Caught Up With Gabe Taylor

Gabe Taylor swung by the 'ol TWS offices on a mellow Friday afternoon with a copy of The Boned Age in tow. We all gathered 'round a little computer monitor and snagged another glimpse at the Grenade flick with some added comments from Gabe. Future movie plans are simmering now and it seems that Mr. Taylor shouldn't have a problem locking down a spot after viewing his part. Heck, if that fails he can always keep hustling photo editor Nick Hamilton at the golf course.

So you grew up down here in Encinitas and have been a Mammoth loc for days, but I heard you used to live in Durango, CO, how were your times there?
I graduated high school in '98 and moved straight there, went to Fort Lewis College and started snowboarding and was like this is awesome. My first day snowboarding was at Red Mountain Pass, like hiking and riding over rocks and just flopping around. I got a pass to Purg and rode that mountain all year. There were a couple of cool guys who helped me out.

Did you ride with [Ryan] Lougee at all?
Hah, he was kind of the man and I was not the man. He would rip around with this duck stance. We met each other at a party but I wasn't a part of his crew… [sighs] Durango, I haven't been back since that season. Silverton is the closest I've been in days, I would like to go back sometime.

PHOTO: Andy Wright

I saw you had some pretty big stuff in the new Grande movie, how did your filming season go?
It was my first time in Whistler and I was just stoked. The terrain up there is so good. We had Benji [Ritchie] filming for the movie and we ended up hooking up with Gaetan [Chanut] and Shin [Campos] who kinda showed us around when we were up there. We got to see all the good stuff and didn't waste any time. When we got there day one was sunny and it stayed for two more days so we got after it and took advantage of the opportunity.

So you filmed pretty much your whole part in Whistler right?
Yeah but we did a trip to Tahoe, I think they might have used one or two shots from there. Everything got kinda chopped up after the shots in Canada because everything was so much cleaner and bigger up there. No trees and the terrain is so cool up there.

You guys had pretty good luck with the weather too, how'd that work out?
We got so lucky. Out of seven days, five of them were sunny and then after that Danny was like, "yeah we killed it let's get outta here, it's supposed to rain." Two days of bluebird is Whistler is pretty nice.

How do you think you part compares to previous ones?
I'm pretty stoked on it, it's always hard to watch it and think "ahh I should have done this or that."  I'm pretty stoked though.

PHOTO: Andy Wright

I think you snagged some people's attention at least that's what it seemed like.
That's definitely one thing that stokes me out as a rider, and I think most riders want to gain the respect of their peers. You don't want people to be like "ahh that was kinda cool, good job this year." When you get something that really stokes people out that's cool because we're all out there trying to do the same thing and push it. We're having fun, but at the same time it's your job and the kids want to see gnarly stuff.

Yeah it's getting harder and harder.
I know. I haven't seen Travis' movie yet, but I've seen some of the footage. Yeah it's pushing it for sure.

Yeah it reminded me of the Discovery Channel's Planet Earth series meets Snowboarding.
We just saw a couple of the jumps they hit. For one, just the whole way their crew did things was different. There were three or four filmers, Travis and a couple buddies, and a couple guys that were just shoveling, building, and working so the jump would get built so fast—it was just a real production. You know, it was efficient and the way they went about it was like, damn, they're taking care of business. We were screwing around on snowmobiles and doing shit hooks while they were building and constructing and basically hiring workers.

So what's up in Mammoth right now? How have you spent your summer?
Ahh the golf course is closed, so very little.

Have you been golfing a whole bunch this summer?
Yeah I golfed a ton this summer.

PHOTO: Andy Wright

Take any trips?
Naw, I just spent some time healing up and took a little breather. I wrecked kinda hard last year.  I took a day off, but it wasn't enough to stop filming and the season so I just rode through it but at the end of the year I was just done. The minute I switched off the filming mode I woke up the next day and just hurt. I was done, just sore for a whole month.

What did you do?
That opening shot of my part, that drop, shook things up. It was supposed to be a little warm up cab five and end our first day in Whistler. I felt like I was going so slow, but as soon as I looked over it was vert. I figured it couldn't be that steep and coming from California snow doesn't stick to vert. I remember going slow so I popped super hard and was like "you're kidding me."  I just crumpled at the very bottom. The day after that I got my ender though, I just took four Advil and a Red bull and was like let's see what happens. I hit the jump twice and that was it.

What do you think of the acting in the Grenade movies?
I think it's okay, it looks pretty corny and I think that's how it should, but it's fun when we do it. I love skits in movies. What's your favorite Grenade parody?

Hah, probably The Boned Age because I just watched the Stoned Age for the first time right before the premiere. The shit was on point. [Dave] England, [Scotty] Lago, Danny [Kass] and all the bros were hilarious. You?
I liked the Spinal Tap parody Smell the Glove a lot. Danny loves the skits and I think they are a cool theme for the movies.

Any movie plans this winter?
I'm for sure working on the Mammoth movie, not sure other than that. I've been speaking to a few companies. We'll see…

The interview trailed off into confidential talks of crystal crescent barrels in Mexico, backcountry secrets, and gnar boardin' with Joe Carlino…maybe you'll see evidence of the talk later this season.