Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Baldface 2016

"Do you ever want to go anywhere else but this place?"  Uh, yea but why would I?  The terrains insane, guides are killer,  lodge is titties, food is off the hook, snow is always falling and they kinda like us.  These guys make it too easy for us not to go anywhere else but here.

Way back when I had some health shit going on, I made goals.  Yea, same song and dance as the previous post about the Banked Slalom.  But the real GOAL of mine from way back when I took the "red pill" and crawled into the rabbit hole was to not miss going to Baldface this year.  It was something I always look forward too and fuels my fire for the entire season. 

We reserved the cat once again under the C3 name for the last week of February, first week of March.  While it's technically reserved under the C3 name, it's really just a bunch of dudes that get together and go ride pow for a week.  For tax reasons, it's a business trip.  All along I was "hoping" one of those seats would hold my skinny ass, but I wasn't too confident in the reality of it happening.

Gumby tasked me with filling the 12 seats. "Uh, sure Bob I got it handled" and out went the email to previous dudes that have come with us.  6 seats were instantly filled.  The other 6, people were waffling on.  "I got a family vacation."  "What if there's no snow?"  "I can't afford it this year."  "My transmition broke and I got to use the money to fix it."  "I'm going to Jackson Hole to test bindings with Iguchi and T-Rice."  "My penis turned into a vagina...."  These were some of the bullshit excuses I got, so I threw it out there: "I'm in, I'm fucking going to Baldface.  This is my comeback."   Not that I'm a big draw or anything, but the fact that my sorry ass was telling them that I was going seemed to motivate others into getting their excuse making asses in gear and going.  

Our cat was full, so it seemed.  I just needed to feel better than I was, get my wife's blessing as well as my Doctors permission.   At this point I hadn't let any of them in on my drug induced dream of being in a remote location, on top of a mountain, no where around a hospital that could even spell the words "stem cell transplant" never mind know what to do should something go wrong.

On a drive by to one of the excuse laden previous Baldface guests house with Lisa, as we were saying good bye, dude throws out the "how stoked are you?  You got a full cat for Baldface, your gonna have a blast!"  To which my wife looks at me and says "YOU'RE going to Baldface?  Hmmm"  And walks into the car.  Big mouth mumbles "I take it you haven't told her of your plans to go?"

After 24 hours of silence I tried to explain that it was a pipe dream to go and I was only going if I could.  If she was cool with it, if the Doctors were cool with it and IF I felt that I could do it.  Which at that point I really wasn't sure.

The Banked Slalom was the turning point for me where I was feeling strong.  That and something this dude said to me while filming a family profile on us for Stevens Pass.  "Do you ever not ride with your kids?"  "Uh...not really."  And I really haven't in the last few years.  It's always following their asses around, showing them places, shooting them, encouraging them while their ability discourages me about my lack of ability, and pretty much stopping to watch them get after it.  I kinda needed to just go out and get after it myself.  So with my wife's blessing, me feeling pretty strong and not telling my Doctor what I was doing, I was off to Baldface for the 6th time in my life.

The crew was all time:  5 of our reps, 2 retailers, a ex CEO of a 300 million dollar action sport company, women's Transworld video part of the year winner, the inventor of snowboarding, Coal Brad and I.  Enjoy the photo's that came from 4 days in paradise.

