Method Mag issue 12.3 is in stores now and this serving of Print's Not Dead is the extended version of Tiny Scenes: Scotland. All the information you need to know about the Scottish Highland shred scene has been uncovered. It has its fair share of powder, kickers and whiskey. We sat down with Scottish uber-loc Lesley McKenna and she gave us the full skinny on what makes Scotland a sweet shred destination. Read on for all the craic..
Airport to Snow:
The closest airport to the main resorts of Cairngorm and The Lecht is Inverness. Edinburgh is Scotland's biggest airport.
The season can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 months, depending on the year. Usually the mountains are open from just before Christmas to the end of April. The best time is definitely late February and March.
Best powder and backcountry can be found on Cairngorm, Nevis Range or Glen Coe and if the snow conditions allow you there are some steep chutes.
The park at Cairngorm has been going from strength to strength and the main cat driver there, Mac, is really into building jumps.The other areas have decent parks too and depending on snow conditions any one of the 5 areas can have a good park set up. Quiksilver and Roxy are going to be the sponsor of the Cairngorm Park this year and will also be putting on an event there sometime in Feb or March. Keep an eye on www.cairngormmountain.org for more news on that.
Last year there was a lot of snow everywhere in Scotland, it is was jib heaven in many of the cities. There are a lot of stairs in Scottish cities so there are plenty handrails too.
Between £25 and £30 a day.
If it has snowed a lot then usually it has also been windy and there are some pretty large windslab avalanches in Scotland that catch people unaware.
There are plenty youth hostels in Scotland, alternatively there are bed & breakfast pensions all over the place too. Visitscotland.com is a good place to look for accommodation. You can find a good hostel for £15 a night if you are on a budget.
We have a strong scene in Scotland and there are some great up and coming riders. Quiksilver rider Jamie Trinder and his bro Angus are the local rippers on Cairngorm and are sometimes joined by Angus Letih if he is not overseas shredding. Matt McCormick is another Scottish ripper from Glasgow, Ben Kilner also rips.
Scotland is not really known for healthy food but there is good food around. Must try is black pudding (blood sausage), it is really good. You can get a good steak in Scotland and salmon is fresh and local as well as venison. Try Highland Cow steak - it is brilliant.
Whiskey, of course! The Whiskey Trail is pretty much on the road from Aviemore to Aberdeen so it is worth going whiskey tasting on a down day.
Clothing for all weather and a sense of humor.
Snowboard snobbery of any kind. People in Scotland ride because they love it and they often ride in terrible weather and dodgy conditions - and enjoy it.
Banter, crack and an up-for-it attitude.
First line of National Anthem:
O flower of Scotland
When will we see your like again
That fought and died for
Your wee bit hill and glen
And stood against him
Proud Edward's army
And sent him homeward
Tae think again
Hmmm, we don't swear much… Baw bag, bam, gadgie, c*nt is a popular one up here but not one for making friends with.
These days you get all sorts from bus tours of old age pensioners to Japanese tourists looking for Nessie.
No glaciers but this year the park on Cairngorm was open until May.
Kind of… with a funny accent.
Euan (my boyfriend) says stay away from the women! Not sure what to make of that though.
Locals Suck At:
Speaking English properly, cooking fancy food, taking themselves seriously, by-passing a good party.
Locals Rip At:
Telling stories in funny slang, making fish and chips, taking the piss out of themselves and everyone else, and finding a good party.
From 1-10, how accepted is it to light up a doobie:
1 = totally illegal but socially acceptable in some circles.
From 1-10, how easy is it to find?
Find the right circles.
Cairngorm will have a park crew this year and will showcase the park on their website www.cairngrommountain.org. Check out glance park project and Aberdeen Snowsports Centre on facebook too.
Old Mountain Tale:
A few years ago one of the local riders woke up sleeping up a tree. He had no idea how he got there.
Why Shred Scotland:
Everyone who comes to Scotland loves it. It is beautiful and great fun and even if the weather is bad you will have a great time.
Golf - there are thousands of golf courses in Scotland and it is not expensive to play here. Skateboard - good indoor parks in Aberdeen, Dundee, and outdoor parks in Edinburgh and Glasgow and Dundee. If you want to be really adventurous the surf is brilliant - although the water is cold! If all else fails then there are castles and whiskey.
"Craic" pronounced "crack" is not a reference to crack cocaine but to the atmosphere or chat going down. You will get asked "how's the crack?" on a regular basis. (When I first lived in the USA when I was 17 this caused me problems). If you are "pissed" in Scotland you are drunk - not angry. If you are angry then you are "ragin'" and if something is good it is "braw", like in Norwegian.
100 euros Gets You:
Mugged - only joking. A return flight from Europe to Edinburgh or Glasgow on easyjet, a few good nights out with money left over for a deep fried Mars bar - local speciality.
Words: Lesley Mckenna
Pics: Dan Milner. Click HERE to see more epicness!