Groove Sector: Flowing from season to season

As snowboarders, we experience two distinct, yearly phases.

December through March, comes the Groove Sector—a time when planetary alignment favors our sign with snow-capped mountains, crisp air, and a generous routine: eat, sleep, board and repeat. Late April is a slightly depressing time known as the Funk Phase of the year. But it doesn’t have to be so.

Photos by Kieth Rutherford, unless otherwise noted.


Kieth Rutherford: climber, fly fisherman, snowboarder, photographer, topping out a boulder problem above Donner Lake, California. Photos by Gray Thompson


Hands and feet. Left: Kieth, photo by Gray | Right: How? Bowie.

When Groove Sector retrogrades in late spring, expect to experience a phase of ever-present, psychological funk—what are we to do now!? It can be very difficult coming to terms with warming temperatures and receding snow lines.

Paradoxically, this will also be a very exciting time, between week two and week six a door will begin to open revealing new and enticing relationships with rock, dirt and water.


Hands and feet. Left: Kieth, photo by Eric Messier | Middle and right: Gray, up close and personal, and through the crack.

Do you often find yourself mindsurfing snow-covered mountains, picking out turns, airs and chutes, linking together into one fluid run? Think about trading in your snowboard boots for a tackier climbing shoe. Many of the lines we ride in the winter transform into immense granite slabs, cracks and boulders in the summer months; just asking to be climbed. Full of motion, technique and style, expect to contract a climbing bug similar to how snowboarding has infected you for years.


Messier, getting messy.

On the other side of the line, a fly sits atop the surface of a meandering stream, calmly flowing through a valley walled-in by granite faces. Fortunately, the fish is not partial to one astrological sign or the next, but favors the fly of a fisherman adept to the flow of the ecosystem.


Countless days on the water lead to the next Groove Sector.

Discovering new hobbies can help us transcend the Funk Phase. Whether it’s climbing, fishing or surfing, the goal is to find something you can be passionate about outdoors.

As many of us choose snowboarding as means to clear our minds, enter a flow state, disconnect with the “real world” and connect with what is real in this world, there are many other activities to fall in love with that will keep the Groove Sector groovin’ all year long.

Think of this as settling the mind while working on the new Warp Wave movie, Aurora Boardealis, set to release this fall.

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