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45 Search Results for ""mike douglas""

  • Call it a Comeback: The Return Call it a Comeback: The Return of George Rodney

    • From: TetonGravityResearch
    • Description:


      Words by Greg Fitzsimmons; photos by Jesse Hoffman (http://instagram.com/jessejhoffman)

      It was August of last summer, and we were down in Chile at the Hotel Portillo. An afternoon sun was just about to duck behind the Andes, meaning it was après time for most. The iconic hot tub overlooking the Laguna del Inca was packed. I was on the sun deck wearing flip-flops and holding an Escudo, standing next to a tripod pointed up toward the looker’s right side of the lake. More than 3,000 feet above the hotel was a skintrack—two kick-turns climbed up from a scree field, and then a long traverse track. The horizontal line stopped atop a visually arresting line that would have any skier frothing. At the end of the traverse stood 19-year-old George Rodney, former Junior Freeskiing World Tour Champion.


      Directly beneath the traverse sat an untouched powder field that narrowed into a chute the width of two Chilean condors’ wingspans. The tight choke marked the entrance into a rock-walled couloir before opening up for a few hundred feet and then once again tightening into a second choke. From top to bottom, this was the type of line that skiers like Rodney gravitate towards. And, after an entire day of bootpacking up couloirs, spinning off windlips, boosting natural terrain features, and flipping off booters, George Rodney opted to cap it all off by skinning to the top of it.

      Skins off, locked down into ski mode, and clicked into his bindings, Rodney counted himself down. “Dropping in 10, 9, 8…” crackled over the radio, and the photographer I was standing next to—Jesse Hoffman—focused the lens on Rodney. Then, with the entire hot tub and a now-packed Sundeck watching his descent, the kid proceeded to absolutely lace the shit out of the line. Three huge GS-turns made quick work of the hanging powder field, a high-speed straight-line into the choke without an ounce of hesitation followed, one turn after the rock walls to dump a little speed before finding a hip transfer to air into the second choke, and a few railed turns in the exit apron. Rodney flashed the line, greased it in less than a minute. He slid onto the frozen peninsula on the banks of the Inca Lake’s ancient waters, and claimed it. The hottub cheered, we were in awe, and Daron Rahlves spoke up over the radio from his vantage point on the opposite side of the lake. “Hell yeah, Rodney! That’s how you ski,” said the Hahnekamm legend turned big-mountain star. Not many 19-year-olds garner hoots and hollers from Rahlves, but Rodney did. 


      After standing on top of the overall JFWT podium in 2012, we took notice and included George Rodney in a piece about 10 Noteworthy Skiers on the Rise in May of 2012. The kid was about to transition from the junior tour to compete against the grownups, and Rodney was poised to make a splash in big-mountain competitive skiing. 

      “I was so stoked coming off that season,” remembers Rodney. “I was committed to training my ass off all summer in the gym and starting the first semester of my freshman year at ‘the U.’ I was working at BD, going to school, and had my mind set on going to the FWT. I was working out every day, going to the tramps and Snowgression to get my air game down because that was the missing piece with my racing background. All I was doing that summer was working my ass off.”

      Rodney was busy. Studying engineering at the University of Utah, working with the Quality Assurance Engineers at Black Diamond batch testing new up-and-coming products like climbing equipment, cams, shovels, and probes, and interning with the ski developers at BD, hand-tuning the entire demo fleet and testing new skis and prototypes. “Every day it was gym, school, work, tramps, yoga, and bouldering,” he says.

      Then, on September 13 as the SLC temps were changing and the upcoming winter was starting to become palpable, things changed for George Rodney. He had a 10-punch card to Utah’s insanely sweet tramp park, Snogression, and used his tenth punch to train that day. At the end of a two-hour jump session, Rodney did a Superman Frontflip—something he had done thousands of times before—and was going from the trampoline to the pad, but landed awkwardly. “I blew up my leg,” he says. “Tore my ACL totally and part of my meniscus, and we later figured out I collapsed part of my foot, too. I was sitting partially on the tramp and partially on the pad screaming, ‘No! No! No!’ I kept trying to use the yoga mind, telling myself ‘you’re fine, it’s just September and you have months to come back.’” 

      The next year was a battle for Rodney. He went in for ACL surgery—something a lot of skiers can relate to—but the doctors at Rosenberg, Cooley, Metcalf Orthopedic Clinic in Park City had a feeling it was more than just a knee injury. “My leg was shaved, needles were stuck in me, and I was right about to go under when Dr. Cooley walks in and says that foot and ankle specialist Dr. Beals had some free time and was going to take a look at my foot,” says Rodney.

