BAck in AK


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 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.


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One Comment

  1. _Sam
    Posted April 19, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    Have fun Mikey and be careful can’t wait to read the report of the trip!

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  • About Teton FreeRide

    Teton FreeRide is a content based blog founded and operated by Mike "Mikey" Leake. Mikey has lived in the Teton Valley region of southeastern Idaho and western Wyoming most of my life. He has also had the opportunity to live and play in the Lake Tahoe area, and now, Alaska too!

    After competing on the Freeskiing World Tour on-and-off for 10 years Mikey has transitioned to judging various events and become an advisory board member with the International Freeskiers & Snowboarders Association (IFSA). Over the past 13 years he has worked in the ski industry through skiing as an athlete, coach, guide, ski patrol, event coordinator, event judge, marketing consultant, team manager, videographer, and as an associate producer. Mikey has a true passion for the outdoor industry and tries to be involved in every aspect possible.