Greetings SBSEF,

We have passed the 400” mark at Alta, and are approaching it at Snowbird.  It has turned into another big snow year, and this February has been one of the wettest on record, likely the most precipitation in 50 years.  Although this current system has been warm, it has truly been phenomenal skiing lately.

Just a few days ago we hosted the Bryce Astle Western Region FIS Slaloms at Snowbird.  The conditions were very good and the race featured an international field.  It has been 9 years since the tragic avalanche that took the lives of Bryce and Ronnie, and we are very honored to have the annual event carry his name and to have Laura and Jamie there.  The race also serves as a reminder that we ski in a very avalanche-prone place, and the danger in the mountains is real.  BRASS has done a great deal to promote awareness in the time since the accident.  THANK YOU to all who have worked on this

Tonight UDOT will close the road overnight for avalanche mitigation.  And in the morning ski patrol will also work to mitigate the hazards in and around the ski resorts.  The road will open in the morning when conditions are safe (ETO 8:30 AM).  Road closures and delayed openings are certainly frustrating, and we experience them frequently, during the last 2 seasons in particular.  However, we are very thankful to have these people watching over us, and keeping us safe, often putting their own safety in jeopardy to do so.  They save lives on a regular basis.  THANK YOU!

As the competition season progresses, SBSEF athletes are turning the hard work into great results, it’s a fun time of year.  I am always amazed at how much progress can be made in a relatively short amount of time.  Good luck to all our athletes, and a big THANK YOU to the family and friends supporting them.  Head U14 Coach Ben Reeder pointed out a nice article written by Dr. Jim Taylor on the topic of supporting our young athletes, it’s a quick but good read. LINK  See you on the hill!

Dream Big. Work Hard.

~ Bridger Call
Executive Director, SBSEF


SBSEF U10, U12, and U14 athletes competed in their second race of the year, two slaloms at the Utah Olympic Park hosted by Park City Ski and Snowbird. On Saturday, February 4th our boys raced in frigid temps and blasting wind, while on Sunday, the sun and warmer temps showed up for the ladies. Here are the SBSEF Podium Finishers:
U10 Men: Chace Kunigenas – 2nd, 1st
U10 Ladies: Elka Kirner – 2nd, 2nd, Violet Loeffler  – 3rd
U12 Ladies: Eva Widmer –  3rd, Farah Kaukab – 5th

Notable achievements – While putting down fast runs, Quinn Webster couldn’t quite put two together, He had DNFs in both first runs, but came back with a win and a second place on the second runs. Zach Mazur also had a remarkable weekend, earning his first top 10 in a South Series event.

One of the many components of JFAST is understanding race rules and regulations. During Farah Kaukab’s 4th race run, the competitor in front of her crashed and needed help getting her equipment back together. Farah, who had already started her race, had the composure and wherewithal to stop and request a rerun due to interference, which was granted and culminated in a 5th-place finish. Nice work Farah!

JFAST has its last qualifier this coming weekend (Feb 24, 25). One GS and one kombi at Snowbasin. The girls will race on Saturday, and the boys will Race on Sunday.

~ Bo Maciejko
Alpine Director and Head Jfast Coach

Skimo Update

Tucker Murphy and Alex Mankouski competed alongside over 200 other athletes in Utah Skimo race #3 at Solitude on January 23rd. Both completed the course consisting of 3 climbs and descents totaling over 1800’ of vertical in under an hour.

In race #4 on February 6th at Solitude, Tucker Murphy battled snowy conditions and was on track for a great finish. Unfortunately, he had an issue at the second transition and had to pull himself from the race. We’re looking forward to seeing what he can do along with the other Skimo athletes at race #5 on February 20th at Brighton.

Thanks to all the athletes for being part of the first season of the Skimo Team.

~ Davin Grapentine
Head Skimo Coach & Freeride Development Director

Alpine Devo Update

It’s turning out to be another great season for Devos.  We are enjoying the storms and getting to ski some of the Devo Favorites: Get Serious Chutes, Hiking Baldy, and of course Black Forest. Skiing the amazing steep terrain we have at Snowbird is key for our devos development.   We are working on pressure, edging and varying turn shape.  We are training hard for the Hot Cocoa Cup coming up this Saturday and Sunday (February 24 & 25).

Our Devo YSL Transition team competed at the UOP for a Kombi race on Sunday, February 18th.  Sam Norton skied to an impressive 3rd-place finish for U10 boys and not far behind him was Lukas Sopko earning a 10th-place finish.  The girls did an awesome job and all listened to their coaches and made adjustments to improve their second fun times.

We are looking forward to the YSL Finals at Snowbasin on March 9th and 10th, and as always we are super stoked for our favorite event of the year: The Good Vibes Only Devo Freeride Comp on March 30th and 31st.

