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Which Mt Hood Pass Should You Buy? – Mt Hood Meadows vs Fusion Pass

To buy a Fusion pass or a Meadows Pass is a question debated every year by Portland residents new and old alike. And there’s no right answer. With three resorts to choose from, and a list of pass options a mile long, the only thing we can definitively say is you definitely should by a pass. With Portland’s dark and gloomy winter looming, this $500ish dollar investment is guaranteed to make your life in the Rose City better, while incentiveizing you to actually go snowboarding. Just trust us on this one – when the snow flies the mountain gets further away (in time, not distance) and all of a sudden getting drunk every night at Reel Em In, skateboarding, going to art shows, watching netflix, etc – sounds way more fun than doing dawn patrol with every other asshole who has their schedule set so they can skip out of work on powder days.

If you’re trying to get max days without splitting/hiking/snowmobiling, there are two main options and we’re tossing a third, more complicated, but comparably priced option, because we’re nice like that.

In bounds at Meadows, lift accessible and every bit as amazing as it looks. 

Meadows Unlimited Pass $549

Summary: For the powder hound who’s concerned with logging vertical and getting wicked extreme, Meadows is preferable. There’s more trees, more steeps, and a network of lifts that move people around fairly quickly, even on the most crowded days.

Pros:
-Steeper steeps and deeper deeps – and with several high speed quads that take you off in every direction, it’s possible to find something worth riding any day of the week, any time of the day.
-Sweet pros, young and old. Wanna see the best freeriding go down infront of your eyes? Post up at the bottom of Rock Gardens on Shooting Star on a deep pow day and watch guys like Colin Langlois, Johnnie Paxson, Ahmon Stamps, Nick Dirks and more send it off features that are at least worthy of a web edit clip!
-Sick trees – Meadows has the monopoly on wide open old growth forests that are easily accessible from the chairlifts with almost no insider knowledge.
-Exchange deals: Get five day tickets at Mt. Baker, three at Steamboat and 25% off at Big White FULL DETAILS
-Legit night riding – There’s a ton of terrain that you can access under the lights (or next to them.)

An average pow day at Meadows. 

Cons:

-Cool guys/Pow Hounds. Don’t be surprised if you get elbowed in the lines or yelled at for scraping the snow off the landing. The Meadows crowd tends to be a bit more aggro when it comes to “getting some.”
It’s further from Portland. Depending on if the state of Oregon can figure out how to fix the recently burned out gorge to prevent the inevitable mudslides in time, there’s a good chance I-84 will be closed for some of the winter. If this happens, the traffic on route 26 will increase and with no other way around, you’re stuck sitting in it for longer to get to Meadows than Timberline. However, if you live in Hood River/East of Mt. Hood, this isn’t an issue and you should disregard this statement.

The view from Ski Bowl is the stuff Mastercard ads are made of. 

Fusion Pass

This pass will get you full access to Timberline and Ski Bowl and for the casual enthusiast living in Portland (or anywhere west of Mt. Hood) this means shorter drive times and the potential for double pow days by hitting Timberline in the morning, Charlie’s Mountain View in the afternoon, and Ski Bowl at night.

This view when you come around the last corner on the Timberline road never gets old – and it’s WAY more impressive IRL. 

