Massive Alaska: Breakout

Massive Alaska: Breakout

Words by Jamey Voss/RedBullSkiing

A typical day in Haines, Alaska involves getting up as dawn breaks over Lynn Canal. A visual inspection of the weather situation and some phone calls render one of two things: throw all your gear on and bust-ass to the heli pick-up or climb back in bed for another few hours. Yesterday involved the latter, as we awoke to rain and low clouds. Sometime around noon everyone at the Captain’s Choice Motel was milling about in the courtyard, killing time in the usual manners. Then the sun broke. Then the phone rang. This was no fire drill. Be at the airport in 30 minutes, we’re going up.

Our crew consists of Tanner Hall and Dana Flahr, and a handful of filmers and HD operators. Getting footage for “The Massive” is the obvious goal of this trip, but our group is also partnered with Rocky Mountain Sherpas, Inc., who are making a 16mm Avalanche Education Film. The Canadian Crew are here to document the safety aspect of the heli skiing operation here. Check out the trailer for their movie, “The Fine Line,” which will release in the fall.

Tanner and Dana promptly got to work under the careful guidance of snowboard legend, and our guide, Tom Burt. Landing on a high peak, Dana picked off a gnarly line into a cliff drop and Tanner dropped in off of the top of ridge into what he thought was double stager. “I thought the line had two drops, but it was actually four,” he said, laughing, later on. Tanner rocketed out the bottom, straightlining down to the heli.

The boys picked off a couple more lines, and a gap over glacial ice serac was scoped out before some weather moved in killing the light. We got shots in the can though, and there’s nothing quite like getting out in the mountains in AK for a few hours. It’s difficult to describe the immensity of the terrain here, so we’ll let the images do the talking.

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