STORM CYCLES DAY 4 – Skiing Finally, And By NIght
After one and a half nights on the train we were dropped off at the West Glacier stop where we were picked up by our host and guide, Greg Forin. Greg owns a cool little house that he turned into a hostel called River Rock Hostel in Columbia Falls, a fifteen minute drive from the train station. Here we met Hayden Price and Thayne Rich; the other 2 skiers on the trip. I was stoked to met these guys.
The next day day we had breakfast in a really nice small restaurant off the main street, shot some b-reel around the small town of Columbia Falls and just hung out a our lodge, as we call it. That afternoon Greg drove us to the Whitefish train station and we shot some more lifestyle stuff there, then we were picked up by the Great Northern Powder Guides, a cat ski operation fifty kilometres from the Canadian/Us Boarder. These guys have been around for only four years and they have a yurt that is a 45 minute cat ride from the highway. We started out late; the cat lights flickered like a party was going on outside we drove in the darkness to the yurt.
Some of the first words the owner, Jay said to us was, “You guys still want to go skiing right? We have no rules here so night skiing is no problem.” I’m going to let the filming do the talking for this, it was almost unexplainable; we skied into the light, sometimes with our headlamps on and other times just aiming for the external light that had TJ and Trent hide behind, with their cameras ready.
The next day, our first real day skiing, went off. The Guides let us do anything we wanted, let us go hit all their steepest, gnarliest zones that the general public aren’t able to access. They had received 20 “inches” of snow 2 days before. Conditions were perfect, bottomless feeling and so fast. The first gnarly zone we got on top of, after shooting some cool sunrise shots, was known as Buffalo Jump. A big row of interesting and different cliffs. We all skied impressive lines, either technical doubles or take offs to big airs right into smaller hits at the end of the shot. Then we were let off the cat to scope out Martha’s Mayhem, the steepest section of terrain they had to offer, open at the top but quickly rolled over and got into tight trees with multiple lines through them. We all skied top to bottom, with Trent filming from the other side of the drainage and TJ at the end of the run. Thayne threw a huge 360 off of one of the cliffs, the footage is madness. All in all, from only maybe 10 or 12 hours of footage we already had a Montana segment. We still had 2 days left touring around some local zones in the backcountry with Greg. What a time it’s been already. Stoked to go for a walk in the woods!