Delayed Gratification: The Hard-Fought Ascent of Nick Russell

According to writer Drew Zieff, Nick Russell might be the world’s first professional splitboard athlete—not a pro snowboarder who adopted the split, but one who earned significant sponsorships solely from human-powered exploits.

Semantics aside, Russell is intimate with the concept of delayed gratification both on and off the hill, having climbed the proverbial mountain of his pro career like he does literal ones—step by hard-earned step.

Sammy Carlson: Not Your Dad’s Powder Turn

Sammy Carlson is no stranger to the spotlight. But after competing at freeskiing’s highest stage, the Oregon native now feels most inspired filming far from distractions in the mountains of British Columbia. There, while working on his current project, Resilience, he’s continuing to define what’s possible in powder.

Free Spirit: A Tribute to Luca Pandolfi

As backcountry skiers and riders, we’re understandably keen to study avalanche fatalities, so that we may learn from them and avoid the same fate. But rarely do we analyze a life—particularly a life well-lived—with the same scrutiny. Luca Pandolfi, a 47-year-old Italian big mountain snowboarder who passed away in Italy’s Gran San Bernardo Valley on March 17, lived one such life, both on and off the hill.

Convergent Tracks: The Chameleon

Jibbing was hot as hellfire when Eric Blehm became editor of Transworld Snowboarding in 1995. Most snowboard media focused heavily on freestyle, but Blehm was more fascinated by the Nitro Tour than the glut of twins that graced the 501 pages of the magazine’s 1995 gear guide. Blehm’s tenure at Transworld stretched through 1998, a […]

Toeing the Boundary Line: Should we still be skiing?

When I drove up Utah’s Cottonwood Canyons this past Saturday, parking lots were a zoo—more so than usual, that is. Stickered Subarus and trucks cozied up mirror to mirror. Groups of diehards and new users alike spilled out into the Wasatch’s infamously well-beaten network of skintracks. And with greenlit avalanche conditions and a balmy weather […]

As Resorts Close, Sales of Backcountry Touring Gear Spike

Toilet paper and canned goods aren’t the only commodities flying off the shelves in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. As Vail Resorts’ stock fell along with the rest of the market, and as ski resorts across the nation closed for the season earlier this month, the demand for touring setups has spiked. “Ski resorts […]

Jeremy Jones on dancing down spines, innovating new tech and fighting for our planet’s future

It’s not an overstatement to say that Jeremy Jones’s contributions to backcountry snowboarding have been unparalleled. Not only did he bring splitboarding to the big screen in the Teton Gravity Research Deeper, Further, Higher trilogy, but his eponymous brand has also dominated the splitboard market. Now, Jones embarks on his biggest endeavor yet—not solely enjoying […]

In Memoriam: Jake Burton Carpenter

Like many snowboarders over the history of our sport, my first board was a Burton. More specifically, it was a hand-me-down ’98 122 Chopper that I got from my older brother in fifth grade. It was deep orange, banged up and beautiful.

Earn Your Interns

To get their boots in the door, aspiring backcountry professionals look to mentorship, observation and a season or three spent hauling gear, shadowing classes and following in the tracks of others.

Board Test Week Kicks off at Crested Butte

The old aphorism “it’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon” doesn’t apply to Board Test Week—rather, it’s a marathon run at a sprint’s pace. And testers have been holding nothing back from the moment the starting gun for Backcountry’s annual splitboard test went off late last week in Crested Butte, Colo.