‘Dear Rider’ Chronicles the Life of Snowboarding Great Jake Burton Carpenter

Jake Burton Carpenter is like the father of snowboarding. After his passing in 2019, his family and friends got started with Red Bull to make a film honoring his legacy.

The Red Bull Media House documentary “Dear Rider,” is an intimate portrait of snowboarding visionary Jake Burton Carpenter. Carpenter was one of the first pioneers of snowboarding and died in 2019 at the age of 65.

The “intimate” documentary focuses on Carpenter’s entire life and includes interviews with family, friends, and snowboarder icons, as well as home video footage of Carpenter snowboarding.

The title “Dear Rider,” itself pays homage to Jake’s beloved and loyal “riders,” the audience he addressed every year for decades on the first page of his snowboard company’s catalogs.

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Jake Burton Carpenter: The Beginning and the End

Inspired by the “Snurfer,” a surfboard-styled strip of wood, Jake created his first snowboard in 1977. From there, he developed different boards over the years while encouraging ski resorts, sponsors, and world-class athletes to take up this new sport. By the late 1990s, Jake’s vision had brought snowboarding into the mainstream arena, and then to the Olympics.

Jake Burton Carpenter died of cancer in 2019. Today, Jake’s memory lives on throughout the snowboarding community, and his wife, Donna Carpenter, remains at the helm of Burton.

This film premieres online today on HBO Max. There will be a screening in Denver on November 17 that is open to the public.

Runtime: 50 minutes

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Mary Murphy

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and serves as the leader of Lola Digital Media’s DEI Committee.

She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking at Avid4Adventure. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder.

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