Photos: Ryan Taylor. Words: Adam Kisiel.
Located in the middle of Minnesota farmlands, there is a special kind of farm. Not necessarily your idea of a typical farm, but a place where they have some of the strongest stallions and mares that run free and are giving riding a whole new definition. You may have never heard of this place before, but they are not concerned with the east coast, west coast rivalry. They are focused on making a place to call home and being proud of what they have built to share with whoever comes there. This past weekend was harvest time and the industrious farmers sat back with big smiles as one hundred thirty one wild animals ran free on the farm. The farmers were Park Manager, Tanner Bakke, and the hardest working park crew around. The farm was Powder Ridge Minnesota, a little mountain with a big heart no doubt due to the untiring crew there and the parks they are growing.
As the warm sun hit the lands of Powder Ridge, Tanner and the Powder Ridge Park Crew had already been up for hours like any other farmers sculpting a perfect TransAm park not knowing that they were staking their claim in TransWorld SNOWboarding TransAm history. The aforementioned is not an exaggeration, the sun was warm making the days temperatures well past the forty-degree mark and blue skies made for it ideal to reap the shred. One hundred thirty one riders, the most of any stop on the tour thus far, stood at the top of the park hungry for the harvest. One even said he had never seen anything like what was laid out in front of him and he rides Powder Ridge everyday. The Traffic Jam, all animals running free on the course at the same time, was a site to behold. The Dakine Paper Shreds watched as riders 270’d on and off the Dakine down rail as well as threw a plethora of 180 to nose and tail press combos, just to name a few. The High Cascade Marshmallow, not expecting a good roasting, was getting burnt by the sun and the hot action of back flips, 720’s, rodeo’s, and more one foot action than a peg legged pirate dance club.
Josh Tranby and Megan Julik could be seen from the adjacent silos as they took off the reins and slaughtered the middle line. Josh was gapping the Powder Ridge up flat down rail like it was not even grown to full size. He most notably gapped the middle section with a 360. Megan seemed like she rode the whole course refusing to get bucked by even the wildest broncos, which included the Oakley up box to shark pit gap. Believe me, the sharks were fed and fattened up from this stop with plenty of animals coming up short off the box.
Unlike Megan, Tommy Leach did get bucked. Gasps could be heard as he caught his nose on the Ride Snowboards Slime Wall and in superman fashion threw a forced front flip ending up deep in the landing. Tommy walked away unscathed with Worst Fall Honors. The Zumiez couch was at the end of the flat up flat box feature and had riders gapping over it much like farm animals often jump their fenced in barriers to freedom. The Ultimate Final gave these wild animals ten minutes on each line of the park to earn them top honors for being best overall out in the pasture of pain. The thirty-minute final showcased the top forty riders who were awarded TransAm t-shirts in the Traffic Jam. Jesse Paul, Brent Mohs, Elizabeth Mann, and Ally Groebel led the pack and pulled away with the TransAm Top honors. The fruits of the harvest came in the form of Custom TransAm backpacks from Dakine filled with custom TransAm goggles from Oakley and awesomeness from High Cascade, Zumiez, and Ride Snowboards. Top three guy winners received Nerf guns and top three girls won themselves tickets to ponyville, by receiving My Little Pony setups all provided by High Cascade Snowboard Camp. Top honors raked in new Ride Snowboards, Dakine board bags and backpacks, and the coveted TransWorld SNOWboarding TransAm First Place trophy. Bakke and the boys of the Powder Ridge Park Crew are growing a name and a park that is putting Minnesota on the map as a powerhouse. Watch them as they ride into the sunset.
Congratulations to the top riders:
1st Josh Tranby
2nd Jesse Paul
3rd Brent Mohs
1st Megan Julik
2nd Elizabeth Mann
3rd Ally Goebel
Worst Fall: Tommy Leach