Words: Phil Larose

Photos: Plehouse

Bélanger and me have been going to Japan for a couple years now. Our Japanese sponsor Phenix invites us every year because they need still shots of us for their show they hold each year. We always have been going the 3 of us and now that Dion couldn’t make it because he was in Europe, we decided to take the opportunity to invite one of our cinematographers Phil Benjamin and rider Josh Bibby along with us. It definitely was a great experience for me and Phil to witness their excitement upon their first time in Japan.

We stayed 7 days and each journey was different. The snow was fresh and untracked when we first arrived at Shiga Kogen. Phenix had hired a guide for us so we could go to cool places in the mountain right away. We shot some powder turns and had a lot of fun just hanging out and skiing all around.

Between a few cocktails and very Japanese meals at The Grand Phenix Hotel, we enjoyed Bibby talking and talking about his clothes and watch him wondering about what hat (among the15 hats he brought) he should put on. I suppose Bélan knew Bibby better than me, but it was the first time that I was traveling with him. I must say he has a very nice personality and is definitely or will definitely help the sport to grow.

Anyways, we skied every day and got stuff done for Phenix as we had to, but the last day was the greatest. A foot and a half of fresh powder was lying on the ground when we woke up. The powder was so light that we could barely feel it. We all put our skis on and went powder skiing all day. To me, it was the best day of the year. We were getting constant face shots and we had the whole mountain for us basically.

After that we went to Tokyo, ate some sushi, shop around and left. We all had a great time.


1. Bibby ate a whole shrimp not cooked including the juicy head and legs

2. Bibby talks a lot about his equipment.

3. It was mandatory that we stoped in a skate shop in Tokyo so Bibby could by a sweatshirt. He also bought neck chains one with a Cadillac logo and the other one a cross. He was looking real ghetto until he saw two black people and removed them automatically because he was scared to get beat up.

4. That’s it