words, photos, and captions: Ryan “Huggy” Hughes
In 2016 all I wanted to do was follow the snow, and drift around the country like a jelly fish caught in a jet stream. Big Bear got hit hard early in January and I got the call from Lucas Magoon that went something like this,"Huggy, you better get up here! This storm is going to dump so much that there will be no way in or out."
So I drove up there as fast as I could. I was so unorganized. I figured I would just camp in the Honda Element here and there. What the hell, it’s still Southern California right?. Nope (read in E-40 voice). It got down to 15° and dumped three feet that night. Then another two feet a couple days later. The Element was no match for the elements!
I spent almost a month in Bear shooting with the heavies; Johnny Miller, Chris Bradshaw, and Lucas Magoon. When the snow finally started to melt around town I went to eastern Canada where it was just starting to pile up. I ended up spending over a month there shooting with the Arbor team and our Resolution riders. The Airbnb prices were absolutely incredible and it ended up being cheaper to stay and shoot up there than in the States! I really lucked out in Quebec and didn’t experience any of that famous -20° to -40° F temps, but we had the nastiest freezing rain I've ever seen. It would coat your camera and lens with an inch of ice around it if you weren't careful.