Sick Days: Detroit, Michigan with Jake OE and Ethan Deiss

Sick Days are anything but down days. With crews and photographers scouring spots across the world for snow, we only have so much room in print for the photos. As the warm season draws upon us, we have asked our senior photogs and editors to go through hard drives and share some of their favorite sessions that highlight the uncanny ability of the riders and the sessions that never saw the light of day. Enjoy.

Words and Photos: T. Bird

Detroit, Michigan is one of the craziest places I have ever been in my life, but don't mistake that and think it's not a super rad city. I had heard so much about Detroit before I flew there in 2015 for a trip with the SFD street crew, so I had preconceived notions about the place, but I have to say, it exceeded all of my expectations. The food is awesome, the snowboarding was insane and the people were really nice. I back Detroit. So does Jake OE and Ethan Deiss. They logged a ton of days in The Motor City and even more clips. The landscape of the city is awesome for shooting and it holds a plethora of spots. Not to mention, the cops are cool because they have way bigger things to worry about than some kids snowboarding. The only cops who kicked us out told us we shouldn't be there because we could get robbed. They didn't even care that we were snowboarding. All in all, Detroit rocks! If you ever get the chance to visit, I recommend it for sure.

Swipe through the slideshow above or scroll down below for the photos!

Jake found this spot on Google Maps, right next to a giant mill. Unfortunately, there wasn't really a photo angle that showed the mill, but this tuck knee to fifty was all I needed for a good shot.

Ethan, warming up with a little gap out to fifty. The Deiss man, always gambling.

We ran into Bode Merrill in Detroit, who was filming for the Absinthe movie. Oddly enough, this was on the very day that we announced that he had won our annual Rider of the Year award, and I think that psyched him up to give this feature a go.

We also ran into the best snowskater in the world, Alan Gerlach. We came upon this zone and Bode walked right up to Alan and said, "Are you Alan Gerlach." Alan replied that he was and then asked, "Are you Bode Merrill?" Bode then told him that he had his pro model snowskate. Small world.

Alan didn't have a photographer with him this day so I found an angle for this ollie off a platform into the stairs. I think this is the first time this photo has ever been seen. Alan is the sickest.

Jake OE, footloose and fancy free in Hart Plaza.

Here's that mill I was talking about. Still wish I had an action shot with it in the background. Maybe one day.

Where there's a winch, there's a way.

After Bode popped a quick ollie into this landing, he stepped up to a front three. Two hits, two stomps. That's how Bode man does it.

We were riding in the main plaza downtown and all of the sudden, I get a text from our old intern Drunk Jeff. He said he could see people snowboarding in the plaza and wondered if we were in town. I told him he was looking at us. Turns out, he was working in one of the buildings in the plaza, so he cruised down and hung out for a few hours. Miss ya, Jeff!

Jake OE, always on permanent vacation.

Until he's gotta strap in and clock in, that is.

Jake OE always seeks out the most unusual features and does the sickest shit on them. That's what I've always loved about his snowboarding. It's all in the approach. It was so cold this night that my flashes completely dies within three tries. Thankfully, Jake landed this within three tries.

This kid got bundled so fucking hard. I swear, sledding is WAY more dangerous than snowboarding. Also, at this school, a few weeks after we left Detroit, a bunch of people were shot and killed in a gang-related fight. Kinda crazy.

SFD frontman and lensman John Cavan. Cavan made the most iconic east coast videos called Iron Curtain when I was growing up in New Hampshire and I really looked up to him and what he was doing. He then went on to make a handful of other films, including the SNOWBOARDER movies, which we worked on together. Crazy how heroes can become peers in snowboarding so fast.

How in the world could Bode Merrill get any taller?

Life on the road takes its toll on vehicles. Here is Jake OE's truck, mid-winter.

Best buds! Jake and Ethan. Two of the funniest humans in snowboarding.

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