The Dirksen Derby: Snowboarding's Family Reunion
Temple Cummins, Matt Cummins, and Blair Habenicht focus on their pre-race waxing techniques. Photo: Andrew Miller

The Dirksen Derby: Snowboarding's Family Reunion

Turning is the root of riding, and Josh Dirksen is known for laying down some of the purest arcs in the game. He has what is arguably the most iconic heelside turn in snowboarding, along with top finishes in events like the Mount Baker Legendary Banked Slalom which showcase his consistency and power when it comes to laying an edge.

But it wasn’t always about the turn for Dirksen. For many years, Josh was at the forefront of freestyle advancement with the famed Robot Food bunch. As Dirksen has grown older, his riding has become more focused on its essence. Progression for Dirksen is grounded in style and the search for new terrain.

While Dirksen spends summers with his wife and daughter in Switzerland as a lifeguard on Lake Zurich, his kickoff to the season begins in December with the Dirksen Derby at his home mountain, Bachelor. Dirksen orchestrates the madness of this banked slalom fundraiser with the same grace he demonstrates as he glides though the course intermittently and unannounced. For many, this event signifies the beginning of the snowboard season. The Dirksen Derby is an unofficial meet-up for the snowboard industry, and riders will crew up here to embark on their season’s first journeys. The popularity of the event has grown to the point that spots are gone almost as soon as registration opens—like Coachella, except colder and with fewer headdresses.

Don’t start packing your board bag for Oregon just yet. Dirksen’s taking a gap year, as the 10th edition of the Dirksen Derby won’t be until the winter of 2017.

Supported by: Salomon Snowboards, Patagonia, and Smith.

We've created 30 additional videos while filming for Insight so you can learn a bit more about the riders involved. Watch for a new release every Monday and Thursday only on

Full movie available November 1, 2016 on iTunes and more.
Josh Dirksen embodies his own event perfectly: pure stoke, along with the will to help others. That's what the Derby is all about. PHOTO: Chris Wellhausen

About Insight

Insight is a multifaceted project about the personalities and places that comprise it. Each rider involved was selected because of their quest: a unique desire to achieve an individual goal is what unites this eclectic collective. The title of the project is quite literal. The goal of Insight is to delve into the lives of those involved, exposing the particular motivations each has to strap in—be it atop a stairset, powder field or couloir. Featuring: Victor De Le Rue, Red Gerard, Jason Robinson, Victor Daviet, Elias Elhardt, Dylan Alito, Bjorn Leines, Josh Dirksen, Toni Kerkelä, RK1, and Bear Mountain.

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