      “I signed a form, they put me under, did some tests on my foot that I didn’t want to be awake for, and were going to operate if they found what was wrong with my foot. I woke up a few hours later with a new ACL and bolts in my foot. That was about a month after the injury so they had to go in and re-break bones in my foot to fix the Lisfranc Fracture [collapsed arch] they found .”

      The road to recovery was long, a process tons of devoted skiers are familiar with. Normally, athletes can start working back soon after surgery, but it was a month of waiting for his foot to heel and doing what he could to rehab before Rodney could get into the physical therapy for his knee. But, he put his work ethic and “yoga mind” into action as soon as possible. 

      Did he ever question skiing? “Fuck no!” Rodney emphatically answers. “I’d be in PT doing my stuff drenched in sweat, about to throw up, doing the little things I could to rehab as hard as possible. I’d bring my iPhone to PT to watch POV edits. I probably watched the Candide Kamera films hundreds of times. I was totally focused on skiing, it was actually driving me a little crazy.”  

      After months of PT, crutches, and work, Rodney managed to get about 15 days of one-footed skiing in last spring at Alta/Snowbird, sliding around on his good leg, smiling and laughing, throwing shakas, and stoked to be back on snow. “As soon as I could walk I went skiing on one leg,” he says.

      Back on two feet and feeling strong, George Rodney headed down to Portillo for Chris Davenport’s Ski with the Superstars Camp last August. And, Rodney definitely skied with the stars. He’d sneak away to bag a couloir with Rahlves, hit windlips with Mike Douglas, blast hidden stashes with Dav, arch turns with Ingrid Backstrom and Wendy Fisher, and ski long lines that had the entire hotel cheering during happy hour. “It was the best ski trip I’ve ever been on,” he says. George Rodney turned heads at the camp, with an abundance of stoke and humility, sans an ounce of ego. 


      Now, he’s feeling fully recovered and stronger than he was pre- injury. It was a long process, but George Rodney is finally back. So what’s that mean? “I’m 100-percent focused on skiing and competing,” he says. “This year I’ll be filming with my buddy Noah Franklin who runs Thunderous Films. But, The ultimate goal is to qualify for the Freeride World Tour. I’ll be competing in all of the four-star Freeride World Tour Qualifiers in North America.” 

      So, just like we said in May 2012, take note of George Rodney—after all, he just podiumed at the Crested Butte Freeride World Qualifier this weekend. Rodney’s worked hard to battle back, and now he’s ready to rage.

    • Blog post
    • 2 months ago
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  • The History of Ski Filmmaking The History of Ski Filmmaking - The Rise by The North Face

    • From: TetonGravityResearch
    • Description:


      The North Face has partnered with Teton Gravity Research, Sherpas Cinema, Stept Productions, and Mountain Sports International to create a new 13-episode series about the history and culture of freeskiing.

      In this episode JP Auclair, Jeff Schmuck, Mike Douglas, and Tom Wallisch describe the history of ski movies.

    • Blog post
    • 3 months ago
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  • Return to Mica - Salomon Frees Return to Mica - Salomon Freeski TV S7 E01

    • From: TetonGravityResearch
    • Description:

      The last time we visited Mica Heliskiing, it turned out to be one of the best powder skiing trips we've ever experienced. Mike Douglas, Mark Abma, & Chris Rubens return to Mica to see if the magic is still there!

    • Blog post
    • 6 months ago
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  • Whistler Blackcomb Snow Ready Whistler Blackcomb Snow Ready - October 3, 2013!

    • From: TetonGravityResearch
    • Description:

      Incredible early season snow fall allowed Whistler Blackcomb athletes Mike Douglas, Eric Hjorleifson, and Annie Boulanger, and lucky #WBFirstTracks contest winner Jeremy Bekken (aka Jer Buck) to head up Blackcomb Mountain with Whistler Heli Skiing and enjoy some unreal snow conditions. Along with the amazing powder turns, the skiers and riders got a great aerial sneak peek of the new Crystal Ridge Express Chair lift construction, which is scheduled to open December 7th. Whistler Blackcomb's official opening day is set for November 28th, but stay tuned.

    • Blog post
    • 6 months ago
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  • Glacier Express - Director's C Glacier Express - Director's Cut - Salomon Freeski TV

    • From: salomonfreeski
    • Description:

      This the extended version of the Salomon Freeski TV Season 5 episode - Glacier Express. Until now it has only been seen at film festivals. The 'Good Times' crew rides again. This time Kaj Zackrisson and Mike Douglas ski Switzerland using only the train to get around. In a challenging season in the Alps, the boys do a pretty good job of finding a lot of good powder.

      Watch Salomon Videos


    • 1 year ago
    • Views: 98
  • Not Another GoPro Edit - Salom Not Another GoPro Edit - Salomon Freeski TV S6 E11

    • From: salomonfreeski
    • Description:

      A new GoPro edit is uploaded to the internet every 3.57 seconds, but trust us when we tell you, this is not just another GoPro edit. Featuring the skiing of: Mark Abma, Kaj Zackrisson, Cody Townsend, Chris Rubens, Alexi Godbout, Mike Douglas, Tommy Ellingson, AJ Kemppainen, Vincent Gagnier, and more.

      'Forgotten' by Mattafix
      Written by Marlon Roudette & Preetesh Hirji
      Courtesy of Ol Media

      Watch More Salomon Freeski TV Videos


    • 1 year ago
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  • Glasnost Ski - Season 6 E04 - Glasnost Ski - Season 6 E04 - Salomon Freeski TV

    • From: salomonfreeski
    • Description:

      The Arkhyz Gosdacha sits in a remote river valley on the north side of Russia's Caucasus Mountains. Built as a mountain retreat for the leaders of the Soviet Union during the Cold War, this lavish estate has played significant role in shaping the history of our modern world. Kaj Zackrisson, Mark Abma, and Mike Douglas discover it also serves as a fine stepping-off point to some of the best, undiscovered heliskiing on the planet.

      Click Here To Watch More Salomon Freeski TV Videos


    • 2 years ago
    • Views: 517
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  • A Taste Of What's To Come - No A Taste Of What's To Come - Nov 8, 2012

    • From: whistlerblackcomb
    • Description:

      Sean Petit, Mike Douglas and Leanne Pelosi headed up to the Blackcomb glacier on Blackcomb Mountain yesterday (November 8) to test out the snow. The combination of alpine snowfalls, snowmaking and cold temperatures made for great snow conditions and turns. Official opening day for Whistler Blackcomb Mountains is scheduled for Thursday, November 22 (or sooner). Stay tuned.

      Click Here To Watch More Whistler Blackcomb Videos


    • 2 years ago
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  • Salomon Freeski TV S6 E02 Quar Salomon Freeski TV S6 E02 Quarter Past Midnight

    • From: salomonfreeski
    • Description:

      Under twinkle of stars and light of moon
      spirits roam the world at night
      emerging cold and frozen
      from shadows left and right
      more richly colored than the day
      they'll play 'til dawn's first light
      set your clocks, the fun begins at quarter past midnight

      Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/salomonfreeski
      Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/salomonfreeski
      Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/user/salomonfreeski/playlist/0PvG1kcYX6NCJt3FQ2zTFX

      Watch More Salomon Freeski TV Videos Here

    • 2 years ago
    • Views: 465
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  • Andreas Fransson and Mike Doug Andreas Fransson and Mike Douglas

    • From: kimhavell
    • Description:
      Andreas Fransson and Mike Douglas
    • 2 years ago
    • Views: 305
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  • Interview: Tempting Fear With Interview: Tempting Fear With Andreas Fransson And Mike Douglas

    • From: kimhavell
    • Description:

      It is a human condition to seek adventure and challenge. The temptation to test both possibilities and limits is strong in some — Swedish ski-mountaineer Andreas Fransson pursues this temptation.

      On Friday, Oct, 5, at the Adventure Film Festival in Boulder, Colo., Mike Douglas and the team at Switchback Entertainment will premiere a film that traces an astounding few years of global ski adventures in Fransson’s life — “Tempting Fear.” It will show at film festivals worldwide and will release online as part of Season 6 of Salomon Freeski TV in 2013.

      Fransson is from the north of Sweden and grew up skiing in the Finnish mountains as well as in Riksgränsen, on the border with Norway at the extreme north of Sweden. From the age of 14 he quit other sports to focus completely on skiing. Finishing school, he did back-to-back seasons in Riksgränsen, the Alps, and Mount Hotham, Australia, earning a living by teaching and guiding skiing. But, it was through the exploration of the Norwegian mountains that he found his passion for steep and wild lines. The next obvious step for him was to move to Chamonix.

      I spoke with Douglas, who is in Whistler, Canada, getting films ready for the ski season as well as with Fransson, who is ticking off a few impressive first descents around the magical towers of Patagonia, a region generally known as an alpinist mecca.

      Andreas Fransson and Mike Douglas
      Andreas Fransson and Mike Douglas. Photo courtesy Switchback Entertainment.

      Part 1: Interview with Mike Douglas

      Teton Gravity Research: You dealt with heavy and serious subject matter in a sport that tempts more than just fear- did it scare you making this film?

