It's easy to daydream about long days shredding waist deep powder in the Whistler backcountry. When your livelihood depends on it, though, the socked-in conditions that are a regular part of the coastal B.C. mountain weather pattern can make trying to get "work" done a daunting task.
Mikey Rencz is a solider who has been steadily stacking clips for the likes of People and Burton for the last few seasons. He has proudly stepped into the shoes of his Canadian Wildcat elders and continued the tradition of hard partying and super stomping that the older generations of B.C. snowboard pros set down before him.
This year Rencz landed at number seven on Snowboarder Magazine's "Top Ten Riders of the Year list," was invited to participate in Travis Rice's prestigious Red Bull Ultra Natural backcountry snowboarding event, and at this very moment is working on his entry for X Games Real Snow Backcountry, the video contest that's running in conjunction with X Games Los Angeles.
You think he's a contender for the Real Snow win? We think he is, so with all this hype going on about Real Street over in the X Games skateboarding section, we decided to catch up with one of the snowboarders on deck for the next contest to see how it's going.
What's up Mikey? How are you?
I'm good, man. Just lounging.
Nice. How was the winter up in Canada?
Pretty sick actually. We had a lot of good dumps with sunny days afterwards. We started filming pretty early this year -- like mid-December.
Who did you film for this winter?
I'm doing the Burton video again and X Games Real Snow.
Does the Real Snow deadline put the pressure on for bagging tricks early season?
It definitely does, but we had more time this year because it's for the summer X Games in LA. So the pressure wasn't as bad as it was last year. We don't even have to turn in our edits until July. I wanted to film different stuff for my Burton part and my Real Snow part, though. Having as much footage as possible is good.
You seem pretty keen on staying in the B.C. backcountry instead of traveling the world to film.
We always talk about traveling, but it's hard to leave when it's so good here. Last year we panicked and went to Europe and it didn't work at all. We stayed for two days and came back.
Wait, you flew to Europe for two days and came home?
Yeah, we flew there and went to this super sick zone. But as soon as we had the jump ready it got hot. That was the last day of cold weather there. We went to check out another zone and that wasn't working out either so we flew home the next day.
What's 8 Mile?
8 Mile is where we used to live in Whistler. It was a super small trailer-style spot that we just started calling 8 Mile. It turned into a little crew and we started making fun little online videos. Basically, it's a crew from Whistler that likes to have a good time.
Did any epic battle raps go down there?
(Laughs) No we are definitely not rappers -- just lots of partying and lots of snowboarding.
How do Canadians party so hard but still film such good video parts?
(Laughs) I don't know, I think that's just part of the snowboarding culture. We just like to have fun and celebrate. That's just the way it goes up here. It gets harder as you get older, though.
Tell us about the time you made Shaun White cry.
We spent a lot of time together when we were young and I think we just got to each other sometimes. We were both on Burton Backhill, which was Burton's kid program, and we were in Portland.
He was just doing the Shaun thing and I wasn't having it. So we ended up in a little "youth altercation" in the back of the van ... he didn't really like it that much.
Now that he's won so many gold medals would you like to apologize?
(Laughs) No man, we are all good. I see Shaun from time to time and it's good. He's killing it.