Alarm goes off in the AM, the time has come to begin our journey. The smell of coffee fills the air as travel mugs are filled and breakfast is prepared. The gear is all accounted for. As we move the contents to the car for a long drive through the Rocky Mountains, we can’t help shouting out a loud “YEEEEEEEWW”. The Stoke is strong with us today. We are ready for our first SYB.
Boards, Bindings, Bags, Boots, Goggles, Helmets, Gloves, and various other trinkets populate the bags and the back of the XTERRA as we make the 4 -hour drive from Denver to Crested Butte. Clay’s phone gives off a loud chime as we roll into the valley. SYB crew is already posting pictures of the trip so far. We are beyond stoked to have joined in this retreat of epic proportions.
For many of us, the daily grind will eventually take its toll on the mind and body. Sending emails, making phone calls, and too many endless meetings can give anyone a case of cabin fever. That’s how I ended up in the heart of the Rocky Mountains with all these amazing humans. I think back on the moments of the past few months when I felt like if I had to put together one more design presentation or sales forecast my head would explode. Now, the only things on my mind are shredding some pow and immersing myself in this new culture and experience they’re all calling, S.Y.B. Obviously in this case we are talking about a variation of the original. SKI, Yoga, Beer in place of the original Surf. Yoga. Beer.
Anyway, In travelling to Crested Butte, I discovered that the SYB mindset and community is a contagious whirling tornado of positivity and magic. You will discover, You will connect, You will learn. It’s amazing how quickly an experience like this can take complete strangers, and magically turn them into family in only a matter of days. If you are having any bashfulness about a SYB trip, throw that out the window and dive headfirst into the bliss.
DISCOVER THE COMMITMENT TO THE COMMUNITY
One of my first discoveries of the SYB community, was that it seemed almost every person attending was from a different part of the country. There were people from New York, Baltimore, Fort Collins, Denver, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. It was amazing how the leaders were so committed to the SYB vibes. No amount of space or land could keep these people away from each other or prevent the experiences they were about to have, from coming to fruition. It was the discovery of their commitment to each other that inspired me to embrace the SYB culture to the fullest. Eddie’s meals were amazing and cocktails, legendary! Family style with more than enough to go around, everyone was guaranteed to get their fill of the deliciousness. Erin’s Yoga teachings were something I really enjoyed. I would consider myself in the beginner category in yoga practice, but her knowledge and guidance made me feel right at home. Nothing too strenuous, but the sequences definitely activated the full body. From morning-meditation, to 108 sun salutations, to post snowboarding yoga session Erin had our backs!
DISCOVER THE NATURE
Whether you grew up in the mountains or on the beaches. It is healthy to take the time to appreciate the beauty of the nature around us. Sometimes the hustle and bustle of a city can get us wound up so tight that we forget how much beauty is around us. In this case, the Rocky Mountains. A favorite moment appreciating nature was during my final evening on the trip. Enjoying a tasty cocktail, compliments of Eddie, I was chatting in the jacuzzi with Kingsley when a fox creeped up from underneath the deck and stopped on a snow bank, not even 10 feet away. We both noticed, then the Fox and I played what felt like a 5-minute staring contest. Realistically it was probably about 30 seconds, but even in that short timeframe we felt a connection with the creature. It was refreshing to reconnect with nature in a way that a city could never provide.
CONNECT WITH PEOPLE AND LEARN
Going on an adventure with complete strangers will coax someone to step outside of their comfort zone. Whether trying skiing for the first time since childhood or throwing backflips and 360’s off a jump Carl and Connor built with nothing but their hands, gear, and wits. There was always a sense of comradery amongst all of the group. You truly learn something new from everyone in attendance. Everyone connects and the whole crew is on the same page. As the days came and went I felt myself becoming closer and closer to these people and learning so much about everyone’s perspectives. The real magic of S.Y.B. is when the “down time” turns into BONDING TIME. S’mores with cave man dances by the fire pit and playing in the freshly fallen snow in the early hours of the morning were some of the most joyful moments of the trip. The final night I was there, we celebrated Erin’s birthday with a surprise post-dinner song and cake. Afterward, then commenced an awards ceremony where everyone was recognized for their various “Stoke Levels” and shared some fun experiences about the trip from each person’s vantage point. One final cherry to top off the entire trip. There’s no vibes, like the S.Y.B. vibes.
Deep in the heart of the Rocky Mountains I reconnected with some old friends, made several new ones, had a bonding moment with some of the local wildlife, and temporarily quenched my thirst for adventure. Mission accomplished. After having this experience, I have a new appreciation for taking the time to play in between the tough bouts of work. Work Hard. Play Hard. S.Y.B. for life. Until next time…