Pros: Way mellower. Rumor has it, on a busy day Timberline sells 1/4 of the tickets of Mt. Hood Meadows because of an agreement with the US Forest Service. Even if the parking lot is full, the trails won’t be.
Amazing parks. The Timberline Parks stuff does a great job keeping multiple parks in solid riding shape – a serious feat given the amount of snow that falls through the season on Mt. Hood.
Access to the best terrain not actually on Mt. Hood. Ski bowl lies in the foothills and the lower elevation.
Fewer ag-bros. Yeah, there’s a bit of the park kid vibe if you’re trying to lap the mega booters in the Timberline park, but for the most part, Timberline and Ski Bowl attract more casuals, and the people who ride there are mostly concerned about having fun, not showing off their sick gear. In fact, if you’ve got a boner for vintage gear you’ll probably run into some real gems in the lines at either of these two resorts that people are riding them totally non-ironically.
-Ski Bowl has a rope tow park. Many a mitten has been destroyed and many a movie has been filmed on this short stretch of terrain.
-Awesome mid-mountain bars. Timberline has a hut serving tacos and tall boys and Ski Bowl has a midmountain lodge that’s steeped in history. Or if you’d rather, the Beer stube at the base serves a minty booze hot chocolate that’ll knock you on your ass and the nachos that were the inspiration for Airblaster’s Nacho Mountain.
-Part of the Powder Alliance. This means your Fusion pass not only enables you to not only ride all of its amazing terrain, but also gets four days at places like Mt. Baker, Bogus Basin and more. See the full list here.

Forget to wax or lift up your nose when it dumps at Timberline – this could be you.

Cons:
-Timberline is “flat.” The topograpy of the resort means you will be traversing from lift to lift. When there’s more than 4 inches of snow, you’ll spend as much time digging out as riding. And while there are steep sections if you know where you’re going – your chances of happening across them by pure dumb luck are much slimmer.
-Just because it’s snowing at Timberline, doesn’t mean it is at Ski Bowl. It might be rain, rain and more rain. Hell, there have been years Ski Bowl has barely opened at all. But NOAA and all the other predictors are saying the 2017/18 season is gonna be a good one, so cross those fingers, fools!

Joey Carnera, on a rare sunny day on the Magic Mile. 

THE WILD CARD – A Ski Bowl Night Pass (TBA ~ $149) + a Meadows 5 ($299) or 10-time Pass ($409) + Timberline Spring pass (TBA ~ $99-119)

If you’re an “average boarder” with a 9-5 job, this is the combo that will guarantee you the most riding and the best combo of all of the above. It’s totally doable to work a full day, go home, get your gear and hit Ski Bowl post rush hour for three solid hours of riding. Adding the Meadows 10x pass gives you the option to ditch work any time there’s a day worth ditching for – which let’s be real, if you do more than 10 times, you’re probably gonna get fired anyway. And finally the spring pass gives ya access to Timberline parks when they’re the best. And the best part – you get the spread out the cost throughout the entire season.

 

IN CONCLUSION

Anyway you go, you’re going to be glad you bought a pass – maybe not when your alarm goes off at 5 am on a pow day, but definitely when you’re exploring the nooks and crannies of Mt. Hood with epic pow hitting you in the face with every other turn. And you have until November 5th to decide. Whatever you go for, don’t forget to buy your annual snow park permit – it’s required to park in either lot and the $25 one-time investment will pay for itself the first time you don’t get a citation from the man.

Paradise Island vol.6

Spring time oh spring time. If you haven’t purchased your spring pass to T-Line this spring you are blowing it HELLA HARD! Here let me show you how hard you’re blowing it with this epic face melting video from the Board Over Brains crew.

Video: Cam Weeg & Ben McCabe
Artist: Rick James Song: Give it to me baby
Riders in Order
Andy Glader
Jeremy Nylund
Jordan Phinney
Casey Mitchell
Ben Mccab
Jeff Deforge
Corey Caswell

Paradise Island Vol. 3

In Paradise Vol.3 your brain is going to explode from how much fun the islanders have been having at Ski Bowl and Timberline, Board over brains!

Edit/Video Cameron Weeg
Artist: The Cry Song: Twist of fate
Artist: Michael Sembello Song: Maniac

Riders
Will Bickerstaff
Conor Carroll
Colton Carroll
Frank Day
Casey Mitchell
Andy Glader
Jordan Phinney
Dustin Reed
Kai Polendey
Josh Polendey
Mike Janes
jagger Heckman
Corey Caswell
Andrew Nagel

Story Time with Uncle Russ Russ: The Final Am Stand

Have you ever woken up late for a cross country flight being stared down by an 8ft snake wondering, where what why and how???? Well that’s the way my trip to my last Am contest started.

