Jake Glass shares his story of his semester abroad in Turks and Caicos, followed by his return to winter in New England, and his discovery of what paradise really means.
I spent this past semester immersing myself in the culture of one of the world’s most beautiful island chains, the Turks and Caicos Islands. My days were long; full of coronas & lime, fly fishing, and long boarding. This was heaven. Studying abroad with me was a great group of students, dedicated teachers, and the cutest girl in the world (now my girlfriend!!!). To say I was “studying” marine biology would be to underscore the wonder of learning on South Caicos. I studied the habits and secrets of amazingly wild creatures. I was a visitor in an underwater world teeming with sharks, eels, rays, and sea turtles. I took my tests 60 feet underwater on my dive slate, and ate meals in front of the soft blue Caribbean Sea.
Connecticut: a land of high taxes, casinos, and dreams of an NHL return. Several attractive destinations are within a three hour drive: New York, Boston, Vermont, and New Hampshire. However, what does home have to offer especially for a winter enthusiast? Winter in the Nutmeg State usually provides more nuisance than enjoyment. Five inches of snow wipes out a month’s supply of bottled water in the supermarkets. Drivers realize that snow tires would have been a good idea. Schools are cancelled for “cold conditions.” Most of all, winter in Connecticut provides a frustrating border to the northern states that provide higher peaks, more snow, and winter charm. Even when it dumps up north, the roads around home may be too icy to drive because that Nor’easter was actually freezing rain for us. Why is it that we have to drive so far through hazardous conditions, when so many others can enjoy what they love right outside their backyards?
The winter of 2010-2011 brought a record-breaking amount of snow that blanketed the state throughout much of January and February. Oddly, many of the storms were southern-based, leaving Vermont and New Hampshire wishing they had a little Yankee Doodle in them. Last winter reminded us that Connecticut still has a lot to offer. All it took was a little white magic… well maybe more than a little.
Degree 7 is the final installment for the 7 Degrees series. Many of us attended the University of Connecticut and were familiar with the amount of possibilities the campus had. All it took was a good amount of snow, some creativity and a banshee bungee from our friend (who unfortunately got hurt early in the day). The campus environment is great for showing people that you don’t need a large hill or high tech equipment to enjoy winter sports. Highlighting our winter was Abo and Will sliding the iconic UConn sign on the main road, leaving their mark as students and shredders.
Degree 6 takes Sevenpair from the east coast park to the west coast powder. We didn’t spend too much time filming park that year at Killington, but we were able to enjoy a great couple of days in sunny weather with our local crew. The trip out west to Vail and Beaver Creek provided Will, Jeff and Eric with terrain that is much harder to come by back home. Although we didn’t get a lot of snow, there was still plenty of fresh snow to play in and soften the landings. The extra fluff especially made Will’s confidence go up at he sent it far and high under the chair. That’s 500 extra points for ripping under a chairlift.
In the days leading up to April 1st, I was expecting sunshine all week and into the weekend. It was shaping up to be perfect spring conditions with soft snow, bumps, t-shirts, and sunglasses. The forecast was ideal, but as we all know in New England, the weather is as steady as Charlie Sheen’s career. News spread of a pretty big storm coming through by the end of the week and dropping off anywhere from 6 to 14 inches in higher elevations. The majority of the snow was expected to accumulate on Friday, April 1st, which was of course April Fool’s Day. With that in mind, I still made the trip up north on Thursday night with hopes of not getting fooled. The next morning, I pleasantly awoke at 7am to a strong snowfall with little visibility. This was it; this was what they were talking about.
Part 2 from our trip to visit Jake at school in PA. After the first day of skiing, we received a very unique tour of Jake’s freshman dorm and all its finest amenities. Some of the highlights included his patent-pending sleep kit and the five star restroom facilities.
Bear Creek provided us with another great day of PA riding. Once again more than half of the mountain was littered with rails and jumps, which provided us with plenty to keep ourselves busy.
Over the course of 2 days we rode more than 20 hours and mostly rails which is pretty appropriate to Jake’s style. It was a great weekend and we hope to go back soon for some more fun park laps and PA antics.
Part 1 of 2 from our trip to visit Jake at school in PA. Eric, Eric and Will made the drive from Uconn to Muhlenberg College to give Jake a well deserved study break. Our first day consisted of 10 hours of skiing at Big Boulder which has rails and jumps on virtually every trail. This also meant that all recreational riders join in on the same trails as well which led to some very PA-esque moments. We quickly got acclimated to the riding style of the locals and lapped the rickety chairs from sunrise to sunset and into the night.
We made our way back to Jake’s dorm that night where we received a very unique tour of the PA college life. The next degree will continue with the tour and our final day of the trip at Bear Creek Mountain.
Degree 4 was filmed by Eric Leone. Special thanks to Colorado Ski Shop (coloradoskishop.com), Ski the East (skitheeast.net) and Mission Fitness (missionfitnessllc.com).
Degree 3 was filmed in one day in early April at Mount Snow. It was a perfect spring slush day with blue skies and bombed out landings. We met up with some guys from 860 Media and spent the day lapping Carinthia while Jeff and Will were hiking Tucks. Maybe we weren’t necessarily earning our turns like at Tucks but it was just as satisfying. Everyone was pushing each other on every feature and Luke Hagearty was doing what he does best, just slaying everything in sight.
This is a slightly re-edited version of the edit released earlier this year but we want to re-release it for everyone who didn’t see it the first time.
Degree 2 was filmed in the Killington area throughout the winter. This season lacked in snowfall compared to last year which made it tough to ski the woods. There was a lot of bushwacking and questionable face shots mixed in with packed powder and crust. Everyone knows by now how awesome gopros are and we were able to use them a lot this year which helped to film longer lines. Despite the lack of snowfall in the region we still managed to have some great times exploring new terrain that we’ll revisit this year in hopes of more snow.
Sevenpair Productions presents 7 Degrees, a Leone Brothers series of episodes from the 09-10 winter.
Degree 1 was filmed for a day at Okemo in late March. It was bluebird skies and perfect temperature, yet the snow was frozen solid. We spent the majority of our morning doing rails until around noon when the snow slushed up and it felt more like spring. Everyone was enjoying the great spring conditions and Kyle kept pushing his front flips bigger and farther every time, while Jeremy flipped off of everything he could.