Words: Desiree Melancon
Photos and captions: Aaron Blatt

It’s pretty rare in snowboarding to have an event that you absolutely cannot miss.

I never find myself saying that I need to get to X Games or any of the other standard, televised snowboard events. They happen every year, and the vibe is always the same: competitive, nerve racking, and a little repetitive, to say the least. However, throughout the year there are those few events that take place that I wouldn’t miss for anything. These take place around good friends, good vibes, large amounts of alcohol, and inspirational snowboarding. To name some of these standout times during the winter, we have the Dirksen Derby, The Baker Banked Slalom, and the Holy Bowly…Then there’s the Gerry Lopez Big Wave Challenge. Lets just say if you aren’t here, you’re blowing it.

The layout consisted of seven waves, cascading down the hill on Mt. Bachelor under Pine Martin. The mentality of the event was flow, flow, flow and more flow. With lines for days, slashes to be had, and options that were almost stressful to make because of the fear that the line you took wasn’t the most ideal, this could very well have been the best course of all time. When speed was lost or a hip was missed, you wondered if you made the right decision, yet somehow within seconds it didn’t matter because it was too fun to dwell on what could have been. Hips went into turns, turns molded into banks, and if you could point it through that one pocket, two doubles that definitely saw a fair amount of airtime awaited you anxiously.

I had the pleasure of watching snowboarders such as Tim Eddy, Alex Yoder, Tucker Andrews, Taylor Carlton, Alex Lopez, The Warbington brothers, Jake and Macy Price, The Gentem Stick Japanese guys, Brian Fox and Curtis Ciszek, Pat Harrington, Ami Voutilainen, Colleen Quigely, Java Fernandez, a grip of old local dudes, Caley Vanular, Chad Otterstrom, Willie McMillon, Kurt Wastell, Krush Kulesza, Josh Dirksen and many more slash their way around, riding the white waves of fury. It was insane. Not to mention pro surfers Ian Walsh, Shane Dorian, Chris Christenson and DK Walsh came out to try their feet on the frozen water and they did not disappoint. It’s always amazing to see what happens when universes collide, and for them it was just another day cruising some rights and some lefts, waiting for the sun to set, so we could go and do it all again tomorrow.

RESULTS

Kane Division
First – Ben Ferguson
Second – Max Warbington
Third – Josh Dirksen

Wahine Division
First – Desiree Melancon
Second – Colleen Quigley
Third – Macy Price

Pro Surf Division
First – Ian Walsh
Second – Chris Christenson
Third – Shane Dorian