Powder and Rails: Bryan Iguchi (Part 2/4)

Uploaded by vice on 26.12.2012


BRYAN IGUCHI: I guess I could say an average person could
definitely become a good snowboarder.
You know good enough to have a great time in the mountains.
It's worth it, it's fun.
SPEAKER: It could take up to a month to become a pro.
BRYAN IGUCHI: Oh at least.
BRYAN FOX: He's legendary everywhere, but down there he
was you know, that type of thing where like the Guch is
like from here.
There's not a lot of people who are from Southern
California and really made any sort of impact on snowboarding
in general.
I'd say Guch is like the most influential Southern
California snowboarder.
That'd be my personal opinion.
PAT BRIDGES: Guch was a sponsored skateboarder, I
think he skated for EPIC skateboards,
something like that.
So even before he got into snowboarding you knew he was a
skater which was cool.
BRYAN IGUCHI: I was 13 years old and I got sponsored by
EPIC Skateboards out of northern California.
But I actually got my first skate shot in "TransWorld,"
Spike Jones shot it.
And I was doing a feeble grind on like a flat bar in '89, I
think it was.
So the skateboarding thing was always--

I was trying to go pro doing it but then I started
snowboarding at the same time.
And just kind of shifted from skateboarding to snowboarding.
KEVIN JONES: When I started snowboarding, I really thought
it was gay.
I mean, in gay in the true sense of the word.
I was like wow there is other people out there like me, they
skateboard and they snowboard, wow this is cool, maybe it's
not as gay as I thought it was.
And then you saw like these trend setters, you saw all
these guys that are--
Guch especially, just this little short guy with these
huge jeans, and then the irony was after a day of shredding
they would get wet, and when the sun would go down, and
you'd be riding in them , and they would turn into these big
bells, these frozen bells, and your leg would just be like in
this thing.
It was like--
it was the worse like coldest trend in snowboarding to date.
But that era was just funny.
But it was like--
it was the whole attitude of the snowboarders and
skateboarders back then, it was like rebellious.
And everybody made fun of you because you wore big jeans,
but you were like yeah that's right.
You don't understand man, you don't understand what I'm
doing with these jeans.
TERJE HAAKONSEN: I met Guch, just kind of
signed up with Burton.
He was riding in big baggy jeans, he had a small bong in
his pocket, he had super long hair, he was from SoCal, he
loves his chips and salsa, and he
introduced me to a few things.
KEVIN JONES: Guch kind of has this lure to him, this like
ninja, Japanese, like mystical Guch, and there's this shot of
him with like-- it's all back-lit and there's just a
huge pony coming off, you know the soul--
you know I'm hardcore, I listen to punk rock music, I
skateboard, but I'm also very soulful.
He's just looking off into the distance like, you don't even
know what I'm looking at right now, what I'm looking at is
totally heavy, and you have no idea.
It was freaking awesome.
once I got out of junior--
Well I did that, it's mostly junior college, and once I got
out and moved up to Big Bear, and that was kind of the
beginning of snowboard parks.
That was the first time that a mountain had given like full
permission to just build jumps,
and build these features.
And no one really knew how--
we didn't really know at the time how big to build them or
what really kind of features, so we started experimenting.
The technical aspect of it was just accelerating.
It was like we've built this like skate park, where it was
like kind of bowled corners and banks long runs, and then
gaps, and then we put up rails, and everything.
The riders around were just-- it seemed like every day there
was some new trick going on or there was just really intense
amount of progression happening in that park.
DAVE DOWNING: Bear Mountain was like the only real
snowboard park.
Like they're building jumps and Mike Parillo was like
digging this half pipe with a chainsaw, it was
pretty raw back then.
And Bryan was just definitely the innovator of the whole
group there.
He started doing those like shifty backside 180s off these
hips and stuff and I remember just everybody trying to do
shifty backside 180s like Bryan Iguchi did.
There's this one rainbow rail that is pretty famous, it was
like a piece of a chair lift tower that was just laying in
some scrap pile and Parillo like drug it out and stuck it
in the snow.
That was like one of the first like metal rails in a
snowboard park, Bryan used to just kill all that stuff.
BRYAN IGUCHI: The word got out then people from all over the
place were coming down.
There was people from the Northwest and East coast, and
then people from Europe, and we kind of--
the snowboard park just caught on and pretty much changed the
way people were snowboarding.
It really blew up and it created the X Games.
It just kind of created this environment where snowboarding
could really progress on a level where there is--
there was a lot of spectators, and events, and things.
It seemed like a lot of things were happening at that time.
TERJE HAAKONSEN: He would always do something
amazing on the board.

