It has been 4 years since I have been back to AK. This is a special trip in many aspects (a trip to AK always is), but two things in particular make this one extra special. One being the fact that my girlfriend Michelle has been here for the past 10 weeks straight and finally being here with her is amazing. The second is the fact that this is my first visit back to Alaska since the passing of my ski industry peer and friend, Johnny Nicoletta.
In 2008 Johnny, Chris Tatsuno, Andy Sabatier, Bryce Newcomb and I all crammed into an RV (along with one other RV load of good friends) and spent the two weeks leading up to the Freeskiing World Championships traveling up and down the Turnagain Arm skiing. It was an amazing couple weeks and having the opportunity to spend the final couple weeks of Johnny’s life with him was something I will never forget. Johnny Nicoletta passed away on April 11th 2008 as a result of injuries sustained in a fall during the Freeskiing World Championships at Alyeska. Being back here for just a day has already brought back so many memories from that trip in 2008. Johnny and the rest of the crew from 2008 will be on my mind a lot over the next 3 weeks (and never forgotten).
Stay tuned to tetonfreeride.com as I will be updating the site with trip reports and photos as I check back in between adventures. First up, we leave tomorrow on the 9am water taxi from Whittier, across Prince Williams Sound to a coastal backcountry cabin where we will ski from for several days. Then back to Anchorage for a day and will try to check back in at that point.