Mammoth opening day: pow, staircases, champagne, and waiting on Travis Rice

Posted By: Zeke Piestrup on November 12, 2010 2:34 pm

Opening day at ski resorts are sometimes like going on the car ride at Disneyland.  Here is your roadmap, don’t deviate.  At Mammoth Mountain yesterday, the center guide track that runs between the tires was demolished.

Incredible powder conditions were to be found everywhere for the more than 2300 snow addicts flocking to ski Valhalla.  Pow stashes had no interest in hiding, nor did they require the help from a die-hard local to find.  Stump Alley Express (chair 2) was not open, but that didn’t stop folks from making endless laps on wide open pow to the parking lot below.  Backside of chair 3, check.  The traverse over below 23.  Check.  Anything just off to the side of the groomers was perfect pow.  And this was opening day?  Where was the white ribbon of death?

The Unbound Crew, always at the top of the terrain parks class, unveiled a bunch of new features that had folks praising their limitless creativity.  Among the new additions were three new urban features.  A staircase replete with three options, a concrete ledge, and a brick and concrete planter box with green astroturf.  Just like mom used to have.  Yep, we are still smack dab in the middle of a golden era in terrain parks.  The only limits are in imagination.  And the gentlemen who comprise The Unbound Crew must still play Cops and Robbers when they get home, cause they’re living in a completely imaginary world.  Huge props.

Oh, and maybe you were there for opening day, but last night, the Unbound Crew built up a huge jump that was not there Thursday.  It’s not the mega jumps we’ll see come later in the season, but it’s big enough for you to Cork 7 your way to happiness.

Master of the first chair, Nate Shute did it again.  Four snowboarders comprised the first chair.  The other three dudes?  Whatever.  This is about Nathan, the Kailua-Kona native who once again landed on the coveted first chair.  I know that’s two years-in-a-row for Nate, possibly three.  Can we get a confirmation in the comments section, Mr. Shute?

Didn’t see Rusty Gregory, the main man himself, loading chairs on Broadway Express.  What’s up with tradition, Rusty??  CEO Gregory was there for the champagne toast at 11am, but so was Woolly Mammoth.  Come on Rusty, your reprisal each year as a lifty is one of my favorite aspects of Mammoth on opening day.  Humble yourself before us ski junkies!  But, maybe I missed him.  Again, a little help in the comments section if someone knows something different…

Opening day now roles into an opening weekend packed full of fun.  If this weekend’s festivities were luggage, and all the fun happening was the clothing, well you’d have to find an awfully large fat man to sit on that suitcase to even attempt a zipping.

The big news?  Travis Rice is coming to Mammoth to play store clerk.  For real, Travis is going to pack up your goods (paper or plastic?) at the Quicksilver Store in The Village.  The God of Snowboarding will be there Saturday from 2pm-4pm, signing autographs and just being Travis Rice.

After Mr. Rice ditches his store clerk nametag, he’ll be heading over to Transworld Magazine’s 200th Issue Celebration at Hyde Lounge.  Fifty bucks goes to the first person who can guess who’s on the cover of that 200th issue?  Fifty Monopoly bucks, that is.  The blue kind.

Hyde, by the way, had their grand re-opening.  Yep, it’s now version 2.0, and with apologies to the Beta version of the previous Hyde, but it’s waaay better now.  Other stuff happening on opening weekend: an Electric Party at Lakanuki tonight (Friday), The Sounds will be rockin’ Canyon Lodge at 9pm Satuday night, and the premiere of “Another Day in Paradise” free at 8pm in the Village.

Mammoth opening day is but the start of opening weekend.  Pack your gear, and head to the limitless options of the very non-Disney Mammoth Mountain.

Zeke Piestrup ( More Posts)

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