Riding Steamboat with SOS
07 Feb, 2009
I had the opportunity to spend Saturday on snow taking photos and video with the SOS (Snowboard Outreach Society) of Steamboat. SOS is a non-profit organization that relies on volunteers to build character and self-esteem in youth. The best part is they do it through snowboarding, giving the chance for kids to learn how to snowboard and continue to snowboard. The Steamboat SOS handles 28 kids for the snowboarding program.
I showed up at 9:30am as the kids and instructors were getting ready to start the day.
I spent the morning with Philip’s group. Philip is the most hardworking snowboarder in Steamboat: he manages the Click, he volunteers for SOS and he teaches for the mountain. His SOS group were the advanced kids that have been in the program for a couple years and are riders that can handle the mountain, kids you just have a lot of fun riding with.
It was a beautiful day in the morning, bluebird skies and freshly groomed runs to just bomb down.Philip’s group was amazing, the kids were awesome shredders and could handle any of the runs we went on. It wasn’t hard to photograph them riding down the hill.
On our way down to lunch, we headed to the Rabbit Ears Terrain Park.
At the bottom ran into some of the SOS girls for a photo op
Stephanie’s group were still learning to snowboard and this was their 5th time on the slopes so we headed to the top of Christie Peak to get them riding.
I ride Christie a lot but I haven’t rode it with beginners in a while, it was interesting to go slow with them and see what it’s like to be on the runs as a beginner off Christie Peak. A lot of cat tracks and narrow trails that as a beginner, are harder to get through.
When we got to the wider open trails, the kids did a lot better and worked on making turns on steeper terrain with no one around them.
At the bottom, we met up with the other beginner group. Here’s a photo of both groups with kids that only 5 weeks ago had never snowboarded before.
Making turns on Stampede
Each of the SOS sessions last 5 weeks and on the last day is the graduation. The parents come out, the instructors talk about each of the kids and how they did and they walk away with a certificate and SOS beanie.
I’m still working on the photographs and the video, lots of editing to be done but can’t wait to see how it comes out.
To learn more about SOS please check out http://www.sosoutreach.org/
SOS is always looking for more volunteers or donations. Even snowboard gear that these kids could use would be a great donation to the program.