New feature I worked on for Ski Canada with Ashley Barker. Words & Photos: Ashley Barker Editing & Conception: Caley Vanular
Whistler Backcountry Photo: Ashley Barker

I started shooting snowboarding in December of 2003 in Alberta and interior British Columbia. I immediately knew it was a calling for me. Something about being in the mountains far away from anyone else with only the people you came to share it with was special. The photos are sometimes far and few between, but the memories are priceless. I have traveled to some truly amazing spots around the globe, but Whistler, British Columbia, my home now, is really the best place on earth.

Below is a timeline of magazine covers I photographed of professional athletes from all around the world…

2014

Snowboard Canada Magazine Cover of Rusty Ockenden, March 2014. Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboard Canada Magazine Cover of Rusty Ockenden, March 2014. Photo: Ashley Barker

This cover of Rusty Ockenden just hit the newsstands yesterday. It was shot just outside of Pemberton, British Columbia, at first light on a short landing step down jump.

 

2013

SBC Skier Cover of Justin Dorey 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker
SBC Skier Cover of Justin Dorey 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker

Justin Dorey, Cadrona Resort, New Zealand.

When the season turns to summer in North America the big guys head south to train for the next season. Vernon’s Justin Dorey is no stranger to New Zealand, he has been training in the halfpipe at Cadrona Resort for almost a decade now.

Onboard Magazine Jussi Oksansen Photo: Ashley Barker
Onboard Magazine Cover Of Jussi Oksansen Photo: Ashley Barker

Jussi Oksanen, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

Days like this one, most would stay home, or hit the hill having to stop every few turns to wipe the snow from their goggles in order to see. Determined, Jussi Oksanen, Mikey Rencz, the filmer, and I had the Whistler backcountry to ourselves. The filmer and I used umbrellas to shelter our cameras and I set up my flash to give the shot some extra pop.

Snowboarder Magazine Cover Of Mikey Rencz 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboarder Magazine Cover Of Mikey Rencz 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker

Mikey Rencz, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

This is the identical set up as the last shot, just a different rider and a different trick. I was able to get two different covers as they distribute to separate demographics.

Freeskier Cover 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker
Freeskier Cover 2013 Photo: Ashley Barker

Sammy Carlson, Whistler Backcountry, British Columbia, Canada.

This was early January of 2013 and it hadn’t snowed in a week, but the sun enabled us to access terrain deep in the Whistler backcountry. It’s not ideal to jump into shade, but, it’s still powder and if Oregon’s Sammy Carlson can hit a step down this massive, you could certainly find snow good enough to keep you grinning all day.

2012

Snow Surf Cover 2012 Photo Ashley Barker
Snow Surf Cover 2012 Photo Ashley Barker

Mikkel Bang, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

Norway’s Mikkel Bang, pictured here, is tapping the tree into a fresh powder landing. The trees in this zone are close enough to offer visibility and spaced enough to give freedom to do big jumps like this.

Transworld Business Cover 2012 Photo: Ashley Barker
Transworld Business Cover 2012 Photo: Ashley Barker

John Jackson, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

February days in Whistler don’t usually offer sun, but you’re sure to get lots of powder. Here, California’s John Jackson is making the best of launching through the trees at low visibility.

2011

Act Magazine of Eric Jackson 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker
Act Magazine of Eric Jackson 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker

Eric Jackson, Pemberton Backcountry, British Columbia, Canada.

This spot is several hours from Whistler, British Columbia towards Lillooet, British Columbia and can be accessed only by snowmobile or helicopter. The snow and visibility weren’t great this day but, California’s Eric Jackson was still able to make the most out of it on this natural wind lip.

Golden Ride Magazine Cover of Jess Kimura 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker
Golden Ride Magazine Cover of Jess Kimura 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker

Jess Kimura, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

This is a roadblock up a logging road just outside of Whistler Village, British Columbia. Jess Kimura is doing a trick called the ‘miller flip’ on the post and landing on a slope that leads into a cat track.

Transworld Snowboarding Cover Of Lucas Debari 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker
Transworld Snowboarding Cover Of Lucas Debari 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker

Lucas Debari, Coquihalla, British Columbia, Canada.

