On Sunday I met up with Megan and Tim early at Kirkwood for a morning photo shoot. I haven’t had time to edit them all yet, but here’s one from the selection that I’m pretty pumped on.
Santa brought us a shit-ton of white stuff and I don’t mean the kind that the kids at Snowglobe are going to be snorting up their nose this weekend.
There is already so much snow in my yard that the pile is taller than me. Pretty soon, you aren’t going to be able to see our front door. I’m not even remotely exaggerating.
We received over five feet of snow in the span of four days and then another two feet or so on Wednesday. It’s borderline out of control and I love it. We spent most of the last week enjoying routine powder days like it was no big deal and then spent Christmas Day shredding at Kirkwood with all of our friends. I couldn’t have asked for a more wonderful holiday. That night we celebrated with a pot luck dinner over at Rose’s house with puppies underfoot and a gift exchange that ended with quite a bit of excitement.
We already have more snow this winter season than we received all year long last season. WINTER IS BACK. I am so in love with it all over again that I can hardly ascertain how I managed to make it through last year without this glorious freezing cold white stuff. It’s SO FLUFFY!
In between all the shredding, Christmas parties, and the retailing of spandex I’ve been doing, we’ve been hanging out almost every night for a week with some amazing Airbnb house guests that I’ve now told are required to be my friends forever. I haven’t taken many photos over the last week, but here are a few of my favorites.
Snowglobe Music Festival is returning to Tahoe South for it’s second year and it’s not too late to join in on the fun. Three day passes and single day tickets are still on sale.
THE 21 DAYS of SNOWGLOBE: counting down to all things involving the fest, including insider tips, band interviews, event coverage and more! Day 12 of the 21 Days of Snowglobe brings you:
SNOW DRIVING SURVIVAL SKILLS
- Be prepared. If you are driving to Tahoe from the Bay and you do not have a four wheel drive vehicle you MUST have chains. If you get caught driving without chains, you will get fined. I would also recommend carrying the following in your car to Tahoe in the winter: a shovel, extra gloves and hats, flashlights and flares, an old sleeping bag or blanket.
- Slow down and don’t tailgate. Double the distance between you and the other cars. In icy and snowy conditions, if you’re doing 25 mph, you should have 8-10 car lengths between you and the car in front of you. Don’t make any sudden erratic movements or changes to your pace or manner of driving. DON’T SLAM ON YOUR BRAKES. Remember when you are in a line of cars that while the choices of those in front of you affect you, your choices affect the cars behind you. If something happens and you slam on your brakes, you are going to slide. Your anti lock brakes will not help you in icy slippery conditions.
- Look ahead. Get ready for corners and other obstacles long before you arrive at them. Have an exit plan.
- Brake long before you enter a corner and accelerate out of the corner.
- Control your speed and let your engine slow you down. Shift into a lower gear any time you are going down a hill or steep grade or if you need to slow down. Do this even if you drive an automatic. By letting your engine control your speed, you won’t have to brake, which will keep your car from skidding and will keep the locals from screaming at frustration behind you over your brake lights.
- Learn to control a skid. If you start to skid, let off the brakes and avoid looking at the obstacle your skidding towards. Looking at your exit, lightly turn into the skid and accelerate slightly. In the event of an uncontrolled skid, if you don’t have room to steer out, head for a snowbank.
- Get updates on road conditions and closures at Caltrans Website or by calling 1-800.427.7623
- 21 Days of Snowglobe: Who to See at the Fest, Day 1
- 21 Days of Snowglobe: Interview with Quixotic Fusion
WHAT YOU MISSED:
This past weekend, my favorite winter event came to Kirkwood. The Subaru Freeskiing World Tour is the largest competitive big mountain freeskiing tour and makes multiple stops around the globe each year. Due to a lackluster early season, the final stop of the tour was moved from it’s normal location at Snowbird in Utah to my home mountain. With one of my good friends and Kirkwood Freeride Team Member Josh Daiek sitting in 2nd place in the overall tour standings, we were all very excited to watch the action unfold under the sun at Kirkwood.
If there is any weekend to come up to Tahoe South and ski or ride at Kirkwood, the FWT is always a good choice. Much like the North Face Masters, the all mountain competition pits the best extreme freeskiers in the world against each other in the permanently closed “Cirque.” Spectators fill the finish corral, drink beer, BBQ, and shake Sierra Nevada Cowbells in support of the unbelievable athletic feats. Backflips are guaranteed.
