New Years in BC - Maui

     After Mexico, I got to spend a few days in California getting in more beach time and catching up with family.  I flew back to make a pit stop in Utah for a sub 24-hour visit to repack my bags for Canada. It was dumping non-stop at Alta Ski Area and all my friends' videos from the storm cycles on Instagram jealous and amped to finally ski. One of my long time partners, Armada Skis, laced me up with brand new skis and apparel right before Mexico and my excitement to rock some brand new gear up at Whistler was through the roof. 

Huge thank you to Dan Villaire at Armada Skis for the finest kit setup!

Huge thank you to Dan Villaire at Armada Skis for the finest kit setup!

 

    My 2017 started when my flight from SLC to YVR literally pulled into the gate. I could think of better places to be at midnight on New Year's Eve, but I had no room to complain when I arrived at my favorite in the world. My dad scooped me up and it was back to Squamish where I was stoked to catch up with some awesome people I hadn't seen since spending my summer up there. We swung down to Vancouver to meet with the crew at RYU Apparel Inc. and Chasing Sunrise to talk business and ideas for partnership and collaborations. 

     I was fortunate enough to speak at Myrtle Philip Elementary in Whistler a couple days later to share my story and talk about leadership development and goal setting. It's always a special experience having the opportunity to speak with students (ages 9-16) who are the same age I was when climbing the Seven Summits. The impact on the children and teenagers is truly something special as they approached me after telling me about their newfound goals and even ones they've been working towards for years. 

    After lucking out on a week of unusual sunshine in Whistler/ Squamish, my dad and I made the migration out to Maui for my last week of winter break. It was a week filled with sunshine, warm weather, surfing, snorkeling, and beautiful sunsets every evening. The week revolved around working on my website and getting my calendar sorted out for Skype and speaking engagement bookings. The first two weeks of 2017 put the year off to an amazing start and I couldn't ask for a better semester break before starting Spring Semester! 

Window seats into Vancouver International Airport always strike gold!

Window seats into Vancouver International Airport always strike gold!

December - New Year's

     Final exams were upon us at Westminster and it was that time of year everything starting coming together before our eyes. Can't go without saying it got a bit stressful, but I was stoked for getting a month long break from school and Salt Lake City. The annual cold snap and cloud cover arrived, so I flew to California to meet up with family before heading down to Yucatan and Quintana Roo. After a sleepless red-eye flight from Tijuana, plus a 5-hour layover in Mexico City, we arrived in Merida, picked up the rental car with no accommodation plans and immersed ourselves in what the region had to offer culturally and ecologically.

     Our stops included diving in Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Valladolid, Sian Ka'an, plenty of Mayan ruins in Chichen Itza, Tulum, Xcaret, and Corba along with countless cenotes (sink holes) in the region. With lots of good food, beer, music, and people in the mix, I was excited to call this only the start to my semester break and head up to British Columbia for dramatic change of scenery, temperatures, and activity. 

2017 the mission continues

What. A. Year. 

I've entered my 3rd year of University. Spent the summer in BC, Canada with  my father, music festivals, running mountains, new relationships, and all the time waiting for this incredible snow that is already landing here in Utah. 

Goals for 2017 are along the lines of pursuing my goals, primarily  in optimizing my ski world, capturing it on film.  Secondly, my passion to reach out to the youth of the world through speaking engagements and appearances, creating change and awareness for issues that affect us all. 

Ad Alta (to the summit)

 

Alpine fast packing in Utah mountains just before the snow this year.  

Alpine fast packing in Utah mountains just before the snow this year.  

It's dang near 2016...

Oh man how time flies. 

Coming at you from UTAH, home of the best snow on earth. I've been attending Westminister College. In my second year now. It's been huge for my personal growth. The crew and tribe here is what I needed. I simply  love it here. Mom is in Orange County So Cal, and Dad is in B.C. Canada doing his thing. 

I'll be in Utah for the winter and hope to see ya'll on the slopes. Let's make a lap or two and schred a bit. -JR