Flow Tailgate Alaska: The Man Games
Words: Graham Mueller
Photo: Aaron Gotthardt
Let’s face it, ninety-percent of the people at Flow Tailgate Alaska are men, and by our very nature are driven to compete. Add to that the fact that Alaska is known for its gun-toting, tobacco-chewing, non-ironic beard-wearing, manly men, and the stage is set for the Man Games.
Every night at the beer garden Tailgaters tested their skills at various manly games. To the victors: fame, glory and spoils from the sponsors. To the losers endless shame and ridicule, at least until the next night when they got a shot at redemption. Ever pound a nail with the claw end of a rock hammer? You’d be great at hammerschlagen (also known as naglan or nails depending on your region and particular rules). Other man games include axe throwing, keg toss for accuracy, keg toss for distance and a log throw into a barrel – you know, with the barrel 30 feet behind you. And don’t let the name fool you, plenty of ladies took part in the games as well. One woman, Cally, was especially adept at throwing axes. Look out fellas.
The conclusion of Tailgate saw the Man Games Super Championships. The event celebrated all things manly and Alaskan. The winner would be chased by women and feared by men along with $1000 worth of gear including: a Flow Snowboard, a Viole split kit, Dye goggles, Crack Grease wax, a pair of crampons and on and on until you wonder if he won a snowcat to put it all in.
The contestants start off by chugging a beer, either Alaskan Amber or IPA. Second, he finds a buried beacon before drinking another beer. Then he turns a snowmobile around 180° (lifting, not driving). Lastly, you guessed it, he chugs one more beer before finally throwing a log into a barrel with his back turned. Good times were around three minutes. The winner was Alaskan jack-of-all-trades Opie, a Tailgate staffer who made up for his slow beacon search and sled drag with instant beer chugs and a first toss winner on the log throw.