Niseko, Japan - a Vertical Integration Trip

I recently returned from hosting a Vertical Integration trip to Niseko, Japan. I first went to Japan a decade ago for athlete work with Sweetgrass Productions on their film, Signatures. I immediately fell in love with the area and have found a way to go back nearly every year since. This latest trip was my first time hosting a Vertical Integration trip there, and I couldn't have asked for a better group of friends to take with me to the powder paradise.

^My oldest son, Amos, always likes to play in my bags as I pack at

All Good in Low Tide

Low Tide. It is a catchy phrase in the ski world to explain thin coverage. As in, no snow. It is a problem for a variety of reasons. The obvious coverage concerns, but the future avalanche implications also become paramount with new storms. As I write this, Northern Utah just received those new storms, and the avalanche curtains are indeed coming down out there. The low tide conditions leading into these storms was long and difficult, but I tried my best to make the best use of it I could. Despite all the glorious photos and Instagram posts there is actually a tiresome amount of work involved in what I do. I have to do it all at some point. So when the snowpack is thin, I might as well catch up on office work, training, scouting terrain, and holidays... oh yeah... holidays.

^I am a backcountry ski guide with Ogden, Utah based,

Western Roll

Working my rookie lumberjack muscles all summer and early this fall had my right shoulder and left elbow in a world of hurt. Thankfully I had a break in the forest clearing to take care of some business and family affairs back in the western rockies again. My kids had some doctor appointments, I had to check up on my rental properties, I had some strategic partner meetings, and I also wanted to ride my mountain bike in the mountains again. 

^My wife and kids and I throttled down across the Great

All Work, No Play... Kind Of

It has been a busy summer for me. With all sorts of new developments in my life the pace has gotten really fast. I am furthering my backcountry ski guiding work in preparation for winter, diversifying into summer outdoor industry guiding work, running rentals, and clearing my 17-acre property in rural Wisconsin. I have a lot of work on my hands, but it suits me. Fortunately for me, even though I work a lot, my work involves some elements of what most people consider play so I guess it's not exactly all work and no play entirely.

^As I talked about in my last post my latest home remodel projects in