We’re not even really sure how this happened. But we’ve come to be thankful that it did. A random trip to Oregon with a surfer, skater and a snowboarder. And we sent our very own Michael Cukr to record what happens when the cultures collide.
While we were there we hangout at Bryan Fox’s [pro snowboarder, all around cultural commentator and founder of Drink Water] Rat Race gathering at Mount Hood. From there it was a zig zag of forest, nature, waterfalls, surfing and random occurrences as you’ll see below, and again tomorrow when we premiere the film we made about it called Postcard Oregon.
Today you meet the cast, via our own Michael Cukr and his honest opinion of it all.
Javier Mendizabal switch back tail at Windell’s
Javier Mendizabal: I was too young to know who he was because I was born in 1994 and “Javi” is 38. But in his career he’s gotten cover shots, is an amazing skateboarder, photographer and just a great dude. It was so interesting talking to him — but it reminded me how young and dumb I am and how much I probably shouldn’t have an opinion on skateboarding because I haven’t seen anything yet compared to him. He is a veteran. All of my favorite skaters looked up to him. He was on the Quik program back in the day, he used to tour with Austyn [Gillette] and Dylan [Rieder] before they were anything. When he comes to the states he stays with Arto [Saari] and he was in a skate film by Thomas Campbell called, Cuatros Suenos Pequenos (Four Small Dreams). He is really close with and used to film with French Fred all the time and he introduced French Fred and Thomas. I asked him what language he thinks in and he said English. He speaks it every day even though he’s from the Basque country. I asked him what his favorite flip trick was and he said “nollie flip or switch flip. I can’t do my kickflips right. You know mark gonzales?” I couldn’t understand who he was trying to say because with his accent he pronounces “z” as “th.” I heard it more like mierconthales. It took a few times. Finally it clicked, “Oh! Mark Gonzales, yes, of course.” He continued “Oh, well back then flip tricks were new and nobody knew how to do them. I was a part of that era. Now people flick out and pop their kickflips. I learned them back then so my kickflips are really bad, but then kickflips evolved and thats when I learned how to switch flip, so my switch flips and nollie flips are more proper than my kick flips.” He is geniune, easy going, and by the end of the trip turned into a bit of a jokester, but in the most innocent and sincere way possible. He was most excited about skating Foster Huntington’s bowl.
Bryan Fox: I also didn’t know who Bryan Fox was (I truly know nothing). Turns out he was the mayor of snowboarding and the host of our trip. Bryan is an amazing ambassador for any of the board sports. He is the real deal. He moved to Oregon 14 years ago and is originally from Ramona, CA. H then moved to Mount Hood, Oregon and lived out of his car, and is now living in Portland in a cute little house with his girlfriend Caley. He was brought up by Scotty Wittlake. He’s a real snowboarder, born and raised by the culture that makes surfing, skating and snowboarding cool. He understands how important the culture is to surfing skating and snowboarding. He founded a company called Drink Water in response to how “cheese dick” everything has become and how overrun with energy drink brands and corporate slogans.
Quote of the trip: “I put in a snowboard video, Dead Kennedys started playing super fucking loud, there was some dude driving a VW Thing through some dirt parking lot, doing fucking donuts, and then the first shot is of a guy going like a million miles an hour down a hill, he eats shit and rag dolls like 50 times and I’m like “This is the coolest shit I’ve ever seen in my life. It had nothing to do with me understanding it, it just had to do with the fact that I watched it, I had never been snowboarding at that point — I don’t even think I had ever seen snow, but I was like, this is fucking awesome. It was like I want this, you know? Whatever this is. But these days I would not be a kid and watch the Olympics or the WSL and want anything to do with it. I’d watch that shit and I’d be like, “Who the fuck are these nerd commentators with their stupid flower shirts saying a bunch of dumb weird slogans about doing a turn? I just think its been so homogenized and made for the masses that if I was a kid I would think its wack.”
Mikey Wright: Mikey is probably best known for being Owen Wright’s little brother, but he is a fucking hell raiser. He doesn’t try to be, he just doesn’t know any different. Growing up in Culburra, doing whatever he could to get a thrill. Drifting his car, hauling ass on a motorcycle, playing fire soccer — which is lighting a roll of toilet paper on fire that’s wrapped in wire and kicked around). He has no fear. While we were with him he jumped through a water fall, went from not being able to drop in to the bowl, to flying around the corners. He has no fear and is hunting for a thrill. He is the next big thing. His reputation seems to be that he’s the “bad seed of the Wright family.” He’s like Owen and Tyler, but he just hasn’t been watered down by the media yet. And let’s hope he doesn’t get changed too much, because he fucking rules.
Now the reason for this random gathering, as we said, is Bryan Fox holds a snowboard contest every year called the Rat Race. It’s a real snowboard contest for real snowboarders. It’s a super fun downhill course with berms and little kickers and you race for the fastest time. So we stayed there in Mount Hood for a few days and did the Rat Race, snowboarded, partied for Caley’s birthday, then we left Mount hood and headed to Portland. We turned that into a day trip of skating. We started at Windell’s, where the Habitat team was filming an Oregon skatepark tour for Silas Baxter Neal’s 10 year on Habitat video. Javi knew everyone and was keeping up with that whole team. He was shredding, this is where I realized how good javi could skate. We then left Windells and headed to to Foster Huntington’s property and checked out the cindercone and his concrete bowl/pool thing. Very unique. Then we camped on the coast for a few days and surfed. Somewhere along the way we went to waterfalls, lakes, white water rafting and Portland. Come back tomorrow and watch the film we made of the whole trip. It’s called Postcard Oregon.—Michael Cukr
Postcard Oregon is now playing here.