      Mike Douglas: Well, luckily for me, Bjarne Sahlen did all the heavy lifting. He was out there filming Andreas in all the crazy spots, so physically, I had the easy job.  After 'The Freedom Chair', I wanted to do something different. I find Andreas' story and thoughts intriguing. Early on I asked myself if this was the type of project I wanted to take on. The decision wasn't easy. I've lost a lot of friends this year and this film provokes the question of whether or not it's all worth it. It's a question I find myself often asking.

      TGR: Why did you feel it was important to tell this story? Why did you decide to do this?

      MD: Andreas couldn't be further away from the stereotypical American view of what an 'extreme skier' is. He's calm, thoughtful, intelligent and doing things that nobody else is. I met him after he joined the Salomon team last winter.  At that point we were looking at doing a 5 minute episode of Salomon Freeski TV about him. After reading his blog, I realized that he shared so much insight and information that it would be impossible to do his story justice in a short format.
      TGR: What was it like working with Andreas? Did you walk away with a better understanding or respect (or not) of ski mountaineering?

      MD: Andreas has been great to work with. He completely put his trust in me. I have full respect for the person he is and what he does, but I don't necessarily agree with all his opinions. After watching the film over and over, I am not really sure what I think. I share a lot of his opinions, but at the same time I think we have different views of risk.

      As a filmmaker, I'm just looking for interesting stories. I find the world of alpinism and ski mountaineering interesting and sometimes harsh.  It makes me laugh how uptight people are about the details of how a climb or descent was done. There are people out there who refuse to give Andreas credit for his first descent of the south face of Denali because he had to down climb some sections to stay alive. The nice thing about Andreas is that he doesn't let the haters get to him. He's very comfortable with who he is and what he does.

      TGR: What do you admire most about Andreas?

      MD: He's a really nice guy! While we were working on the film he came to stay with my family for a week in Whistler.  My wife was impressed with how great of a house-guest he was. She'd have no problem if he wanted to move in with us [haha]. Aside from that, it's his intellect. He's a very smart guy.

      Andreas FranssonAndreas Fransson. Photo courtesy Switchback Entertainment.

      Part 2: Interview with Andreas Fransson

      TGR: Did skiing the South Face of Denali put you on the map? And, was it a turning point or a stepping stone?

      Andreas Fransson: On who’s map? I guess it did in the media, but I had done far more difficult things in Chamonix before I went to Alaska to do something I felt that with my experience I could and should pull off. But of course once I had done this better-known line, things got easier with sponsors and the media.  The funny thing is I had no idea of the impact it would have – I just wanted to ski this line.

      TGR: How do you make decisions about risk and routes?

      AF: I think it is a very open dialogue in the game of mountain decisions. It usually comes down to how much you want something and how much risk you are willing to take. Then you get to put your values on top of that. Whatever you do other people will judge you. I simply want to do things I define as fun that will give me something, maybe wisdom, in return and at the same time stay alive. There is no law book in the mountains, and one has to meet reality at every instant.

      TGR: How did you feel making this film? What do you hope audiences get out of this? Why were you willing to share your journal entries?

      AF: It was fun. I learned so much and I got to work with really talented people like Mike and Bjarne. It gave me a medium through which to share my thoughts with others. I made the decision to be open a few years back and I don’t think it would make sense to say no to doing so with an even bigger audience. I hope that people will enjoy listening. I don’t claim to say anything wise or with value in any other sense than it’s fun to ponder the mysteries of life and existence.

      TGR: What are your hopes and your future in pushing the limits of skiing?

      AF: I can’t promise anyone I will push anything. That’s one of the reasons why I keep quiet about my objectives. I simply don’t know what I will do next year or how my life will change. I feel steep skiing is a very intuitive thing to do. If the mountains, the weather and I are ready at the same moment then something fun can be done, but there might be periods when the combination of these three do not match.

      TGR: What is the significance of temptation and risk to you? What scares you?

      AF: I don’t fear death, but sometimes I fear not being able to realize the dreams I have. The temptation is to realize dreams before one is ready – the risk is we won’t get the perfection in the match.

      TGR: How do you set your mark for risk versus reward?

      AF: My gut feeling does it for me. If something feels worth it, I’ll do it. If it doesn’t, I’ll back off!

      TGR: How do you decide on your next projects? What are your parameters?

      AF: First of all I don’t like to talk about specific projects, but I think there has to be a general challenge involved. It can be difficult, have a rare beauty, be remote, or involve a physical or psychological challenge – any of these can turn on my inspiration.

      TGR: What was it like to work on a film of your life as a skier to date? Does it feel like a risk?

      AF: It’s great in many ways. And, now I can leave that behind me. The risk I see is that I get to talk more and more about skiing and have less and less time to actually do things. But I think it is part of my journey. First I have to have something to later be able to renounce it. It’s easy talking about renouncing things that are not your reality.

