North American Escapade Reviews/Comments

This page was last updated on November 6th, 2003

We live in a beautiful world. And it's captured, yet not imprisoned in the
new movie by J&E. It is very alive and free in this film. An awesome,
historical winter in the Northeast is brought back to precious life. And
the Western scenes are gorgeous too. We've seen their handiwork before,
but this is better than we expected. Whitney and I were sleeping in when
we heard the door to the breezeway open. Something was set on the floor,
then the mailman departed. We got up, found the box, saw who it was from
and tore it open like a Christmas present. Watched it in it's entirety,
smiled, relived, and happily took it in.

The editing is intuitive, sharp and clever. The skiing is often very hot,
yet real and always alive. Regardless of exececution, from the small
children to the big children, extreme pleasure radiates contagiously from
each performer.

And the snow. All that snow. How easy does the memory fade. How nice it is
to be brought to the time when the Weather Channel forecasts 20-40 inches
of snow in _BURLINGTON, VT_. Mansfield is white, white, white. So much
powder. So many untouched lines, plucked before the camera. So, so much

There is something intangible about this movie that sets it apart from any
other. Nothing singularly does it, but collectively, the charisma and
smooth flow of it all just oozes of an innocent personality that the
corporate flicks totally lack. From playing hackey sack in liftline (with
skis on!) to the blinding sun reflecting gold from Jspin's Volants in
mid-360 on a bluebird day, genuine fun by genuine people brings it all
alive. Brought to life is a flair and a certain kind of
innocent essence,
all children playing in the snow. Combine that with amazing footage,
daring skiing, deep snow and a sweet soundtrack... there just aren't any
more words.

Matt Duffy, April 11th, 2002

It came!!! I am so psyched for some more turns!
Unfortunatly it is currently 89 degrees here in BTV and turns are hard to be had.
E and Spin- totally awsome flick packaging!

Weston Gould, April 17th, 2002

...just finished watching the film in its entirety. It
is absolutely magnificent -- the most enjoyable ski film I have ever
seen!!!!!!! The editing, music, skiing and everything else is just
terrific! Real people doing real skiing is so much more enjoyable than
the Warren Miller type films. I'll watch it many more times, and will
try to figure out who's who.

Robert L. McNeill, April 24, 2002

Wow! Amazing stuff. What a way to pick me up on an otherwise crappy day. "I laughed, I cried, it was better than Cats."

Eric Morton, April 24, 2002

Movie came today! Thanks a lot and I watched the
first half of it and its great so far! I love
watching you and E and is that Matt Duffy in a lot of
those scenes, like the Straightbrook segment? Its fun
to see a lot of the ski-vittlers and trying to name
them as they go by!

Scott Braaten, April 26, 2002

Once again, the video is very impressive.
We have not yet made it through the entire tape, but we looking forward to seeing many more cool scenes.
Great job on the music selection! Very diverse tastes.

Scott Robinson, April 29, 2002

I went out to buy a new VCR last night. I basically bought it to watch only one

A week ago Friday, I arrived home from work to find a package on the doorstep.
I picked it up and looked at the return address.

"J&E Productions"

Woo-hoo! I was finally going to get to watch the great J. Spin & Erica video.

Folks, this tape is
incredible. The soundtrack is perfect, and through the right sound system
really showed that this was a first-generation copy from a digital master. The
professionalism, even right down to the packaging, is amazing. The talent on
the slopes is matched only by the talent of the production. (Duffy, you're
still nucking phuts, maybe even more so!)

There are some amazing shots of skiers like
bud Jeremy Malczyk (one of the best damned skiers I've ever had the pleasure of
sharing turns with, and 2nd place finisher at Jay's 2000-2001 IFSA event), and
from Jay Silveira himself, half of the husband-wife videographer team.

It's nearly worth the price of admission just to see Malczyk jump literally over
a building at Sutton, and to see FTO writer Matt Duffy turn sideways to almost
fit between two trees that are maybe 18" apart.

After watching too many
professional films featuring nothing but stupid jumpy-spinny tricks and figure
11s in Valdez, this was absolutely refreshing. "Keeping it real," I kept
telling myself.

