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May 2020

TGR Journal Volume 1

Story by Teton Gravity Research

Welcome To The TGR Journal - Letter From The Editor
Max Ritter

Digital media is an ever-evolving space, one that presents unique challenges, new opportunities, and lots of excitement at every turn of the road. TGR has been on the forefront of the action sports media world for a quarter century, constantly pushing cutting edge storytelling techniques in the world of film and written word. Now that we're about to turn 25, we wanted to try something new.

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All Hail The King
Max Ritter

How an unintentional change of plans led to discovering new things, re-kindling a desire for local skiing, and perspective on how to move forward with travel and expeditions within our sport. COVID-19 changed the world, but here's what we learned. 

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Lookback: Shangri-La
Cy Whitling

In 2014, Jeremy Jones re-defined snowboarding by chasing a line down a high-altitude spine wall in the Himalaya. It was AK-style snowboarding, just at 21,000 feet. Jones brought teamed up with fellow rider Luca Pandolfini and a dream team of TGR production crew to put together an unforgettable segment for Higher. Here's a look into what it took to find Shangri-La, drawn as a comic book page by illustrator Cy Whitling. 

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COVID-19 Vs. The Ski Industry
Zack Skovron

2020 was a year unlike most anyone alive today has ever experienced. It tore apart ski towns, gutted economies, and broke many of the big companies mountain towns rely on. COVID-19 hit the U.S. snowsports industry hard and fast. Major revenue sources like resorts and retail stores dried up in March, and the industry’s biggest players, corporations like Vail, VF Corp and Amer sports are publicly feeling the pinch. Thousands of mountain town residents are abruptly out of work, left without lifts to operate, pistes to groom, and customers to serve. Without a well-communicated plan for returning to non-socially-distanced life, they have been left to wait at home and wonder what the future will bring. What's going on, and how does the future look?

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Dhaulagiri VII Dreams
Elliot Levey

Here’s the deal: Drew and Elliot are not professional athletes. But they did decide to go ski mountaineering in the Himalaya. Sure, they've done plenty of bold stuff together, from first descents in Alaska to volcano skiing in Russia, traverses in British Columbia and steep skiing in the Sierra-Nevada. But when you’re in basecamp at 16,000 feet, looking up another 10,000 to the summit of your objective, everything changes. 

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If There's a Will, There's A Way - Behind the Lens of Eric Parker
Katie Lozancich

The path to becoming an action sports photographer is typically unconventional, but this may be the wildest we've heard yet. Learn how Eric Parker's quesadilla making skills and quick thinking inadvertently landed him a dream gig with Teton Gravity Research. 

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Haley Badenhop's Lessons Learned
Caleigh Smith

When many of the steps required for success happen out of the public eye, it sometimes makes it difficult for an artist's work to be recognized and their hard work validated. Jackson local Haley Badenhop has taken a long and winding path to receive the feedback she does now: the man in the coffee shop commenting on the moose mural, clients sending pleased photos of themselves posed in front of her commissions, strangers recognizing her and her artwork from all corners of the globe. This life of hers came together slowly, somewhat unexpectedly, as most good things in life tend to do, and she’s excited to continue pursuing the life plan that she laid out for herself at ten years old.

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So You Want to be A Ski Mountaineer?
Katie Lozancich

Ski Mountaineering is not straightforward. You simply can’t show up to a mountain as a beginner and just do it. It takes a combination of experience, gear, and patience to break into the discipline, which often feels daunting. Learn about how Katie Lozancich was introduced to the world of ski mountaineering, and hear some tips for how to break into it yourself.

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The Art Of Getting Shafted
Lily Krass

Not every ski trip goes your way, but that's part of being a skier. Lily Krass muses on getting absolutely shut down on a trip to Chamonix last spring, where the only lines she dropped into were the ones through the bakery door. 

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The Heavyweight Manifesto
Jack Beighle

They say a pound on your feet equals five on your back, and Jack Beighle doesn't care. If pursuing speed records or running uphill in lycra is what gets you out of the bed in the morning, then you can disregard the words that he's about to spray onto this page. But if you walk up mountains to enjoy the turns on the way down, listen up.

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TGR Tested: WTF is #Freemo?
Max Ritter

Damn, our industry really just loves putting stupid names on things we like to do in the mountains. Call it whatever you may, but it’s really just skiing, and we can totally get behind this foot-powered trend of getting rad in big mountains. With dubious roots in the French Alps that soon found their way across the pond thanks to some enterprising North American freeride skiers, #freemo is the next big trend. What probably started with some baguette-wielding Frenchies in the tram line at the Aiguille du Midi is now unequivocally spreading to the steeps of North America, so of course we set out to figure out what the damn thing is all about. 

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