      TGR: You are currently doing some exciting descents in Patagonia. Tell us more.

      AF: We have two weeks left here. I got help from my friend Colin Haley, who knows this area well. He pointed out the Whillans ramp for me and said it would be one of the greatest ski descents to do in the world. [Note: Fransson did the first descent of this last week.] Once we are here we assess objectives and then go and try to do them. It’s really hard though. No one has ever tried to do the things we are looking at and there is no information. There are really long approaches. But that’s part of the game rules which makes it all much more interesting and fun.

      TGR: Tell us about a few of the other things going on that help balance your expeditions.

      AF: Yes, I have much to juggle, but I like challenges. I have a wonderful girlfriend with whom I want to spend time. I am working a lot for my sponsors, doing the Swedish mountain guide program, and I’m a ski editor for Epictv.com. I also try to run and climb, and I do yoga every day.

      TGR: What do you admire most about Douglas in getting to know him on this project?

      AF: Professionalism, creativity, the importance of detail and storytelling - it all comes from Mike so you could definitely say I admire him for that. Also, I’m very impressed with how nice, kind and generous of a person he is.

      Tempting Fear Box Cover photo by Daniel Ronnback

    • Blog post
    • 2 years ago
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  • News: Nike iF3 International F News: Nike iF3 International Freeski Film Festival Returns To Montreal On Sept. 12

    • From: media-75233
    • Description:


      The ski season officially kicks off Sept. 12 with the sixth annual International Freeski Film Festival, co-presented by The North Face, Salomon and Oberson. iF3 brings you the best freeski films from across the globe and unites the whole community for five days of movies, art, concerts and activities.

      This year iF3 is moving to the heart of Montreal's cultural district, the Quartier des Spectacles. Returning for another year are signature events such as The North Face Outdoor Screening, the Oberson Autograph Session which will compliment new venues such as the iF3 Outdoor Village and the Monument National‚ the new location for iF3‚ and daily movie screenings. This year iF3 will be giving special props to the ladies of our sport by hosting an all-female movie screening and autograph session, both in memory of the late Sarah Burke.

      The Ultimate Celebration of Skiing

      From on-piste to backcountry to urban meccas, festival attendees have been joining their ski heroes on trips around the world since its inception in 2007. Dubbed the 'Cannes Film Festival of the Ski World' by ESPN Media, iF3 brings professional and amateur producers together to showcase their films and give the public a glimpse into what their season had in store. A multidimensional offering of activities, iF3 draws a diverse crowd of music and visual art lovers, outdoor and travel enthusiasts, and, of course, aspiring pros, current all-star athletes, and future Olympians.

      Spectacular Cinematography

      The festival also rewards film producers and athletes for their hard work, dedication and creativity. From all four corners of the world, production teams and skiers constantly push the limits of the sport and bring the public to places that few have ever laid eyes upon. Last year the festival welcomed members of the newly announced Canadian Olympic slopestyle and halfpipe teams, along with freeski legends such as Kaya Turski, Sean Pettit, Phil Casabon, JP Auclair, Mike Douglas and Tanner Hall‚ just to name a few.

      A few of the many iF3 Movie Awards that were given out in 2011:

      iF3 Best Film presented by SBC Skier: Poor Boyz Productions, The Grand Bizarre‚ USA

      iF3 Best Amateur Film presented by Jay Peak: NSF Productions, Frozen Yogurt, CAN (QC)

      iF3 Best European Film: Field Productions, Being There, NOR

      Uniting the Freeski Community

      "At the outset of iF3, the goal was to create a film festival dedicated to videos showcasing freeskiing, and to export ski culture on many levels. The initiative comes from the need to combine all the elements of freeski culture in one place, says iF3 President Felix Rioux. "Today, no medium better embodies the freeskiing spirit as filmmaking, and this is what iF3 is all about. It is the largest gathering of independent filmmakers, athletes, and festival-goers, bringing together personalities from over 20 different countries. Each year we receive submissions from professional and amateur producers from around the world and aim to represent the infinite angles of the freeski movement; the new school of skiing."

      iF3 is Truly International

      Great news for those of you in South America this summer! We have teamed up with the Sony 'Eye of the Condor 2' to bring you one night of iF3 action on August 3rd in Santiago, Chile. Returning for the third consecutive year is iF3 Europe, taking place September 28th-30th in Annecy, France.

      This year there are three submission categories at iF3: Amateur, Professional, and Web & New Media.

