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“The Funnest Place on Earth”. (And where a Yorkshire accent is considered posh!)

 

Here’s the thing. Our special little SNOOKS skier, Thea, has worked relentlessly at her form, her steeze, her performance is on top form, so we want to shout about it! At just 15, Thea is already awarded Backing the best by Sport England and SportsAid, SportsAid, last year winning her first European Championship, now she’s taking America by storm! Recently placing 4th place at the USASA Nationals!! Thea has her eyes firmly on the X-Games and her ambition is to become an Olympian.

Here’s Thea’s season round up, straight from the horses mouth 🙂

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So this winter I got invited to go to Windells Academy in Mt Hood, Oregon. I felt so lucky to have been given the opportunity to do this and was super excited about it.
 
After starting my season with Why Ain’t You in Austria I travelled out to America in February. The journey was tiring but exciting. I landed at Seattle, had my fingerprints scanned and then looked for the Windells’ staff. Hannah and Michelle appeared like angels and we went straight to a coffee shop – typical Seattle!
 
When I arrived at Windells I was nervous but the place seemed so amazing I couldn’t help but be excited despite the jet lag. They took me on a tour of the campus which includes a big ass skate park called The Jungle, a super trampoline, 2 ramps and an airbag. I shared a cabin with five of the most special American girls you’ll ever meet.
 
I went up Mount Hood on my first day – it was sunny and you could see for miles but everyone warned me that it would be the only sunny day for a while … and they were right! The park at Timberline has rails that are so rad and the kickers are really mellow.
 
I skied almost every day at Timberline and the snow was extreme which meant there was fresh powder every few days so we could shred the sweet pow lines on our fat skis. Luckily, thanks to Snooks I was never cold in my Reviver jacket. *Thanks for the plug Thea ;)*
 
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The other skiers and snowboarders were so sick – they all has their own cool styles and we helped each other try new tricks.
 
My coach at Windells was Wynn Berns, he helped me on and off the snow. I’ve been working on flat spins, underflips, Misty 5s and moving my tricks onto the proline.
 
I competed in the USASA series events at Mount Hood, Timberline and Snoqualmie and podiumed at every event. This meant that I qualified for US Nationals at Copper Mountain, Colorado. We drove to Colorado across Utah and stopped at The Arches National Park which was scorching hot and spectacular.
 
Competing at US Nationals was *horns emoji*. I competed in the Overall category and I threw down a switch 5 tindie, right 3 lead mute, left 7 safety and some steezy rails. I was stoked with my performance and final result of 4th overall which means I’ve qualified to compete in the Rev Tour next year which is huge. Next winter I also aim to compete at Youth Olympics and maybe step up to World Cup level.
 
In Summer I’ve been offered an internship at Windells Camp so I’ll be working in the Demo Store and on the Recruitment Team. I’ll also be working towards my cork 7 and doubles with pro skiers including McRae Williams, Nick Goepper, Jossi Wells, Tom Wallisch and Devin Logan.
 
The weird things about America were the fact they call scones biscuits, they don’t eat Yorkshire puddings and they thought my accent was posh! The things I liked most about America were thrift shops, corn dogs and the hot boys!
 
Honestly besides the jet lag and missing my family, this winter season has been the best I’ve ever had. I would tell anyone who wants to ski or snowboard in America to check out Windells – it lives up to its slogan – ‘the funnest place on earth’. Watch this space for photos of my summer at Windells Camp.
 
Ambition is our favourite word here at SNOOKS HQ and we will be supporting her every step of the way! Thanks so much for the write up Thea, you rock!

 

 

Here’s what we think about it…

 

Mind-numbing, vulgar TV adorned with a consistent sprinkling of flagrant language, performed by a bunch of promiscuous, binge drinking, 20-something Geordies. Cringe-worthy? Embarrassing? Slutty? Disgraceful? Over the top? Sure, that’s what the critics and haters say about Geordie Shore, and of course they are entitled to their opinion… most of which I agree with to be honest, however, I reckon there’s a lot more to be said for Geordie Shore, especially for the girls on the show. These Geordie lasses are a new kind of feminist – the sex celebrating, orgasm worshipping, strong independent women who literally don’t care what anyone thinks of them. No, really. We had a good old chat about it at SNOOKS HQ, and found this great article by Lucy Wood that we couldn’t help but agree with! Before you write me off as a loony, allow me to elaborate. And if you still think I’m a loony then we can agree to disagree. Even loonies are entitled to their own opinions. So, here’s what we think about them Geordie Lasses…

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Before you write me off as a loony, allow me to elaborate. And if you still think I’m a loony then we can agree to disagree. Even loonies are entitled to their own opinions.

