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…And We’re Back

After almost a year, we’re back with more winter content!

During the hiatus, lots has happened. Ryan Denning Creative has turned into a much more serious business venture over the last 9 months and wedding films have taken up the vast majority of my time. Being able to celebrate and spend time with a couple on one of the most important days of their life is so special and being able to hand them a personalized wedding film from our cameras after it’s over is even more rewarding.

Please have a look at the video gallery over on ryandenning.com, as a team we appreciate it!

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Back to skiing…..we’ve been doing that too, in between building wedding films and selling them. It’s been a pretty special year here on the East Coast. Driving through Seacoast towns, snowbanks are as big as I’ve ever seen them. It’s been snowy up North but they haven’t had the blowout winter we’ve had down here. Still, I think I may be having one of the best ski seasons of my short ski career. Not only because of the snowpack but because of the new terrain we’ve stumbled on. In the past we’ve skied a lot at Bolton, this year it seems the ski touring wave has started to encroach upon our go-to spots. That’s a sore subject for sure, but I’ve spent the last 6 years telling everyone who will listen about Bolton and I can’t be bitter that there are a few extra tracks in my favorite spot. The Mountain has gone through multiple ownerships and long-term closures in recent memory and seeing it full of people, with a lift line (crazy IK) is phenomenal and I can’t be anything but happy for the team up there. Everyone works so hard to keep it together with such passion for winter, Vermont and the little village at the top of the hill. Thanks to Josh, Quinn, Jason, and all my friends who make Bolton what it is. I’d also like to publicly thank ‘T.O.G.’, Bill W., C.H., G.L. and whoever else pioneered the terrain we’ve been skiing for the last 6 years. I can’t forget Liz, my cousin, for introducing me to Bolton in the first place.

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The expanding ski touring market has brought guided introductory groups to the area and rather than a couple journeying splitboarders stumbling upon the terrain, the groups shred the place out in a single run. This is tough to swallow, but again – great for business and in the end it makes me smile to think about the look on their face when they ski it for the first time. These factors have inspired me to look elsewhere though, it’s been a blessing without a doubt and I can’t wait to publish the film at the end of the season with all of our exploration and shenanigans. Keep your eyes out, and enjoy the mental spring we’re about to have.

I will add, for good measure to anyone who is reading: Some things just need to remain a secret. If you have to think about it, please find other places to bring your intro/guided ski groups. I’m likely the friendliest of the people who ski the terrain at hand here.

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Saddleback, ME | March 13, 2014

Rob Brown and I spent our Vulcan at Saddleback, Maine. It was a great day to explore Saddleback, this was my first time up there and we practically had the place to ourselves. The drive up on Wednesday night was a bit treacherous, we were almost sidelined by a logging truck (or two) and we saw a bit of carnage on Route 4, particularly on the hills. We saw one state plow sliding down a hill sideways, scary. Thanks to Rob’s buddy Eric, we had an outstanding lodge to stay at for the evening in Rangely. The morning came around and we checked the STE Weather page for snow totals – lots of snow across the board, Saddleback was reporting almost two feet. I think we got on the 4th or 5th double chair, when they let the first double on there were like 15 people lined up. We headed straight for Casablanca and it was deep, it’s not often I get to ski on my 195 Praxis Pow Boards but this was the day.

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Myself, my brother and Rob Brown went up to Camel’s Hump yesterday to see how VT fared with Vulcan. Right from the parking lot we realized the snow had gotten really wet and dense the night before and it was going to be a challenge. Although the new snow depth seemed to be much deeper than what we had seen in Maine – the quality had gone to sh*t. The wet snow and my old touring setup didn’t work well – after 4 years of hard touring, my tired Naxo bindings broke at the toe piece, just like everyone told me they would. Skiing back down on 1 ski was a challenge, but a good workout. I’ll chalk Camel’s up as a cardio mission. It sounds like another 8″ fell in places last night and the rest of the week is supposed to stay cold. Spring temps are here and skiing is as good as it’s been all season, eventually we’ll have some stabilization of snowpack on George and we can get our annual pilgrimage underway.

Fail on pictures.

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Return of Winter (Part 3) | January 21, 2014

What a ride it’s been.

So grateful to have a patient touring crew for Tuesday, -10 degrees and not a single complaint all day from anyone. We checked out an old zone that I haven’t ventured into this season and it paid off pretty well. Bolton was reporting like 10″ since the weekend started but it seems as though this East aspect we were skiing (Bolton being West) had atleast another 4-5″. Our crew consisted of John Howland, Sam Chalek, Ryan Kinner and a wonderful new addition – Morgan Marzo. Enjoy!

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December Powder

Quite an active December so far, unfortunately it’s looking like there could be an ice storm coming this weekend for the mountains.

With the slow travel on Sunday I decided to try and stay close to home and find somewhere to skin, I suppose in an effort to save cash and stay away from the kooks. Weekends obviously suck and I’ve had zero inclination to wait in lines or get elbowed by the crusty old powder hound in the line for first chair. That sounds pretentious I guess but I’ve given into the notion that I may be turning into a Hermit. Call it pretentious, call it snobby – the rat race is unappetizing.

Here’s how the first turns of the season went.

I love skiing groomers just as much as the Jersey plate passing me at 75mph with 8″ of snow on 95 who I will eventually have to speak to about stepping on my skis in the madness that is Sunday River’s lift line but at some point, astonishingly quickly actually, it just becomes stale and mundane. Maybe a few nights sleeping in the parking lot at Bolton will help. Nothing like forgetting what day it is up at the 1500′ village. That 300″ average annual snowfall adds up somehow – in the form of a surprise 3 inches, twice weekly. Let hope this incoming system is kind to them because Northern Vermont is almost in, almost.

I’m real stoked to be skiing with a new crew from Burlington. I met John and Dane last season and they’ve got a great group of skiers and riders – Tuesday morning we took a trip up to the NEK for some exploration. The snow was significantly dryer than what I had seen in the Whites on Sunday and much dryer than what I had at home on the coast. Great skiing for sure, not bottomless but just enough blower for the tunnel effect. There is some potential up there this winter, see for yourself below. I’ll be back for sure and now that Andy’s living up in the area, game on!

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Skiers: John Howland, Sam Chalek, Ryan Kinner and Taylor Luneau

Hoping to get at it again on Saturday morning here in NH, before the ‘R’ word rolls in.

Away from the ski lift obviously. Carbon footprint bro.

Season of the hermit.

Erica + Nathan | York, ME

Erica and Nathan’s beautiful York, ME wedding is our first feature wedding film. It was one of the funnest weekends of the summer and an incredible experience for the team.

Contact us for next season’s availability. Thanks for checking out Alpine Live – enjoy!

Erica+Nathan | York, ME from Ryan Denning on Vimeo.

One Winter Day

A look back at a wonderful sunny day last season in Vermont.

One Winter Day from Ryan Denning on Vimeo.

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