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Entries in hestra (3)


Keep on Blogging in the FREE WORLD

AspenSpin has been publishing continuously since 2006.  That makes me an O.G. in the blogosphere. AspenSpin was the very first "powder blogger" and now all that hard work has paid off.  In 2011, AspenSpin was named the #1 winter sports blog in the world by Cision, a large international P.R. firm. We now get between 50 and 100 P.R pitches per week.  Sometimes from very unusual sources.  

We've has some great sponsor's over the years who have been very loyal to us.  KJUS, KASTLE, NEVE, GORSUCH, HESTRA and others have supported AspenSpin and we thank them.  Honestly, I don't normally like to do product reviews...unless its a product or service or brand that we actually use and truly believe in, like the ones mentioned above.  Most of the 50-to 100 p.r. pitches get deleted with the other spam.  They're impersonal and not relevant, interesting or authentic to the mountain lifestyle, Aspen or skiing.    No!!  I'm not interested in "spreading the news" about adult diapers, or broadcasting info about above ground pools or jamming with a band I've never seen...or heard...or even heard of.  It's not that easy to make someone else's agenda or their product or service seem cool.   It takes time and effort.  

So why does AspenSpin continue to document the lifestyle.  We do get to ski every day and party every night...so there's that.

Honestly, it's not for the cash (blogging is soooo lucrative).  It's not for the chicks (there are tons of them).  It's not for the accolades ( non-stop awards).  We blog for the Love, and we love to get the FREE STUFF.

Every once in a while we get an invite from an interesting, relevant, authentic source.  Something that catches our eye.  Last week it was a stampede of FREE STUFF.  Here's my take on the best of the best.

Flips Audio. headphones & amp'd speakersFLIPS AUDIO HEADPHONES:  I can't count the number of free headphone's I've received...but FLIPS AUDIO are the coolest by far.  Cooler than Skullcandy, cooler than Beats.  FLIPS Headphones are also speakers. You can just flip the ear pads around...and you have portable, amplified speakers that sound awesome. Whether you wear them on your head or not...Flips offers tremendous sound in a durable, well designed, stylish package.   Give them a try for free... Click FLIPS AUDIO.

Picture Organic Clothing. 100% Re-Cycled ski & snowboard gear.PICTURE ORGANIC CLOTHING:  Skiing and snowboarding merge together with PICTURE ORGANIC CLOTHING, one of the few outer-wear brands that totally crosses over.  RIDE, SHARE, PROTECT is the moto of this French gear manufacturer that produces its garments with an organic and environmental mission.  I received a fantastic outfit made of fully RECYCLED material.   The Welcome Jacket was a Gold Medal Winner at the 2012 IPSO show.  Picture is new to the U.S. and I can't wait to try it out on the mountain.  Click: PICTURE

GoBites. nom nom nomGOBITES:  Healthy snacks delivered.  The "snack packs" from GoBites are 100% natural and USDA certified organic.  No preservatives or additives either.  Best of all they're tasty and they get delivered to your door every month.  GoBites offers 25 varieties of healthy, portion controlled snack packs.  mmmmmm good.  Nom Nom Nom.  Order here, Click GOBITES.

Robetowl. SuperabsorbantROBETOWL:  By Cascade Designs the folks who brought you Packtowl.  Robetowl is a highly packable, ultra-soft, superabsorbant robe.  It's a robe and a towel in one.  Robetowl is a fabulous product for travelling, at home, for guests or just toss it in your gym bag.  It's machine washable and antimicrobial. A great piece of gear for anyone.  Click: ROBETOWL

Bootlegger by Camelbak

BOOTLEGGER: By  Camelbak.  Bootlegger is a low profile hydration pack designed to be worn under your ski jacket.  It's lift-friendly, lightweight (200 g) and carries 1.5 liters of hydration.  The Bootlegger is designed specifically for skiing and riding...but it can be used anytime that you want to stay hydrated.   Its a great product...perfect for hiking the Aspen Highland Bowl.  Get one, Click: BOOTLEGGER.


*AspenSpin recieved promotional considerations for this posting.


SIA Snow Show (you should go, bro.)

SIA 2012 in Denver. click 4 pix.The 2012 SIA Snow Show took place in Denver last weekend.  It's the greatest show on snow...the biggest skiing and snowboarding trade show.  All the major snow brands are there and many smaller brands and start up's represent too.   

To break it down, The SIA Snow Show is pro skiers and riders, sales execs, retail buyers, models, free food and drinks and bags and bags of swag. It's serious networking and hopefully deal making.  Unfortunately SIA's Snow Show is held at exactly the same time as the Winter X Games in Aspen...so AspenSpin was a pretty busy boy.  Carmelo and I took the quick drive down to Denver to meet up with sponsors and troll for new ones. We got to see what you'll be riding and wearing on the mountain next  Winter.

Our quick visit to Denver for SIA 2012 was fun and exciting.  We scored BIG Time.  Unofficial totals:  t-shirts (12),  hats (15), chapsticks (unlimited), sick headphones (2), awesome socks (4), stickers (325).

Sick PIX:       SIA Day 1              SIA Day 2                Spyder Party

Pow Day in Denver. 1/27/12

AspenSpin's 5 Trends for 2012/13

1) COLORS and GRAPHICS:   The brighter the better.  Both soft goods and hard goods will feature vibrant, bright with colors.  Skis and boards will incorporate even more graphical designs than they currently do.  Animal prints are here to stay...the more exotic the better (see Shaun White).  Cheetah prints, snake-skin prints and more.