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Let’s break it down. Essentially the show consists of: drinking, sex, arguing, more drinking, swearing, being dramatic, and yet more drinking. I think what people dislike about the show is that these girls are not showing us society’s fabricated ideals that dictate how a woman should behave. We are taught from a young age that blue is for boys and pink is for girls. Football is for boys, netball is for girls. Trousers are for boys, skirts are for girls. Working is for men, cleaning is for women. Strength is for men, submission is for women. Promiscuity is for men, monogamy is for women. Now, I’m not suggesting we all suddenly drop all our morals and standards of decency and go out binge-drinking every night and get jiggy with the nearest bronzed Adonis or Aphrodite. BUT, if that is something you want to do, who the hell is anyone to tell you not to? As long as you’re not harming anyone else, whose business is it but your own?

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Why, in this day and age, is it OK for lads to go out on the lash, get ‘absolutely mortal’ and ‘tash-on’ with a fitty? They are revered as legends by their peers, not condemned to the fiery pits of slut-hell like a woman would be for the same behaviour. They see sleeping around as normal and acceptable (which is debatable in any case…), just the same as the guys on the show do. They talk about their ‘lady parts’ the same jokey, showing off way that the blokes on the show do!

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The girls reclaim derogatory language for themselves. They have taken the word slut and absolutely owned it, unashamedly. In a vulgar way… that’s pretty empowering! These girls are flipping around soceity’s norms. This might not be the most conventional or inspirational example of feminism to use, but I think it says a lot about how society has changed in recent years.

The one aspect of the girls, that I’m sure a lot of women can relate to is their rejection of society’s sexist pressure for their bodies to look a certain way. They will not be told to be skinny, and nobody else should be either. It’s YOUR body to do with as YOU wish.

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On Geordie Shore, the women and men behave the same. Equally as “disgraceful” as one another, but equal all the same! They all use similar language, they all go out and get hammered, they all put make up and fake tan on, yes the men too, and they all sleep around. These aren’t necessary aspirations we all want to be shooting for, but the sentiment is that they are equal and empowered to behave exactly how they want to. Unlike some reality shows, Geordie Shore isn’t showing it’s cast dressed up to the nines, airbrushed to the absolute limits of reality, quaffing Kale and Caviar Belinis from diamond studded champagne flutes. There is no Clarendon filter… Granted, we see the cast tangoed and plastered in make-up (the guys included) but we also see the cast looking rough, hungover and groggy, dressed in their Sunday chillout attire, make up smeared, laughing about all the ridiculous shenanigans they got up to the night before! They are unapologetic about who they are. If you don’t like them for it? They don’t care!

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So we are raising a glass to the girls of Geordie Shore! We probably won’t ever hang out but we definitely appreciate how kickass you all are. Thanks for bringing a refreshing new perspective to our screens. Let’s get absolutely mortal… (in moderation)!

 

BOUNDLESS BETTY – PROMOTING THE PURSUIT OF ADVENTURE

Now we met Jenny in Barcelona last September at the Women in Board and Action Sports Conference and she had this amazing idea! This idea is now a reality, and Boundless Betty is ready to make waves in the predominately male-dominated, outdoor adventure industry by creating the first ever, online booking platform designed with female inspiration and participation at its core! Wahoooo goooo Jenny! Or should we say Betty!

The mission – to encourage, inspire and ease accessibility for women into outdoor adventure sports.

 

CHECK OUT https://www.boundlessbetty.com/ & BOOK YOUR ADVENTURE!

 

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The concept was developed and evolved by founder, Jenny Tröber during a year of travelling and pursuing different sports in 2015/16. Her inspiration and passion was derived from the belief that participation in outdoor adventure sports has huge benefits including increased self-confidence and environmental awareness as well as a desire to encourage more women to get outside and get involved in the sports she felt had given her so much!

 

The operators on board have been carefully selected by seeking out passionate independent operators covering a number of different action sports, all in incredible places and all offering unique and real experiences! Boundless Betty will constantly be discovering and sharing trips and retreats, ensuring what’s on offer is fresh and inspiring for you guys! By showing the variety and depth of what is available in the wonderful world of outside action Boundless Betty opens the door and provides inspiration to those who might otherwise not have known where to look!

 

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The website and booking platform will also be shouting out about awesome female driven adventures! Along with travel advice, inspirational womens’ stories, and a travel buddy feature so you can team up with like-minded ladies! Basically everything you’d need and want all in one exciting platform! Boundless Betty is now LIVE so go check it out, we cannot wait to see how this inspirational community grow!

 

You can navigate to Boundless Betty here www.boundlessbetty.com, or visit their social channels on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

 

SNOOKS Love x

“I found myself naked in a cave with a woman who spoke no English chucking buckets of hot water over me…”

 

Snooks Co-Founder, Sophie, took a solo trip to the High Atlas Mountains to make the most of the May bank holiday…

 

 

This year I thought I’d set myself a goal of climbing a mountain that wasn’t in the UK! Not that I am particularly experienced at climbing mountains in the UK, but hey, the challenge sounded fun! So on New Year’s Eve, when a friend recommended Morocco, I thought why the hell not and bought some flights for just little old me to see what this solo adventure thing could rustle up as an experience! Safe to say I did not know what I was letting myself in for!

