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					      <Feature>   Summer Gravity Camps                                                                                                                          Words[Kyle Jameson]
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    <decline magazine>
                                                                                                                                                                Photos[Sterling Lorence]

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          working muscles that I did not even know you                    stuff. I don’t remember what I won that year
                                                                                                                                                                                       SGC coach, Kyle Jameson,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          used to ride bikes. After a sick day of riding                  because it was my birthday and right after the
                                                                                                                                                                                   shows the kiddies how it’s done
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          we would go to Lost Lake to hang out on the                     prizes, the coaches brought out a birthday
                                                                                                                                                                                  on the Red Bull Elevation jumps
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          beach and play Frisbee, King of the Dock                        cake! I was so shocked, I remember getting
                                                                                                                                                                                                      in Whistler.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          and swim around. There is tons of fun to be                     super teary-eyed and not knowing what to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          had at Lost Lake.                                               say. After that, I knew that I wanted to come
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                You pretty much hang out with the                         back to SGC the next summer.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          coaches the entire time, except for dinner                            At the camp, I developed a really good
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          when you have the option to find food on                         relationship with the camp director, Andrew
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          your own. But I ended up eating with the                        Shandro. When I was younger, I looked up to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          coaches because they were all pretty cool.                      him as a mentor and he’s really cool friend to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kids up to 19 years old have an 11pm curfew,                    have. At the time, I didn’t know that not only

                                                                                                          From Student to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          so there’s not too much horsing around and                      would he be my friend and mentor, but also
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          kids don’t stay awake all night. You get in so                  my boss one day.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          much riding during the week that you end up

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          falling asleep pretty easily, anyway. I know                    …To Teacher
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          that I did.                                                     During the winter of 2006, I was in Aptos,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The last night of camp was Saturday                       California, hanging out and riding with some                   Thomas Vanderham, Cam McCaul, Andrew
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          and the coaches always have pizza and                           of my good friends. Andrew (Shandro) and                       Shandro and Matt Hunter. If you went to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          prizes. These prizes aren’t just some repetitive                The Collective guys were there to doing some                   SGC, you’d be looking at this view with

                                                                                                           Kyle Jameson goes full cycle                                                                                   stickers and a t-shirt. They are desired things                 filming with Cam McCaul, so I told Andrew                       a pair of handlebars between your hands
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         rather than this magazine. That’s not a
                                                                                                           through Summer Gravity Camps
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          like a new suspension fork, JBL headphones                      that I was extremely interested in coaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          or a complete Shimano Saint group – sick                        camps and I would work my ass off for him. He                  salespitch, it’s a statement of fact.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          told me that he would think about it. In about

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The Whistler Boneyard:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Learn it, know it, live it.

                                                                I’VE HAD THEABEST THREE SUMMERS
                           Thing 1: Cam McCaul                                                                   OF                       Vanderham and Andrew Shandro. At the time, I was
                                                                                  S      G
                                                                   MY LIFE GOING TO THE UMMER  C       RAVITY   AMPS                      an avid viewer of Kranked 5, so I knew who those guys
                                                                (SGC). R            S     , SGC
                                                                           UN BY NDREW HANDRO                 IS A                        were and was amped to ride with them. An opportunity
                                                                VALUABLE EXPERIENCE FOR ANY AGE OF RIDER. AT THE                          to get to ride Whistler with amazing shredders for a
                                                                CAMP, YOU RECEVE COACHING AT ITS FINEST. BETWEEN                          week sounded super fun. Plus, SGC lift-line priority, which
                                                                THE WHISTLER BIKE PARK, DIRT JUMPS, SKATEPARK                             means the campers can go straight to the front of the
                                                                AND THE AIR DOME, YOU CAN RIDE ALL ASPECTS OF                             line.
                                                                MOUNTAIN BIKING IN ONE WEEK TO HONE YOUR SKILLS.                                I told my mom that I wanted to go, so when July
                                                                BEST OF ALL, YOU BECOME FRIENDS WITH AWESOME                              rolled around I was off. I had no idea who I was going to
                                                                COACHES SUCH AS WADE SIMMONS, KIRT VOREIS,                                meet or what was going to happen; all I knew was that I
                                                                TYLER MORLAND, THOMAS VANDERHAM, JORDIE                                   wanted to ride as hard as I could.
                                                                LUNN AND CAM MCCAUL. IF YOU WANT TO EXPAND
                                                                YOUR RIDING CAPABILITIES, THIS IS THE BEST WAY TO                         From Student…
                                                                SPEND A WEEK OF YOUR LIFE.                                                The first thing that happens once you get to the Tantalus
                                                                                                                                          – the hotel that everyone attending SGC stays at – is
                                                                Introduction                                                              Steve-O sets everyone up with rooms and passes for the
                                                                When I was 13 years old, my friends were taking a road                    bike park. Once I got my room, I started to make some
                                                                trip up to Whistler with their dad. I wanted to go so                     new friends, and now these friends are friends for life. I
                                                                badly, but their car was full and there wasn’t any room                   was roomed up with two other Kyles and a kid named
                                                                for me. Man, I was bummed. Fortunately, my mom                            Bret. In fact, I still keep in touch with them and one of
                                                                looked into it and found a week-long summer camp at                       the Kyles is now one of my best friends and partner in
                                                                the Whistler Bike Park called the Summer Gravity Camps;                   crime. All the kids that come to SGC are here for one
                                                                I had never heard about it before. At first, I was pretty                  reason and that is riding mountain bikes, so it’s pretty
                                                                skeptical about this camp, going to Canada for the                        easy to meet new friends.
                                                                first time and attending a summer camp. But then she                             The camp runs for eight days and has a daily
                                                                told me about how you get to ride with all these super                    schedule. During the week, you ride from 10am to about
                                                                sick riders like Dave Watson, Wade Simmons, Thomas                        4 or 5pm. I rode the hardest I have ever ridden before,

