Team Blog: Marissa at the 2015 Taos Salomon Freeride Extreme Championship

Marissa Krawczak

The 2015 Taos Salomon Freeride Extreme Championships went off this past weekend! We had been hearing forecasts of heavy snow hitting New Mexico, but we didn’t expect the epic conditions we actually got!

My teammate Randa Shahin and I traveled in a day early for course inspection on Taos’s premiere hike-to access, West Basin, which was super rocky and hard pack. When we arrived for competition day Thursday though, the course was blanketed with new snow and made for some fun conditions!

I was randomly chosen to drop first, and with women snowboarding starting first, that meant I was opening up the comp! I was so amped and had so much fun shredding pow during my run, but the judges couldn’t see it because it was so socked in from the storm at that point. Luckily, I got to drop again, it was even more fun!

My run put me as tied for second place with Audrey Hebert and qualifying to move on to Day 2. Jacqui Shaffer out of Mt Baker made a debut appearance at a freeride comp and placed fourth her first run. Randa and Snowbird local Camila Brown sent it, but unfortunately tomahawked in the deep powder. I think our greatest success though, was being in the right place at the right time for insane pow runs!

Friday provided the ladies a weather day, so the men could finish their first runs. We had fun enjoying the light and deep powder, it was some of the most memorable turning, especially on our inspection of the far side of West Basin! It was literally waist deep!

Saturday morning was even deeper though, the snow up to my armpits on the far side of the West Basin! So stoked to be shredding pow again during a competition run, I chose a unique line and hit, absolutely sinking into pow on my landing and throwing up some spray into the finish corral.

Since the weather was so heavy, the women snowboarders were the only one able to finish two competition runs and our scores over two days were combined for our overall. Emily Weer had clean lines down the center of the venue and held onto first. Luckily I was barely bumped into second place with Audrey right behind me in third.

We had a good time celebrating on the podium! Our trophies were traditional wine flasks, but in Taos style they had martinis in them. Apparently an old timer used to leave the flasks around the mountain.

Full results and info:

Thanks to Taos for the great times and hard work putting the event together for us!

Watch Randa and Marissa get after some of the epic powder at Taos:

Photo Gallery:

Party on the podium

Seeking shelter from the wind

West basin venue

Course inspection

Posted by Gabby Rainville on 03/04/15

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