      Submissions are currently open, and you can find all the necessary submission information at:




    • Blog post
    • 2 years ago
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  • Noteworthy: 10 Skiers On The R Noteworthy: 10 Skiers On The Rise

    • From: gregfitzsimmons
    • Description:

      Had this story been written a year ago you might have seen names like Nick Goepper, Carston Oliver, Eliel Hindert, Aidan Sheahan, Logan Pehota, Leo Ahrens, and Johnny Collinson on the list. All of these guys were known at their home mountains for being full-tilt skiers, but burst onto the scene over the last 12 months with insane contest results, video segments, and photo spreads.

      If I were a betting man, the following 10 skiers are the ones that I would put money on. With solid on-snow techniques and even better on-shoulder heads, odds are we’ll be talking about this crew in the near future. So, rather than making you wait, we decided to tell you about them now.  Here are 10 relatively unknown shredders — six guys, four girls, in no particular order — to take note of.

      Mat Jackson Slashes Powder. Photo by Josh AndersonMat Jackson slashes a powder turn in the Tahoe backcountry. Photo by Josh Anderson.

      The Guys:

      1. Mat Jackson
      Home Mountain: Squaw Valley
      Age: 25
      Sponsors: Völkl, Marker, The North Face, Smith Optics and Helmets
      Twitter: @mat1TJackson 

      This Squaw Valley local originally reigns from Crystal Mountain, Washington. As a grom, Jackson banged plastic with the local racing program and tried to keep up with the Backstrom clan — Ingrid, Arne, and Ralph — that were a few years older than he.

      At 25, Mat Jackson is older than most of the names that follow, but his consistent skiing and patience with the industry are two attributes that are starting to pay off.

      “We love Mat,” says Völkl/Marker Team Manager Chris Adams . “You’ve got to wait your turn and Mat’s waited for his opportunities while skiing great all of the time. His skiing is fairly technical, big-mountain while still having the backcountry jib thing happening.”

      “I definitely think that there’s a process to the ski industry that you have to embrace and be a part of,” says Mat Jackson. “I always wanted my skiing to speak for itself, for my skiing to be the vessel that took me places. My patience has paid off a ton, because I’ve had a lot of amazing opportunities come along and it’s awesome to be a part of that. I went to Japan in January filming with TwoPlank Productions. We had 10 days of perfect snow. The movie will drop this coming fall.”

      Colston VB spins off a cliff in British Columbia. Photo by Dave Heath.Colston VB spins off a cliff in British Columbia. Photo by Dave Heath.

      2. Colston VB
      Home Mountain: Red Mountain Resort and Whistler Blackcomb
      Age: 20
      Sponsors: Salomon

      When the “godfather of freeskiing” vouches for someone we need to listen, and Mike Douglas only had good things to say about Colston VB.

      “Colston’s a good skier and a good kid,” says Douglas. “He’s super keen and has a good attitude. I think that if he keeps on skiing and pounding he’s going to do well… He’s a confident skier and Colston is always skiing with a smile on his face — which is the best part.”

      Having grown up skiing Red Mountain in British Columbia, Colston VB is now residing in Whistler. Whether he’s sled skiing in the Whistler backcountry, working in front of a camera lens, or freeskiing with his crew, Colston’s style and creativity are undeniable.

      “This season I got to really push myself and ski the biggest high-alpine lines, hit the biggest drops, and do the biggest tricks I ever have,” says Colston. “Filming video is a high priority for me right now, because I like how you have to keep it together and be on-point the entire time, not just for one frame.”

      Gerorge Rodney's 2011-'12 season edit.

      3. George Rodney
      Home Mountain: Aspen and Alta/Snowbird
      Age: 19
      Sponsors: Völkl, Marker, Dalbello, Smith, Obermeyer

      George Rodney found a home on the podium this year during the Junior Freeskiing Tour en route to winning the overall tour championship. Finishing on the podium at three of the four stops this season, Rodney will immediately be a contender on the Subaru Freeskiing World Tour as he transitions from the junior circuit to the main event this summer in South America.

      “George took that super solid fundamental background with racing and translated it to big-mountain terrain,” says Völkl’s Chris Adams. “He’s a big kid, he skis on the Gotama 198 — which is a big, big stick — and he charges big-mountain stuff.”

      Headed to Salt Lake City to pursue an engineering degree at “the U,” a change of venue isn’t new to Rodney. “If the ski industry could have the equivalent of an ‘army brat,’ George would be one,” says Adams. “His mom has worked in the ski industry forever and George has learned first-hand how it all works by watching his mom.”

      “My mom is an awesome person to help out with everything — from my skiing to school,” says Rodney. “I grew up ski racing in Aspen, and then moved down to Summit County and competed there. After finding out about the Winter Sports School in Park City I transferred there for my junior and senior years. My mom got a job at Obermeyer, so I moved back to Aspen with her after graduating and now I’m headed to Utah.”