He was like the guy who could do a lot out of little.
Guch was really into spinning and all the little jib things,
he was a really good skateboarder, still is.
So there was a lot of jibonks and lot of
tail and nose maneuvers.
BILLY ANDERSON: I guess like one of his influential things
too were just like all the nose butter stuff.
Like that was one of his deals just like spinning around from
his tip to his tail, and ollieing, and bouncing around
with one foot, that was all stuff that no
one had really done.
BRYAN IGUCHI: It was probably two months after I moved to
Big Bear, there was a big pipe contest at Snow Summit, and I
was living in my Jeep and whatever, and I really wanted
to do this contest.
I got started--
ride the bunch and felt like maybe I could do--
maybe I could go pro or whatever, that's
what I wanted to do.
It was the first pro contest I entered and halfway down my
first run my binding broke, and I didn't
qualify for the event.
And I was so bummed, wasted that money.
I don't even know what I was thinking, I was just pissed.
Next day, I went out and I was just riding the pipe at Bear
Mountain, just doing my thing, just sessioning
with a couple friends.
It was a nice day and the pipe was good.
So I was having a good session, and went to take a
break to grab some water, and Tim Pogue was the team manager
of Burton snowboards and he was there with some of the
team and had seen me ride during the contest, or in the
practice for the contest in that morning, and approached
me and gave me his business card, and said, give me a call
in two weeks, I'll be in the office and I'd
love to help you out.
BILLY ANDERSON: It's kind of crazy because when I think
about it I don't think of him as really a progressive pipe
rider for the time.
But then when you start talking about it, he was one
of the ones that was really pushing it at those times.
The early-- and I think it's in A Lively Ride, he does a
cab nine in the pipe, and a bunch of switch stuff, and a
ton of spinning.
I think he was one of the first ones to really kind of
take that up and I think, Hard The Hungry and The Homeless, I
think he was doing some 900s.
PAT BRIDGES: But he was also--
in A Lively Ride, he was doing Alley-Oop McTwists and tail
grabs on this quarter pipe that couldn't have been more
than six feet wide and 10 feet tall.
It was really, really impressive to see.
I mean here's a guy who was buttering, he was trying to
hook 1080s, 9s, off of everything.
And he was ruling on McTwists and stuff like
that, it was sick.
DAVE DOWNING: That's when he was filming The Hard, The
Hungry, and The Homeless.
And then after that, Burton brought Bryan
in and helped him--
Bryan helped Burton develop the twin, which was that
question mark Ouija twin that was pretty famous.
BRYAN IGUCHI: I think it was early enough in snowboarding
there was a big change happening.
It was kind of one of those things you go, well here go
travel with Mack dog and go film, and
then go to these contests.
So we filmed between the contests and kind
of just road tripped.
I just jumped in the car with him, we drove
from event to event.
But it was more of the filming, we would go out and
film, hook up with locals at different
places and go film stuff.
And the project turned out to be The Hard, The Hungry, and
The Homeless, that was the first snowboard
film I'd worked on.
That was where my career kind of shifted to is more the
filming stuff, it was just kind of--
that was gaining in popularity more than the events.
The events were kind of you know I would say pretty well
dominated by Terje and everyone.
And it was just more of a--
I don't know, it just seemed like it was a better
opportunity for me.
DAVE DOWNING: Guchi seemed like he
just came out of nowhere.
And it's interesting because all the other riders, they
still had to do contests and stuff, with the exception of
like Damian, and those guys.
But he was the first pure freestyler who actually just
seemed like first he did movies, then he did contests.
BRYAN IGUCHI: I've never had the best
luck with the contests.
I ended up feeling frustrated a lot at contests.
It's just one of those things, I don't think
competition's easy.
I remember Dave Seoane came up to me at the ASR show in San
Diego and he said he had this concept for
this snowboard movie.
We're going to all jump in these Cadillacs, and drive
around, and road trip around the states, and make a
snowboard movie.
I'm like that sounds awesome, who's going to go?
He's like well I got Terje, and Ranquet, and John Cardiel,
I was like done, let's do this.
We'd go shred all these spots but then we'd go skate as
much, if not more.
It was like on that trip, I remember skating Burnside with
him, and some mini ramps in Colorado.
And just everywhere we went there was like-- we would hook
up with the skaters or we would hook up with the
snowboarders, or whatever.
It was a really cool time.
DAVE DOWNING: He basically took off with Dave Seoane
during the Roadkill filming sessions, he was gone for a
couple months.
I didn't even know what was going on until that movie came
out and then I was like, whoa Bryan was doing that, it's
pretty sick.
PAT BRIDGES: And then you saw him in the Vulcan movies.
A Lively Ride, was the first Vulcan film I saw him in, and
then obviously he had a lot of clips in The Garden.
BRYAN IGUCHI: Throughout the process of making it, we just
kind of went out, OK we're doing Vulcan snow project, and
Wooly the owner, he'd be out in the field with us in the
back country hiking filming the super 8 and Troy Eckert.
It kind of all came together at Sonora Pass in California
and that's where we came up with the name, The Garden.
We would go up there, we'd camp, and hike these jumps,
and we'd have these amazing sessions where it would be
exhausting long days, hiking around, and just having a
blast, and sitting around the campfire at night telling
stories, laughing, and partying just
having a good time.
That's when we were like this is the butterfly garden, this
is The Garden.
This is the movie, this movie's about this, this is
what snowboarding is about.
It's hanging out with your friends, and going out and
finding these places that are special.
It was a really kind of a liberating experience for all
of us to be able to get out from the ski resorts, from the
crowds, and from the crazy park scene
that was blowing up.
I mean, making The Garden was probably still to this day the
highlight of my snowboarding career.
It kind of got me inspired to continue to search, and
explore, and recreate that kind of feeling.
And been trying to keep that dream alive by riding.