Anyhoo, the point that I'm arriving at slowly but surely is that this video
better than any other I've ever seen accurately depicts the quality of the
skiing often available in the Northeast. Some of the tree skiing sequences are
nothing short of incredible. Some of the narration even points out the
inaccurate bias -- they describe some of the comments heard out west:

"You must not be used to skiing this powder back in Vermont."

"Everything back east is icy!"

"The trails are so crowded back there!"

The sheer amount of footage shot casually in just one season proves each of this
misconceptions to be just that -- misconceptions.

If you haven't yet gotten this from J & E, do it.

Marc Guido, April 30, 2002

Received ALL my stuff. Sweet / Very nice. You guys are out of control. Per usual,
very well put together. We are going to have to come up with new adjectives for your
efforts (hopefully "sick-of-it" is not one of them!!!!).

Greg Prior, May 12th, 2002

On a most cheerie note, I got the North American
Escapade tape from JSpin yesterday and viewed a small portion last night.
Wow!!! Everyone has got to see this. It will sweeten everyone's attitude
and help us persevere through the long hot summer ahead. (I hope.) (It will
be long and hot, not that we persevere)

Jim Dugan, May 16th, 2002

Everyone should get a copy of NAE from JSpin and watch it. Then we could
all critique the different sequences. They are all good but my choice for
getting me psyched and wanting to get out_ right_ now_ and ski has Led
Zeppelin music from 1970. Haha, now you all have to get a copy to know what
that is. By the way, don't watch this in the evening or it will make you
stay up all night with your pulse racing.

Jim Dugan, May 23, 2002

The Swampfest segments are the best, but also I really liked the whole
March 5-6 snowstorm thing they put together! Its always nice when its warm
out to put that on and make it feel like your watching the weather channel
with 2 feet of snow expected.

The segment that got me going was the one where Jerm (Not sure if its him or
not) is talking about the backcountry of Owl's Head or Oxford? Where
J.Spin, E, Leigh, Telenaut, Matt Duffy and the crew goes off the backside.
That has a real exploration feeling to it in the good ol' northeast.

Best segment for the west would be the Whistler-Blackcomb part. That
looked like really great powder and just got me into the skiing feeling!

Scott Braaten, May 24th, 2002

The Swampfest II segments are great, but by far my favourite section is "Come Closer and See Into the Trees", accompanied by aptly chosen Cure song. It really gives you a feel for eastern tree skiing. My daughter just loves it when E sprays the camera with powder.

Eric Morton, May 24, 2002

I saw a J- Spin movie at Wes' house last weekend (don't know the title). I
was amazed by the trailer! This is some of the coolest eastern skiing stuff I
have ever seen on video. J-Spin did a great job! How do I get a copy? Ya
gotta see it if you love skiing, are wishing for winter, and know anyone in

Jim Clapp, May 24, 2002

J. Spin,
Was at Mat Duffy's place and got a chance to see the vid.
Great stuff!!

Benjamin T. Kulas, May 28, 2002

Wow! Finally got off my duff and bought a copy of Jay and Erica's movie
of the 00-01 season. What was I thinking in those months that went by
without it? Great stuff. Makes me wonder if the big production ski movie
ala Warren Miller, Greg Stump, etc. are suddenly obsolete. Maybe just
different, not quite a one for one replacement. I like the real skiers
version ski movie better than the rad dudes version. That a bunch of
those Real Skiers were my friends had nothing to do with it of course. :-)

Thanks J & E.

Denis Bogan, July 8th, 2002

After reading Denis Bogan's Ski-vittler mini review on the Ski-VT List this morning I had to see what the movie was about. Glad I did! I must have been sleeping through all the other posts on this movie.

One word review- Awesome!

I was watching W Miller's Steeper and Deeper this AM, but I'm already more impressed with what I've seen on the NAE trailer. It's one thing to get big air against a wonderful backdrop. . .only to duff on the landing as so many of Miller's skiers end up doing, but it's absolutely amazing the way the Eastern skiers tear through the woods! Clearly NAE will help me through the rest of the summer and fall seasons.

Jimme Ross, July 9th, 2002

In any case, the Smuggs segment was my favorite for the whole movie. I
suppose that at least part of the attraction was watching this crazy
guy ski.