From the hostel roof top, Marrakech. Shout out to Hostel Rouge!

After a brief, vibrant, crazy couple of days hanging out in the over-whelming souks of Marrakech, where the air is rife with merchant chants, snake charmers, street performers, henna artists, spices, perfume and enough street food to tease the tastebuds to the moon and back…. I tottled along to the foothills of the mountain to go say hey to the top of Mount Toubkal. The night before I left the hostel, I overheard a Candian Guy Jimmy speak about the Toubkal trek (this little hill I planned to conquer in the morning) and said “hey! I am leaving in the morning, want to come with!? He was super on board, and off we left at 7am the next morning…me and my new mate Jimmy! A bus ride away to the village Imlil where you begin at the foothills of the mountain we eagerly began the slow and slightly daunting ascent. Luckily we were stopped by some local berbers who almost laughed at our ill preparation and lack of gear and higgghly recommended we rent some crampons and at least a sleeping bag. Yes we thought this sounds like a good idea. Turned down the offer of a mule to carry our things and headed along the dusty and winding trail. We were on our way!

 

3 hours in I thought okay, a slightly tougher stroll than I had anticipated. Half time oranges:

6 hours later we arrived at a 5 star accommodation for the night.

 

Okay it looks VERY basic bus after a heck of a walk, the hot plate of food and open fire and prospect of a bed was hugely inviting! Back to basics and no wifi here and it was great! (Apart from the 60 year old german couple who coughed and spluttered next to me all night but I was just too impressed at the fact that they had summitted that day to even be annoyed!)

7am the next morning. Ohhhhh that’s what the crampons are for!

Jimmy’s turban game was not quite on point!

By 10am we were close to the top, hit with a bout of altitude fever, I had a little moment to talk to myself where I felt at this point I maybe couldn’t go on. The wind was against us and my head felt up my arse! The summit was so close but so far! Will power and determination and the prospect of a view over the Hight Atlas Mountain range and across North Africa dragged us through. Needless to say, despite the wind nearly blowing us off, the views were breath-taking!

Now for the long 7 hour walk back down to the bottom, where at this point, I decided I fancied staying another night near the foothills of the mountain, found a berber guide who said I could stay in his guest (ahem, mud) house near the bottom of the mountain, and Jimmy and I went our separate ways. See ya on your visit to England Jimmy you legend! Anyway, here I proceeded to have a lovely dribble of a hot shower, exquisite hosting followed by top notch food poisoning a traditional berber hammam where I found myself naked in a cave with a woman who spoke no English chucking hot buckets of water over me, (I also had food poisoning at this point but that is a WHOLE other story) I trekked on down the mountain feeling invigorated, refreshed and serene, (and slightly violated after the hamman, and a little bit sick from some real dodgy stomach situation, but I don’t think this is the general aftermath).

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My main berber man Abdul!

Ok so it’s not every everyday we get opportunities like this BUT everyday does have the opportunity to have an adventure. WE thought we’d some get some outdoors motivation for all you girls who just need a little nudge to hop across the garden fence. With the weather in the UK getting warmer, who says you need a whole week, a trip abroad or lots of money to get the adventure going!? Think about it, you work say, 9-5, there’s still 5-9 of time to go somewhere! Get lost! Explore what you are capable of!

You’ll be surprised how many new places you can find practically on your doorstep….

Adventurer, explore and motivational speaker Alistair Humphrey’s concept of the microadventure is certainly pioneering; he’s won awards for it! It’s all about encouraging people to get outdoors, explore and step out of that comfort zone because lets be honest, it’s a beautiful place but nothing ever grows there! Even it is half an hour away from your house, get off the sofa, and fill your lungs with fresh air,

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Squash Falconer

grab a mate and go watch the sunset. If you are feeling super brave then get yourselves a bivvy bag and to hell with it. Sleep under the stars! Try it, you’ll feel invigorated. Life is not blessed upon you to pay the bills and die, ha brutal but it’s true!

We recently attended an event where we heard one of the best and cheekiest adventure stories from Squash Falconer on how she began her journey of exploring. She decided she wanted to motorbike to South of France, climb the majestic Mont Blanc and paraglide off it, making her the first female to do so. She told BMW she had this awesome adventure planned, supported by the BBC and the told the BBC she had this unbelievable adventure planned, supported by BMW. Before she knew it both were on board and she was off. You go Squash!

I mean YOU could even just have a quick googlemap to the nearest place where you can find water….and jump in! Get out there girl, there’s a whole there out there you know!

Snooks love x