Snowboarding The Wall At Kirkwood Resort_thePlanetraveler S02E07

Snowboarding The Wall At Kirkwood Resort_thePlanetraveler S02E07

Have you ever been in a situation where at
that very moment you say to yourself, “What the heck were you thinking?” Yeah, well this was that exact moment for
me. In my last video, I was in Bali, Indonesia. In this video, I am in Tahoe, California and
I’m going to get back to the Bali, Indonesia coverage shortly, but because it’s Spring
time, and the snowboarding/ski season is almost over, I thought that I would do a quick episode
on snowboarding at Lake Tahoe. Spring skiing is the best, well not the best
but it’s pretty darn good. It’s mid April and we are out here skiing. They got a ton of snow out here. So I just wanted to bring that to you and
show you what Spring skiing is about so let’s get into it. This is me headed to the top of the mountain
to ski down the “Wall”. Now I ask you, does the “Wall” sound like
anything an intermediate boarder should be going down? Hold up! Maybe I should take you to the beginning to
explain exactly how I got myself in this situation in the first place. It was the first run of the day and I was
pretty amped up. It had been a couple of months since I had
been boarding. I was fresh off the recovery on an ankle injury
from a motorcycle accident so I was looking forward to go boarding one last time before
the season ended. How’s it going? Have a great run guys. Enjoy! Happy Easter! As soon as I sat down in the chair, it was
on. It took no time to reach the top and the wind
was blowing pretty good that day. I had no idea that would play a factor in
the later events. I sat down to check my gear prior to my first
run and then I was ready. I did one last final check. Uhh, ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain
speaking. Please keep your seatbelt on at all times,
in case we experience any rough air on the way down.. The best part about snowboarding late in the
season was that there was hardly anyone out skiing which meant that we pretty much had
free reign of the resort. My favorite part was going through this gully. There was no one there and was simply a blast. Before I knew it, my first run was done and
I was ready for more. But it wasn’t all fun and games. There were some pretty humiliating times as
well. Did I tell you that moguls are not my friend? You are about to see why. Two things to remember when going down a steep
mountain with an uneven surface. Slow and Steady. Unfortunately, that’s often easier said than
done. I was definitely having challenges. And of course there were times where I just
gave up. And then, there was the terrain park. This is me on a box. Let’s slow this down so we can get a good
look. Nice! Was nice! It was a pretty good day, but we couldn’t
end it there without going down the most challenging run of the resort, The Wall You guys been down the wall before? I have not. Ok. It’s a little steep. It’s a little hard coming off the top. Might be icy from the when blowing it off. But it’s definitely pretty mogully coming
down from the top to the bottom. So the first 200 yards is going to be a big
mogul field, but if you keep a good edge, you’ll be all set. Ok! Clue number one should have been the skull
and bones sign that I somehow missed prior to getting on the chair. Clue number two should have been the fact
that they were briefing me prior to going up. That’s not normal. Non the less, I ignored all the signs and
ignorantly went up this expert run. I had no idea what I was in store for, which
explain why I wasn’t the least bit nervous at that time. In the beginning, the ride to the top was
no different than any other run I had been on earlier in that day, but slowly as we made
our way up, I begin to realize that this run might be a bit more challenging. For one thing, there were fewer skiers here
than there were on the other runs. On the way up, I started to understand exactly
why it was called the wall. Each moment we moved closer to the top, the
more intimidating it became. And the trees were sideways. I don’t know why, but that added to the anxiety. Almost there, things suddenly started to get
real. I then realized that there was no turning
back at this point. And all of a sudden, the terrain changed. Did I mention to you that moguls are not my
friend? There were a ton of moguls. They kind of reminded me of a crater faced
kid with real bad acne. To add to the effect, the wind began kicked
up. The moguls were huge! This definitely was not a good idea. There was so much snow that the chair barely
cleared it because of how much there was. Hmm, It’s not so bad up here! I wonder why they built a fence on top of
this mountain. Look at that… A Skull and Bones flag.. Cool! I took my time before I readied myself to
go down. I was cramping up from boarding all day and
was trying to give my muscles a chance to relax. PIn the meantime, I took the opportunity to
watch other snowboarders and skiers to assess the best way down the mountain. On the way up, It looked like there were less
