Ear to the ground

“I thought I saw snowfall, but it was just a swarm of teeny bugs flying overhead.”

-Local woman commenting on the Pineapple Express that didn’t quite make it to Durango this week

Experiments in eco-design 

At least one snow-based industry is seeing some success in Durango this winter. Locally made Venture Snowboards are among 56 sustainable products recognized in the new bookExperimental Eco-Design, Architecture/Fashion/Product, recently published by RotoVision.

The book aims to illustrate how inspiring, experimental, clever and hip sustainable design can be by highlighting diverse, low-impact products. The items chosen for this book run the gamut from practical to strange, and include everything from modular homes made from shipping containers to scrap wood furniture and deodorant-canister flashlights. A sampling of other featured products includes American Apparel clothing, Whirlpool kitchen appliances, found-object chandeliers from designer Eva Menz, and recycled fashion from Trash-a-Porter.   

Venture receives kudos for its longstanding efforts to produce high performance snowboards while minimizing environmental impact. Started in 1999 by the husband and wife team of Klemens and Lisa Branner, this small, independent snowboard manufacturer has taken a sustainable approach from day one. The company uses only sustainably grown and harvested hardwoods for its signature bookmatched cores, reduces its use of plastics by utilizing fabric topsheets (including organic cotton and hemp), and recycles or reuses most of the waste generated by the production process. The company also began powering its entire operation with wind power credits last fall – a first for the snow sports industry. The work of two local photographers, Ben Eng and Scott Smith, illustrates Venture’s section in the book.

“As riders, we spend a lot of time outdoors, so of course we want to help protect our surroundings,” said Klemens. “Trying to incorporate low-impact techniques and materials wherever we can is our way of helping preserve things for the next generation of riders.”

Lisa added, “It’s definitely a balancing act, but we are committed to maintaining quality and performance while doing the least amount of environmental harm.”

Venture boards are available through local dealers and will be available for free test rides at Durango Mountain Resort demo days on March 4 & 5. For more information, log onto: www.venturesnowboards.com.


In this week's issue...

January 25, 2024
Bagging it

State plastic bag ban is in full effect, but enforcement varies

January 26, 2024
Paper chase

The Sneer is back – and no we’re not talking about Billy Idol’s comeback tour.

January 11, 2024
High and dry

New state climate report projects continued warming, declining streamflows