February 2018

Rob Vandervoort

Rob Vandervoort started skiing Crested Butte Mountain Resort at the tender age of 2, but by the time he was 9 his interest had turned to snowboarding. He had started skateboarding the previous summer and was hooked on riding a board as opposed to two planks.

“The flow of surfing a board on snow down a mountain is addicting, and that’s what keeps me coming back,” he says. The 30-year-old has lived in Montana, Washington and California but has since returned to his hometown. He’s received numerous podiums at Freeride World Qualifier events, including a second-place finish at Crested Butte in 2016 as well as third overall on the tour that season. However, his first big result came three years prior at the Rahlves Banzai Tour in 2013 at Squaw Valley. Vandervoort finished second at that event, and third overall on the tour.

Yet, the backcountry has become a big draw. His introduction to off-piste came in high school, when Vandervoort and friends turned to “car laps” off roadsides. He split his first board himself in 2010 and says the experience changed his live. “I used to split boards for friends in my dad’s garage in Crested Butte,” Vandervoort recalls of the shop, in fact, about two blocks away from the facility where Cold Smoke’s factory Voodoo is made today.

Of course, powder is the biggest factor that draws Vandervoort to the backcountry, not to mention the fact that a splitboard is such an enjoyable way to experience the outdoors when the snow piles deep. “It’s low impact and feels great on my knees,” he says. “Also, my dog absolutely loves to go splitboarding with me.”

Vandervoort’s perfect day in the backcountry starts with an early rise, quick stretch, breakfast and he’s out the door, splitboarding from his doorstep before hiking multiple laps in his favorite backyard zone. “Shred deep, stable powder all morning. Lunch somewhere in the woods. A few more afternoon bonus laps. Splitboard back to the house to enjoy victory beers on the porch. Ahh …”

Vandervoort has ridden the Cold Smoke Voodoo off and on for about two years, but this year is his first full season on the board. “The Voodoo is SOOO easy to turn,” he says. “Think left, it turns left. Think right, it turns right. It’s effortless. Also, It’s a stiff board yet has great pop. Finally, its durable.”

In addition to Cold Smoke, Vandervoort also is sponsored by Crested Butte Mountain Resort, Handlebars Bike and Board Shop, Bearcat Builders, Crested Butte Snowsports Foundation (scholarships) and Patagonia (proform).

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