JP SKIS THE LOOP
It was on posters everywhere: JP Auclair upside down on a loop made of snow. Snow? We had seen skateboarders do it at around the same time, but they had the luxury of building stable structures with precision engineering, ensuring that all the curves matched up. For JP Auclair and the Poor Boyz crew, it wasn’t so simple. “It took JP one month straight of just working on the loop,” explains Johnny DeCesare. “It was such a nightmare that JP got shingles from it, from all the stress involved.” Part-way through construction, a piece of the top collapsed onto a builder, breaking her back, and the project almost didn’t go on. But after more work and re-engineering, the loop stood up long enough for JP to put down what Johnny calls “one of the most monumental things in skiing,” and appeared in PBP’s Propaganda. It will forever be ingrained in our minds as one of those tricks that made us all do a double take.
MORRISON STARS IN HIGH SOCIETY
With the release of Matchstick Productions’ movie High Society, Seth Morrison once again solidified his place as one of the kings of the backcountry. “Seth has always pushed the boundaries,” says Boyd Easley. “We got to hit the same jumps over and over again learning our tricks to perfection, where as Seth always has a different line or cliff or snow conditions. He has one shot at sticking a big line or cliff and he does it with so much power and makes it look easy. I think his segment in High Society made me realize how phenomenal of a skier he really is. And that he has a major screw loose.”
SALOMON’S POCKET ROCKET DEBUTS
With freeskiing growing rapidly, the natural progression was for skiers to take newschool tricks into the backcountry, but they lacked a ski that performed adequately in that environment. Mike Douglas and JP Auclair developed what would become the Pocket Rocket. It was a lightweight, fatter twin-tip ski with a softer fl ex pattern that allowed skiers to hit backcountry jumps, yet was solid-enough to ski the whole mountain. “For me, I wanted to head into the backcountry with my skiing and some of the new tricks,” says Douglas. “I was stoked because at the time, fat skis were really heavy and none were twin tips. We wanted a ski that was fatter and could go switch in powder.”
TANNER BAGS HIS FIRST COVER, FIRST PROFILE
In the December 2001 issue of Freeskier, Tanner got his first cover at the age of 18, after taking five major wins and three other podiums. It was already obvious that Tanner was the real deal on top of an emerging game; a notion that has only been solidified in the ensuing years.
In the interview for his profile, Tanner says: “Professional skiing these days isn’t really skiing. Most professional skiing today is done in the park and halfpipe. I want to see them ski real lines.” Six years later, Tanner won gold medal in the X Games halfpipe, and also recorded some of the best backcountry skiing to date in his movie, Believe. At 18 years old, Tanner knew what he wanted, and has been successful at accomplishing it.
“Shane Szocs told me to fi lm this guy because he’s going to be a superstar,” says Johnny DeCesare of the young Tanner. “I asked him what he can do and he told me 3s and 7s. He comes over and does the sickest, most stylie backflip and the most ridiculous 720. I ask if he can do it again and he does. I ask if he can do it one more time and he did it one more time. I told him: ‘You rule. You’re going to be doing this forever.’ I’ll never forget those moments.”