TTAG BANKED SLALOM X BIG AIR 2020
Special thanks to Ilias Kostaras and Ilias Mertis for the incredible photos of the event, Mike Vassileiou for keeping the music cranking, and Athanasios Perrakis (aka Tiny Jackal) for sharing the MC slot with our very own Andreas Mitsioulis (aka MC Zeth)!
BANKED SLALOM OFFICIAL AFTERMOVIE
BIG AIR OFFICIAL AFTERMOVIE
Photos By: Ilias Kostaras & Ilias Mertis
This year the United Nations’ Theme for International Mountain Day (December 11) is to promote the development and education of younger people in the mountains – www.un.org/en/observances/mountain-day – So we decided to take a group of kids to one of our favourite places in the Greek wilderness, Mt Smolikas, and show them the beauty of this virgin landscape… with a little twist of our own. We hiked through the snowy forest to the Alpine Dragon lake (Drakolimni), testing our strength and focusing on spreading a message of solidarity against the industrial expansion already set in motion in Epirus, and in other regions of the country. It is of the utmost importance that the younger generation develops an understanding and appreciation of our vast and diverse landscape, if they are to inherit anything more than an abandoned wasteland.
thanks to Ξενώνας Munti Smolikas for their help on this trip. And to everyone involved for being champs.
The 2019 Ikaria Surf & Acroyoga camp will go down in history considering everything we did in 6 days! Surfing, yoga, dancing, falling, partying, laughing, healing and loving! We couldn’t fit them all into a single video so here’s a snapshot of why Ikaria was our favourite destination this summer ???♂️???♀️?
Huge thanks to Ikaria Surf School / Greece for their love and support, and everyone who made this such a fun experience!
Mount Olympus Splitboarding Camp 2019 was a great introduction to both splitboarding and mountain safety. Over two days we experienced a little bit of everything. From a sprinkle of fresh snow to blue skies and from spring slush to icy climbs. Ideal conditions for getting used to the equipment and gaining an appreciation of the unpredictability of the mountains.
Day 1 was all about getting to know the boards, going through ascent techniques like proper strides and kick turns, using batons and changing our bindings to fit the slope. We also went through a brief avalanche equipment training course just to get a feel for the reality of avalanche danger. *This is not a certified avalanche safety course – If anyone out there wants to get involved in ski mountaineering or splitboarding we strongly recommend attending an official mountain safety course.
We got to Migotzidis Refuge at the top of the KEOAX ski lift area, currently used by the military for training purposes, but is also open to the public for a small fee on select days throughout the year. After a quick snack we headed back down through the Xero-un-lucky Gully down to the base near the cars. On the way we stopped to do a couple of avalanche scenarios with the team, and dig a profile to explain more about snow layers.
Day 2 – The target was to reach the second tallest peak in Greece – Skolio 2,911m. Due to icy conditions and an increase in wind at higher altitudes however, we stopped short of Agios Antonios Refuge and returned down the same route as the day before. Playing it safe on the mountain should always be number one priority, and turning back was an important lesson in mountaineering, not to be underestimated.
The team arrived back at Olympus Lodge Hostel safe and sound and with big smiles on everyones faces. Greece has an incredible potential for ski mountaineering and splitboarding, with an almost endless mountainous terrain, even on the islands, it’s a blank canvas with plenty left to discover.
Thanks to Pitenis Siokas and Gerasimos Avramidis for the valuable lessons on safety and risk management, MicroXtreme for the rental boards and Splitboard.gr for the extra rental boards, Olympus Lodge for keeping us warm and fed, and Odyssey Campers for the extra wheels.
If you’re interested in joining next year’s Splitboard camps let us know by sending us a message. If you’re interested in venturing up into the mountains on your own make sure you have the right gear, and know how to use it. We recommend attending an official avalanche safety course before going out there without a guide. Play safe. Have fun.
Finally, special thanks to everyone who made our first Splitboard Camp one of the best things we’ve done all winter! You guys (and girl) rock!
The first official Igloo Experience in Greece couldn’t have been a better meeting for aspiring eskimos! Igloos, Snowboards, kids, dogs, food by the fire and plenty of snow made this event one to remember. Wether you had lived in n ice cave in Siberia or had never spent a night out in nature these two days of outdoor living in Vasilitsa turned everyone into certified ice architects. Getting to snowboard down one of our four different jump lines was just the icing on the cake. Choosing wether to go over the fireplace or through the ice palace was the only difficult decision you had to make all weekend.
Our Igloo building seminar helped everyone produce some amazing results. From the small two person igloos to the fortress like structures big enough to host a party in, igloos just kept popping up all over the place. We learned how to cut blocks, stack them to create a dome, and finish off the interior to make it nice and smooth. With the help of hot rocks from the fireplace everyone managed to have a good night’s sleep and wake up energised for an epic snowboarding session the next day.
Congratulations to all Snowmen and Snow-women for building one of Greece’s coolest little villages ever! #vasilitsamanicsidevillage
Special thanks to Fuit Art Cafe for sponsoring the event, and to the Fasolia, Zografos and Avramidis families for joining us in the festivities.
If you’re interested in joining next year’s Igloo Experience send us an email or message us on Instagram or Facebook.
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Take a Virtual 360 Degree Tour of the Village in the video below:
The 2019 Freestyle camp was just the right amount of learning and playing. Our students worked on everything from carves to butters and presses, moving up to straight airs and rotations in the park. Coach Spiro tailored the lesson to each student’s ability with visible results by day 3. We saw better flow over the jumps, better body positioning through rotations and greater edge awareness in butters and spins. Thanks to all of our students for participating and for the great feedback!
Special thanks to Kalavrita Ski Center and Hedonism Rides for creating the park, we can’t wait to see what’s in store for next year!
Thanks to Microxtreme for the test boards and Stone Garden Hostel for the warm meals and comfy beds.
If you’re interested in joining next year’s camps send us an email or message us on instagram or facebook!