      Jake Teuton's 2011-'12 season edit.

      4. Jake Teuton
      Home Mountain: Revelstoke
      Age: 16
      Sponsors: Fortitude Skis, Strafe Outerwear, Revelstoke Mountain Resort, Marker Bindings, Smith Optics, and Planks Clothing
      Twitter: @jrteuton

      Revelstoke Mountain Resort Pro team rider Jake Teuton makes the most of the incredible surroundings he gets to call home; spinning hot laps on the mountain, building backcountry booters to session with friends, and using his local knowledge to snag some of the most eye-popping photos that have come out of Revy in the last season.

      The young gun put together an insane season of skiing, mixing burly lines and massive natural airs with crazy tricks off of man-made features (Teuton added a few dub tricks to his arsenal this year).

      “The highlight from last season would probably be sending the 60-footer, skiing deep powder, or spring park laps with friends,” says Teuton. “I definitely want to do a few competitions next year, but I’m mainly going to focus on filming and travelling as much as I can. Hopefully, I’ll get to see more of BC, ski more places, and get into the backcountry more.”

      5. Grant Howard
      Home Mountain: Alta/Snowbird
      Age: 15
      Sponsors: Salomon, Gordini, Lightpole Clothing

      In 2011, Grant Howard absolutely dominated the 12–14 age group of the Junior Freeskiing World Tour with a couple of first place finishes and the overall title. In 2012, the 15-year-old bumped up to compete in the 15–18 age class, and Howard didn’t miss a beat. Skiing against guys a few years older than he, Howard finished as the overall runner-up (behind George Rodney).

      “This kid lives and breathes skiing,” says Rob Greener, Head Coach of the AltaBird Freeride team. “[Grant’s] father, Sam Howard, was named top 100 skiers by Powder Magazine 10 years ago; so skiing is in his DNA.”

      “Grant is a natural athlete, and his approach to the mountain is very creative,” continues Greener. “Overall, Grant at age 15 is one of the most talented athletes I have worked with in Little Cottonwood Canyon.”

      What’s on-tap for next year? Aside from getting a driver’s license, Grant Howard has his sights set on the overall Junior Freeskiing Tour Championship.

      Matt Evans on the Junior Freeskiing World Tour podium. Photo by Billy Swan/JFTMatt Evans stands on the Junior Freeskiing World Tour podium. Photo by Billy Swan / JFT.

      6. Matt Evans
      Home Mountain: Crested Butte
      Age: 16
      Sponsors: Smith Optics and Helmets, Tecnica/Blizzard, Colorado Freeskier, and Trew Outerwear

      Matt Evans has been riding the tails of his older brother Randy's and the rest of the core CB local crew’s skis for years, and everyone in Crested Butte knows about the young grom that charges. Recently, however, people outside of Crested Butte started to notice.

      “This season was super awesome,” says the 16-year-old Evans. “I got sponsored by Blizzard/Tecnica, and my best result was 3rd. I am hoping to go to South America this summer, and next year I am going to compete in every Junior Freeskiing Tour competition.”

      “Matt's name started to come up a lot this [season]. Ben Wheeler was the first to tell me about how this kid impressed everyone so much at the Squaw stop of the Junior Freeskiing Tour,” remembers Tecnica/Blizzard Team Manager Frank Shine. “The buzz wasn't just about Matt’s skiing, though. I kept hearing about his attitude, big smile, and good-times approach. At Snowbird he brought it all: high speed turns, spins off cliffs, and backflips. Then, he dove face-first into a pile of snow in the finish corral of the venue to get a laugh from his friends."

      Tatum Monod's double backflip video.

      The Girls:

      1. Tatum Monod
      Home Mountain: “Banff will always be my home, but right now I'm based out of Whistler.”
      Age: 20
      Sponsors: Monod Sports, Rossignol, Orage, Soul Poles, Smith, Icebreaker, and The Soze Group
      Twitter: @TatumMonod

      “Like a lot of athletes her age, what stands out most about Tatum right now is her drive and genuine enthusiasm for skiing, and that's always nice to see!” says ski legend JP Auclair. “On top of that she has a good attitude and a great smile. If she stays hungry and humble, we're going to hear lots more about Tatum in the years to come.”

      The first time I saw Tatum Monod ski was in 2011 at Revelstoke for the Canadian Freeskiing Championships. The event was Tatum’s first ever big-mountain competition. Her line choice, aggressive approach, and rock-solid bellied her inexperience, and stood out to everyone watching. The Subaru Freeskiing World Tour judges noticed, too, because Tatum finished on the podium.

      This season ended up being another huge one for the 20-year-old from Banff. Among other things, Tatum stomped a double backflip that had lots of people talking and asking, “Who is that?”

