Words by Luke Tanaka
Last season in Alaska was one for the books. We saw record snowfall in Anchorage and were literally inches away from an all-time snowfall record at Alyeska. February alone averaged 10+ inches a day and the stoke factor amongst the locals couldn't have been higher.
The thing I kept hearing day in and day out was that "The snow is so light!" A typical year sees a denser more maritime snowpack, but it seems that last year we just up and stole some of that good ol' Utah cold smoke (sorry Utah friends, we'll consider giving it back next winter). I spent most of the first half of my season touring in the surrounding backcountry areas. I had all of these plans at the beginning of the season to build jumps and learn new tricks but it was snowing so hard and the stability was so incredible that I spent my time pow harvesting and skiing the lines I had always dreamed of hiking to. We had such a killer crew last year, everyone was on point and it really allowed us to travel safely and efficiently to new zones.
As the season tapered off I spent a lot of time at Alyeska havin' fun in the sun! Alyeska is great because it's a full on natural terrain park. I grew up here and learned every trick I know off of these windlips and cat-tracks and it was especially nice moving back this year and revisiting my old playground. Last year was such a blast and I couldn't be more stoked for this year! I really hope it dumps down there in the States because I was getting the sense that my friends were starting to resent me for bogarting all the pow last year!
Big thanks to ON3P, Bern, Rime Knits, Quiver Killer, Phar North and of course Alyeska Resort for the best season of my life. Over and out.
Last years most Worst Topsheet Ever contest winner was declared, by Newchoolers' own votes, to be Luke Tanaka's "Fishsticks". Luke is one of our sponsored athletes, and since we give him skis already, we told him he would get a pair of skis with his topsheet and to pick an additional winner. Click here to see the full contest write-up is here in case you missed some of the hilarious best entries.
Luke Tanaka's Fish Sticks
After the contest, Luke spent a good part of the season rocking out on his Fishstick'ed 186 Jeffrey's, so check out this edit of his season in AK...