It’s finally here. The mountain has opened. Now is the time to prep for an epic season. The first thing you’re going to do is try to find all of your gear. Which bag has your gloves in them, how about your goggles and base layers. Is your jacket and pants stashed in your pack or are they in the closet. Once you pull out all your gear it’s time to check it out. Do your base layers look good or do they have a blow out? Maybe it’s time to get new ones. Are your gloves in working order? A lot of times the leather on your gloves will dry out. You can recondition them with Hestra Leather Balm or Nikwax Glove Proof . Speaking of Nikwax, you will want to reapply the water repellent coating on your jacket and pants. I use Nikwax TX Direct Spray On. It’s easy to use, just spray it on. It works every time. You will probably need new socks. I don’t know about you but my dryer consumes at least three or four a year. A goggle check is a must. Did you step on them? Are the ventilation holes still protected with foam? Is the lens scratched? By the way, don’t use the squeegee thing on the thumb of your glove to wipe your goggles. It’s bad for your lens. Alway use a chamois or the bag that came with your goggles. I don’t know why they put those things on the thumbs of gloves and mittens. It’s probably collusion with lens companies and glove companies. Oh, and you should probably buy a new beanie. You deserve it.

The next thing you should do is pull out your skis and or snowboard and your boots. Is everything in working order. If not you should bring it down to the shop for possible warranty consideration. The warranty guy is amazing. Go to Amber, she’s the best. She will write you up. Brenden is O.K., but his handwriting sucks. Next you should check your edges with your fingernail. If you feel any burrs you should have them sharpened. If the base of your skis and snowboard is a little white you need a wax. You should probably get a wax anyway. Some wax their boards every time they ride. If you want to do it yourself we have everything you need. You can come on down and have one of our expert technicians look at your board or skis and they can tell you what needs to be done. We can test your ski bindings with our electronic binding tester to make sure they are safe. Yes, electronic binding testers are a thing.

The consensus around the shop is that the most important thing for getting ready for the season is snacks. Jen likes to make her own trail mix. Michael is a die hard Clif Bar guy. Chuck likes beef jerky. Andrew likes Milky Way bars, but he warns the structural integrity is not great, so if you fall you will have a mess. So to err on the side of caution he suggest Snickers. The peanuts shore up the rest of the bar. Now if you have read my other blogs you know I am opposed to Snickers. I just don’t like nuts in my candy. There you have it. Some great tips for the start of the season. Oh, and don’t forget to buy a Sno-park pass.


Winter is rapidly approaching. I can already feel that familiar nip in the air. Thoughts of snow falling and pumpkin spiced lattes. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever had a pumpkin spiced latte. I’m more of a white mocha guy. As the season approaches and the mountain calls here are some new outfits you might want to check out. We’ve got new gear coming in daily.

Strafe is a new and exciting brand that we just started carrying. Daniel is wearing the Strafe Exhibition Jacket with the Strafe North Woods Bib. And to top it off he is sporting a Cole The Stanley Beanie.

And for you ladies, Kayla is decked out all in Volcom from top to bottom. A stylish Volcom Argentina Beanie for the noggin and to keep warm up on the mountain she’s wearing the Volcom Shadow Insulated Jacket. With an air of style and function the Volcom Species Stretch Pants fit great and give her the ease of movement to take deep turns in the powder. Looking good in the lodge, looking good on the hill.

This defiant outfit is totally Volcom. Daniel is sporting the Volcom L Gore-Tex Jacket coupled with the Volcom Roan Bib Overall. To keep his head, neck and face warm with a little incognito camo the Volcom Travelin Hood Thingy is just the ticket.

On the more demure side Kayla is wearing the warm and toasty The North Face Garner Triclimate Jacket with the The North Face Freedom Pant . To round it all out the The North Face Tech Glacier 1/4 Zip is a great moisture wicking baselayer.

Let’s not forget the crumb crunchers. We affectionately call our mannequin model little Jimmy Lipper. We didn’t have any 8 year old employees we could grab for the photo shoot. Nuts to those pesky child labor laws. To keep the cold at bay, but still looking cool little Jimmy is wearing an ensemble of The North Face and Orage. Gone are the days of layers upon layers of clothing to keep warm until you look like Randy, Ralphies little brother in The Christmas Story. I got a Red Rider B.B. Gun for Christmas when I was ten and never shot my eye out. I did shoot my friend D.J. in the head during the great B.B. gun war of 1992 when we were kids. But that’s another story. Back to Jimmy. He is wearing an Orage Kids Comox Jacket with the Orage Tarzo Pants. Underneath it all is the The North Face Glacier 1/4 Zip Fleece. And on top of his silver little melon is a The North Face Youth Bones Beanie. Winter is almost here. So come on down and do a little shopping. You won’t regret it.

Radventure RADtrospective: Have Board, Will Travel

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!

2014 Burton Mountain Festival

Head up to Mt. Hood Meadows and check out the 2014 Burton Mountain Festival! It takes place Saturday through Monday ( January 18-20 ), you don’t want to miss this. There will be a Burton Demo Tour where you can check out and try the latest equipment by Burton for free! You can test out the goods each day from 9am to 1pm. For this you will need your ID and a credit card, if you are under 18 you will need to have a liability release waiver signed by a guardian or adult.

Don’t hesitate to bring the little ones along, the instructors will be running a Riglet that can keep the kids entertained on a course made for fun.

There will be a chance to win some prizes in the Burton Know contest just as long as you are ready to show off your slope skills.  Hope to see you all this weekend!

Mt. Hood Meadows Winter Brew Fest

Looking for something to do this Saturday? The Brew 105.9 and The Oregonian present to you the Winter Brew Fest of 2013!  Taking place on December 7th from 12:00pm to 5:00 pm at Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort.  Taste the best Micro brews that the Pacific NW has to offer! Sample beers from Laurelwood, Double Mountain, Full Sail, Widmer, Everybody’s Brewing, Mt. Hood Winery, Naked Winery and Hood River Cider Works.

You must be 21 or older to attend this event and the entry fee is $12 which includes a glass beer mug and 4 chits ( extra 3pz samples can be purchased for $1 ).  World’s Finest will also be performing from the hours of 1pm to 5pm.

For those of you interested in taking a bus to the Brew Fest, there will be one leaving from the Hood River News parking lot at 10am that morning. The total cost for round trip transportation is $10 and space is limited so seats are available for those who show up in time!

Sno-Kona Pond Skim Competition, 4-28-2012

It is time to dust off your water wings and pond scum snorkel set as we approach the 2012 Sno-Kona Pond Skim hosted by Mt. Hood Meadows. This annual tradition sends land based humans cascading down a snowy runway in hopes that they will generate enough speed and have enough control to cross the pond without falling in the drink. Of course it is not just making it across that earns you points.

Criteria for this sacred event is based on a three tier scale: Making it across; Costume; and Style/Crowd response. So if you’re planning on entering, don’t forget to dress in your “Sunday best” and by that I mean the most outlandish thing you can think of (as you will be judged on appearance). However shallow that might sound it helps to ease the tension when you catch an edge and belly flop mid pond dressed as a transsexual Batman or a giant burrito or Betty Boop or, well you get the idea. It is like that one guy said in the movie ‘Gladiator’ “… win the crowd, and you’ll win your freedom.” In this case it is win a grand prize trip for two to Hawaii!

Registration for the event concludes on the 26th or after 100 participants have signed up. To sign up and learn more please visit Ski Hood. GOOD LUCK!