words and photos: Mike Yoshida, unless otherwise noted

With the absence of last season's Sesh Up at Mt. Baker due to the lack of snow, this year I think all of us shredders were eager to get up to the mountain and enjoy the annual pilgrimage to Granny's Zone. The original date for the competition was planned to go off a couple weeks earlier, but since a gnarly rainstorm was forecast for that particular weekend, the date was rescheduled to June 5th.

This was the latest the comp had ever been held, so there were challenges with the build that went down the previous day. Trees were starting to melt out in the landing and the in-run was treed as well. Thanks go to the motivation and foreman skills of Matt Wainhouse and Steven Goodell for spending the extra time to make the jump proper the day before.

I think because of the reschedule, there were slightly less people than the last time I had come up for the step up session, but the smaller crew had more enthusiasm and stoke than ever. Huge cheers roared from the crowd as daring snowboarders and skiers upped the ante with double flips and massive, slow, inverted tricks. In true Baker fashion, the occasional wild card would huck off one of the corners of the lip, only to land Wil E. Coyote-style in the trench or ragdoll aggressively down the landing.

The temperature was in the 80's and slowly, but surely the two kegs that had been brought up started to run dry. With a morning session coming to a close, there was a slight pause for maintenance and reshaping and then the airtime continued–and so did the loose moves and stomped landings.

Highlights were: Matt Wainhouse sending huge backside rodeos and tweaked out methods; Colin D. Watt, this guy really pushes it and has an infectious, positive attitude; Max Dre threw down a bunch of awesome tricks and double flips which even landed him a sponsorship with 686 clothing; David Petrov, this kid sent it until he broke his board, then he borrowed five other people’s boards and kept sending; Matt Finnel won the Donnkie award and a pair of K2 bindings. The groms were also in full force with Matteo, Milo, and Corey sending it on the jump, and throwing down in the jib zone.

All in all, it was another awesome Sesh Up and a great closer to an amazing winter season in the PNW. Hope to see you all there next year!