It does not escape the knuckle dragger’s notice that there has been a dearth of splitboarding coverage on WildSnow over the years. So, to begin the rectification of this oversight, I thought I should go to the man who made me rethink the sport of skiing uphill to snowboard down: Josh Jesperson.
In full disclosure, I spent years of my life as a snowboarder. As the sport started to grow, I would sneak away for precious surfy powder turns, slogging my heavy setup to summits and suffering the long transitions to descend. To say that Josh has taken the sport farther than me is a gross understatement.
In 2017, Josh successfully climbed and rode all of Colorado’s fourteeners in just 138 days, shattering Chris Davenport’s record and with it the dreams of ski elitist’s abilities to trash talk the inefficiency of splitboarding. Realizing I was woefully under qualified to interview Josh on this achievement, I called in heavy hitter The Dav for the interview last December in Aspen. You can check out that episode here.
However, after the tape stopped rolling, I spent the night touring Aspen with Josh and discussing ski mountaineering, splitboarding and general mountain excitement. I knew then that I had to go back to the well. In my years of interviewing some of the greats of these sports, I can say it’s tough to find someone with such unparalleled excitement for the mountains as Josh Jesperson. He uses them not only as a testing ground, but as a way to stay close to his fallen friends who lost their lives fighting along side him in Iraq.
As he continues to call on the mountains for healing, he has also made it a personal mission to bring friends and fellow vets with him on his project Mission Memorial Day. We caught up with Josh, and fellow vet John Newman, the night before a 6 a.m. flight to Washington D.C. to lobby for Protect or Winters. Check out the full episode for his new Journey Lines project and all his latest missions. You can also follow him on Instagram here for some amazing snowboard mountaineering inspiration.
I did not make the mistake of cutting this episode short. In fact, we talked for almost three hours of recorded conversations late into the night. This is a highly edited version so drop us an email or leave us a comment if you would like to hear the entire version. Also, we have received feedback that the amount of swearing on the podcast is sometimes excessive. I promise this feedback has not fallen on deaf ears but talking to a Navy Seal about the mountains over a bottle of whiskey was a tough night to make the switch. PG13 conversations ski conversation to follow soon!
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Doug Stenclik is an avid skimo racer and ski mountaineer who lives for sharing the amazing sports of ski touring and splitboarding. Since his first time on skins he was hooked and the obsession has taken him all over the United States and the world pursuing the human powered ski turn. He founded Cripple Creek Backcountry in 2012 and took over the Colorado Ski Mountaineering Race Cup in 2014 to spread knowledge and the love of the sport. In 2019 he took a step back from the ski shop and race promoter life to become a publishing partner with WildSnow.