The Launch Photo Recap | Snowboarder Mag

The Launch

Snowboarder Magazine’s The Launch event was a breath of fresh air.  For riders earning their stripes the season tends to be congested with contests, organizing bodies, and rules.  While checking in on arrival day the invited congregation let out a harmonious sigh of relief;  the spirit of snowboarding, of freedom and creativity, was sweeping over us, engulfing our souls, and washing our sins.

The stage was set at Snow Summit for four days of ideal southern California ripping.  “Sunny n’ Sick” was easily heard throughout The Launch.  Why wouldn’t it be?  Every day on snow was perfect – the warming sun rays, a gentle breeze, and a light crispness of air that can only be provided by dense pines made The Launch heaven on earth.

– Rider Highlights –

Zeke Oppegaard:  Capita Snowboards, Union Bindings, Volcom Clothing, and Electric Goggles

The man-child Zeke Oppegaard got more play than Heffner in the 70’s.  With an aggressive ability Zeke pushed off fear resting on his shoulders and launched into the forefront of the rider pile.  For a kid who under 13 he sure has a great start to what will become a long career.

Sam Stillman: Interior Plain Project Snowboards

Sam Stillman is the hardest working self promoting rider in the game.  He’s constantly putting in time to get the right angle for the right shot with the right style and it’s paying off.  Slaughtering jibs was second nature and boosting quarterpipes had the people calling out for more.

Brandon Kirkland:  Rome Snowboards, ThirtyTwo Boots, Neff Clothing, Ashbury Goggles

GREASED!  That’s the common theme behind everything Brandon Kirkland does – he greases it.  With a slick and laid back style Brandon was the silent killer of the week.  Roaming amongst the pack Brandon has a tendency to charge forward and do something that takes everyone off-guard.

Walker Murphy: Ride Snowboards, Von Zipper

It’s hard not to watch the complete field of riders and see Walker Murphy’s riding scream out for attention – he rides fast, goes bigger, and puts it all on the line.  While his peers stop to grill dogs for lunch Walker continues to hike and get the shot.  Walker doesn’t bail or washout – he SLAMS and gets back up until he rides away bolts.

Chaney Gilmore: Dinosaurs Will Die Snowboards

Chaney Gilmore, Mr. Birthday Boy himself, blew out the candles, smashed the cake in everyone’s face, and flipped the table just as a devote Dirty Boy should do.   Usually found filming in the street Chaney quickly adjusted his urban assault style to hips and tranny galore.

Repolia Robinson: Nitro Snowboards

If Repolia was a wizard he’d be the greatest of them all – Gandolf.  With hella’ smoke there’s no mirrors in his tricks, just pure magic.  The only thing he knows is going hard, so hard that you can feel the ground shake when he lands.  Repo levels ups and everyone takes notice.

Nick Belbas: Rossignol Snowboards, ThirtyTwo Boots, and Giro Goggles

The all around stand out did it all.  Nick Belbas shines as bright as the southern California sun.  From huge gaps, quarter pipes, rails, and transfers the Big Boss holds his own on everything under the sun.  Nick ripped like a mullet all week – fun and game with a splash of serious business.

Pete Croasdale: Rome Snowboards and ThirtyTwo Boots

Pistol Pete Croasdale is a loaded gun who doesn’t give warning shots.  Quick off the hip Pete aims to kill everything is sight – and he had his sights set on the massive jump at Summit.  With a murderous style Pete was set up with a sunset shoot and Front Double 1080.

Brody Sanderson: K2 Snowboards and ThirtyTwo Boots

Brody definitely put his time in at the Launch.  First finding his rhythm one footed through the rhythm section, then the rails, over the hips, blasting off the jump/ transfer gap, and lastly on the tech quarter pipe transfer feature Brody does it all with a touch of Midwest pride.

Support provided by Oakley

Select images in gallery below | Photos by Matt Guf

2016 Vans Pool Party


Combi Classic

Vans is kicking hard into celebrating 50 years of business.  Is there a better way to show significance within a community than hosting an event?  Maybe, but the the Combi Pool Party definitely defines Vans as a vital organ that helps make the heart of skateboarding beat.



2016 Mammoth Holy Bowly

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Mervin does Holy Bowly 2016

The Mervin crew (Lib Tech, Gnu and Bent Metal) on an epic journey to snowboarding’s mecca, the Holy Bowly! Pack in to a HCSC van, skate sick parks on the way down, pick up homies here and there and then spend a week shredding the world’s most fun set up? Yup!

Starring; Sky Siljeg, Ted Borland, Tucker Andrews, Phil Hansen, Eric Jackson, Alex Lopez, Mikey Swearingen, Brandon Reis, Blake Paul, Jesse Burtner, Max Warbington, Zebbe Landmark, Jacob Krugmire, Sam Hulbert, Chad Fenlon, Jamie Jacobson and Jamie Lynn.

Filmed and edited by Think Thank’s Sean Lucey with additional filming by Garrett Read, Tim Stanford and Tim Zimmerman.

Thanks to Snowboy Productions, Mammoth Mountain, Snowboarder Magazine and Monster Energy. Road trip made possible by High Cascade Snowboard Camp.

Virtual Reality GoPro Omni


GoPro Omni

The GoPro Omni video camera is going to revolutionize how the hobby filmmaker creates content.  This is the tip of the iceberg for VR, and it’s good to know GoPro is leading the way for consumer accessibility.

Rome Snowboards – Beer & Rails Teaser

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Liquid courage. Nerve tonic. Pork chop in a can. Whatever you call it, it’s all the same once it hits your lips: BEER. This adult beverage has been entwined with snowboarding since the dawn of time—cold ones kicked back in the parking-lot, a 12-pack at the spot, or late-night shotguns at a house party.

The Strange Brew boys are no strangers to slugging cold ones. They’ve built their reputation out of Tahoe by thrashing urban environments, traveling by van, and crushing cans all the while. Thousands of miles away across an ocean, Toni Kerkelä has spent his seasons meticulously picking apart street spots and filming hammers on his home turf of Finland. Toni’s built his reputation by putting out multiple video parts every year, full of his crisp style. When you park the Strange Brew van in the U.S. and mash them and Toni together in Finland, you get “Beer & Rails”.

When the wave of fermented grain finally crashed and washed Strange Brew up on the streets of Jyväskylä, Finland, they got a two-week guided session of Toni’s home-town spots. The crew was comprised of Riley Nickerson, Keenan Cawley, Ian Daly, Jasper Tripp, and Toni Kerkelä. With equal parts raw snowboard talent, beer-soaked ambition and an eye for unique lines, the newly-forged crew took it hard to the streets in search of late-night sessions and urban creativity.

Beer & Rails hits taps 8.31.15.

» Rome Snowboards