After leaving Montana I made my way through North Idaho, passing some old family stomping grounds, visiting smoky bars, and being reminded that Affliction sells shirts. The area resorts had shut down earlier than usual, so there was no shredding to be had during this leg, just a long and boring road to travel through Washington and Oregon. At the end of that road, was Hood.
I got as far as Parkdale with a fellow Oregon shred blogger (Hillcrest), and got to stay with some old friends/coworkers from Mt Hood Meadows. The next day at Meadows was super fun, even though visibility was pretty rough and the storm had settled down quite a bit the day before. The snow didn’t look good, but it felt pretty good! It was a bit strange seeing Hood so bare, but in looking at the positive aspects, I was loving the abundance of stumps to bonk. I’ve been on an amazing trip and got some good days in, at awesome places, but that’s not to say that there weren’t things I missed about Hood (at all 3 resorts). One of those things was Shooting Star Ridge. I even managed to get a face shot in the trees, a hot commodity this season.
While riding down to Portland with another good friend and former coworker (whom I coincidentally met through ridesharing), I was reminded of the sheer beauty that our part of Oregon can exhibit. I travel an outrageous amount, and part of traveling (at least in my experience, but if you’re reading a US Outdoor blog I would assume you feel the same) is loving where you call home, and loving the act of returning to it. Passengering down 26 with a road soda in hand, I was blown away by the vibrancy of the imagery surrounding me, which started with lush greenery and gave way to the improved men to women ratio (a big improvement on the 15 to 1 world I’d been living in during recent months).
After barely being in Portland for 36 hours, I was off again. This time to LA for a small film festival (this is a piece I did for it last year). Even though I missed Portland so, I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to travel for free, and booked my return out of SF. Though I’ve been skateboarding every day instead of snowboarding every day, the key elements are the same: travel and friendship. I’m in the city now instead of up in the mountains, but I’m still crashing in precarious places and living what I would call the dream.
Looking back on this trip, I’m reminded of a value that I have known often and hold very dear- The value of travel. My sanity would be lost to me without it. I’ve always been one who’s proud to have friends across multiple states and countries. I would be nothing without the people I surround myself with, and my trip would have sucked without those people. Thanks to all my awesome friends involved, and thanks to US Outdoor, Poler Stuff, Smith Optics, Tubbs Snowshoes, and Lensbaby for supporting me on my journey and helping to ensure that my trip did everything but suck. I may have missed out on some of the resorts and some of the activities I had in my original plan, due to less than average snow, but I had a blast and enjoyed writing about it. All things considered, I’d say 40-50 days on my snowboard and travel through 6 states in under 3 months qualifies as a successful journey. Thanks for reading!