Funny that this sign was next to Starbucks by Brads house because we were on our way to invade CANADA.
Sweaty was dressed for suck-sess with the denim shirt and Birkenstockzzzzz.
The 7.5 hour drive to Nelson B.C. is less painful when your eating Scotch Eggs.   Which is a hard boiled egg wrapped in sausage.
The bird is the word.  Heli flight up with Klocker and Call-In.
Helicopters, snow cats and snow mobiles, this place is as green as it gets.  Use it or loose it.
This was Shafack and Wilmoth's first adventure to Heaven.  Kind Bro knows whats up as he's been here before, so when these two donkeys were asking if this was gonna be fun on the morning before we rode, he just shook his head in disbelief. 
Shfack spent 4 days telling us how rad it was to have Snap Chat.  He turned 51 on the trip and every day he would share a Snap Chat story or feature with one of us that could give two shits about Snap Chat.  This is the face swap ap.  Again George, no one cares.
Bacon training, I mean beacon training.  Baldface does have some amazing bacon though.  They have a couple Traeger grills up there that they smoke that pig with.  Mmmmm, bacon.
See the dude in the white, that's Brad, who will forever be known as WHITE SNAKE cause he Adam Balon'd us every run. 
We brought a few Spring Breaks on the trip.  And they work incredibly well.  If you spend the cash to go on a pow trip, then spend the cash on a pow stick because it's stupid to hammer a nail in with a screwdriver. 
Andrew Racine is from RI.  Which is on the east coast.  Everyone on the east coast is a miserable fuck.   Including Andrew.  But for some reason you put people like this on top of a mountain, with a shit load of powder and a ping pong table and they do nothing but smile and act nice.  Andrew is back home now, being a miserable fuck, but he will always remember that one time he had fun and was pleasant to be around.
This is what my legs look like after a day of riding.  Chemo legs.
Every time we see photos from Baldface, there's always these pro shreds playing music, looking sweet, so we started our own band, Butt-Trumpet.  CD's are available soon. 
Apres ping pong is as fun as apres booze. 
Baldfaces Uber vehicles.  There's a fixed rate for each one of these too.
This is the inventor of snowboarding, Mike D.  When he's not running Garfinkle's in Vail, he's eating banana's because he's a talking gorilla.  Mike was supposed to be on my first trip to Baldface 7 years ago but had to cancel at the last second because some kid was being a "fucking pussy" in the park at Vail and he had to show the pussy how to ride a box.  And then he broke his ribs.  I think Mike had a good time being out of the zoo and back into the mist.  Get it?  Gorilla in the mist.
Call-In came with us last year to BF but we got skunked with snow.  After our second run, he looked at me and said all of last years shit was made up for.  Dude is like speedy Gonzales on the hill.  Following him was a task.  It may be from him having close to 50 days on the hill SPLITBOARDING this season, on top of all the other days he has riding chairs. 
I was Facetiming with WeGnar and he informed me how "sick" it was that I made the photo of the day on Baldfaces Instagram. 
Jeff Pensiero and Desire Melancon playing a few tunes for us.  They're not good enough to play with Butt Trumpet yet.
The view from above.
Desire won women's video part of the year from Transworld this season.  This was her trophy, a wicked ass slash at Craig's cross. 
Kids pay attention, someday you will be 51 years old.  And when you are, you hope to still be able to shred as good as George Johnston does as well as have as much love, fun and energy as he seems to have.  Everyone on the trip was an MVP in my book but Shfack was hands down THE MVP of the trip.  I can only hope I'm as rad as George is now when I turn 51, which will be in like 10 years or something.
Kind Bro and Call-In like to press the multi picture button on the GoBro vs. pushing the camera button.  So at the end of their runs you get to go thru over 300 shots of them motoring down the hill.  These were the best two out of 600 photos and 5MB of memory.

If you owned all these decks and lived up here, you'd be Spring BROKE.
Mike D worked and rode for Original Sin back in the day.  I snuck both of these 20 year old powder specific shapes from them up to Baldface for us to take a rip down memory lane on.  I only made 3 runs on the barge and Mike, well he rode all day and dislocated his shoulder.  Thanks Chris Mask for making the best snowboard that ever rode me.
Jeff rolled up to our group when were standing on top of Cheeky Monkey on one of Ken Blocks super snowmobiles.  He told our tail gunner Cordell to take it to the bottom as he was gonna take a lap or two with us.  Jeff looked at me and asked who my partner was.  It was Shfack but I said "no one."  "Lets go..."  And off we went, no guide, no protocol, just a 3,000 foot gully of fresh to the bottom.  Thanks buddy and sorry Shfack. 
Andy and Cordell, two pretty awesome humans as well as incredible guides.  Cordell has been on every trip I've been on, and for a reason.  The meat head gets us. 
Miserable ass Racine getting snaked, but still happy about it.
Cat track runs at Baldface can be just as fun as regular runs.  Not really, but sort of. Racine is probably complaining that the slopes are too crowded and he'd rather be back at Yawgoo.
Emmet changed his last name from Klocker to Blocker.  Emmet Blocker.  That's cause he would walk in front of everyone buckling in and strap in right in front of everyone else so he could go first.   At least he thought that, then White Snake would roll out in front of him. 
Shfack Night Hawking.
Kind Bro with his $20 goggles and $4,000 smile.
Jeff Pensiero also brought up a shit load of roman candles when he met up with us.  Once Andy the lead guide went down, he handed us all a rocket launcher and lit everyone's candle.  Then we all took off at once, trying to light each other on fire.  More good times.  Wilmoth is about to get lit on fire right here.
I call this my cancer carve.
The crew, nothing but good times.  Thank you EVERYONE. 
There's a vid in the works.  Of course. 


  1. so amazing to read this!

  2. best shred trip ever. and i'm not saying it like "best burger ever" either. I really mean it. this was the best shred trip ever. thanks everyone.

  3. DREAMS ARE MADE OF THIS STUFF... Glad you got up there Johan! Someday I'll make it up that way and when I do, I hope your with me...

  4. so pumped for you

  5. Great synopsis, especially from an illiterate, Ger-Lock scribe! Kidding Johan; good shit. Luv reading your blogs, crack me up, make my sides hurt! There is a "cure" for the "Whitesnake" we used Cat boarding in Revie...anyway, looks like I'm booking BF next December/January with a crew I hope is a quarter as much fun as yours! Ride on brother, dunno how you did a week in your condition. I barely make it half days right now.

  6. Love! Johan, you're a badass. I can't wait to go to Baldface one day!

  7. Kathy Karlovic8:58 PM

    awesome! I will be there in a few weeks, sooo stoked!!

  8. You are blessed Johan. Not just because you are but because you realize it!

  9. Nice write up! Sounds like you guys had a horrible time ��