Inside the Pro Models with Jake Blauvelt
Words: Sara Owen
Photos: Crispin Cannon
Jake Blauvelt spent his season filming a web series called Naturally. “I felt like trying something new and embracing the power of the web,” he says of his endeavor. According to Blauvelt, the season was one big highlight reel but perhaps nothing could top heliboarding insane terrain in perfect conditions with Terje Haakonsen and Fredi Kalbermatten. While filming Naturally, Blauvelt had a Berzerker strapped to his feet and the Oakley Choice kit covering his body. We talked to Blauvelt about the role of these signature products in his epic season.
Jake Blauvelt’s Berzerker pro model brought to life a dying breed in snowboarding –the all-mountain board. Brands have been cutting allmountain boards from their lineups for the past several years in favor of noodle-like rockers built specifically for the park and pow boards that look like they’ve been yanked from your surfboard quiver. These brands have forgotten the value of a board that can handle the variety of terrain a rider like Blauvelt encounters. While the backcountry is clearly his stomping ground of choice these days, Blauvelt has been known to throw down in the park and take a lap or two on a groomer, which is why he and Ride worked together to build a versatile board. Putting the reins in Blauvelt’s hands, Ride Board Designer Paul Mcginty stood by as Blauvelt came up with the specs and graphics for his board.
The moderately stiff Berzerker has a hybrid all-mountain shape, which Blauvelt explains as, “The best of both worlds with camber under foot for snap in and out of turns and slight rocker in the nose for float in the soft stuff.” It comes in a range of sizes: 155, 158, 161, 164 and 167 and is also available in wider waist widths in the following sizes: 159, 162, 165 and 168. Another component of this board is its super durable 90A Slimewalls (sidewalls), which are key when you’re riding heavy tree lines and dropping cliffs.
Blauvelt’s signature graphic features a background that resembles Doodle Art (with hidden shapes and pictures) speckled with green maple leaves. The maple leaves and maple syrup jugs are a tribute to Blauvelt’s home in Waterbury, Vermont where his family sugars maple syrup. “It’s a little piece of family pride that reminds me where the heart is when I’m out in it,” he says of the artwork.
This season Blauvelt also worked with Oakley to design the Oakley Pro Rider Series Choice Jake Blauvelt jacket and pant. Blauvelt’s home mountain is the climatically-schizophrenic Mt. Baker, so his outerwear requirements are extreme. Fortunately, he only has two words to describe how close the final product is to his original vision, “spot on.”
Tuning in to Blauvelt’s needs, Oakley built a jacket and pant with breathable and waterproof 3-layer GORE-TEX, waterproof zips, and fully taped seams. Both the jacket and pant have useful features, like a fixed hood magnet (so the hood doesn’t fly across your face and block your vision when you’re spinning in the air), and engineered knee articulation
so that thknees won’t get holes in them mid-season. The kit is highly functional and has been designed without any useless bells and whistles. It’s done in Blauvelt’s preferred fit –loose with the jacket in a Grey/Green or Crimson/Shadow combo and the pant in Shadow, Black and New Crimson.
Blauvelt’s overall impression of his outerwear, “It keeps me dry and warm, so I can get after it when I’m out in the elements,” says Blauvelt, “I hate being wet in the backcountry, and with this kit I was very happy,” he concludes.
This article was featured in Volume 8 Issue 2. Don't get the magazine? Subscribe now!