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      <Feature>                 Summer Gravity Camps                                                                                                                          Words[Kyle Jameson]
                                                                                                                                                                              Photos[Sterling Lorence]

                                                                                                                      SGC has exclusive sessions
                                                                                                                      at the Air Dome during the
                                                                                                                      week. No waiting in line, so
                                                                                                                     you won’t have to wait while
                                                                                                                      perfecting your John Jesme

summer gravity camps
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Old dog, new tricks:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dave Watson.

      a month I was on the coach’s list for one week in July.
            Coaching for Andrew has been my dream since I
      first began attending his camps six years ago. This past
      season, I received the opportunity to show him that I
      had learned from his tutelage and could supplement
      my SGC background with bits of my own knowledge
      learned along the way.
            Going into my first day of coaching, I was really
      nervous because I had never done it before. Out of
      the 45 kids at the camp, I had to be responsible for
      five – the camper to coach ratio at SGC is at least six to
      one. These kids were relying on me for a good day of
      coaching and fun in the bike park.
            I thought that Shandro would give me the full low-
      down of exactly what I was supposed to do, but he
      didn’t. I think that he was testing me… I guess he figured
      I’d been to camp for six years and by now, I should
      know the basics.

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      <Feature>                     Summer Gravity Camps                                                                                                                          Words[Kyle Jameson]
                                                                                                                                                                                  Photos[Sterling Lorence]

      The Boss: Andrew Shandro has been
      holding his skills camps since 2002.
      SGC has blossomed into five week-
      long sessions with instructors like
      Wade Simmons, Thomas Vanderham,
      Kirt Voreis and Brandon Semenuk.

             On our first run, we dropped into B-Line with all of the kids. I
      couldn’t help but to remember what being a camper was like and
      that feeling made me extremely excited to be a coach.
             When we split into our groups, I realized that I had some really
      awesome kids. The kids that come to the camp usually want to ride
      A-Line all day, so the hardest part as a coach was trying to keep

      every camper in one piece.
             Before long I began to understand my duty as a coach: Giving
      tips to help the campers ride smoother and more consistent. Teaching
      kids to catch air for the first time and corner properly was amazing,
      I couldn’t believe I was doing it, my dream! It was so sick. I really
      started to get into it and began to bond with these kids, it was clear
      they started to trust me. That’s a big part of coaching – achieving
      respect from your student. When the student respects the teacher,
      they can trust the coach’s judgment and truly begin to learn.
             After lunch, my campers wanted to go down A-Line so badly
      that they would not stop talking about it. We had to visit the most
      ridden mountain bike trail in the world. Halfway down, one of the
      camper went over the bars – damn. This was a big fear of mine, the
      reason why I did not want to go down A-Line on the first day was
      feeling responsible for the kids. I was thinking, “Man, Andrew’s going
      to fire me on the first day. I’ve killed a kid!” Luckily, the camper was a
      resilient little guy, which they all tend to be.
             After riding the bike park, I went up to the Air Dome with some
      campers to practice some tricks. SGC has exclusive use of the Air
      Dome between 3 and 5pm during the camp, so there is no waiting in
      line, just like our chairlift access, which is sweet.
             I got a chance to talk to Steve-O about the A-Line incident
      and he made me feel a lot better. He told me that it happens every
      year. And thinking back to when I was a camper, I can remember
      someone crashing on the first day, all three years. I realized that the
      best thing you can tell your students is to take it super easy the first
      day because we’ll have the chance to ride a lot during the week.
             The following days of riding and coaching were even better
      then the first. All the groups are pretty much sorted and it was time to                             The student challenges the
      get your shred on: Riding the bike park, going to Lost Lake and riding                              teacher on the Whistler slalom
      the dirt jumps for hours with your own crew of campers. Six days of                                 course. Shandro (rider’s right
      riding the Whistler Bike Park for seven hours a day, plus riding Air Dome                           course) and Jameson (left).
      and the municipality dirt jumps is a lot of riding. I was really tuckered
      out but Steve-O asked me to stay on as a coach. I must have done
      something right after all.

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      <Feature>                  Summer Gravity Camps                                                                                                                         Words[Kyle Jameson]
                                                                                                                                                                              Photos[Sterling Lorence]

                                                                                One of Whistler Bike Park’s many
                                                                                ammenities: Crabapple Hits. The
                                                                                jumps are big and the speeds are
                                                                                high; it’s the fastest jump run on the
                                                                                mountain. This photo is a motion
                                                                                blur for a reason...

      The Real Deal
      After I finished my first week of coaching, I realized that
      it was not as easy as I thought, and man was I pooped!
      With two more weeks ahead of me, I was really exited.
      As I continue to coach, I start to coach myself and
      become more conscious of my own technique when
      I ride. Now, when I ride I am constantly thinking about
      how to properly articulate and explain to others what
      I’m doing on my bike.
              Today, coaching mountain bike riding skills is my
      life. I love teaching and helping people become better
      mountain bikers because I want everybody to love
      biking as much as I do. To me, this is the best job in the
      whole world and Summer Gravity Camps are the best
      camps that you could ever attend. It’s crazy to see a lot
      of progression in one week, with kids and adults.
              I had always wanted to make riding my bike a job
      but I could never figure out how to make it happen.
      Now, I’ve learned that if you love what you do and you
      have a goal or a dream then you should never give up

      and never let anyone tell you that you are not capable
      of reaching it. Persistence and a happy outlook on life is
      the key to doing anything.

                  For more info on the Summer Gravity Camps,
                              go to

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