moguls on the far right of the mountain so I made my way there. Remember that fence I was wondering about. Well, I quickly found out exactly what the
purpose of it was for. The wind at the top was fierce and as soon
as I passed the fence, the wind immediately began to blow me towards the edge of the wall. Half strapped in to my board, it was difficult
to move. More and more, it was beginning to look like
it wasn’t a good idea to go any further so I stopped at the exact same spot as the last
victim claimed by the wall. And as if I didn’t already make enough bad
decisions for the day, I made yet another when I decided to take my board off and walk
to where I needed to be. As soon as I picked up my board, the wind
blew it from my hands. I had to quickly grab it before it went down
the mountain without me. Clearly, this wasn’t the best place to be. I decided to make my way to the rock up ahead
and hunkerdown until I figured out what to do. While walking there, the wind blew me closer
and closer to the edge of the wall. The nervousness started to kick in. As soon I looked over the edge I quickly realized
that this wasn’t the place to start my trip down the wall and yet it started to look like
the place the mountain had chose for me to go down. I hunkered down while I tried to collect myself. Once I did, I decided to make my way back
to that nice fence that caught my attention when I first arrived. On my way back, it was then that I noticed
the Skull and bones sign which said experts only. I had to fight my way back to the fence and
my board was working against me because I had taken it off and was hand carrying it. I tried to keep it turned into the wind to
minimize the amount of surface that was being blown upon. Finally, I had made it back. I had never been so happy to see a fence. I dropped my board and sat my ass down as
I tried to figure out my next move. As I contemplated what to do next, I came
to the conclusion that I was capable of conquering this challenge. I just needed to find the right line down
and I would be good. I took a lengthy amount of time to watch the
other skiers go down. The people I observed going down didn’t look
the least bit nervous. I was clearly out of my element. After watching them, I then decided that I
was ready to make my move. I started my way down. It was a combination of a cat digging it’s
claws into a couch as it tries not to be pulled away and a snow plow down the mountain. I took it nice and easy down the face because
should I fall, I was going down… and I wasn’t stopping. This video does not do justice to how intense
the experience was. Between the cramps and my progression down
the mountain, I took a second to look up and just appreciate the gignoumous cliff I just
traversed down. And then it happened; at the apex of the entire
day… My camera died. I did have my camera phone, but I didn’t want
to take the chance of losing it should I fall. Once I got to a spot where the terrain wasn’t
so treacherous, I pulled out my phone and started to record. So Josh just talked me into going down this
expert double black diamond run. it took me 30 minutes just to get the courage
to go down the face. It was frick’n intense, but I did it. The hard part is over. Now I just need to get to the parking lot,
in one piece, and get the heck out of here. Moving on to the next section of this double
black diamond run, things were looking a little suspicious. Did I say that the hard part’s over? Well, I lied. Look at this view. This is sick! This is ridiculous. I have no idea what I am doing up here. I sat and debated whether or not it was a
good idea to go down this bowl. The problem was, although it didn’t appear
to be, it was steep. I could tell because those I observed on the
run very quickly disappeared as they went down. I didn’t want to get myself in a situation. I did eventually successfully make it down
and swore to myself never again, but you know how that goes. See what that says? That says, “Experts Only” and they mean that! You should adhere to the signs. I went up this chair and took this double
black diamond run. It took me an hour to get down. So, take heed to the signs.

Antonio Breitenberg

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1 thought on “Snowboarding The Wall At Kirkwood Resort_thePlanetraveler S02E07

  1. David Ferrero says:

    A good way to prep for the wall is start on chair 6 and go right to monte wolfe. Once you feel comfortable on that slope and moguls then step it up to look out janek, also on chair 6. Once you master both then try the wall again. Perferably on a snowy/ less windy day. Also work on your carving cause its just not there yet for that kind of steep. Dont feel bad about sucking on the wall, my first time I got lazy on a turn an fell 50 to 75 feet non stop down it lol. If you couldnt handle the wall will all that snow on top for sure dont go when its early season.

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