      “I'm stoked to say that last season was my best season yet,” says Monod. “My highlights were my first ever first descent in Bella Coola, shooting with Robin O'Neil and an amazing group of women in Revelstoke, and, to top it all off, an unforgettable trip to Retallack with Orage where I threw my first ever double backflip.”

      Emilia Wint slides a down rail during a Dew Tour event.Emilia Wint slides a rail while competing in the Dew Tour.

      2. Emilia Wint
      Home Mountain: Breckenridge
      Age: 17
      Sponsors: Breckenridge, Volkl, Marker, US Freeskiing

      It was a busy season for Emilia Wint, who skis at Breckenridge when she’s not traveling to compete in Slopestyle events.

      “When I’m in Breck I ski with a team called Hawks Freeride, run by Chris Hawks (1999 X Games Champion). I also ski with Anna Segal and Kerrie Herman a lot,” says Emilia Wint.

      Wint seems destined to follow in the footsteps of the company she keeps at Breckenridge: The Breckenridge shredder logged some serious time atop the Slopestyle podiums in 2012. Third overall on the Dew Tour, Champion at the Aspen Open, third at the US Freeskiing Grand Prix in Mammoth, and second at WSI in Whistler. The highlight, however, of Wint’s incredible season was when she was named to the US Freeskiing Team.

      “She’s hardly under the radar because she had a bit of a breakout season, but 17-year-old park ripper Emila Wint is definitely one to watch,” says Chris Adams from Volkl and Marker. “She skis with a style that not a lot of women park skiers have. We think she’ll take women’s park skiing to a whole new level.”

      With a high school graduation ceremony coming up soon and the Olympics on the horizon, Emilia Wint’s future is bright.

      3. Perry Martin
      Home Mountain: Alta/Snowbird
      Age: 18
      Sponsors: Blizzard/Tecnica
      Twitter: @Pearemartin

      Alta and Snowbird seem to have been a factory that specializes in churning out cool, smart, ripping female skiers recently. Rachael Burks and Angel Collinson are two examples, and on their coattails is 18-year-old Perry Martin.

      “Perry is an incredible athlete; she is a powerful, fast, and graceful skier,” says AltaBird FreeRide Head Coach Rob Greener. “Her technique has allowed her to dominate the IFSA Junior Freeskiing Series.”

      Perry did absolutely dominate the tour, too, winning two stops on the tour and taking third on the other two while amassing a 100+ gap between the runner-up.

      “Perry is really a smart young women, who is sensible and pragmatic.  Her hard work both on and off the hill is what sets her apart from her peers,” says Tecnica/Blizzard Team Manager Frank Shine. “What I love about Perry's skiing is that she’s aggressive and drives straight down the fall line. When you see Perry ski, she is not going to waste any time showing why she is the JFT overall champion. The girls on the Freeskiing World Tour better be ready for a new batch of ladies to arrive and shake things up on the big kid tour—Perry is going be knocking on that door first.”

      Yuki Tsubota rail slideYuki Tsubota slides a rail. Photo by Nadia Samer.

      4. Yuki Tsubota
      Home Mountain: Whistler
      Age: 18
      Sponsors: 4Frnt, The North Face, Skull Candy, Giro, Zett, TMC Freeriderz Pro Shop
      Twitter: @yuki_tsubota

      “Yuki’s getting better all the time, and she’s a cool girl,” says Mike Douglas about the 18-year-old Whistler native Yuki Tsubtoa. “I’ve been watching her for a long time and she’s been working her way up through the freestyle program at Blackcomb. She has a good chance of making it to the Olympics and she’s super fun to watch.”   

      With three consecutive slopestyle wins on The Canadian Shield Tour, Tsubota dominated the pro women’s field and earned the overall title. Then, a third place finish (behind Anna Segal and Emilia Wint who finished in first and second, respectively) at WSI/AFP World Championships during the TELUS Ski & Snowboard Festival in her hometown of Whistler, BC thrust Yuki into the big-time.

      “When we first were introduced to Yuki we thought her jumping was what stood out from everyone,” says Toben Sutherland, Head Coach of the Canadian Slopestyle Team. “But, at WSI this year one of the rail features was pretty burly, a lot of the guys were even talking about how gnarly it was. Yuki had no problem going 450-on which was pretty impressive for anyone to do, let alone a young girl from Whistler that no one had heard of yet.”

      “I think in one word what sticks out about Yuki’s skiing is her determination. She skis pretty hard and if she takes a hit she won’t back down. The Olympic Games are 20 months out and it’s definitely not too late for Yuki. Hopefully, we can roll into the games with her and hopefully she’ll be in the finals and on the podium in Russia.”

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