2) CROSSOVER:  The bad blood between skiers and shredders is over.  It's all good as long as you can keep up.  Many companies are finally understanding that their styles might appeal to both skiers and riders.   Several brands are creating variations on a theme for both two plankers and knuckle draggers.  Alpine Touring equipment including split boarding is a segment that is growing quickly.

3) CHANGING of the GUARDS:  Some of the smaller, more boutique brands are gaining strength and influencing their HUGE corporate rivals in terms of performance, design and demand. Newer, more adventurous shapes and sick graphics are coming from the little guys. Brands that come to mind, HIGH SOCIETY, ICELANTIC, SKI LOGIC and others.  From the majors, I'm digging the new quivers from KASTLE, ROSSIGNOL and VOLKL. I can't wait to try next year's models.  *AspenSpin did not participate in the on-snow demo events

4) SILHOUETTES : Skiing is always a fashion statement:  Baggy pants are still around, but I'm seeing more and more stylish cuts coming out... even from the American brands.  The Euro-style makers continue to lead the way...but everybody is bringing out sleeker and more technical outer gear.  We are still partial to KJUS from Norway. Their collection for 2012 /13 looks awesome.  Their stuff is performance oriented and stylish.  It even makes me look "slender".

MONKEY SEE / MONKEY DO.   No new revelations here.  It is well known that the snow sports industry is an incestuous community.  Everybody knows everybody else.  Many of the execs, the reps and designers move from company to company.  It's a pretty tight network.  From my perspective as a relative outsider who lives in a small mountain town at the end of the road...I don't see very many unique ideas coming out of the inner sanctum.  The bigger they are..the more resistant they are to change and risk. It's good to see that independent start-ups are taking more risks...and succeeding.  Then everyone jumps on-board.

It was on in Denver for SIA 2012.AspenSpin's 5 TOP moments @ SIA 2012

1) BAGS of SWAG;  You don't have to be a big time blogger to get tons of free stuff. Every booth has some promotional item on their counter.  It's official, I'm a Swag-hoarder...and I love it.

2) WAFFLES on a STICK.  Thanks Vans.  It's the Breakfast of Champions.

3) MARQUES SCOTT:  The internet-famous dub step animation dancer at the Spyder party.

4) SKI LEGENDS:  Meeting and rapping with Glen Plake and Picabo Street...pretty cool.

5) The MODELS:  Like any major convention...there were a lot of "booth girls".

Wrong Gear gettin it done at SIA 2012, The Snow Show. Click for Day 1 pix.2 Legends of Skiing convine at the Snow Show. click for pix.Breakfast of Champions. Day 2 at SIA. Waffles on a Stick. Click for pix.Yeah, They let smowboarders in. SIA Day 2. Click for sick pix.

The Spyder Party went Gonzo at SIA. Click 4 Pix. 



Early Bird Special - Aspen Style

An EARLY OPENING DAY in Aspen/Snowmass??  Sounds good right?  Sign me up for that. Ski Season 2011/12 is here.  In Aspen, ummmm Snowmass the lifts fired up and the ropes dropped 5 days early.  Snowmass Mountain was primed for action.  Plenty of early season snow storms up top created an early-bird treat for the locals.  AspenSpin and many others officially kicked off the 2011/12 ski season on November 19, 2011 at Snowmass. 


AspenSpin doesn't get out to Snowmass very often, but we jumped on the opportunity to click in EARLY and RIDE.  Turns out it was POW day (sort of). Super-freaky high winds on Thursday and Friday blew most of the snow off of the Big Burn...but it was still open for business. There was even some freshies. Ankle deep in spots...but we can't tell you where.   Another 3-4" fell during the day.

Our commute was extended a wee bit, but it was "all good" on Saturday.   Being "steps away" from the Gondy on Ajax spoils us. It makes the high speed 20 minute ride on Owl Creek Road, free parking (nice) and the 2 lifts to the top seem a litlle management intensive.  For the record, AspenSpin loves FREE PARKING.  Forgetting your boots in town is not a good way to kick-off, but we realized our false start before the round-about.   It was AWESOME to get out there on the mountain and do some figure 11's.  It was pretty cold and windy...that's why they call it Winter, but we were skiing... and it was fun to have the breeze and snow in your face again.  Plenty of people were ripping at high speeds on the variable early-season conditions.  We avoided any and all human-on-human collisions and we didn't eat any wood... which is always good.  The speed, the freedom, the physical activity... there's a reason people are passionate about skiing and riding.  In Aspen, ski season is officially upon us and it came 5 days early this year.

Friday Night kicked off the weekend in style at THE WHEELER OPERA HOUSE with a screening of ALL.I. CAN. from Sherpa Films and the locally shot movie,  IF YOU WANT TO FLY from Vital Films.  Both flicks were AWESOME and helped raise money and awareness for ALPINE INITIATIVES a non-profit that strives to get action-oriented people to take action against climate change.  Click their link to learn how you can help take action.  ALPINE INITIATIVES.  The Siiiiick after party at THE RED ONION went all night long.

Turns out AspenSpin is 2 legit 2 quit. We're hoarding a bunch of new equipment from KJUS, KASTLE, HESTRA and others.  GORSUCH even tuned up our rock skis (just in case) and THE ASPEN CLUB's ski-conditioning class definitely paid dividends.  

So we'll see ya out there...almost every day. We're doing the snow dance right now. Let's get it on, Aspen.   Click 4 Pix  EARLY BIRD SPECIAL-- ASPEN STYLE

V.P. of Marketing Christian Knapp samples the goods. Photo: Jeremy Swanson / ASC.Torin Yater-Walace shows his opening day form. Photo: Jeremy Swanson / ASC. click 4 pix.