclass halfpipe.

 I'm seriously impressed with the new crew and looking forward to telling everybody about each of them but for now, we rode until 2, went food shopping and straight into Woodward at Copper for Tramps and Foam pits. The training is perfect and as promised earlier that is no cliche.
We left Woodward at 6:10 and the kids had time for a wax job and dinner before 8:00 pm study hall. Bed check is 9:30. That's what everyday is going to look like but dryland will get a few days off and/or be light to be sure that proper rest and digestion occur. Stay posted, email and call but the photos and details will get deeper every day here. Thanks again for making this a reality. It is Shredtastic once again. ouch.



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