Now that I've seen the whole flick, it's interesting but not quite ready
for the mass market. Well worth the $7 though, please send me an email
when your next production comes out.

Mike Naughton, July 29th, 2002

Commercially produced ski flicks are perhaps not yet obsolete but the are
headed in that direction, IMHO. Jay and Erica's North American Escapade
convinced me of that. Here is a great 2.5 hr. flick with every bit of the
professional quality of any of them and it was made by a couple of
dedicated skiers & friends with equipment that is accessible to a large
fraction of the population. If you want further evidence look at the
rapidly increasing inventory of flicks available as web downloads, from
many sources, particularly Telemark Tips and First Tracks Online. In
other words we no longer need traditional film makers like Miller, Stump,
and their many copy cats.

Denis Bogan, September 16th, 2002

After seeing a couple of Miller flicks, then NAE it was hands down
NAE as being the most entertaining. Seeing skiers in the woods here in the
East was more exciting than seeing a Miller Star hucking off a cliff. (Only
never to see the 'real' landing.)

Jimme Quinn Ross, September 17th, 2002

I think Denis mentioned that North American Escapade was currently his
favorite and I'd have to agree with him. Watched parts of it last night
again and was transported back to Swampfest II (?). This movie is real,
made by people just like the rest of us. It also helped me remember many of
the skivt-l faces again.

Peter Salts, November 12th, 2002

Got the movies...watched Tracked Up and 1st 30 min of NAE. Got a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. I miss New England like you wouldn't believe. It was near 80oF here today.

I think this was 1978. I was about to turn 18. My first backcountry experience was hiking from the top of the S-Bush 3 person gondi to the top of a closed Castlerock and skiing 5 foot drifts down the left side of Rumble. This was on a Friday and they were 'saving' Castlerock for New Year's weekend. My second backcountry was the next day, hiking from the top of MRG and skiing the old liftline that never got a lift on the far northern face of Mt. Ellen. Just little twigs in it back then. We finally hit the Glen Ellen trails in the dark and used the headlights of groomers heading up the trails to see where we were going.

Your movies make me remember a lot of really good times. For example:

Jonathan Kamien, November 15th, 2002

I think NAE is the best ski video I have seen so far. The format, the theme, the way it
was produced, the music and especially the featured skiers :-) all made it
better than Prophecy.

Jim Dugan, November 17th, 2002

I got the NAE movie this morning... so I listened it this afternoon and I found it quite interesting !!

I really liked the woods looking like "The Gash" at Smuggs and the other nice lines in the kind ;)

The sequences of Whistler / Crystal, etc, in the west were also really fun to see !

And the pics of Tuckerman Ravine will help me in my preparation for my 1st spring trip, next april ! (btw, I really enjoyed the place last sunday. You can see a report of this on the No-bulls of FTO if you want)

I will probably enjoy the video even more when I will be able to put a name on all the "actors" of the movie... next FTO day I guess ;) A sure thing, now that I exactly know what you all look to love for terrain, I will be able to guide you in our local spots for this kind of skiing, if I ski with some of you ;)

Have a great weekend and enjoy the first snows recorded in the west / first freezing grounds in the east, this weekend !!

Thanks for the video !

Francois Masicotte, August 22nd, 2003

It was really funny to see the North American Escapade movie of the FTOer Jay Silveira (J.Spin). Owl's Head, little funny song and skiing all the times in the woods. Sutton, little song and cruising slopes + off-piste. Orford : One of the best rock song of the movie IMO (She sells sanctuary of The Cult) with sticking to the official crazy glades all film long. (damn the conditions were bad, though !)

PS : the North American Escapade doesn't have only those 3 ski areas in QC...

There is also : Stowe, Smuggs, Sugarbush, Killington, Tuckerman Ravine, Attitash, Cranmore and Jay Peak in the east (about) and Lost Trail Powder Mountain, Crystal, Alpental, Whistler, Squaw Valley, Heavenly and a couple other ones in the West. (pub for you, Jspin ;))

Francois Masicotte, August 31, 2003 on First Tracks!! Online Ski Magazine Liftlines Discussion Area

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