Building on the success of last year’s breakthrough performance, the second edition of The Gondola Sessions captures what it is like to share a gondola with one of the members of the Eddie Bauer ski and snowboard team. Filmed on location in the Revelstoke Mountain Resort Revelation Gondola—with additional action footage from Alaska, Japan and interior BC—Gondola Sessions II: Return to Rev asks the tough questions of pro skiers and shredders Lexi du Pont, KC Deane, Andy Mahre, Lynsey Dyer, Wyatt Caldwell and Seth Waterfall. The result is a conversational summary of their 2014-15 seasons—plus plenty of deep powder footage— for those who have not had the experience of scoring a lift ride with the members of this totally entertaining and fully charging crew. First up is Warren Miller Chasing Shadows and Why So Serious film star Lexi du Pont with a breakdown of her trips to Alaska, Japan and interior BC last season.
Since he first turned pro, Eddie Bauer skier KC Deane had dreamed of skiing the big, bold lines of Haines, Alaska. Last season his dream became a reality, as Deane made the trip north and was introduced to a new professional level of risk and consequence by teammate Reggie Crist, who has been guiding the steep, stacked terrain for more than a decade. He was so hooked he went back on a filming mission for Blank: The Movie in April. But this time it was with a more grassroots approach that involved brutally long drives, trying sled-and-skin approaches, and tedious waits for the weather to crack blue. We asked KC to summarize the experience in ten images or less, and this is the window the former AK rookie provided us on freeskiing’s biggest venue.
It’s been a week of high fives and hell yeahs at the Live Your Adventure blog for Eddie Bauer expedition kayakers Ben Stookesberry and Chris Korbulic who—along with Pedro Oliva and Benny Marr—took home the hardware as National Geographic Adventurers of the Year for their first descent of the Grand Canyon of the South Pacific in Papua New Guinea. On Monday we profiled their accomplishment with the Red Bull Media House teaser from the upcoming flick about the descent and Tuesday we published an exclusive gallery from the stunning 13-day, 13-gorge run. Red Bull ran an extensive article on the mission and National Geographic followed up with a Q and A session with Stookesberry on the brutal mission on the Beriman River. Ben and Chris did their part, now it’s your turn to show your stoke—vote for them in the race for the People’s Choice Award. Vote early and often at adventure.nationalgeographic.com.
Ben Stookesbery and Chris Korbulic represent the essence of adventure. With more than 120 first descents in 36 countries, any reader who has followed their epic exploits on the Live Your Adventure blog will confirm that fact. Yet their most recent first descent of the Beriman Gorge in Papua New Guinea—a class VII river of no return run from a jungle heli drop to the Salomon Sea—is an order of magnitude greater than any objective they had ever tackled. The 13-day, 13-gorge first descent that could only be partially scouted by air placed them in harm’s way in the middle of one of the world’s most remote jungles. So it was no big surprise to us that they were honored by National Geographic on Friday with the Adventurer of the Year award.
A huge high five goes out today to Ben Stookesberry and Chris Korbulic who were selected Friday as National Geographic Adventurers of the Year—with whitewater partners Benny Marr and Pedro Oliva—for an expedition of magnitude that ticked the first descent of the Beriman Gorge in Papua New Guinea. The story, the film and the Red Bull Media House footage are absolutely, jaw-dropping incredible but the executive summary is a jungle heli-drop first descent of a class VII river of no return to the Salomon Sea.
The 13-day, 13-gorge first descent that could only be partially scouted by air placed them in harm’s way in the middle of one of the world’s most remote jungles. Red Bull Media captured the entire, epic undertaking and is working on a full-length feature about the mission—a project you can read more about at RedBull.com—but we’re sharing their teaser live today to celebrate the announcement.
Now that Ben and Chris are officially Nat Geo Adventurers of the Year, they are also in the running for the prestigious people’s choice award—so we are actively encouraging you to go vote for them at Adventure.NationalGeographic.com. The pair has ticked more than 120 first descents in 36 countries and their lifetime body of work is beyond compare in the expedition kayaking sphere. But, if you need more persuasion, tomorrow we will be publishing an exclusive first-look gallery at what they encountered in the Beriman. Check back for the full story and go vote, early and often. —LYA Editor
Eddie Bauer skier Lexi duPont is both a free spirit and a serious ripper. Her ski footage has always impressed us, but when she sent us the preview, on Tuesday, of her own ski film project—#WhySoSerious— we were blown away. From deep blower in Japan and pillow stacks in interior BC to the wide open venue of Alaska, Lexi travels the world and slays big terrain with easy, effortless style. The footage, shot by ski industry heavies from Will Wissman, Tyler Hamlet, Stellar Media and Warren Miller Entertainment to Francois Desrosiers and our own Wyatt Caldwell is spectacular. The production by Stept Studios is just as smooth. It’s an impressive first marquee effort from Lexi, wading into the world of creating your own ski flick with her characteristic charge. But in classic Lexi style, she keeps it fun, loose and incredibly impressive. Watch and enjoy. —LYA Editor
Today, Eddie Bauer announces a partnership with actor and activist Ryan Reynolds to serve as the company’s philanthropic ambassador for the next stage of its 20-year affiliation with American Forests. American Forests is the national nonprofit conservation organization dedicated to reforestation in threatened ecosystems. Together they planted the organization’s 50 millionth tree, celebrating a significant milestone in a partnership aimed at protecting and restoring North American forests.