The Launch 2011 Day 2 Photos & Recap

This photo was shot by Mike Yoshida from a Hughes 369D helicopter. You know what's ironic? The Hughes 369D was allowed in the park to shoot, but our Photo Editor Ryan Hughes wasn't allowed within 500 yards of the event. r: Mike Yoshida p: Mike Yoshida

Recap: T Bird
Captions: Pat Bridges

Day two of The Launch started out surprisingly. As in, the weather. It was calling for snow. Heavy snow. Instead, photographers, filmers, and riders awoke to clear, sunny skies and little wind. Needless to say, The Launch young guns immediately started shooting the moon.

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So. Ahhh. Way to bring the symmetry to the Snowboarder Magazine branding. While we are on the subject we must acknowledge the jumps in these photos. With our emphasis on branding it is easy for these jumps to feel like they are losing their identity. That isn't our intention. This is a team effort r: Sam Elliot p: Mike Yoshida

First, let me start out by saying that there’s most certainly a new guard. As weird as it is to say that about the Tyler Flanagans of the snowboard world, there are a handful of kids at The Launch who are ready to take over. JD Dennis, Hunter Wood, Spencer Link, Sam Taxwood, Spencer Whiting, Caden Michnal and others took to the channel gap in a hurry. Sending it flat at times didn’t seem to bother them much, but most times, they hit it right in the sweet spot. A few double corks, backside rodeos, sevens, nines and tens were put down and you can see it in the recap video.

You ever hear the song Helicopter by Bloc Party. Well this is kinda like that song except it isn't overproduced and it is for punks instead of emo hipsters. r: Hunter Wood p: Huggy

While the rest of the park was going off, the channel was the heaviest…until the chopper arrived. You could hear it from a mile away. Careening down the Kings Crown elbow, the bird chased 10 under-18ers down the gargantuan setup. After the chopper chased the children down the jump line, the same invited riders sessioned the hip. With rotor wash blowing camera bags about, the kids pointed it at the beast. Cam Fitzpatrick went huge. Austen Sweetin went to outer space. Seb Toots sent it to the moon as well as Hunter Wood, Stale Sandbech, Sam Taxwood, Hans and Nils Mindnich, Ben Ferguson, Garrett Warnick, JD Dennis, and Spencer Whiting. I couldn’t believe I was watching kids. It was unreal and surreal. Some serious shit went down on day two, and that too, can be witnessed secondhand in the recap galleries and video. Do yourself a favor and check it out if you have a few minutes, and while you’re at it, introduce yourself to the next generation.


Remember Spencer Gifts? It was in almost every mall in North America. That store sucked. But you know you bought a crappy Bush poster from one. Admit it. r: Spencer Link p: E-Stone

One would think that it was the SNOWBOARDER editorial and photo staff that made this caption happen. That would be partially incorrect. This caption was made possible by Matt, the hotel bartender who served us extra booze in order to write this. (Mind you, we're in Utah.) Thanks Matt! r: (from left) Nick Olsen and Mons Roisland p: Mike Yoshida

Do you think these guys called each other up in the morning and planned to do backside three-sixty tailgrabs off this jump at the same time? r:(from left) Ben Ferguson and Sam Taxwood p: Huggy

The guy flying the helicopter was super nice. His name was T.C. and we subcontracted him. Day-to-day, he runs a tourist charter business on the big island. He had a buddy. Thomas something. Magner? Magnus? Whatever. His Ferrari was boss. 350 GTB we think. Not as cool as our buddy Sonny's Daytona though. r: Sebastién Toutant p: E-Stone

We've heard people say JD is their middle name but first! That's impressive. r: JD Denis p: Jeff Baker

Say this photo were shot in the early hours after sunrise. Could you maybe say that it's a rare capture of a morning Wood? r: Hunter Wood p: Huggy


There was something absent from the channel gap feature on day two of The Launch. Some might say that there was a missing Link. r: Spencer Link p: Huggy

This is a Hughes 300D helicopter in the photo. Aside from the really big air of Austin Sweetin we ran this shot because it reminds us of our photo editor Ryan Hughes and his fixation with anything named with a number and at least one D after it. r: Austin Sweetin p: Huggy

Baker Mindnich

The doors come off!!! r: Hans Mindnich p: Jeff Baker

Baker Seb

Did someone get the number of that helicopter? r: Sebastien Toutant p: Jeff Baker