Known as the ‘Unofficial Mayor’ of Whistler, Rube Goldberg made his mark on the world-renowned ski town for his notable snowboarding, extensive backcountry knowledge, and overall amazing personality. Living in Whistler, British Columbia for over 20 years, Rube developed a way to make the ‘ski bum’ lifestyle a sustainable reality. In the first portion of his Whistler life, Rube worked as a professional snowboarder exploring the Whistler backcountry by snowmobile and filming video parts. As Rube transitioned out of professional snowboarding, he focused his skills on guiding the next generation of snowboarders, owning a painting company and property managing. His love for the town and ability to adapt to new roles has helped him create a comfortable community and the accessibility to snowboard everyday.
We sat down with Rube to learn about his productive 2014 season, favorite things about Whistler and his plans for the upcoming season…
Rube, where are you from originally? I am from Hudson, Quebec, Canada.
Where did you spend the most time snowboarding in Quebec? I grew up riding at Mt. Riguad and Mt. Saint Sauveur.
How many years have you been snowboarding? I’ve been snowboarding since 1988.
What inspired you to make the move from Quebec to Whistler? I moved out to Whistler in ’95. I just needed a break from school. I was originally planning on only taking a year off, but that plan fell apart quick.
How did you first get into the Whistler backcountry? Well I was a park rat to start, and then one day I was invited to go for a hike around Whistler and Blackcomb and jump off cliffs and hit big jumps with my friend Rick Johnston for his new movie. Pretty sure his company was called FaceShot Productions. It was awesome! The next year I bought a snowmobile and tried to hang with Treetop Films. They were definitely pushing snowboarding in the backcountry back then. It was not easy to hang. I slowly progressed and from there went on to shoot with a bunch of other crews over the years. Neoproto, Kidsknow, Brainwash, Whiteout, Sandbox.
Did you know anyone living in Whistler before making the big move? I had a few friends that had lived here before I came. They showed me where Tommy Africa’s was!
Can you tell us the top five things you love about Whistler?
- The mountains.
- The proximity to the mountains.
- The proximity to Vancouver.
- The snow.
- The people.
What are your top five restaurants in Whistler?
- The Furniture Warehouse – Cheap food, good people, good vibe.
- Samurai Sushi – Quick, easy and tasty.
- Splitz Burger – Best burger in town.
- Earls – Great company.
- Rim Rock – Amazing food.
Where are your favorite places to ride backcountry in Canada? Whistler and Revelstoke.
Where is your favorite place to go Heli-Boarding in Canada? Whistler. Next question.
This year you filmed for The Pathology Project, how did that happen? My good friends Bryan Fox and Austin Smith always come to town and make me do things that I don’t want to do anymore. I can never say no, so I hung out and threw my body around for a few days. The film crew was massive and mixed with skiers and snowboarders just doing what we love to do… Play in the snow!
What are your plans for next year? Will you film a snowboard part again? Well I’m definitely going to keep playing in the snow. If somebody wants to film it then I guess I’ll be filming again.
In the meantime, enjoy some classic videos of Rube snowboarding below…
Calgary, Alberta native Leanne Pelosi is no stranger to competitive sports. Once a member of the Junior National Soccer Team, Leanne made a life changing decision by leaving soccer and moving to Whistler, British Columbia to pursue her other passion, snowboarding. Leanne quickly proved herself in the snowboard industry and later went professional. Fast forward 10 years and Leanne has positioned herself as one of the most influential female riders of the last decade by operating her own all-girls movie production, winning countless snowboard contests and awards, and she is nowhere close to slowing down…
We caught up with Leanne to talk about her latest two-year snowboard project: Vision Airs.
What is your new web series ‘Vision Airs’ all about?
My inspiration for snowboarding is constantly changing, depending on where I am and who I’m with at a particular time. I’ve realized that throughout the years of my career as a professional snowboarder, I fed off creative energy from certain snowboarders and I always try to emulate their creativity in my own way. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched legendary snowboarder Gigi Ruf video parts! So this past season I created my own web series called ‘Vision Airs,’ which is about riding with masters of their own craft, whether it’s in the park, the backcountry or the streets. I’ve realized that if you surround yourself with passionate people, it will bring you to a whole new level. So that’s what I focused on. And I had a great winter!
What brought an Alberta native to British Columbia?
When I was at the University of Calgary studying Biomechanics, all my friends were making the trip to Whistler. All I kept hearing about was how much it snowed, ALL THE TIME. I begged my parents to let me live there for just one year and they said fine if I finish my degree first. So I moved to Whistler after I finished, and that one year is now ten. I love the lifestyle, the people, the culture… Whistler has so much to offer for a mountain town that is so close to a big city like Vancouver.
Traveling for snowboarding over the past 10 years must have enabled you to ride some of the best powder in the world. Out of all the places you have been, where is your favourite place to travel for filming?
My favourite place to travel for filming is in my own backyard. I love beautiful British Columbia.
My favourite place to travel for filming is in my own backyard. I love beautiful British Columbia. The snow conditions are not like anywhere else in the world; it’s consistent and it’s good. What I love about the Whistler backcountry is that because the snow is coastal, the avalanche conditions are relatively stable. And that’s good when you’re spending most of your year out there.
Some of the best powder of my life has been at home in the backcountry. However, I can’t forget to say something about the interior; between Whitewater, Revelstoke, Golden and BaldFace, you can’t go wrong.
If you could go on the ultimate snowboard trip anywhere in the world where would it be?
One place that is on my radar is Mica Heli. It looks like they have the most insane pillow lines ever and with the champagne powder they have in the interior, it seems like that would be a really fun place to go shred. I’d love to go there to film pillow lines.
What are your plans for this winter season?
Plans for the next season… I am teaming up with Kingfisher Heli and I’m going to be coaching heli assisted women’s split board trips in March. Check out more info on Kingfisher Heli here.
I am also working on a new film project based around snowboarding in my own backyard.
Watch Vision Airs below: