Look down from Timberline's Stormin' Norman lift this week and you'll see future stars of Sochi spinning off jumps at the resort's terrain park. There are no medals or sponsorships on the line, though. Which is the point, says West Coast Session organizer Ethan Stone.
"All winter long they're competing, they're doing photo shoots, they're working really hard to become professional athletes. It's work, it's not always fun," he says. "When they come here, this is a chance for them to relax at the end of the season and just have a good time. They can push themselves if they want to, but no one's telling them what to do. And it turns out incredible, because when you let them have that freedom, they go nuts."
These are some of the world's best young skiers. At this year's X Games, both first and second place went to Session alum. The Session is a way for Timberline, which sits on a glaciated peak and is open all summer unlike every other North American ski resort, to kick off its busy season. In June, Portland becomes the center of the American ski world as an influx of ambitious skiers and boarders come to train while Colorado's mountains melt down to slush.
"If you just ride this lift all day you'll see things that will blow your mind, that you didn't think were possible, and that happens to me on a daily basis during the West Coast Session," Stone says.
On Sunday, the ridiculous tricks were amplified by even more ridiculous outfits as the Session kicked off on the resort's Gaper Day, which Stone says is a "time-honored mountain town tradition."
"In the spring time, everyone picks a day to dress as ridiculously as possible, possibly get very inebriated and just have a great time, celebrate the season past," he says. "But here it's celebrating the season to come."
What better way to do that than a spirit hood or neon pink shorts?
Oh man, it looks like Shaun White even showed up! Check out more videos and photos taken by actual professional photographers here.