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Snowboarding: A freeing experience

Donald Myers likes The Boys Boys.

And he’s definitely waxing down his board.

But it’s not the surf that’s he’s craving as the winter storms roll through and bring big ocean swells that drive most watermen straight out into the lineup.

It’s the snow.

With another storm expected to bring a decent dusting to the higher elevations of the Sierra and help give ski resorts more to work with, Myers says that he’s checking the weather reports daily and counting down the days until he be sitting on a lift headed up the mountain.

“I’ve surfed before, and it’s fun, but there’s just something about being in the mountains and flying downhill on your board,” he said. “The view when you’re on your way down and the variety of things that you can do – that’s it for me.”

It took the urging of a few friends to get Myers out of skis and onto a board, and he initially hated the feelings of having his ankles locked into something here he couldn’t move from side to side. But he got used to it, and slowly, over time, he started to be able to keep up with the guys he used to chase down on his skis.

Now, whenever the weather starts to turn, he says he counts down the days until he make a trip up to the Tahoe Basin to tackle any one of a handful of resorts that offer pristine – and even world class – conditions for those willing to shell out the money for a lift ticket.

“That’s what I love about living here. You’ve got places like Squaw Valley – where people come from all over to ski and ride – that’s just down the road from Truckee. My friend has a cabin there and we can go to so many different places,” he said. “How can you not love that?”

The learning curve, however, can be steep.

His first time out was primarily spent sliding down the hill not on his board but on his back, unable to manage the fluidity required for such an undertaking. Getting on and off of a chairlift when you have to propel yourself with just one foot, he said, didn’t go well.

“I felt like a total amateur,” he said. “But you’ve got to start somewhere. It’s the most freeing experience in the world for me now. There’s nothing that I’d trade in for it.”


209 staff reporter