photos: Mike Azevedo/@beershower
words: Brendan Hart/@brendanhartsy
On April 23 Ragged Mountain hosted what may very well be the last major New Hampshire snowboard session of the 16/17 season. It was also arguably one of the heaviest. Ragged's Bryan Harper, who has been revamping the resort's terrain park endeavors for the past few years, enticed some of New Hampshire's most talented riders with rhetoric that no snowboarder could resist: slush, hip, sunset shoot and—the clincher—barbecue. But really, it was a "you had me at 'Hello'" situation. The word "Ragged" was the only enticement needed.
Ragged Mountain is 200 acres of rippable moral fiber. If you have any doubts about that, here's justification: their main lodge is a palatial red barn. It's the kind of ski lodge America's founding fathers would've grabbed a beer in. Ragged has a trove of other jewels—NH's only high-speed six-pack chairlift, some of the best glades in the Granite State, and three outstanding terrain parks. Such was the bait that lured the likes of Danny Garrity, Zach Normandin, Brendon Rego, Merrick Joyce, Shane Nassar, River Richer, Jed Sky, Will Mayo, Luke Mathison, Jackson Happ, Noah Guarriello, Nick Joy, and more.
The only weenies present at Ragged's sunset session were the kind that were thrown on the grill. All of the attendees were of the unruly breed who would gladly fly United and choose, for the sheer thrill of the fight, not to give up their seat in an overbooking situation. The hip was a testament to the brilliance and dexterity of Ragged's terrain park crew. After having shaped out numerous U-ditches for their annual hand-dug halfpipe event in March, the Ragged posse has developed an amazing capacity to sculpt snow. As for this last piece of prize-worthy transition the crew had built, the invited riders lost no time in shredding the snot out of it.
Zach Normandin massacred the feature, getting at least 15ft above the deck and soaring to the last tidbit of tranny. He laced indy pokes, unthinkable grab combos, gravity-mocking backside 180 melons, and even an alley-oop backside 540 mute—the first time I've ever seen that done on a hip. Jed Sky was also on a tear, boosting technical grabs and well-styled 180s. Merrick Joyce, River Richer, Will Mayo, Luke Mathison and Danny Garrity were likewise boosting. Even the session's photographer Mike Azevedo strapped in and launched some lofty michaelchuks. This was all done in front of a sunset humming with soft color tones, draping over the landscape of woodlands and picturesque NH mountains a general feeling of, “Wow, this place kicks ass.”
While Ragged helped put an end to this sick and snowy season, they've already been planning big things for the next, including a free learn-to-ski-and-ride program and incredibly cheap season passes at $279. Whether you’re a park rat, powder hound, or comfort-seeking lodge lounger, this NH resort will be your best friend. It's just a fact: Ragged rules.
Huge thanks to Bryan Harper and the dudes at Ragged for putting together such an epic night!