Ian McIntosh at Revelstoke, BC, by Blake Jorgensen.After a warm and foggy day, the clouds settled enough for photographer Blake Jorgensen and skiers Ian McIntosh, Kye Petersen, and Lynsey Dyer to ride to the top of British Columbia’s Revelstoke Mountain. Revelstoke, which sits in the Columbia Valley, is notoriously foggy during winter. But unless it’s storming, ascending a few thousand feet is all it takes to poke through to sunshine. “It was warm and the snow was getting pretty manky, so I set up under the cliff in this cave,” says Jorgensen. “Water and ice were dripping all over me and my gear.”


The Focus section of our magazine is where we showcase some of the best photographs of the year, and the stories behind how they were taken. Here is a collection of those images.

Carston Oliver in Las Lenas, Argentina.

Sweetgrass Production's "Solitare"

Sweetgrass Productions isn't your average film company. Instead of shooting urban jibs and heli-fueled big mountain lines, they've made a name for themselves by filming in-depth portraits of human-powered ski culture, with a side of pow shots (see their last film "Signatures"). They've spent the past two seasons in South America shooting their 2011 production, "Solitare." Here's a behind the scenes look.

 As band saws whine in the telephone’s background, Ski Logik's founder David “Mazz” Mazzarella lets slip only a tiny hint of nostalgia, “it's bittersweet, I used to ski a lot more. I love to ski. I should have started a golf club company.” True, not much snow falls on his new tropical home in the South China Sea. But it’s a small price to pursue the one thing he loves more than skiing, building skis. A few weeks prior to my conversation with Mazz, I'd spent a day buttering up Breckenridge’s Horseshoe Bowl in 22 inches of fresh on a demo set of Ski Logik Bombsquads. The experience left me pondering. I needed explanation on how the beautiful wood ski smeared powder one minute then crushed bumps or railed groomers the next. I couldn’t fathom why the featherweight boards felt stable and reassuring underfoot. My curiosity spiked when the skis stood up to every type of terrain yet were such a drastic departure from the epoxied, ABS, and metal laminate weapons to which I’d grown accustomed. So I called him and asked.

Ski Logik: Handmade in Hainan

One skier's surprising day on a demo pair of Ski Logiks leads to a transcontinental phone call with the company's founder to learn about ski building, moving to China, and the crazy dream that made it happen.