~ Jason Stone
Head Devo Coach

Alpine U16 Update

Hello race fans, it’s been a busy month for the U16 team juggling UOP/Snowbird training and most recently some action-packed racing at the notoriously difficult Sun Valley venue.  Despite the challenging snow conditions, the cold, and the relentless hill Sun Valley turned out to be our most successful series thus far this season.

Some of the outstanding performances in the GS races are Alta Brower moving up 22 places in GS 1, Quinn Costello moving up 24 and 23 places in the respective GSs, Calvin Cui moving up 24 and 25 places and August Mennell making a huge leap of 27 places in the first GS and 25 places in the second. Additionally, Halle Hipple found herself picking up more hardware with 5th place in the second GS of the series.

After the second day of the GS races, SBSEF skiers took to the Sun Valley ice rink to skate a few laps. A good time was had by all, even those who spent more time on the ice than they did on their feet.

Brushing off their bumps and bruises from skating, our U16 team came out charging in the SL. Quinn Costello led the pack finishing in 8th but many of her teammates had personal bests in this race including Devon Harman who went from 40th to 20th. The attack from the back came from the girls, Mia Pagano moved up 25 places from starting 66th, Elizabeth MacKay moved up 31 and Blake Larsen went from 52nd to 19th. The hardest-charging Snowbird skier for the series came from none other than Alta Brower who moved up a whopping 36 places to finish 41st.

For being one of 4 of our U16 skiers who finished and moved up in all three Sun Valley races, Alta Brower wins this month’s cowbell for moving up the most!

The last of the U16 qualifiers will take place next week on the “Big Hill” at the UOP with 3 Super G races.  That hill is long and steep, however, with the effort this team has been putting in to get results like we had in Sun Valley I am confident they all will step up to the challenge and shred it like cheese!

~ Fritz Wood
Head U16 Coach

Alpine FIS Update

FIS has been cranking on full these last couple of weeks. As we’ve become accustomed to over these last two years, the snow (or lack thereof) has been causing some serious headaches with our calendar and pulling off the scheduled races as intended. Though not as often as we would like, when the canyon has cooperated, our group has enjoyed getting together to take advantage of the awesome off-piste-free skiing conditions of late. It has been refreshing to me personally to witness the passion and spirit that our group displays when they take it upon themselves to ski on their own or with friends and family at other resorts – keeping that Bryce Astle Spirit alive – when LCC is too difficult to coordinate around.

As of Tues, Feb 20th, we’ll have completed our main qualification circuit for U18 Nationals that has taken us to Jackson Hole (twice), UOP for Super-G, and Snowbird. While some athletes in our group who hoped to qualify may or may not make the grade this year, I’m personally really proud of the individual progress within our group. They have shown themselves to be an exceptionally respectful, fun, passionate group of kids who have supported each other through many unique challenges and also been quick to celebrate each other successes as well.

This year we have continued to “debrief” (when possible) after each race or training day. This is when we circle up after a training or race day to synthesize the good, the bad, or any other learning moments in front of everyone. While sometimes this feels routine and athletes struggle to come up with something that genuinely was new or learned that day, sometimes the “takeaways” are more valuable than any podium, personal best result championship series qualification or other extrinsic validation can provide.

Today was a challenging day for the group, but it reminded me of a quote from the book Dune. I won’t repeat the entire thing, but the quote starts with, “I must not fear, Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.” I repeated the quote to the group as a topic for today’s debrief and one of the responses was so sublime but I thought displayed a level of self-awareness and maturity that I’d say is rare for a U18. They said, (paraphrasing)  “That reminds me… that today I remembered why I am out here. It’s not to make it to the next level of racing, but because I like to ski. And even though today didn’t go the way I wanted, I remembered why I am doing this”.

~ Brennan Rubie
Head FIS Coach

Alpine U14 Update

After a solid block of SG training and powder skiing, Snowbird’s  2nd year U14s made a strong showing at the Wes Baron Memorial SG at Teton Village. Axl Dain led the charge within the U14s in the field with a first, second, and third. Cedar Knight had 2 ninth-place finishes and a sixth- Jack Webster finished with 8th, 11, and 10th-place finishes within U14’s- and Zachary Carnett and William Youngtok each finished with multiple top 15 finishes. The first-year U14s followed on the speed track in Jackson with the IMD U14 Speed Camp- where they thrived. Hendrick Wussow clocked the fastest speed while James Murphy was voted ‘most improved’ within his group.

Both the original IMD Speed Camp plan and the U14 SG qualifier were canceled this year due to a lack of snow, both venues changed at the last second to hold the events. Parents and athletes made a remarkable pivot- and enjoyed quality venues. With more SG training and epic freeskiing, Snowbird’s U14s headed to Targhee for the SG qualifier.

