Anticipation runs through my veins. It is a feeling I have known for 30 years, but at times it can be a tough feeling to catch. The quest for these feelings of anticipation and excitement have kept my mind sharp and body healthy all these years.
At this point, I know a good day in the making well before it comes. It gets me in bed early and I wake with a purpose, easing my body into movement with some light exercise and stretching to prep for the day to come. After a big breakfast I head out, pump up the music in the car, and soon enough i’m briskly walking to the chair lift. Upward I go appreciating the comfort and ease of a lift ride to the top. As the chair climbs I take stock of the mountain, it’s subtle textures and the features catching morning light. Stoke is rising as I loosely plan my attack. Excitement boils over as I off load the chair. I look around. I am totally alone. This is definitely not a powder day by most standards. We haven’t seen a snowflake in a month, but my pulse tells a different story.
My excitement comes from what is under my feet. I am strapping into the first prototype of the Storm Chaser 142cm. The Storm Chaser was an experiment that started years ago with surf shaper Chris Christenson. We set out to design a niche powder board that blended the hydrodynamic features of a surfboard with the materials of a snowboard. It was the first snowboard I have ever designed with no care for how it would ride in hard snow. The whole point was to make a board with friction free glide in powder. But today is not a powder day. It’s a cold February day and I am here for the corduroy. I am alone, bubbling over with little kid excitement to ride a blue square groomer on a board smaller then my daughters!
Now moving down the mountain, I aim for a bank and let my body fall inward as my edge goes outward, sinking deep into a toe side turn. My inside arm and back thigh brush the snow with my face hovering just above the corduroy as the Storm Chaser hooks up, loads up and snaps me into my next turn. This turn and the ones that follow are the root of my excitement. These are the best turns I have ever made. For someone who has has been snowboarding for the better part of thirty years, those are not words I thought I would say on a hardpack February day.
The crazy part is, this board, this instrument for joy that has me feeling like i’m twelve again, and made my mountain feel new again, was not intended for hard snow. Building the best hard snow carving board we have ever made was a completely unexpected result of the design process.
This experience has happened many times over since I started Jones Snowboards. For the last ten years I could have written this same story about little kid excitement but I would have been referring to the backcountry and talking about how our splits ride like solids. It is why we test, tweak and experiment. Taking chances is how you evolve. An open mind, a thirst for exploration both in and out of the mountains is what Jones is all about. It is what is at the root of every board in our line.
Everyone is different. There is no one way to play the song of snowboarding. The Jones quiver holds a wide variety of instruments of stoke to get you feeling like you’re twelve years old again. They all work, they all play a different song. Bring an open mind, grab an instrument and let the music move you.