We had quite a surprise in the action on Sunday when the competition was stopped for an hour due to the Airbag flying into Chair 6! Patrol had to rope evacuate people off the chairs due to a derailment. Thankfully, no one was hurt and in the meantime, a huge snowball fight erupted in the finish line corral.
I will say that the action of the last 10 riders was worth waiting for. All of our friends were on the edge of their snowseats waiting for each competitors final scores, trying to determine if Josh was going to win the event. We saw some amazing skiing from all the competitors, including another Tahoe local Kevin O’Meara.
At the end of the day, not only did Josh take first place on the podium for the event, but he was awarded the McConkey Cup, in honor of ski legend Shane McConkey, as the points winner of the overall tour.
Tahoe South Local Josh Daiek has been skiing at Kirkwood for ten years and is sponsored by Tecnica, Blizzard, Smith Optics, and Clif Bar. I am so proud of my friend and I can’t wait to see what he brings to the table next season. Way to go Josh! Proud of you!
These are some of my favorite photos from the weekend, but you can see the entire gallery here.
My friend Mikey Wier is pretty awesome. While Mikey calls Tahoe South home, he travels the world filming movies about snowboarding, splitboarding, and fly fishing. If I had remained in the film industry after college, Mikey is the person whose job I would want. Most recently, Mikey and his Tahoe based production company, Burl Productions, produced the well received fly-fishing adventure film SoulFish which featured some of the most talented anglers in the world. Patagonia, who sponsors Mikey, claims that the movie is fly fishing’s answer to The Endless Summer.
Mikey is currently raising capital to complete post production on his new film Cali Rush. Mikey envisions Cali Rush as a celebration of California’s “most adventurous and talented athletes that are in search of a more harmonious relationship with nature through sports, lifestyle, recreation and environmental technology.” It features the place that I call home as well as a number of my good friends: Tahoe South locals Joe Markus, Tarren Closson, Mark Hamm, Mike Olson, Dan Durkin, and Josh Daiek who won the 2012 Suburu Freeskiing World Tour this past weekend (a post on that to come!). In addition to all these folks that I am lucky to call friends, the film features a number of other Tahoe South locals like Pat Quinn and Pat Bonzer, front runners of the snow skate scene.
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/34825490 w=500&h=281]
I’m pretty excited for Mikey and his new movie. He has only 19 more days to raise the money on Kickstarter and could use every Tahoe local’s support! I encourage you to to support him and his awesome efforts.
“Join our community and let’s help shape the future and increase environmental awareness through sports, music, art, lifestyle and conscious energy.”
We celebrated some of our friends’ impending addition to their family this week with a ridiculously large baby shower. There was some really amazing food there but no liquor and I’ll be damned if I’m going to hole up in a house with 40 women and talk about onesies without a drop of alcohol. Right? So, I did what any normal person would do: I hauled ass to the grocery store and bought two 12 packs which I promptly hid in the snow and shared with my favorite lushes.
I didn’t take very many photos at the shower, but you can check out the rest of them here.
I had my one and only powder day of the season on Monday. We had pow days over last weekend also but I had to work after having just returned home from Bolivia. It’s cool though because Monday was legit. So legit that after about two hours my legs were so thrashed and tired that I was essentially totally and completely out of control for the rest of the day. My friends were all out of control also, except that they are so experienced even when they are screaming behind me and careening downhill, “OH MY GOD I’M SO OUT OF CONTROl!” they still appear to be IN control. I, however, find myself upside down with my face stuffed into snow.
I started my One Word/12 Month Project. You can go read about it under the “One Word Project” tab. The first word for the year is your word and each participant is supposed to pick a word that they will focus on over the course of the year. I picked uncomfortable because I far too often get scared and wuss out in the face of a challenge and I don’t want to do that anymore. So, now, when I feel like I’m going to wuss out of something that I should try, I’m going to focus on how I promised to push myself to an uncomfortable limit this year, rather than just biding my time in the realm of my comfort zone. I decided that since it was my word this month that I would take a self portrait. I had no idea how uncomfortable it would be to do a photo session with myself. Seriously uncomfortable. Editing a self portrait: also uncomfortable. Everything about this project so far: uncomfortable. Ironic.
