The Meditation of the Mountain Experience

From the beginning of my life I have moved through the mountains on a variety of tools.  As soon as I could walk I was using cross country skis to access our house in Bear Valley, California, which was almost a mile from the plowed road in the winter.  Every tool is designed for a certain function which makes a greater task easier and even possible.  After many years in the snow I have arrived at the split board as my favorite tool for my time in the mountains.  To travel efficiently, safely and with the aesthetic that embodies the snowboard turn I spend my time skiing the flats and up hills while surfing the white waves of the descent. 

After spending four years at the University of California Santa Barbara, learning about the ocean and the perfect moments in surfing, I translated this new found meditation into my snowboarding.  At that point in splitboard development the performance did not match the ability of people who love the backcountry.  To really enjoy the descent I ended up climbing with snowshoes or using approach skis in conjunction with a solid board most of the time. Three years ago we started developing and testing the BlackSheep and the idea of a splitboard changed for me forever.  I spent many days riding the lifts, as well as the backcountry, in all conditions, testing and tweaking our prototype with the goal of developing a board which could perform in any condition while retaining its ride through 40+ days of hard resort riding.

Last year I was at the X Games with friends who were racing Boarder X.  We shredded 4000+ groomers leaving trenches with the new BlackSheep X3.  One of the US Snowboard Team Coaches commented that the only board he had ridden which had greater dampness and edge hold was a custom Kessler made to his specifications in Switzerland.  Add this endorsement to my personal experience sticking double drops and pointing tight chutes in overhead pow and you have a very complete ride. 

Having way too much fun at the XGames 2014! #gettingbarrelledcali #xgames2014 #aspen #g3gear @g3gear #g3showskin #earnyourturns #thegoodlife #searchingforsamsonite

A photo posted by Jesse Wilfley (@gettingbarrelledcali) for the 'G3 Show Skin' contest on

Guiding people in the backcountry requires an utmost trust in one’s equipment.  The last thing I want to think about is the equipment in my backpack or under my feet. With the products we have developed at G3, neither is a concern for me. I also enjoy riding the resort, especially when we are waiting for the backcountry to settle down during or just after a big storm.  Even though I spend the majority of my days hiking and enjoying the solitude of the woods, I still find myself enjoying the bottomless storm days at the resort.  Riding the BlackSheep at the resort and in the wilds (all the time in other words) allows for more consistent riding, style and technique.  The one board quiver is here and the BlackSheep is it.  If you only have money for one deck which will shred the resort, fly uphill on tours and float above the deepest lightest pow get on a BlackSheep.

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