Deep Winter / by Strain

The first week of the new year is probably my favorite time to be around Whistler.  The Christmas vacationers and New Years partiers have returned to the cities, leaving the mountains relatively quiet during a time of year noted for the intense winter storms that pummel the coast day after day.  It isn't unusual for the alpine to shut down for several days at a time as the snow piles up, forcing powder hunters into their secret forest stashes until the weather breaks and the upper mountain opens with several feet of fresh. For 4 years now, Whistler has played host to the Deep Winter Photo Challenge, a 3 day contest that pits 5 photographers against each other for a hefty prize purse in stormy conditions that tend to be the exact opposite of ideal for photography. Sadly, I wasn't able to attend the event itself this year, but I was shooting with some of the participating athletes in the days leading up to the contest, working through the storm on our own little Deep Winter side challenge. I'd be stoked to be one of the competitors someday... but I think I'll wait until Jordan Manley gets sick of winning every year.

A pair of photos of skier Jake Cohn on Blackcomb Mountain in the early days of the new year. Deep.

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I missed the slideshow presentation because I'm on the road, touring through interior BC with the Surface Skis crew. More about that in the next day or two - but you can keep up to date on our whereabouts and shenanigans by following my twitter. We'll be back in Whistler on the 18th... fingers crossed we're coming home into another storm...