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Luca Pandolfi chases the last light of the day above the clouds of the Chamonix Valley, France.

Credits: Seth Lightcap

Luca Pandolfi / Freeride Collective


Home ZoneChamonix
SponsorsCamp, Midlands, Mystic Freeride, POW Gloves, Pro Sport Shop, Promo Sport, Salewa, Spark R+D, Vertical Attitude, Zero G Chamonix
2013 Season Highlight Every single day of last winter was epic!! It was probably the best winter I can remember in the Alps since I started snowboarding twenty years ago. The highlights were 15 days riding untracked couloirs and pillow lines in the Dolomites in early March, the Frendo Spur on the north face of the Aiguille du Midì and the first descent of the Sentinelle Rouge on the Brenva Wall. Favorite Jones Boards I ride the Flagship for daily free riding. It works well on all types of terrain and snow. When I think I’ll find variable or hard snow on steep lines I ride the Carbon flagship and solution. Bottomeless powder days in the woods I ride the Hovercraft. Why do you snowboard? It's my way to express myself, it makes me feel alive. Riding revitalizes my mind and my body and balances my energies. When I snowboard I don't think. My mind gets quiet and another part of me that I recognize as my deep essence takes control; it's a door to another dimension. When I snowboard I experience life from another point of view, perfectly in the moment and completely absorbed by the element I am moving through. It's a form of meditation. My mind, my body and the mountain become one. It's a super feeling! If you only got one pow day for the entire next winter, where would you ride? Helbronner, the Italian side of Mont Blanc. This zone is the sickest lift-accessible big mountain freeride terrain I have ever had the pleasure to ride.
What's your dream line look like? My dream line would be in perfect compact powder. The line would start with a few tight turns on a steep spine with the slough falling on both sides. Then three massive accelerating turns on an exposed snowfield, before a mandatory drop through a rock band in the middle of the line. After the drop, a few more big turns, then into a narrow couloir that opens up into a wide apron. I like exposed lines where no mistakes are possible; I like the total mind concentration of making turns in the only place possible. What is one lesson every beginner splitboarder should know? Splitboarding unlocks a lot of freedom. It is a door into another world, a beautiful world that hides different type of dangers such as crevasses, rockfall and avalanches. Try to learn as much as you can about the terrain you will be touring in, be humble and respect the mountains. What video projects will you appear in this season and what mountain ranges or lines are on your radar? I will be featured in a couple webisode series on EpicTv - "Secret Stash" and in my own series called "Life though Luca's Lens". Hoping to take part to a two-month splitboard expedition to the North Pole in March then head to Peru and Bolivia next spring.