Way up in the wild Northwest, just outside a town called Seattle, sits a little collection of resorts on a mountain pass known as Snoqualmie. A 40-minute drive east from Sea-town (past North Bend, where Twin Peaks was filmed) gets you into a set of rugged mountains that are home to Alpental and The Summit At Snoqualmie. These areas are like mini Mt. Bakers, all full of scary steeps, strange pillow lines, gullies, and gobs and gobs of snow. In fact, Snoqualmie is where Jamie Lynn first strapped on a snowboard, where Mike Ranquet and Peter Line honed some of their first shred maneuvers—and now, it’s the host of the annual Holy Oly Revival, an event dedicated to the celebration of Northwest pride.
Round about the morning of Saturday, February 25 (okay, let’s face it—more like afternoon), I crept up on Snoqualmie’s East base are to find out exactly what this event was all about. I found a down-home lodge that smelled like campfire, a couple old-style double chairlifts, and a giant water tower painted like a can of beer—a can of Olympia, to be exact. Upon further inspection, I also located a giant, finely tuned quarterpipe being hit by a hyped-up crew of riders, both young and old.
I bumped into event organizer Krush Kulesza, who was busy running around coordinating and making sure everyone was having fun. “What’s going on right now? I asked in a typical contest panic. “When are the Super Finals? Where are the judges? Do I need a photo pass? Krush just laughed and reminded me that this was sort of an “anti contest and that the point was just for everyone to ride and have fun. “Ahhh, I see, I said, shrugged my shoulders, and I climbed up on top of the QP deck to soak in the action. Sure enough, there was some.
Early on, Mt. Bachelor legend Allister Schultz was drifting giant backside airs over the entire span of the quarterpipe. He set a precedent of hugeness and lit a fire under everyone’s ass—a real-deal session started to unfold. Luke Mathison slowly spun huge, off-axis backside fives, Scott Blum popped hand plants in the midst of hot laps through the venue, and Justin Heath blasted big ol’ backside rodeos. People talked, laughed, watched, ate Cobra Dogs, and did what Northwesterners do—shredded. Even Jamie Lynn himself was lurking around, although he’s got a sore knee or hip or something, so he wasn’t riding.
Now, it seems that there were actually judges in the mix that day (how else could there have been an awards ceremony?). Turns out, several “secret judges, including Mark Welsh and Joel Muzzey, had been appointed to keep a keen eye on the hot action and decide what was what at the end of the day. And so when all lifts stopped running and the hill emptied out, results were held down in the steamy lodge—and this is how it went:
Holiest Of The Holy: Luke Mathison (winning the Holy Oly trophy and half a palette ofOly beer)
Joey McGuire Award (biggest, smoothest NW steez): Allister Shultz (winning half a palette of Oly beer)
Lurkers: 1) Justin Heath, 2) Devin Elliot, 3) Ken Kelley (also won Most Rippin’ Dude On A Glissade award)
Best Handplant: John Carlson (on a snowskate, by the way)
Hardest Charging Industry Hero: Dustin Anderson