Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Smith Optics & Jackson Hole - Testing Grounds Giveaway

It must have been about 30 years ago when Howard Entin moved to Jackson Hole, WY to become a ski bum for a winter. He and 3 others lived in the Elk Refuge Inn just north of Jackson. Back then, the Tram was “new.” It was that winter, when he brought his skiing to another level. He passed the ultimate test by dropping into Corbet’s Couloir. As a result of his early experiences in the Tetons, Howard proclaims, “Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is my favorite place to ski and ride in North America.” It’s funny because he also said, “Smith is my favorite goggle/sunglasses company.” We didn’t even pay him to make these statements.

So, somewhere between skiing Corbet’s and his most recent climbing excursions throughout Utah and Colorado with his son Jake (pictured), Howard found the time to become a psychiatrist. He and the family now live in the Denver, CO area., JHMR, & Smith Optics are excited to send Howard and his son Jake to Jackson for an all-expense paid ski trip. How did Howard get so lucky? He simply entered our JHMR and Smith sweepstakes and came out on top. In addition, Smith is outfitting the two of them in all goggles, glasses, and logowear. It will be a bittersweet moment for Howard because he still uses his original Smith goggles from the year 1984, around the time when Jake was born. But the times are a changing and he is ready to embrace this change. These two are super stoked for their trip to Wyoming, and hopefully they will report back to us with some great stories.


Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Canis Lupus at The Canyons

I ran into my buddy Dave [who works at The Canyons] yesterday at the store and after catching up we chatted about last Saturday's Canis Lupus Challenge at The Canyons, sponsored by Quiksilver. If you've never been down Canis Lupus it's a natural halfpipe that twists, turns and dives down the north side of the Condor lift in serious James Bond fashion.

So Friday, buddy Dave gets a phone call from Rob Kingwell, former US Snowboard team member, multiple world cup/X games winner and all around rippah, and this is how it went down:

Kingwell: I was thinking of driving down (from Jackson, Wyoming) for that Canis Lupis Challenge. Sounds pretty cool, I read it about it today.
Buddy Dave: Yea, the Canis Lupus Challenge is tomorrow.
Kingwell: What are the prizes?
Buddy Dave: $5000 purse (courtesy of Quiksilver) - $2500 to the top boarder, $2500 to the top skier
Kingwell: Sweet, sign me up. I could use a little extra cash. I'll see you in the morning.

So he drove down to Park City, stepped up to the plate and smoked the field with a winning time of 1:18:59, over 3 seconds faster than second place. Just like the old days eh Rob?

On the skier side, Griffin Post, out of Ketchum, Idaho won top prize making his drive home equally as enjoyable. What's the deal with these out of state winners? Utah represent!?

Sorry, no pics of Kingwell.

Images courtesy of The Canyons - photos by Dan Campbell-Lloyd


How Does One Catch an Avalanche on Film?

From our friends at The Piton comes this little "How To" gem for everyone that's ever wanted to know how all those video images of an avalanche coming down the slope to envelope the camera come about.

I'll give you a secret, it's not by accident.

Basic steps from cinematographer Steve Kroschel.

Oh yea, PLEASE do not try this in a slide path near you.


Friday, February 17, 2006

Goat Sightings

The Goat has been traveling the globe and climbing both ice and rock as of late. In conjunction with the "Show Us Your Goat" sticker contest I had wanted to post one Goat image each week and send the winner a Nalgene water bottle but I've been slacking.

So here they are - 4 weeks worth of Goat sticker photos that I chose, by no particular scientific method, to be a weekly winner. Enjoy!

If you haven't submitted a goat sticker image, you still have 11 days until the end of the contest.

Photo Shot by: Rachel Nelson
Photo Location: McAffe's Knob, Catawba VA
About the photo: We were getting in some hiking training for our trip to Peru this summer and thought we'd try and take a few pictures with the goat to get some gear for our trip.

