Thursday, January 22, 2015

Skiing in the San Juans

Over new years I spent a week in Ouray, CO, a little mountain town about an hour from Telluride that is famous with climbers for the amazing ice climbing in the area. I did go there mostly to ice climb, but I couldn't resist bringing my skis.

The first day I skied with three snowboarders on snowshoes at Red Mountain Pass. I didn't get as many laps as I wanted, but it was good to be on the skis. My camera somehow froze to my clip and I couldn't get it off of my backpack, so I didn't get any photos.

The next day we drove to Telluride and met Dave Chew, an engineer for Wagner Custom Skis who took us on an amazing ski tour straight out his front door! We climbed over 3,000 feet and were back by lunch.

Vincent sporting the snowshoe look. He now has a mighty fine AT ski set up and will no long have to suffer on the way up! 

Snowboard transitions will be a thing of the past

The views on the hike up kept getting better and better

Dave Chew charging up his backyard playground, something he does almost daily. I'm definitely jealous of this guy. 

Dave doing his usual, waiting for us "lowlanders".

The views from our high point. Spectacular.

Vincent enjoy the view

Dave Chew crushing the downhill as well

Vincent can't help but have a shit-eating grin

Dave Chew getting some airtime in his backyard

After a late night on New Years Eve in the bustling streets of Ouray, Andrew McLean and I get a late start and head to Red Mountain Pass again. There wasn't really any new snow but the conditions were still pretty decent.

The McMillan Peak area has so many amazing looking yurts and cabins. Would definitely be fun to spend a few days back there.

The terrain is seemingly endless. 

Andrew remembering how to skin on his first day out of the season. (First day on a recovered ACL) 

I love the white stuff

An old mining building

Andrew rides out the steepest part of the couloir. It sluffed on me a bit, but was overall really nice conditions. 

Skiing out of the couloir with an audience in the parking lot.
I love the San Juans. I both wish they were closer to Boulder and am glad they are not. If they were any closer they'd be skied and climbed out like everything else in the Front Range, but then I would have better access to them. It's good to have a destination to go to. I will definitely be back. 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Happy Holidays!

I guess it's a bit late for that, but what the hell. It's been a great year and I had a great holidays. I spent the week surrounding New Years ice climbing and skiing around Ouray (your-A), Colorado. It was an awesome vacation with some great friends. But I'm always excited to return to Boulder (I take that as a good sign I'm supposed to be here).

I took a short hike with a friend yesterday just outside of Boulder, on the north side. For some reason I rarely go to that side of town, but it's quite beautiful.

Monday, December 8, 2014

A Moab Thanksgiving

I spent Thanksgiving with a couple friends in Moab, Utah climbing some stellar desert cracks. Perfect weather for four days of climbing!  

We had the best campsite! 
I’ve been trying to capture a Milky Way shot, somehow I’ve never done that. I think the moon was too bright this night. 
Along with Climbers, Moab was full of base jumpers and slack liners.

This is my view from my tent in the morning!

The Owl in Arches National Park. This was my first desert tower. Fun 5.8 climb! 
Self portrait from the summit of the Owl
Vincent leading the Owl

The view from the top of the Owl over Arches National Park
Vincent and Stefanie watching for the beta on the Devil's Golf Ball before deciding to climb it
Vincent pulling through the C1 section on the Devil’s Golf Ball
We checked out The Windows for sunset

Vincent loving the perfect handcrack of The Naked and the Dead 5.10R. The top opens up into an awkward but stable offwidth. 

Moving into the offwidth

The last day we moved to Wall Street and climbed the best 5.9 crack climb I’ve lead, Flakes of Wrath. Five Stars and you can belay from your car!
The variation to the left is stellar too, but the crack dissipates into V3-4 face climbing with no protection. 

Stefanie snapped a shot of me leading Flakes of Wrath

Friday, November 21, 2014

New Print Shop! Just in Time for Christmas!

After many years of intending to do so, I have created a Print Shop for my art. You can now purchase prints directly from a website that allows you to pick the size, what it is printed on, and where it is shipped. Can't figure out what to get Grandma for Christmas? Get her a canvas print!

Click here to see the Print Shop:

Prints are available on archival paper, canvas gallery wraps, acrylic gallery standouts, metal prints, matted and framed, as greeting cards, and phone cases.

Many of the photos on this new website have never been published or seen outside of my archives. They don't really have a place on my portfolio website. I'm excited to give you the opportunity to print them for your walls. I'd love to hear your thoughts!

From now until January 1st, get 20% off  your order (does not apply to printing cost)!
Type in this code at checkout: JAVVDP

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park

I’ve wanted to go to the Colorado Great Sand Dunes National Park since I moved to Boulder 3 years ago (almost), but hadn’t had the opportunity. This past September my aunt, father, and sister were hiking a section of the Continental Divide Trail in Southern Colorado. My mother came from Indiana to watch my sister’s boys while the other adults were out on the trail. Mother insisted on seeing me since I was only six hours away. 

I was happy to finally see this beautiful spectacle. They’re the tallest sand dunes in North America. And they’re awesome. 


Note: All of these images are available for sale on my new Print Shop website,

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The Dunes cover 30 square miles and are stacked up against the Sangre de Cristo mountains. 


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Grains of Sand 


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Steam rises off of a lake in the San Luis Valley

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Panorama of the dunes as seen from the road entering the park. 


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The evening sun casts long shadows across Great Sand Dunes National Park, accentuating the sensual curves of the dunes.


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On the drive home up 285 I was watching a storm come through his valley near Buena Vista and had to stop to capture it. 


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