Vasu Sojitra: Out on a Limb
After developing a blood infection at 9 months of age, Vasu Sojitra lost his right leg in an amputation. That didn’t stop him from discovering — and pursuing whole heartedly — an unbounded love of skiing that shaped his life. Today, Sojitra shreds bumps, hucks rocks, plunders powder and, with the help of outriggers and incredible will, accesses backcountry lines. Out on a Limb is a short profile of an individual proving that disability can be a mere hiccup instead of an impediment to your dreams.
Out of the Central North Island of New Zealand rises a trio of volcanic mountains — Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro — so sacred in the formation narrative of the Māori people that the firstcomers to the island averted their gazes from the flanks of the snow-covered peaks out of deference.
The mountains lie within Tongariro National Park, the fourth national park ever established in the world and one that was created explicitly to protect the sacred beauty of the volcanic peaks. Today, they are the site of popular ski resorts with lifts carrying hundreds of eager skiers to the snow.
Salomon skiers Josh Daiek, Chris Rubens and Mike Douglas wanted to be counted among those making turns on the still-active volcanoes. But these mountains don’t relinquish their spoils easily.
55 Hours in Mexico
Fly to Veracruz, rent a car, climb the third-highest peak in North America, ski down and return to work Monday — all over the course of a weekend. How hard could it be? 55 Hours in Mexico explores the limits of the weekend warrior and dives deep into type 2 fun with four friends who take off to Mexico for an outlandish adventure on the continent’s highest volcano, Orizaba.
2015 Presentation: Jeremy Jones
Jeremy Jones is a busy man who wears many hats, most of them warm. He’s a legendary big mountain snowboarder and has starred in more than 20 films, including several produced by his brothers — Teton Gravity Research creators Steve and Todd Jones. He is a founder and owner of Jones Snowboards, which makes boards from sustainable materials through a carefully sourced supply chain. Jones also the founder of Protect Our Winters, a coalition of outdoor athletes working to combat climate change.
In Person: Jeremy Jones
Jones’ home mountain of Squaw Valley in Northern California has been especially impacted by global warming. As he points out, “People who are in the mountains on a daily basis see undeniable changes to our winters.” Jones does his part to make a difference by riding as many self-powered lines as he can, eschewing the helicopter rides that are so pervasive in ski films. But his efforts go beyond earning his turns and stretch into the realm of outreach and education. “If we get to the point where the ski resorts all close because there’s no longer any snow, the least of our worries will be that skiers and snowboarders don’t get to go play in the mountains,” he says.
A National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2013 — who was also named an “Agent of Change” by President Barack Obama — Jones will discuss his environmental efforts and how he manages to ride the epic lines shown in his various films.