It's that time of year again, boys and girls. The time when some of snowboarding's most talented riders descend on Mt. Baker Ski Area and take to the Natural Halfpipe to race in the longest running snowboard competition in North America. I have had the opportunity to be present at the past three or four of these events and I must say it is a really good time.
The events begin on Friday and go through til Sunday when the final race is held. There are two qualifying days in which the top 25% will go on to the actual race on Sunday. It is a one shot, one kill kind of race so there is a lot of pressure to do well on your one or two runs of the weekend. Each day ends with a bonfire in the parking lot. Saturday there is a party of sorts and a Baked Salmon BBQ, maybe a little bit of debauchery, too. This Saturday will also hold the 10th Anniversary Party for Frequency, The Snowboarders Journal at Chair 9 Woodfire Pizza. Tickets are $3 and there will be music and raffle prizes, and don't forget all of your favorite people.
After the last rider has sent the course on Sunday and a little bit of down time the awards are bestowed on the top riders. It wouldn't be fair or just to leave out the most important part of the competition - The Golden Duct Tape! The golden duct tape is the highly coveted award that goes out to the winner and most highly regarded snowboarder in all of the land, perhaps even the WORLD! There also happens to be a little bit of an underground thing we like to call, "The Banked Sleddem." That one is a little bit more difficult to locate. It is kind of an annual cap to the event, but we shall see how that goes down this year, too.
I am finally getting back to life after my three week escapade. The Super-Vaca followed by SIA, then the long drive back put a toll on my mind, soul, and body and I am just now getting back to reality. This week I picked up a little bit of work and have been busy staying focused. I took some time last night to head over to Mountain Militia HQ and helped out while the boys cranked out gear for the weekend. They will be up on the hill taking donations in return for T-Shirts and will also have games for the kids. Make sure to stop by the booth and say what up, check out the gear, and trade in a suggested $10 donation for a T!
The parking lot is going to be crazy and I highly recommend carpooling with your 27 closest friends in that clown car Subaru. The weather outlook is pretty sweet and there might be a snow storm on the way for the Finals, too. Make sure to remember that drinking and driving is a serious deal, especially on 542! The cops will be out in full force and they don't mess around. Designate a driver, or invite a friend that doesn't drink and pay for their lift pass. It's a lot cheaper than a DUI! Also, drinking in the parking lot is illegal, so do your best to fly under the radar if you must.
See you up on the Mountain and hopefully shredding the gnar. I might just take a little walk up on top of the mountain and catch the race from a little perch up on top of Hemispheres!