Episode 3.1: Into the Forest
Winter is short enough on the East Coast. Add multiple thaws, every form of frozen precip, and shrapnel-filled forests and it’s enough to make us wonder why we even bother. Episode 3.1 documents the first half of the season splitboarding in Vermont—a season that’s been full of highs and lows, but then again any day on snow is a good one.
“CHIEFTAIN’S GOOD BUT HE’S A ROBBER”
Sticking your head out of the tent in the morning gives you a feeling something bad is approaching you at a speed of light. In a moment you realize it happens to be only a fog, so you immediately fasten your board.
The next beautiful day in mountains is about to happen.
Splitboarding, camping and a good mood!
Karkonosze are awesome, it is hard to find cliff drops here, but you will get a blend of deep powder turns, tree runs and a huge smile on your face after all day run.
Greetings from Japan
This is a friendly reminder that our webstore is currently shut off, our phone goes straight to voicemail, and there are tumbleweeds blowing through the Spark office.
It’s tradeshow season and the WHOLE Spark family is on the road from Jan 28-Feb 8. We will be at SIA in Denver first, then ISPO in Munich! We pride ourselves on quick customer service and apologize for this temporary inconvenience, but we have an AMAZING band of Spark dealers worldwide that can help you out during this time with all of your Spark split needs. A list of our dealers can be found here. We will be intermittently checking emails during this time, but if you need something ASAP our friendly Spark dealers will be your fastest and best option. Our webstore will be back up and running when we’re back in the office on February 8th.
Check up on our facebook page to follow us while we’re on the road. See you after the shows!
-Will, Becca, Jason, Kory, Ryan, and the rest of the Spark team.
A Guest Post and Photo Essay by Seth Lightcap, fellow splitter and friend of Spark R&D.
The joy ride fired up on October 22nd. That was the first pow day of the winter in Lake Tahoe this season. For the 100 days since then, the Northern Sierra have been firing day in, day out. We’ve had our fair share of storm days but it’s been the cold, sunny days in between the fronts that’s made the season really shine. The stable stretches have opened the window for incredible backcountry adventures. From multi-day deep peaks to roadside attractions, conditions have been prime to lay fresh tracks just about anywhere your legs and splitboard can take you in Tahoe.
In celebration of the season and in hopes of many more stormy days to come, here’s a taste of 12/13 Tahoe pow featuring the crew getting after it strapped into their Spark R&D’s:
Moss Holladay rips into a Donner Summit chute on October 24th – two days after it started snowing in Tahoe
Without a splitboard you were hosed on the first three weeks of the season. The first lifts didn’t spin in Tahoe until mid-November. Ryland Bell and Chris Galvin started their seasons in October on the splits.
To make matters perfect, the first two feet of snow in October came in thick. The second two feet (which came two days later) came in blower. We were blasting through bushes but not hitting rocks. Matt Clark kindly avoided crushing the flowers with this boost.
No doubt you’re gonna see some epic early Tahoe days in the season POV edits this year.
Mid-November brought another round of storms. Chris Galvin cashed in on the insane early season powder cycle touring around Donner Summit.
The mid- and late-December storms were a terrain game changer. Lines opened up on all sides of the lake. Toe side slasher staring at Tahoe for Brian.
With the new year came a new storm. Though this round was followed by a short rush of east wind that made pow hunting a bit trickier. Curtis Woodman searched for the stashes on his Arbor Abacus splitboard.
Sunny days and killer snow mean it’s time to send some lines. Curtis Woodman throws down a technical track under the eye of the RC heli cam.
By Tahoe standards this is ancient powder. Woodman rips into a twelve-day old virgin pow panel mid-January.
And the good times show no sign of stopping. Ryland Bell slashes pow in an untracked alpine line on January 21st – two weeks since it last snowed in Tahoe.
Thanks Seth, for sharing this with us and all of the Spark fans! Hope it makes everyone hungry for pow, and ready to get after it this weekend 🙂
Get your goods before we’re gone for good … well, not for good, but for a couple weeks anyway.
As most of you know, Spark is a small family owned and operated business. So when it’s tradeshow season, the whole Spark family hits the road. Literally – the WHOLE Spark family. Which means, there won’t be anyone back at the homefront to answer the phone, respond quickly to emails, or take your web orders. In fact, we will be shutting off our webstore on Jan 26th at 12am. We pride ourselves on customer service, being the resident experts on all things split, and getting stuff out the door quickly. But from Jan 28-Feb 8 2013, we will be out of the office and spreading the Spark good cheer (oh, and showcasing our 13/14 lineup, which is epic by the way).
Soooooooo …. what does that mean for you? This is your one week warning to get those tailclips you wanted, replace your toe adjusters, buy a second set of LT Brackets, or get that Spark hoody you asked Santa for but never got. And if you need anything between Jan 28th and Feb 8th, feel free to email or call (though our voice mailbox might be full at that point) and just know that it will take longer than usual to get back with you.
Or even better….please contact your local dealer during this time for all of your Spark split needs. We have an incredible, knowledgeable, band of Spark dealers worldwide who can help you out with most anything. Please give them a ring and see if they can help you out. CLICK HERE for Spark Dealer link.
As always, THANK YOU for your support and energy. We’ll see you after the shows!
Evo is hosting the Boarder’s Choice Awards to find out who is killin’ it right now as decided by the people that live to ride these brands. This is your chance to show your support for Spark R&D and potentially win a brand new deck for the season!
You can only vote once, in 5 categories (note: we are only listed in best backcountry and most innovative) – so make it count: CLICK HERE!
Spread the word, and vote for Spark!
Congratulations to David Rodoreda Sala of Navas Spain, the winner of our T-Shirt Design Contest!
We liked his design because it was unique and creative, would spark a great conversation with a non-splitboarder, and might even be a good checklist to consult when you’re heading out the door. (Come on now, be honest, how many of you show up ready to roll and realize you forgot your skins? Or one pole? It happens to the best of us!)
We did a little interview with our new buddy David, just to get to know him a little bit more:
Spark: Where is your hometown?
DRS: I was born in a small village called Santa Maria d’Olo, near Barcelona. I’m living now in Navas, in the middle of Catalonia: 1 hour driving from the sea and 1 hour driving from the Pyrenees.
Spark: What do you do for a living?
DRS: I’m working as an industrial designer in a company which manufactures laser coding and marking equipment.
Spark: We love your design, do you have a background in art or graphic design?
DRS: I don’t have any background in art or graphic design. I just do it as a hobby!
Spark: How long have you been splitboarding?
DRS: I’ve been snowboarding for 17 years now. In the past, I used to use snowshoes to climb a mountain and I went down snowboarding. However, when I discovered splitboarding (5 years ago) my universe changed completely …
Spark: What is your favorite type of terrain or place to ride backcountry?
DRS: I normally go to the Catalan or French Pyrenees, which are really close: 1 hour from home.
Spark: What’s your most memorable adventure on your split?
DRS: Watching the sunset from the top of the highest mountain in Spain (Aneto, 3.403 meters above sea level) and going down on my splitboard. Such a priceless experience!
David won a set of Burners and of course, some of the first printed T’s hot off the press. Enjoy, bud!
Thank you to everyone who sent us designs and participated in the contest. It was a ton of fun for us, and we hope to keep having contests like this in the future, we’ll keep you posted.