Despite the short turnaround and heavy snow leading up the the races, Targhee did a great job (thank you, Becky, for your help up there!) and the track was in perfect condition. Liz Eden led the charge for the girls, reaching the podium with 2 fifth-place finishes and a fourth. Hannah McReynolds finished 14th, and 11th.

Axl Dain again led the boys with a victory, 7th and 3rd- with Cedric Sullivan close behind in 8th, 3rd, and 5th. Jack WebsterCedar Knight, Vonn Kunigenas, and Arlo Hochman also finished with top 15 finishes. With a handful more training days before our last qualifier in Park City, Snowbird’s U14s are set up for a strong finish to the season.

Special shout out to Axl Dain this month! Not only are his results impressive, Axl has shown to be dominant in the division and a leader on our team. Axl is always having a good time, but brings the focus to training each day, and pushes hard each run. His attendance is phenomenal, and Axl pushes his comfort zone at training every day. He sets the tone for each session. Great job Axl!

~ Ben Reeder
Head U14 Coach

Freeride U12 Update

It’s been a busy month for the U12 team. Our athletes participated in 3 consecutive weekends of competition beginning with the Snowbird 2* on January 27th and 28th.  Snowbird was the first competition for many of our U12’s and all our athletes showed the judges their best skiing. Our team had great results over the weekend with Ayuna Devine placing 1st, and Sophia DeBirk placing 3rd in the Volume 1 girls competition. In a close volume 1 boys competition Tucker Williams took the win, and Will Fallis placed 2nd. In the Volume 2 girls competition, Sophia DeBirk took the top spot, and Ayuna Devine placed 2nd. Kekoa Ho improved on his 4th place Volume 1 result and earned a podium spot with a 3rd place finish in the volume 2 boys competition.

After Snowbird, the team headed to the Powder Mountain 2* on February 3rd and 4th. This was the first time a Freeride event had been held at Powder Mountain and the athletes were treated with a fun venue. We had 3 U12 athletes compete in the Volume 2 event. In the boy’s competition, Will Fallis placed 2nd, and in the girl’s competition, Maviny and Sabrina Houdeshel placed 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

We wrapped up 3 weekends of competition with blue skies and powder conditions for the Snowbasin 2* on February 10th and 11th.  We had 3 U12 athletes compete at Snowbasin with Linnea Schmid placing 2nd in the Volume 1 girls competition.

The U12 team will have a break from competition for the next few weeks and will be focusing on revisiting some of the fundamental skills and training for the Solitude and Park City events in March.

Thank you to all our U12 athletes for making this an incredible season so far.

~ Davin Grapentine
Freeride Development Director

Freeride U15 Update

We can’t believe we are halfway through the season but what a great one it’s been so far.  The U15s have been skiing great and hopefully having a lot of fun.  The beginning of the season was full of training and working on our skiing. Starting at the end of January the Competition schedule has started and we have been busy!!

It started of with a bang on January 27th and 28th with a bunch of U15s competing in the Snowbird 2*s volume 1 and 2.  Everyone did great! In volume 1 the Altabird U15s swept the podium in both the girls and the boys.  With Izzy Utgaard taking the win and Dorothy and Priscilla Hastings placing 2nd and 3rd.  For the Boys Dylan Hersh took the win, Canyon Whiteside taking 2nd and Rex Rice taking 3rd.  For Volume 2 Dorothy Hastings took the win and Willow Arens placed 3rd. For the boys Rex Rice placed 2nd and Cortland Goldberg placed 3rd.

The team then made their way to Targhee (Feb 1st-3rd) and Red Mountain (Feb 2nd -4th). Targhee’s venue was tricky and steep. The kids were able to find a line and ski well! We had a hardship in Targhee with one of our teammates Aksel suffering an injury.  He received surgery and is now on the road to recovery. Make sure to check in on your friends throughout recovery!!  The U15s day 2 got canceled so Fisher Campagna was able to keep the 3rd place he received on day 1!!!

Red Mountain had some tricky conditions and the event ran 175 athletes in one day! Props to all the kids who skied in that event despite the hard snow conditions.

At the same time kids were traveling to 3* competitions 2*s events were happening a bit closer to home! Powder Mountain 2* Volumes 1 and 2 happened February 3rd and 2nd. Altabird was able to grab some results from both of them.  In Volume 1 Grace Poulsen placed 2nd and Dylan Hersh received 3rd! In Volume 2 Ruby Fallis took 3rd and Trey Sweeney received 2nd!!

The U15s traveled to Palisades Tahoe and Copper Mountain as well! They got to experience a new mountain and meet some new friends.

Finally, the U15s competed at the Snowbasin 2*s volume 1 and 2.  In Volume 1 Grace Poulsen took home the win and Madlen Schmid took 3rd. In Volume 2 Willow Arens took home the win and Sanders Vedejs received 2nd!! How cool!