Getting to this spot off the Coquihalla Pass is a mile hike inland off the highway. You have done most of the climb in the car; the hard part is getting out of the bowl once you’ve shredded only a fraction of all the possibilities it offers. Here, Washington’s Lucas Debari is tapping the tree and dropping into the fresh backcountry bowl.

Golden Ride Magazine Cover of Kjersti Buaas 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker
Golden Ride Magazine Cover of Kjersti Buaas 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker

Kjersti Buaas, Revelstoke Mountain Resort, British Columbia, Canada.

This is a mellow little spot just out of bounds on Revelstoke Mountain Resort. Pictured here is Norway’s contest veteran Kjesti Buass doing ‘her thing’.

Steeze Magazine Cover 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker
Steeze Magazine Cover 2011 Photo: Ashley Barker

Simon Chamberline, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Ontario’s Simon Chamberline set out to hit some handrails in the streets of Calgary, Alberta.

2010

Snowboarder Magazine Cover of Hana Beaman 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboarder Magazine Cover of Hana Beaman 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker

Hana Beaman, Valdez, Alaska, USA.

This was my first time in Alaska with a Heli operation out of Valdez. This shot was a mellow run almost anyone could take to slash this wind lip, but Utah’s Hana Beaman actually knows how to make it look good.

Snowboard Magazine Cover of Rube Goldberg 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboard Magazine Cover of Rube Goldberg 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker

Rube Goldberg, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

Many of the snowboard and ski film crews head to Whistler, British Columbia to build massive jumps into fresh landings and do tricks until the landing is super trashed. Veteran of the Whistler Backcountry, Rube Goldberg did just that at this classic jump spot once the light had left the take off.

Snow Surf Cover 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snow Surf Cover 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker

David Carrier-Porcheron a.k.a DCP, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

Unbelievably this is a mellow slope; I was shooting with Quebec’s DCP as a warm up lap waiting for light to get good on the lines he really wanted to hit it. There is so much terrain like this in Whistler, that’s what makes it the destination for all backcountry enthusiasts.

Snowboarder Magazine Photo Annual Cover of Mikey Rencz 2010Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboarder Magazine Photo Annual Cover of Mikey Rencz 2010Photo: Ashley Barker

Mikey Rencz, Revelstoke Backcountry, British Columbia, Canada.

We snowmobiled to this area named Turtle in Revelstoke, British Columbia to set up a step down to shoot. Squamish’s Mikey Rencz loves to hit big step down jumps and the snow and terrain in Revelstoke are perfect for doing just that.

 

Snowboard Canada Womens Annual Cover of Jess Kimura 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboard Canada Womens Annual Cover of Jess Kimura 2010 Photo: Ashley Barker

Jess Kimura, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Often in the early season, park riders like to hit ‘urban features’ to legitimize their careers as ‘rail riders’. It snows a great amount in Ontario every winter, so a crew of girl riders and I headed to Ontario for a week. Here Jess Kimura is switch frontside boardsliding this handrail at the University of Ottawa.

2009

Snowboard Canada Business Cover 2009 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboard Canada Business Cover 2009 Photo: Ashley Barker

Craig Beaulieu, Bariloche, Argentina.

In 2009, I spent two months in Bariloche, Argentina shooting photos for an American snowboard camp called: SASS. This particular feature was in the junkyard at the base of the camp, which offered some fun features for the campers to play around on when the hill was closed due to weather or mechanical malfunction. Ontario’s Craig Beaulieu, pictured here, was coaching at the camp and took a day off to do some snowboarding for himself.

2007

Snowboarder Magazine Cover of Kevin Griffin 2007 Photo: Ashley Barker
Snowboarder Magazine Cover of Kevin Griffin 2007 Photo: Ashley Barker

Kevin Griffin, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada.

I was visiting Whistler for my first time and staying on my friend, Kevin Griffin’s couch, in April, true Whistler style. He had gone on a trek through the woods the week before and thought it would be a cool spot to hit. Surely there was a lot less snow then the week before, but the photo came out amazing.

View more photography from Ashley Barker on her Photography Website and Instagram.

 

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