Issue 83

Event Profiles: February / March 2015

Event Profiles: February / March 2015

Banff Mountain Film Festival, Rahlve’s Banzai Tour, VetFit, 39th Annual The Great Ski Race, Santa Cruz Paddle Festival, Run Rugged Trail Camp Banff Mountain Film Festival Feb. 20, 21, & 22, 2015 — Santa Cruz The 2015 Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour will exhilarate you with amazing big-screen stories. Journey to exotic locations, paddle the wildest waters, and climb the highest peaks. Join UCSC Recreation when the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour brings the spirit of outdoor adventure to Santa Cruz, at the Rio Theatre on February 20, 21, 22 at 7pm. Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of bringing this event to Santa Cruz while also celebrating the 50th Anniversary of UC Santa Cruz. Tickets are available at brownpapertickets.com or in person at Bicycle Trip in Santa Cruz. Different films will be shown each night so join in for one or all three shows. This event benefits the UCSC...
Destination: Bear Valley

Destination: Bear Valley

A Sierra gem that keeps you coming back By Kristin Conard Between Tahoe and Yosemite on California State Route 4 is Bear Valley, a small and scenic destination with a rich history and year-round fun. Bear Valley is set in the midst of the central Sierra mountains, along the 61-mile Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway. This steep and winding road runs through the mountains along a trail that was once used by Miwok and Washoe Native Americans. California pioneer John Ebbetts used this passage in 1851 and thought it would be a good route for the transcontinental railroad. While that idea didn’t work out, it did become a well traveled wagon trail and the pass now bears Ebbetts’ name. At 7,000 feet, this high alpine sector was first named Grizzly Bear Valley, and it was developed as a ski resort in the 1960s. Bruce Orvis Sr. envisioned a sports complex...
Ear to the Ground – February 2015

Ear to the Ground – February 2015

Outdoor News and Notes for the California Region Kevin Jorgeson and Tommy Caldwell after free climbing the Dawn Wall on El Capitan. Photo courtesy Patagonia. First free ascent of the Dawn Wall sent by Caldwell and Jorgeson Patagonia climbing ambassador Tommy Caldwell and partner Kevin Jorgeson made history free climbing the Dawn Wall, the hardest route up El Capitan in Yosemite Valley. They summited after 19 days on the wall on January 14. Caldwell first conceived the idea of the climb in 2007 and has been working towards it ever since. The Dawn Wall, considered to be one of the hardest climbs in the world due to its extremely blank face, has never been free climbed. “When we first climbed the North American Wall on El Cap in 1964, we thought, ‘Well, that proves that any big wall in the world can be climbed.’ We never dreamed they could be...
California Brewing: Mavericks Brewing

California Brewing: Mavericks Brewing

Big taste that won’t slow you down Mavericks Rye Pale Ale, Tunnel Vision IPA and Belgian Style Wit (Paul Kirchner). Some breweries are launched in corporate boardrooms. Others originate from the backyards of home brewers. Mavericks Brewing in Half Moon Bay started after a bike ride. Mavericks is the brain child of Pete Slosberg, best known as the Pete of Pete’s Wicked Ale. An avid cyclist, he often went on long journeys starting from his home in San Francisco. “I would go on 25-40 mile bike trips, across the Golden Gate Bridge, and eventually stop at the Marin Brewing Company taproom in Larkspur. Problem was, after stopping there for a beer or two, I didn’t feel steady enough to get back on my bike and head home. Instead, I’d take the ferry.” Loving the reward of a good tasting beer but not enjoying the effects of too much alcohol, he...
EPiC: Saving the Solitude

EPiC: Saving the Solitude

Snowlands Network preserves human powered winter Snowmobile trespass. Photo by Jeff Erdoes. Imagine gliding through a serene Tahoe glade on a pair of cross country skis. Then imagine a line of snowmobiles blasting through the forest and shattering the peace. Sound familiar? Most likely not—and there is a reason. Snowlands Network has been quietly advocating for backcountry skiers and other human-powered winter athletes who care about wilderness values for over two decades. The advocacy group works to ensure that future generations can find pristine areas in winter where they can experience solitude while engaging in healthy recreation. The organization’s founder and President, Marcus Libkind, saw a need as far back as the mid-1980’s for human-powered winter enthusiasts to be represented as the Forest Service at that time was engaged in promoting snowmobiling at the expense of backcountry skiers. Libkind reflects back on Snowland’s beginnings, “I was confronted with the realization...
Liquid Imagery: Darryl “Flea” Virostko

Liquid Imagery: Darryl “Flea” Virostko

Three time Mavericks comp winner helps those afflicted with drug or alcohol addiction By Nelly Flea at The Ave (Nelly). I’ve known Flea for a long time. One of the hottest up-and-coming kids, he seemed to get really good really fast. I was amazed when he started charging Mavericks and he quickly became “the guy” out there too. His life has changed in the last five years, and he now spends most of his time trying to help people which is incredible for our community. Flea now runs Fleahab—an organization that takes recovering addicts surfing—and has a beautiful wife and two awesome daughters. Hometown: Santa Cruz       Stance: Regular           Specialty: Big Waves Sponsors: Body Glove, Pearson Arrow surfboards Favorite waves: The Ave, Mavericks and The Lane Goals: Just keep helping others and I’d like to open a full fledged rehab center one day. What do you like to do when...
Athlete Profile: Sachi Cunningham

Athlete Profile: Sachi Cunningham

A life shaped by water Selfie (Sachi Cunningham). The name “Sachi” means happiness in Japanese. Water photographer, documentary filmmaker and Professor of Multimedia Journalism at San Francisco State University Sachi Cunningham is half Japanese with a sprinkling of Scottish stock, so it is fitting that she finds the most happiness when surrounded by water like her island ancestors. A graduate of UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and Brown University, Cunningham’s documentaries focus on the ocean environment, international conflict, the arts, and her favorite pastimes, body-surfing and surfing. A long list of awards have been bestowed upon her work, from Emmys, to Webbys to recognition from Pictures of the Year International for her filmmaking with media outlets far and wide, including the PBS documentary series Frontline, the New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Discovery Channel, and the Los Angeles Times. Her avid passion for water surf photography since 1996...
Fat Bikes

Fat Bikes

The new winter adventure machine Words by Casey Coffman and photos by First Tracks Productions First Tracks Productions’ Anthony Cupaiuolo in the Lake Tahoe backcountry (David Braun, Go West Foto). Fat biking is one of the fastest growing segments in cycling, experiencing an almost exponential growth in the last few years. What was once a rare sight on the trail has now become commonplace, not just in the winter time, but on the dry trails of summer as well. But these monster truck bikes were built for the snow, and that’s where many riders feel they excel over many other forms of winter recreation. Fat bikes are best ridden on snow that is somewhat firm, groomed, or tracked down by other users. Avid fat bikers have formed many localized social media groups to inform one another about trail conditions after fresh snow falls, in order to find out the conditions...
Going Solo

Going Solo

A solo ski tour provides a large dose of backcountry medicine Story and photos by Leonie Sherman Gazing east on the best breakfast ledge ever (Leonie Sherman). If you love the mountains you need a pair of skis. And if what you love about the mountains is the crystal clarity of the air and how your heart and mind mirror that stillness with just a short immersion, you need a ski tour. Solo. It took five seasons on skis before I had the courage to tackle a simple overnight ski tour on my own. Even then only the loss of my steady ski companion spurred me on. After cramming more exhilaration, challenge, and satisfaction into 24 hours than I often cram into a week, I’m making a solo ski tour an annual ritual. I don’t consider myself extremely skilled or experienced, so for my first solo tour I chose a...
Separate and Not Equal

Separate and Not Equal

Equal access to multi-use trails builds a strong and vibrant community, so why doesn’t this exist in the birthplace of mountain biking? By Kurt Gensheimer There is a strange dynamic between mountain bikers and park rangers in Marin. The fact that this ranger declined to have his photo taken with them indicates a serious image problem. Photo: James Adamson/dropmedia.tv Davey Simon grew up an outlaw on the hallowed grounds of mountain biking’s birth, Marin County. He wasn’t an outlaw because he shoplifted or vandalized public property. He never spent time in a juvenile detention. He was a straight-A student. Simon was an outlaw because he rode his bicycle on public trails built on public land for public use. In most parts of the country, mountain biking on public lands is completely legal, but in Marin County, gaining equal trail access has been a decades-long struggle that continues to this...
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