The night before the flight me and some so-called buddies went out for some dinner, drinks, dancing and some more drinks. Needless to say, as an 18 year old I took it way too far. I woke up a half hour before I was supposed to be on my flight about 25 in the wrong direction from my luggage. I cant really remember the load that I fed the lady at the check in counter but she got me on the next flight outta JFK heading towards Portland with a bunch of random stops in between. To add insult to self-inflicted injury I arrived in Portland with no ride to Hood and no idea where I was staying.

Will Jesus save Russ? Keep reading…

I sat on the curb lit a smoke when I saw a group of people with a few hot teenage girls amongst them who happened to be on a church trip to Mt Hood. “Thank you Jesus, double thank you!” I told a cleaner version of my story and now needed to get to Hood. Like good Christians they offered me a ride and we were off. I think by this time everything I had ingested the night before was starting to wear off and the last thing I wanted was to be a Shiny happy person amongst the Shiny happy people, but I needed the ride and didn’t want to get kicked out in the scary northwest woods! I’d heard stories about the crazy lack of race relations in the woods in the NW and really wanted no part of it. Luckily, I made it to the Huckleberry Inn where I found some of my teammates who just started laughing…

Back in the day you had to do all three events: Slalom, GS and the Halftube. The first day was one of the race events. At this point I was completely over the racing and there was powder. Dale Rehberg was there with the Midwest boys and we decided after one run through the race course that we were going to go freeriding. I remember rippin through some powder field then getting down to the trees and knowing I needed to go left. I was screaming at Dale but he was just have way too much fun and kept going right almost all the way down to Gov’y! That was the last I saw him til later that night. After another run or two I ran into my coach who wasn’t really that pleased with me not taking my runs, but I told her that I really didn’t see much future in racing for myself. She looked at me and giggled and said ok.

This is where the magic happened then, and sometimes still does.

Back at the Huck after riding it was time to PARTAY!!! My boy Rocket was there, a big ass dude who ripped. I hadn’t met him before but birds of a feather! We started drinkin’ and it was on, but the next day was the halfpipe and I really wanted to win. I woke up, or came to, however you wanna say it, and went up to the hill. I looked at the pipe and it was less then average… I don’t think any of the kids today would even drop in. It was maybe a 6ft ditch with highway hits in it. Still, I think I was in the top three going into the finals, Rehberg and Rocket were right there too, so we all went and talked to the people who put on the contest about the quality of the pipe.

Me: Yeah, Hi, I was just wondering if you realized this pipe really is bad.
Contest admin: I don’t know why you’re bitchin’ you are riding it great…
Me: Great is a relative term..

The contest admin made a scowly face then walled away from me with disgust. I don’t know if he smelled all the booze or just couldn’t believe that I was such a little fucker. Either way I went out took my last run. I did pretty well, or so I thought, and went back into the lodge to hang with the homes. When the final scoring came out I didn’t have a score and if my memory serves me right, neither did Dale or Rocket. I returned to the same contest admin for another conversation that went something like this

Me: Umm.. Why did I not have a score
Contest admin: I don’t know

Me: How do you not know this is complete bullshit!
Contest admin: I don’t know what your bitching about the nationals are going to be at your home mountain next year.
Me: I don’t give a fuck where the contest is gonna be next year! I’m turning Pro next week and I’m done with this bullshit!

THE END of my Am career


Sadly, Russ doesn’t have any photos of this event, but here’s one we found on google image search of what snowboarding looked like back then to help you imagine.

