DC Transitors closes out the season at Mammoth – Highlights and Photos
words: Mary Walsh
photos: Mark Clavin, Mary Walsh, and James “Rango Rangler” Taylor
For seasoned snowboarders, the hunt snow begins in November (though sometimes earlier) as temps drop in urban centers and precipitation collects on cement. Bags are packed, plane tickets are booked, and from then, winter is an unpredictable routine of watching weather patterns and moving locations. It's an annual circuitous migration that riders follow to film video parts, an up and down in elevation that leads to unique locations, fresh snow, and cold metal--along with bursting-at-the-seams rental vans, jet lag hangovers, late nights, early mornings, group effect, and fresh alpine air in some of the most beautiful places in the world. All experienced with a congruous crew for whom the next powder slash/drop in/park lap/corduroy carve is the driving force through it all. It was to this end that the DC Snowboarding team set out to film DC Transitors, a five-part video series showcasing the times, travel, and turns of their talented team in a winter season.
For the final edition of Transitors, Iikka Backstrom, Anto Chamberland, Sebbe De Buck, Jordan Morse, Brady Lem, and Torstein Horgmo piled into the DC RV and pointed it to Mammoth Mountain. The mission: close out the season with runs though Unbound's Main Park, a springtime snowboarding oasis raked and salted to perfection. The crew had been steadily on the road since the December. First in Quebec, shoveling snow and de-icing handrails in the northern reaches of the province. Then in Japan, capitalizing on Japanuary storms on the North Island. From there they crossed the Atlantic to Austria, where, fueled by schnitzel and beer, they pilfered powder and settled street spots. The crisscross continued to British Columbia, where they loaded sleds and set out into the powder-clogged backcountry. By May, clips had been stacked, rails had been shut down, and rooster tails of fresh snow had been sent high into the sky. The jet lag of navigating through dozens of time zones had worn off, and it was time to celebrate a season well spent with slushy spring laps.
The Mammoth Unbound diggers, led by TJ Dawoud, had pushed a tranny set up lined with jibs in the middle of Main Park. At the top of it all was a large volcano in the shape of a sombrero--an ode to Cinco de Mayo and an open-to-all park party that was going down on Saturday, May 5th, of course. On Thursday morning, as the crew loaded Chair 6, the sky was bright blue, the snow was soft, yet fast, and the park laps were firing. It was early May and the riding was perfection. Toby Miller, Stefi Luxton, and Ian Matteoli met up and the long weekend began.
Each morning kicked off with few runs through Forest Trail, the riders ricocheting off tubes and jumps in quick succession, and then the days were spent on the hallowed trail beneath Chair 6. Warm weather boarding gives off some of the best vibes of the season and the DC team took full advantage of the set up and the sunshine, collecting clips for the final episode of Transitors. Friday night the Eastern Sierra winds were calm and light was warm and the crew loaded sleds and sessioned the jumps, rails and iconic, pink Mammoth wallride for a season ender sunset shoot, soaring high above the distant Minarets until the sun had disappeared behind their peaks.
On Saturday, after a full morning and afternoon of boarding, the Unbound crew prepped the park, raking and refining the mid-park transition. At 4:30pm, Chair 6 roared back to life, a loaded line ready to head on hill. Mammoth's Molly Dawoud and Lauren Burke welcomed the crowd to the Fiesta in the Park, a celebration of the season marked by open riding in Unbound for everyone for the evening--no tickets required. A cat with Coronas was stationed on hill, the deck at Tusk's was going off, and the special DC x Unbound Cinco de Mayo park set up was chock full of solid snowboarders. Hands were being planted on the wallride. Tranny finders (and double corks) were being sent off of it. A big pill in the center of the bowl zone was pressed and gapped; the volcano sombrero was Miller flipped, and the infamous Mammoth deck rail was hit (see: @markclavin for the leak before the real Transitors drops). Snowboarders had come out in droves--the DC crew was joined by Scott Blum, Pat Bridges, Jared McDaniel, Alexis Roland, Mike Grey, Kyle Mack, Grant Giller, Summer Fenton, Ryan Pluche, and more cruised through on repeat. By the time the light was gone from the sky, memory cards were full and a happy exhaustion had set in. The hammers and park lines from Torstein, Anto, Brady, Fronius, Jordan, Sebbe, Toby, Stefi, Ian, and Iikka are better view in photo form (above) and of course, video--so stay tuned for the final episode of this season of DC Transitors, dropping May 21st on Snowboarder.com. The sun has set on this season of Transitors, so make sure to check out the full episodes following a winter well spent by the DC Snowboarding team.