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JAPAN GRABS - Hakuba 2014-2015 : A Season Exploring the Japanese Alps


Excellent review, Mark. Looks like an interesting board and a lot of fun to charge around on.

And yet another video to make us jealous. Thanks. wink


Just read the full review. Great stuff, mate. I’d be keen to give that thing a go.


Nice review Marc. I’m pretty sure C2BTX doesn’t have rockered tail though. How is this board compare to your La Nina in powder, much easier float?


With c2btx the entire back half of the board (& front half of course) is rockered. It has those camber zones but overall it angles up. I should have said a board with softer tips though as the La Nina doesn’t wash out either.

Versus the La Nina, I guess on paper the Camel Toe gets the edge in float, but for real life riding they both float loads. The big difference is the stiff nose vs rocker nose, and the short tail on the Camel Toe that you can sweep around for quick precision turns


Ah I see what you mean, because it teeter-totters. My Lando doesn’t teeter-totter when layed flat (it just sits flat with mellow rocker in the middle and the camber zones touching the ground) so I don’t get that.

Have you tried the Billy Goat? Demoed that last week for 2 runs, I think you’ll like that too.


Happo Banks Closing

Wow, two weeks have passed since my last day of riding - on the last day of Happo Banks for the 2014-2015 season. I guess I should write it up, at the very least to introduce the next post.
Right, so it was that super busy weekend with the ‘Ride with Kyota’ memorial shred and ‘Robbing the Banks pt.2’ on Saturday, April 4th. Then, the next day was the last day for Happo Banks. sniff.
Unfortunately, mother nature was determined not to let us have a good time and just rained and rained all day. It was crazy. Our boots were so wet that we could feel the rain water sloshing around as we rode. We joked about our futuristic H20 cushioning liners…

Andrew, squeezing water out of his gloves

The flip side of the horrible conditions was that the snow was fast, and soft…and there weren’t any crowds. We had zero lift lines all day and just lapped the park with no breaks. It was actually good fun and we turned a throw-away day into something quite good.

Bubbles said a few words at the end of the day

Then, on the way down to the parking lot, Andrew decided to go offroading a little

I wasn’t sure he had enough speed to make it…

but he did!


So, next weekend at Hakuba 47, there will be a big event….and it’s free! Woohoo!
There’s going to be a ‘3D’ course, which means banks and bowls (always rad!) AND demo boards to try from loads of companies AND a flea market at the base. The best part is that it will be going on all weekend - so if you can’t make it on Saturday, drive up on Sunday.

Personally, I’m looking forward to trying out some Replant boards, some Lib Techs, and maybe grab another ride on the K2 Cool Bean. Hopefully they have some One Ball Jay wax for sale too.
The facebook page for it is here:

the flea market facebook page is here:

and of course there will be an after party! Link is here:

Here is the official Japanese info (with the guest rider list):

4/25.26 Hakuba 47で3D地形、試乗会&フリーマーケット

梶浦修治(Slopestyle初代チャンピオン)をメインにLive Naturally CrewがFunな地形を作ります。
Out Flow.Replant.Green lab.Jones.One Ball wax.Ride,K2.Prana Punks.Capita.Union.Deeluxe.NOW Binding.Dragon.Signal.Flux.Cross5.LibTech.Gnu.Allian.
Entry free(リフトチケットは必要)

:Guest Riders:
Shuji Kajiura(Out Flow)
Goro Komatsu (Replant)
Yuu Nishiyama (Out Flow)
Tasuku Matsuura (Out Flow)
Noboru konno(Capita)
Masashi Nishina (Replant)
Ken Shibuya (Blue Blood)
Hideva(Out Flow)
Jiro Nakayama (Green Lab)
Nobuyuki Ohe (Redi)
Ruiki Masuda (Volcom)
Yatto (Volcom)
Kuya Kubota(Volcom.Lib tech)
Yuta Kiyohara (Capita)
Go Biyajima (Green Lab)
Takashi Ito (green Lab)
Mitsuhiro Sugimoto (Replant)
Yuta Kobayashi (Hachi)
Masaki Kitae (Hachi)
Hassy (k2)
Masashi Kuroda (Gentemstick)
Atusshi Gomyo(Prana Punks)
Naoyuki Watanabe(Prana Punks)
Kentaro Miyawaki(Ride)
Yuya Akada (Arbor)
Yudo Yoshida(Replant)
Hisanori Katsuyama(T.J brand)
Yuki Nakamura (Capita)
Sayaka Kato(Ride)
Maiko Matsumoto(T.J brand)
Naoki Ito(Rome SDS)
Ryosuke Abe(Home School)
Ryoki Ogawa(Ride.Volcom)