Congratulations to everyone who has competed so far this year! Skiing a run in a competition alone is a huge accomplishment! Everyone should be very proud of themselves so far this year.  Also a big shout out to all the kids that have been holding down the fort at home and practicing hard!! Keep up the good work!

We still have lots of fun to be had with the Crested Butte 3*, the Crystal Mountain 3*, the Kirkwood 3*, the Snowbird 3*, the Big Sky 3*, The Solitude 2*s, and the Park City 2* still to come!!!

Thank you all for an amazing season so far! Go AltaBird!

~ Jacqueline Pollard
Freeride U15 Head Coach

Freeride U19 Update

It has been an amazing season so far, with many great training days.  The entire team has participated in their training with positivity, a passion for winter sports, and the Mountains.

The start of the newly structured IFSA competition season has been diverse and full of gained experiences. Starting with five of our U19 boys competing, in the Jackson Hole 3* event.

Next, Mike Wheatley debuted in Kapple, Austria, bringing home 3rd place, at the Junior Freeride World Championships.

The team skied very well in Red Mountain, Canada, where we had spring-like conditions in the rain and freeze cycle, and enjoyed Canadian bowling. “Free ride, keep the vibe high”.

At home, we had the Snowbird 2* Volumes 1&2, where eight of the U19 girls, and nineteen of the U19 boys competed on Silverfox. Jack Reynolds took 1st place, Volume 2. Six U19 Girls and five U19 Boys competed in the Grand Targhee 3* event. Sasha Bills was just shy of the podium in fourth. We had two dual podiums at Powder Mountain 2*, with Kate Williams in 2nd place, Izzy Parker in 1st, Cash Moon in 3rd, and Nik Kath taking 1st.

Continuing now to Copper Mountain 3*, where Hannah  Baldwin lands in 1st place. At the Snowbasin 2* Nik Kath is on the podium again, this time in 2nd, and Gage Adrian in 1st place. At Palisades, Tahoe 3*. We had seventeen U19 athletes attend. In a battle to qualify for finals the event ends with Sasha Bills, currently ranked #3 overall, earning 2nd place, Olive Morris in 3rd, and Jack Reynolds in 2nd.

The show continues next week in Crystal Mountain, WA, and Crested Butte, CO, National events! Meanwhile, at Alta/Snowbird training continues, and progress is being made.

~ Griffin Rasmussen
Freeride U19 Head Coach

Snowboard Update

Wow, it’s been a BIG month for Snowboard. After a very slow start to the competition and travel season, the team has been playing catchup with competitions.

The Boardercross team attended a camp in Steamboat Springs where we had an excellent 5 days on the course. This came perfectly timed for the Para Team who then headed to Finland for a camp and some EuropaCup and World Cup competitions. Some notable results – Kate Delson took 2 first-place finishes in EuropaCup, Brenna Huckaby first place in 2 World Cups and Dennae Russell took two 3rd place finishes in World Cup. The para team has a quick break before heading off on their next round of competitions in Germany and Italy.

Sadly the streak of canceled events continues for the able-body SBX group but they are looking forward to the first NorAm of the season at Gore Mt., NY followed by Sunday River, ME.

Meanwhile, the Big Mountain crew have done a couple of comps – the Targhee National where Kaito got 1st and Gage got 4th. And locally Julia and Gio Piacenti took home first places in their first Big Mountain Freeride events.

For more information follow us on Instagram: CLICK HERE

~ Lane Clegg
SBSEF Snowboard Director

Championship Grants:

Our March Championship Grant Application is OPEN through February 26th. Don’t miss out on applying for a grant to help out your Spring competition bills!

Alpine Summer Camps

SBSEF Alpine Spring / Summer Training Options

While we are in the middle of our winter season and our current competitions and scheduling are probably in the forefront of our minds, spring and summer camp season is just around the corner, and time to start penciling in some dates.

  • May: All Alpine groups will schedule time/weekends in May to get some additional training in. Your Head coach should be working on a May calendar and will get that out soon.
  • Mt Hood – We have lanes booked on the Palmer snowfield for June 21-30. This camp is open to JFAST – U19 athletes and will be a GS + SL focused camp.
  • International Camp – We are tentatively planning an alpine camp in the southern hemisphere for July 14 – 27th. Depending on lane space we will be either in La Parva, Chile, or Argentina (Bariloche region), but we need a verbal commitment from 6-10 athletes to solidify the training option. The camp is intended for U14 – U16 athletes and will be a GS / SL focused camp. SBSEF will travel with U16 and U14 (with coach approval) athletes. If interested in this option, please complete this form and we will send out specific details for camp. Yes, I’m interested in this summer camp

Please click on the Human Outreach Project logo to access information about an amazing opportunity for our team members.