Birthday: Burton’s Flagship turns 1!

A local son wishes the store and its "blatant disregard for authenticity" well!

The new FLAGSHIP store in Burlington, Vermont (one of… I lost track how many total) boasts, “WELCOME to Bur-ling-ton” in large tween-like window lettering just steps from Church Street and directly across from City Hall Park.

Just turned 1!

Its mere existence is an ode to BTV tourists who don’t know or care that the home office and factory flagship store is just a few miles further south, or even exists. It is a glorified tourist trap for pedaling vacation souvenirs. *soft-goods


A “shop” local market share that had all but eluded them since their founding in 1977 and Uncle Jake grew to be worth 100 million. 40 years forward >>> with a blatant disregard for authenticity; a consistent brand philosophy or providing a product with any integrity. Wild style, blind-on-the-knuckle, definitely not looking up hill — they are gaping their way in and out of the trend pool, each time reaching a little further from the shroud of being from Vermont.

Welcome to Burlington, suckers.

“Versatile as the weather is Variable” appears in the opposite window in the same bullshit typeface. It is the new “Riding is the Reason” #hashtag and more aptly articulates what is most important, the clothing you wear and memories you purchase. i.e. the products “we” mass produce in China at the lowest cost by VOLUME to sell at the highest cost RETAIL, each piece sealed individually in single-use plastic, before being folded like an Abercrombie t-shirt welcoming you to the Green Mountain State.


Alas, my point: the Green Mountain State. A beacon of free-thinking, locally minded, sustainably driven and thoughtful folk. The semi fashion forward, trendsetting birthplace of farm-to-table and all things organic and green. Indigenously home to the first nation Abenaki people whose flag depicts Vermont through story and symbolism, lending itself to the oral tradition central to their community and culture.

Abenaki flag
Abenaki flag

A group of people whose ancestors thrived on the same intervale flood plain (as Burlington’s present day farmers’ market in City Hall Park) thousands of years prior with a food hub that extended outward in barter and trade throughout the region. Insert: mind blown. Me too; Burlington is the mess-0-fuckin-potamia of the east coast. i.e. the fertile crescent creation story “we” all learned to be our own.

Heavy history lesson aside, what the F is really the point? This particular group of people wasn’t recognized until May 3rd, 2006. It took Burton CORP. less than a decade to “borrow” their flag (change it to black and white) and brand it their own established 1977.

cultural appropriation!
cultural appropriation!

*slim to moderate correction: it took them less than a decade to pay LA based @magedesign to go ahead and “borrow” it for them. Not sure what is worst, oh wait — paying someone else top dollar for how fake you are is actually much worse.

No Brainer.

Welcome to Burlington.

Watch: A snowboard get barreled!

The future has no boundaries!

Oh this was only a matter of time, I suppose, especially seeing that Gerry Lopez, Mr. Pipeline himself, dances between the snow and the surf so lightly.

We’re brothers! Aren’t we?

Fred Compagnon sure thinks so. And watch him get barreled on a snowboard here! Oh I don’t think he calls it a “snowboard” but surely it is.

A brave future for all!

Wisdom: “Waterfalls are a pain in the ass!”

What other nuggets of truth does Iceland's favorite son, Eiki Helgason, have? Come find out!

After nearly a decade of traveling the world on the hunt for new spots to film, Eiki Helgason spent last season riding at home in Iceland. The island republic is only slightly larger than the state of Maine and yet there was much of the country that Eiki had never seen. Filming for his just-released Island Born gave him the chance to chase waterfalls all across his homeland and produced a seriously standout part. So why not ask him a few questions?

How did you end up filming in Iceland all season?

At first we were going to do another Sexual Snowboarding movie then Halldór got the opportunity to do his project with Sage so he was out. We thought we could still do it without him but then in December, Ethan & Nisse got on the Method Movie, so then it was only me and Felix left so we decided to call it. I was trying to figure out what I should do for the season, I always wanted to see more of Iceland because I have never really been a tourist here. It seemed like perfect timing to do this kinda stuff, so I started contacting a few filmers and Mark Wiitanen was super down to make it happen, but by then it was already middle of March! He flew straight away over here and we basically started cruising around filming every day for a month and a half and some how managed to make this happen in such a short time! Mark is the man!

How is that you have never traveled around your own country before?

I think it’s hard being a tourist in your own country because everything is so close it feels like you can always do it later but you end up never doing it, so I’m definitely glad I did, Iceland is actually amazing!