Photo Shot by:
Samuel Huber
Photo Location: Sydney, Australia - Opera House/Harbor Bridge
About the photo: I took this picture at the end of my favorite training run in Sydney. A park loop along the sea wall from the Domain, through the Royal Botanical Gardens, and concludes with a run up the Opera House steps ("Rocky-style"). This observation scope looked like it needed a little spice in its life, so I padded it with the Backcountry Goat.

Photo Shot by: Kim Goldak
Photo Location: Pushkar, India, Asia
About the photo: This photo was taken in a town called Pushkar (Rajasthan) in India. The area is primarily desert. The camel guide took this picture for me. What could be more outdoor than a camel ride in the desert?

Photo Shot by:
Eric D'Orvilliers
Photo Location: Mount Massive, Colorado
About the photo: This shot is from a snowshoeing trip along the Colorado Trail during January. My friend and I started to hiking up Mount Massive (14,421 ft.) as a day trip. Although we were not able to summit, we did end up on this rock out crop with great views. It was a nice spot to stop for lunch.


Tuesday, February 14, 2006

And you thought your hybrid was cutting edge.

Never before has the Yugo appealed to such a broad audience as this one in Siberia does. I'm not sure if it was spurred by an accumulation of late night boredom or an effort to increase it's efficiency. Either way, it's out there.

The Full Story - from


Monday, February 13, 2006

VF Corp has a record Q4 on the surge from The North Face

It seems that more people are interested in schleping their school books around in a Jansport and wearing stuff from The North Face than they are in sporting the newest from Tommy or Wrangler. Yep, VF Corp reported a record revenues which increased 4% to a record $1.65 billion from $1.58 billion.

The growth is being fueled by an increase in their Outdoor and Sportswear division, which include brands like The North Face, Vans, and Nautica.

Said Mackey J. McDonald, chairman and chief executive officer:
Our Outdoor coalition had another excellent quarter and continues to be the primary driver of our Company's top line growth. Total revenues increased 23% to $343.9 million in the quarter from $279.9 million in last year's period, driven by growth across nearly all our Outdoor brands. The North Face® brand continued to grow revenues in excess of 20% both in the U.S. and internationally. Revenues of our Vans® brand also rose...
20%?!? It seems most surprising to outdoor junkies that the floundering and misdirected North Face of the mid 90's has once again risen to the occasion under direction and financial backing of VF to rule the outdoor world as it did in the 80's as THE premier brand. Different this time is the popularity among the "recreational" crowd and the urban crowd - certainly in thanks to the reputation developed early in the brand's lifetime. Despite the image it may portray to a "core" outdoor brand, having key market segments like the urban or casual recreationalist are essential to long term stability and growth for TNF and ultimately VP Corp.

It's the adventure and forays of thier premier athletes that help bring the image of core to the brand. Along with this I still think they make some solid offerings for us "hardcore" outdoor freaks (read - weekend warriors) that will continue to control pocket books of consumers across the boards.


Thursday, February 02, 2006

Ski industry veteran marries Tony Hawk

We were excited to hear the recent news of the marriage between our friend and longtime action sports industry veteran Lhotse Merriam and Tony Hawk. Lhotse was pivotal in starting and running the IFSA - International Free Skiers Association after which she went on to event management and PR related endeavors.

Congratulations Lhotse! Tony is one lucky guy.


Wednesday, February 01, 2006

The Last Desert - Lisanne Dorian wins!

Lisanne Dorian, adventure racing athlete has won the Last Desert Race, a 100 mile race in the driest place on earth - antarctica .

Racing through -30 degree F wind chill and 60 mph winds Lisanne has completed her fourth desert race by winning first place in the women's division.

From the Racing the Planet website it said:
Lisanne Dorian placed first in the women´s division. The rest continued through the night enduring the blinding snow and wind. The course was closed for 4 hours to wait for daybreak at 3am. All have completed now except for three.
Ever wondered what this type of athlete thinks about during a 100 mile race across the Antarctic or a 250 mile race in the Gobi Desert? Check out the athlete Q&A.

You're one tough chica Lisanne!