Happo Banks 2015, a last hurrah!

Before we had the rainy, miserable ending to Happo Banks 2015, Andrew and I enjoyed a pretty sweet bluebird day.
Andrew had been going on about how good his Trapper Ursa Major was in the pow (and relegating all his other boards to ‘backups’), but I was surprised when he decided to ride it at Happo Banks. Andrew’s park deck is a 56 Smokin Superpark, so riding the 61 Ursa was going to be a big change. Well, it turned out to be a non-issue, and we got some good photos. Check them out:

The top section of Happo Banks is an open bit where everyone gets their very serious carving face on.


Hands up if you like methods

Here is another angle, with Yellow Jacket guy making it a double air

I’ve got some more Banks photos lying around so I’ll throw those up too sometime. The Japan Grabs season is far from over!


The Hachi crew just posted this video they made from the Dream Session at Norikura. Good times!

<div id=“fb-root”></div><div class=“fb-video” data-allowfullscreen=“true” data-href=”/originalhachi/videos/vb.135441339945125/471246913031231/?type=1”><div class=“fb-xfbml-parse-ignore”><blockquote cite=”/originalhachi/videos/471246913031231/”>先月のDream Session 最高でしたね。ゴローさん、関係者の皆様ありがとうございました!#dreamsessionPosted by HACHI on Sunday, April 19, 2015</blockquote></div></div>


Today I’ve got Neil Hartmann’s video from this year’s F-Stop Mountain Shootout for you. It’s a good fun watch, which got the biggest single laugh of the night. Hint: it’s got to do with ducking ropes. This video stars Ken Shibuya, Yuta Kobayashi and DANG Shades owner, Chris Beresford. Have a peep:



Last weekend saw a new event at Hakuba 47 ski resort: Mountain Wave. And that’s exactly what it was - a wave down the mountain LOL
It was sort of an old school halfpipe but with little features all over the place. On the right side at the top, there was a step up ledge which you could, of course, step down from. A few turns and slashes later and you had a pair of hips on the left. The course meandered down a bit further before spitting you out in a spot that still let you do the bottom section of the 47 park. The weather was warm bluebird and the event was free! Life was good. Oh, and they had a flea market down in the parking lot where I scored some 100 yen t-shirts (new with tags!).

Here you can see an overview of the course. It was to the lookers right of the halfpipe

Boosting an indy crossbone off the main hip in the course

It was a fun atmosphere at the top of the course with loads of next year’s boards to try. Off the top of my head I saw K2, Jones, Ride, Capita, Replant, TJ and Green Lab

Reverse carve on the side of kicker

There was a demo session by a long list of guest riders AKA pros. They hit the pipe before a mandatory method at the bottom booter

Check out the huge crowd at the top!

Slashes still can happen in spring!

He then followed it up with a method

Front 3 off a hip

More riding pics


Meanwhile, the regular 47 park was going off as usual. 50-50 front 3 out

Next year’s Replant boards. I tried the Blessing wide and it was super sick. Soooo fun! (third from left)

Yuki ita boards

Next year’s Green Lab lineup



Ah man, that looks like ridiculous amounts of fun! grin


Mountain Wave pt.2 - Methods on Parade

So, after the guest riders did a lap through the pipe they had to hit a booter and do a method. I snapped off a bunch of these and will just post them here. It’s cool to see everybody’s different interpretation/style!