You just started hitting backcountry zones there, is there more to explore, do you think you could film a whole part out there?

Since we started filming so late in the season we kinda missed the good pow, but we did cruise around on snowmobiles in the mountains around my home town and found a few spots that had pow landings. We saw a lot of potential spots that I am definitely going back to this year once the pow arrives again.

Did you ever end up in the water with all the waterfall shots you went for?

No, but it’s a pain in the ass to film around these things, because of the mist they create and freezing temps, then all the equipment got a layer of ice on it: cameras, lenses, boards, clothes and then the spot it self turned to ice real fast, too.

What are you most stoked on about this part?

The 10 kink for sure! It has taken me so damn long to get, a total of 10 days over a period of 10 years, so it was a huge relief to get it out of my head—it was kind of an obsession in the end. I spent 5 days on it this season and I was getting so over it in the end—it’s for sure the most annoying rail I have ever ridden.

What’s up for this season?

I’m gonna do Insta shows and start releasing them in January, so 1-minute long webisodes for Instagram, I am gonna try to do as many NBD trick as I can and each show will be about 1 trick! So follow me on Instagram @eiki.helgason if you want to see what I come up with.

All NBD’s?

It can be tricks or new spots as well, since finding new tricks nowadays is pretty damn hard —I got a few NBD tricks already, some very random, I will tell you one I’m but gonna keep the others a secret for a bit longer so people won’t steal my ideas before they are out ha ha … I got a “Hardflip Bs Lip Shuvit Out” That one has been sitting in my head for awhile now, super nice to get it out!

Are there any spots left in Akureyri that you guys haven’t hit?

You have to get really creative if you want to find spots here in Akureyri but the town is always getting bigger and bigger, so there are always coming new spots… But it is insane how many spots we have filmed in this little town of ours!

Watch: Eiki Helgason’s Island Born!

It'll make you weep! In public even!

Sooooo I know that it is not cool to get emotional, to cry in public and things of that nature, but TEARS just filled my eyes in PUBLIC because I clicked play on Eiki Helgason’s ísland Born!

First, by way of quick explanation, the Icelandic star has just released an ambitious project in three parts. Zine, Full Part, and Documentary.

The Zine is a collection of stories compiled by different people throughout Eiki’s life and career and is gorgeous (will share tomorrow!)

The Full Part is filmed entirely part in Iceland. Eiki traveled throughout the island, finding spots never been ridden before.

The Documentary features snowboarding journalist and comedian Stan Leveille, as he travels to Iceland to learn how an Island farm boy became a world renowned snowboarder.

Altogether it’ll put tears in your eyes too because Eiki captures something very essential about what we love. This damned obsession, this ill-spent life, and not just in snowboarding either. It is the same weird magnetic grab in surf and skate too. Like, the bit where his dad says, “Whenever Eiki went to the soccer field, all he saw was a snowboard park…” could not be any more perfect.

There’s something slightly busted in all of us, ain’t there though. Something off. Something that sees things that don’t exist in real life.

Yes, we tilt at windmills and Eiki Helgason captures the quixotic better than I have ever seen it captured before.


ÍSLAND BORN from ZOO on Vimeo.

Just in: How McMorris learned to soar!

Have you ever wondered what the Canadian's secret is? Come discover!

Mark McMorris is very good at getting big air. The Canadian superstar seems very natural whilst flying. Does anyone do it better? I think not and he will certainly be the Olympic favorite for Korea in two years. Maybe his only competition will be other Canadians.

Oh it’s a Great White North renaissance!

But have you ever wondered how Mark McMorris and the other Canadians learned their skillz?

From Ray. Friggin’ Ray.

Watch and learn!

O Canada! Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!
From far and wide, O Canada,
We stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land, glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee;
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

O Canada! Where pines and maples grow,
Great prairies spread and Lordly rivers flow!
How dear to us thy broad domain,
From East to Western sea!
The land of hope for all who toil,
The true North strong and free!
God keep our land, glorious and free.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!

O Canada! Beneath thy shining skies,
May Stalwart sons, and gentle maidens rise.
To keep thee steadfast thro’ the years,
From East to Western sea.
Our own beloved native land,
Our true North strong and free!
God keep our land, glorious and free.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!

Ruler supreme, who hearest humble prayer,
Hold our Dominion, in thy loving care.
Help us to find, O God, in thee,
A lasting rich reward.
As waiting for the better day,
We ever stand on guard.
God keep our land, glorious and free.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!