Stay tuned next week for the start of Russ’s pro career…

Windells Terrain Park is Open for Learning

While the rest of us are sitting around waiting, the kids at Windells Academy have their own private terrain park to shred right now. It’s sort of fucked up of Windells to send out this press release right now and make everyone else jealous, but I guess that’s what they refer to as “marketing.” Pretty clever. It’s no Panda though.

mikebangers

Windells Academy is proud to announce the opening of the first snow terrain park in the Northern Hemisphere for the 2010-2011 season. Windells Academy students kicked off the fall semester of school September 9th at legendary Mount Hood, by riding Windells’ park. Students have traveled from all over the world to join Windells Academy to get a head start on the upcoming competition season, while beginning their academic school year. Visiting rider, Johnnie Paxson shares, “I’m stoked to be riding a ridiculously awesome park; it’s crazy that Windells could put together such a strong venue this time of the year.”

Although Timberline is currently closed to the public, Windells Academy athletes and their invited guests have exclusive access to world class on snow training facilities. Park features include three jumps ranging from 20-40 feet, a hip, two triple rail/jib lines, and a daily Dream Feature provided by visiting pros. Mike Hanley, President of Windells Academy explains, “this is the first time ever, that athletes have been able to train year round on snow in the Northern Hemisphere, as well as get a well rounded education at the same time. It’s only September and the parks have been great and we’ve seen a lot of progression in just a couple of days.”

Academy founder Tim Windell echoes Hanley’s comments. “The Academy was created to attract those athletes who aspire to reach the top of their game, whether it be snowboarding, skateboarding, or skiing. We are excited to be able to say that we are in the unique position to offer year round on-snow training without skipping any seasons.  Opening the first park of the year shows our dedication to the progression of riding and skiing. This is the Windells’ advantage!”

For more info, check out  www.windells.com and  www.windellsacademy.com

Pipe to Pipe Version 2010

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More than a few years ago, the Bonfire Pipe to Pipe lost it’s way. Despite the name, neither the snow or skate portion of the events in recent years have featured a “pipe.” I suppose that’ll happen, when you’re the longest running summer snowboard contest out there. But this year, the folks at Windells and Bonfire decided to bring back the pipe, and created a snowboard course centered around a miniature halfpipe. But aside from making the name more logical, this new set up managed to do something else as well: Bring back the 90s.

How, you might ask, would a course set up do that? Well, the kinked and slightly oververt 8-foot walls adorned with various jibstacles were pretty much as good as it got back then. Then add in the fact that the jib-heavy field had some trouble negotiation the transition to get to said jibstacles, and you got a contest full of falling and tweaked food grabs.

Falling is fun! Video by Jeff Holce

I personally am quite fond of the 90s, having spent many of my formative years living in the them and all, so I, along with the older generation enjoyed the flashback. Admittedly, the kids seemed confused. Luckily MC’s Java Fernandez and Scotty Arnold kept the youngsters entertained by calling out various new-school pros that the competitors resembled, and of course, there were plenty of free stickers.

This is also not to say that there was no good riding. The highlights of the day were thanks to riders like Brandon Hobush, who got loose, went big, and even used the halfpipe walls as they were supposed to be used — to do tricks off of! That, and probably some other stuff I wasn’t paying attention to, earned Brandon the win in the pro men’s division.

After the final death sprint from Windells on hill facilities to the parking lot, the action moved to the concrete jungle for the second portion of the Pipe to Pipe (skate), but all I’m going to leave you with about that is this one picture of winner-man Willis Kimbel, because I’m tired, and I feel like the story will seem much funnier tomorrow.

OMG OMG OMG Skate story and video here

willis

Results!

Women’s Snow
1. Mackenzie Matters
2. Laura Rogoski
3. Madison blackley

Am Snow
1. Frank krab
2. Chris Cloud
3. Oliver Dixon

Pro Men Snow
1. Brandon Hobush
2. Everest Arnold
3. Sawyer Dean

Pro Skate

1. Willis Kimbel
2. Mason Merlino
3. Rion Linderman

Windells Session One is a Wrap

windellspicssess17

p. Darcy Bacha

Here’s the video so you can feel like you were there!