You’ll have to head over to the project page to see my first submission.
The newest edition of our local monthly chronicle The Tahoe Mountain News is out and a ton of event photos that I took are in it. Taylor, the editor, was kind enough to include photos of me from the event that Marion insisted on taking so all my friends have been joking that the Mountain News is now a publication dedicated to “photos of Lauren Lindley, taken by Lauren Lindley.” I’m also, of course, in this month’s edition of The Entertainer (twice!) so it’s a little ridiculous. I started taking photos so I wouldn’t end up with my face in the local papers every month. The opposite has occurred.
I’ll start writing my travel reports from Bolivia today but in the meantime, you can see my photos here on pages 38, 48, 54, and 64.
Also, it snowed for the first time since October! I can’t wait to finally go out and ride on some real snow tomorrow!
Our snow-less streak in Tahoe continues and frankly, I’m tired of talking about it. It’s the worst winter on record. People are depressed. They are crying in my store. They are mountain biking and road biking instead. They are 4-wheeling in the Pine Nuts. They are traveling to other states in search of snow. The USAirbag leaves on Monday for new resorts in far away places and I don’t know what everyone will do with themselves after they’re gone. If you want to see a photo of me looking pro on the airbag, you can do so here.
In summary, I’m happy that I’m leaving for La Paz, Bolivia on Tuesday for a week and a half. I heard that it might snow in two weeks.
…to be all over the place.
Last week I took photos at the Mott Canyon Christmas Party for the Tahoe Mountain News. Speaking of the Mountain News, if you head there and look at this month’s issue you can see my photo spread for the Soroptomist Wine Tasting Evening on page 58-59. Disregard that note where it says, “Photos by Lauren Payne.” Taylor, the editor, accidentally put the other Lauren’s name in at 3 am after he’d been up working far too late. He feels really bad. Thankfully, I live in a small town. Also a bonus, Lauren is a good friend of mine. Anyways, if you are interested in seeing pictures of strangers, you can head on over to the event photo section and peruse them.
After hitting up Mott Canyon, Buddy and I stopped by Meghan Kelly’s, where her neighbor was throwing an ugly Christmas Sweater party.
I headed home early that night with a grand plan to wake up at 5:45 AM and hike up the groomer at Heavenly with Meghan and crew. It was a genius idea. I had been lacking serious motivation post marathon. I’m a very cyclical athlete: I run for awhile, then I ride for awhile, then I’m ready to snowboard for awhile. It makes me happy and keeps me sane to have some rotation in my life. Honestly, I’m ready for winter like most of the folks in Tahoe. It’s dark, it’s cold: I don’t want to get up in the dark and the cold to run. I want to snowboard. Meghan was feeling pretty ambivalent herself and suggested that maybe some dawn patrol groomer hikes were just the ticket to break us out of our rut. She was dead on.
Though the mountain top was socked in with fog, we were all SO happy to be outside, up early and getting some exercise in. Bonus that it ended with a sweet long groomer run all to ourselves.
We were jubilant at the top, despite the lack of view. It was a fairly easy hike and a really killer freshly groomed smooth run down.
It left me a bit tired and excited, finally. Sadly, this has been one of the driest December’s on record for Tahoe EVER. Apparently one year in the late ’70s it didn’t snow at all, all winter. Or so I heard. I also heard this is the driest December since the late 1800s. That’s what the town gossip claims. I unfortunately cannot find any sort of data online to back this up. Gossip be told truthfully or not, we’ll just keep hitting up dawn patrol to keep our spirits up and praying/dancing for snow.
My friend Meghan Kelly was recently made the director for the Northern CA chapter of SheJumps, a non-profit nationwide organization dedicated to increasing female participation in outdoor activities by building supportive communities of members.
Her first group event as director was a ski and board tuning clinic at one of our local bike/ski shops, South Shore Snow. Their ski shop tuner Pam Warman is pretty amazing: while she calls South Lake Tahoe home, she’s the first and only female ski tuner for the US Ski Team and she is a cancer survivor. She did an awesome job in the free two hour clinic and the group of students soaked up the information that she presented in a very clear and patient way.
Here’s a few of my favorite photos from the evening, but you can see them all here.