I snuck away on Saturday for a ski day at Taos, my first of the season. The mountain was in fine form, thanks to a storm track that dumped nearly two feet of snow last week, and my little posse and I started the day with a hike to 12,481-foot Kachina Peak. From the top, we had stellar views across the valley to Wheeler Peak, New Mexico’s high point, and to an avalanche-swept bowl on Lake Peak, just to the south. Our run down Main Street was chunky on top, but softer towards the bottom, and we followed that with another couple laps on the Ridge, skiing foot-deep powder in the trees of Treskow and Billy Sol—the kind of hero snow that made me wish I had a helmet cam.
If I had, I could have filmed our turns and put it up on claimMYrun, a new “purpose-media” website where skiers and boarders post POV videos of their favorite lines on their favorite mountains. CMR went live two weeks ago and its more than 250 original videos have been viewed 35,000 times, arguably making it the fastest-growing collection of DIY, user-generated ski flicks on the web. You might think the biggest user group are dudes in their 20s and 30s, but the kids are moving in fast. “Ten and 11-year-old boys love it!” founder Brett Hills told me when we met up for après ski beers at the Stray Dog. “They don’t want to just ski the sweet lines, they want to document them and claim them." Like this clip from Coop and his gang of 12-14 year-old freestylers from Snowmass.
“A GoPro is what kids want for Christmas,” says Hills. “They are growing up in a different world where everything is a movie. They want to share their adventures and ego driven experiences through moving pictures.” With claimMYrun, says Hills, “They can store, share and geographically organize their conquests with their friends.” Consider the founder's own mashup from Taos a couple of weeks ago:
There are two ways to use the site: Contribute or gawk. If you’re the first rider to post video of a particular run, you’ll be memorialized forever with a “First Claim” honor. You can download footy a la carte, or become an “amigo” and create your own page of video content. If, on the other hand, you need a little mojo before your junior high ski trip to Shawnee, you can browse other riders’ videos by “trick,” “mashup,” “carnage,” or mountain—CMR plans to include trail maps for every ski resort in the U.S., plus the site has a backcountry feature that allows users to drop a pin and link their video to any mountain in the world using Google Maps.
A former competitive extreme skier-turned-entrepreneur, Brett lives in Albuquerque and partnered with pal Stephen Wood, aka Woody, a former ski racer, fashion industry insider, and self-sponsored surfer who recently moved back from Panama to launch CMR. Their goal: “to unite and create a core community” of adrenaline and “to capture the adrenaline so we can see the world through your eyes.”
Translation: “If you've got the steez, we'll help you share it with the world.”
Oh, and bonus for all you Taos rippers: Whoever posts the most videos from TSV in the next two weeks wins a free season pass from SkiTaos for next season. www.skitaos.org.
Get on it, kids.