The 25th of august a storm hit Valle de Las Leñas leaving almost nothing of snow on the slopes. The next morning we started early, the weather conditions looked perfect for hiking and we decided to go for Cerro Torrecillas. Tristan Sanchez, Lorenzo Medioli and me formed the team. We approached on skins up to Cerro Negro bottom, continued the trail hiking on boot deep snow up to the summit [...]

Johnny Collinson is a buddy of ours. Yes, he looks like a girl – and never more than in the beginning of this video. Yes, he wears feathers in his hair. But there’s no denying the kid can ski. You might notice that this video mostly shows Johnny in gnarly mountain terrain such as: Denali National Park, Bolivia, and India. Johnny is a mountaineer. No, like a real one. Johnny had climbed all Earth’s “Seven Summits” before the age of 17. Not bad This edit show’s Johnny’s wide range of mountain skills. The kid isn’t afraid of high elevations nor marginal conditions; he’ll still charge. You can really [...]

The guys from Nimbus are into one thing and one thing only: smoothness. The gnarliest lines on Earth? You can have ‘em. If it ain’t smooth, they ain’t into it. Theirs is a refreshing look into how a mountain can be ridden. These guys like deep powder, pillows, big airs and smooth transitions. Imagine if you could travel the world in search of these four things. Not a bad life. Chris Benchetler, Eric Pollard, and Pep Fujas just did exactly that and “Coordinates” is what they have to show for it. The movie was shot entirely on GoPo cameras, which is also impressive. [...]

Jackson Hole will begin working on building a new lift this summer that will be ready for the 2014/16 ski season. The lift will be named the Teton lift and it will take skiers 1,600-vertical-feet and drop them off very near the entrance to Granite Canyon at the Northern boundary of the ski resort. Granite Canyon is within the Grand Teton National Park and it holds some killer terrain. Almost too [...]

Las Lenas will close this year on September 8th, 6 weeks earlier than their normal closing date of mid-October. Last year, 2013, Las Lenas closed 4 weeks early on September 14th. Las Lenas hasn’t truly had a good season since 2008. This is sad because Las Lenas has some of the best terrain in the Southern Hemisphere. Lenas got some big snow in June before opening and that was about it. Since those June snowfalls there have been a couple decent storms but nothing big and hearty. Below is every report we have from Las Lenas in [...]

Nick McNutt from Whistler, B.C. has made the TGR team, which is nice. Talk about a dream come true. Nick submitted his best edit to TGR’s Co-Lab comp and came up short – ie he didn’t win. But, TGR noticed his steeze and gave him a call -ie he won. Nick was invited to shoot with TGR this past winter and it sounds like he crushed it. Big congrats to you, Nick. Enjoy it! “In 2013 Nick McNutt entered TGR’s Co-Lab competition. Skiing out of his hometown of Whistler, British Columbia his smooth buttery style, switch landings, and easygoing persona caught the eyes of the TGR team. Although, he would eventually fall short of winning the $100,000 [...]

Looks like the season might be coming to an end soon. Rumors have spread that the 8th of September has been set as the closing date. Last week was warm and we enjoyed spring skiing conditions. The storm that was supposed to hit Las Leñas last weekend with about a half a meter of snow was a disappointment. It started to snow a little bit on Saturday around noon and continued on and off until Sunday. But it didn’t really accumulate in the valley, but up high and in Valle Hermoso it snowed quit a lot. On Sunday pretty much everything was closed due to high winds [...]

The best surfers in the world showed up to surf the heaviest barrel in the world this week. The Tahiti Pro at Teahupoo did not disappoint. The swell came in HUGE for finals day on Monday and truly freaked everyone out. These were the biggest, more perfect waves ever surfed in ASP competition history. It was mesmerizing to watch… I sat in my kitchen in Argentina and screamed my head off for 3 hours on Monday night watching this comp live. [...]

Located in a warehouse just south of Jackson, WY, Mountain Athlete is an unconventional gym to say the least. There are no fancy machines and most of the exercises don’t require much beyond some free weights, a pull-up bar, and maybe a sandbag. Founded by Rob Shaul, Mountain Athlete provides specialized training for a variety of outdoor pursuits such as mountain guiding, climbing, kayaking, and skiing. Dubbed “The Monster Factory,” it has produced top-level athletes such as Griffin Post, Crystal Wright, and Kit DesLauriers just to [...]

