Following my work trip to Austria I jumped on a train at St Anton station and took a 2 hour train ride to Jenbach, a small town 50km east of Innsbruck which sits at the bottom of the Zillertal Valley. On arrival at Jenbach I was greeted by my identical twin brother ‘The Great El Porko’ (Rich) and one of my good University friends Reado. I hadn’t seen Reado for over six years so it was great to catch up.
After loading the car with my board bag we drove to our accommodation for the next three nights, The Backyard. The Backyard is a beautiful old farmhouse which sits above Mayrhofen on the steep sides of the Zillertal valley. Jurgen, the owner, has turned what was a derelict old building into a bustling hostel which offers snowboarders a fun, friendly and really comfortable refuge. Jurgen also offers his guests the opportunity to go splitboarding and if you’re really keen you can even build your own split board, which is exactly what I did.
We had two amazing days (three nights) staying at The Backyard, where we made the most of the sauna and the wood-fire-heated hot tub. During the day we had unbelievable snow conditions at Hintertux and rode knee-deep light fluffy powder both days. We also indulged in some classic Schnapps-enduced Austrian Apres Ski.
As Rich, my brother, works for snowboard manufacturer Amplid I was very fortunate to be leant his latest project straight from the LAB ‘The Carbon Pocket Knife’ which at less than 1.7kg is the worlds lightest snowboard. It was great to be back on a snowboard again and this board absolutely blew my mind.
After a busy few days snowboarding, building my splitboard, and enjoying the beautiful scenery it was time to leave The Backyard. Unfortunately I missed my train back to Zurich Airport so had to book another last-minute flight from Munich, which was fortunately on my brothers way home. On the way to the Airport we stopped at Rich’s bosses house, Amplid HQ, for a coffee and croissant. Our visit also gave me an opportunity to a look at the 2015 snowboard designs. Rich’s boss is ex Snowboard World Champion Peter Bauer, as well as being a legend in the Snowboard World he’s also one of the nicest guys you’re ever likely to meet. Every time I’ve visited Amplid HQ, Peter and his family have always made me feel really welcome. Anyway, while Rich and Peter talked business, Reado and I went for a walk to take some photos of the beautiful Bavarian scenery.
The photos below are of the Zillertal and the area immediately around Peter’s beautiful house.