“Check out our group of smelly hippy three pinners: 1995 Mt Lassen.” – Dan (one of the guys in the photos) This photo was taken on June 1st, 1995 at Mt. Lassen, California. Mt. Lassen is a stratovolcano in Northern California that is known for its copious winter snowfall. 1995 was simply insane at Mt. Lassen. “Can’t believe that little plow scrapped away that drift just so we could ski in June.” – Dan (one of the guys in the photos) 1995 was an interesting year on Earth. ’95 was a La Nina year (legendary for big snowfall winters) and was the 6th warmest year on record on Earth (and the #1 warmest ever at the time). Mt. Lassen, CA by the Numbers: 10,463′ [...]

This video proves, once again, that Portillo has incredible terrain. Wow. Northern Chile has had a dry winter this year. Portillo is the furthest north ski resort in Chile that we know of. It sits at the same latitude as San Diego, CA. Just last week Portillo released this statement on their Facebook page and their website: “Most of our lifts are functioning and all of the major slopes have adequate snow [...]

On August 23rd, I took a solo trip down to the secret “Skinny Dip” swimming hole located in Oakhurst, CA. The 4 mile-long dirt roads and hidden paths had me turning in circles, but once I got on the right track, it was very easy to find. A very short .25 mile hike had me swimming in no time. The water was flowing at a decent rate, enough for the 20 foot waterfall to fill the pool below and continue down to other Jacuzzis and pools. The water was about 10 feet deep, so it was a perfect place to dive (feet [...]

These photos are all from August around Tahoe. While not quite as stormy as July, there were still some days of really amazing clouds. Prints of these photos and a many more are available for purchase at mattbansak.com with various mounting and framing options. To kick off my new website, you can use coupon code SNOWBRAINS to get 20% off your entire order, until August 30th! [...]

It’s that time of year, the product guides are out, the temps are dropping, and there are even rumors of snowfall at higher elevations. Despite it still being August, ski season is right around the corner. If you ripped your jacket, blew an edge, or lost some precious gear tomahawking down the mountain, you’re probably in the market for some [...]

Catedral ski resort in Bariloche, Argentina got about 3-4 inches of snow last night. It wasn’t quite enough to bury the hard layer underneath, but it did make things fun. You could ski the whole mountain again and the shatter underneath quieted down every run as the sun softened things up throughout the day. The Nubes chair was the call today in the bright sunshine. We’ve had about a week of funky weather, so it was great to just have a pure [...]

The famous Farmers’ Almanac just released their 2015 Winter Weather Forecast for 2015 today. The Farmers’ Almanac has been in continuous publication since 1818. Today, it’s circulation is still around 4 million copies per year. It’s produced by the Almanac Publishing Company in Lewiston, Maine and was originally founded in [...]

South America is huge and the Andes mountain range is the longest mountain range in the world with the tallest mountain on Earth outside the Himalayas. The good skiing in the Andes is mostly in the south and can be phenomenal. On the right year, it can be non-stop snowstorms in the south and incredibly long, smooth descents in the north. South America is raw, rad, and wild. If the snow isn’t just right, the culture most certainly is. Seven nights a week there is a raging party waiting for you at Wilkenny, Dusk, or any of the other of the many night clubs in town. Combine these clubs with how good looking Argentines are and [...]

Mt. Hood is about 60 miles east of Portland, Oregon and probably has the best and most consistent summer skiing in North America. Lift tickets are $62/ day and skiing is from 7 AM-2 PM. Snow is generally hard packed (salted) from 7 AM to around 9:30 AM ( depending on the daily temperature and weather)and a very nice corn from 10AM to 12 PM. It usually gets very soft and slushy from about 12 Pm to closing. The best time for gate [...]

NOAA just released their latest forecast for September 2014 in the USA. They’re feeling confident that the Southwest along with Utah and Colorado will experience above average precipitation in September. They’re also feeling confident that the West Coast will be hotter than average this September. All of Alaska, the Southeast, and Maine are also forecasted to experience above average temperatures. September is a bit early to start thinking about snow, but these early storms in Colorado and Utah could be interesting. Of course, early snowpacks [...]

UC Davis just released their annual “State of the Lake Report.” This report speaks to Tahoe’s clarity, temperature, deep mixing, algae, future, and more. Here are some of the main points from the 2014 report: Lake Tahoe only rose 6 inches from spring snowmelt this year, one of the lowest rises in history. Tahoe will fall below natural rim level later this year. Clarity remained at 75.3 feet, the same as 2012, but 13 feet better than 2011. This is most likely due to the low rainfall/snowfall [...]

SALT LAKE CITY—In a move designed to help the metropolitan area attract more tourists, Salt Lake City officials unveiled a new advertising campaign Thursday reminding potential visitors that they can leave at any time. “With our new ‘Free to Leave’ campaign, we’re letting the world know that when you visit Salt Lake City, you can get out whenever you want, day or night, whether you’ve only been here for a couple of hours or a couple of days,” Mayor Ralph Becker said, emphasizing that [...]

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