Last Ride! Final Vancouver SUN blogpost for 2012!


Last Ride: Final SUN Ski Guide Blog for 2012

So, I thought we’d wrap up the 2012 ski season with a bit of a re-cap of some of the highlights gleaned around British Columbia during what was surely one of the most epic years for snowfall of all time. The momentum that started with early season snows pounding the Coast Range continued right through last week’s Telus Whistler Ski and Snowboard Festival. The Pro Photographer Showdown is always a major highlight of the festival, and last night Unofficial Networks posted Brian Nevis’s winning entry. This is the second year in a row that a surf photographer has won the big prize.

Here are my other notable media picks from the season that just ended.

1)      S**t Skiers Say – I’ve watched it ten times and have to say that this Voleurz satire on the S**t Girls Say meme was one of the best. “It’s a great day for a great ski!” “Is the red light on, is it on?” and “Are you sponsored?” – Priceless dialogue, indeed.

2)      The Freedom Chair – The story of Josh Dueck, former freestyle coach who became a paraplegic after demonstrating an aerial manoeuvre to his kids, is long on inspiration, and not in a corny, Disney kind of way. It’s clear from this succinct video that Dueck struggles, every day, but he’s ‘still a skier.’ Later in the year, Dueck would blow everyone’s minds by doing the first back flip on a sit-ski which went super-viral in the weeks’ afterward.

3)      Fernie’s Big Days – The snows are melting and the East Kootenay is currently on flood watch, a poignant reminder of just how ‘big’ the 2012 ski season was. On two separate occasions, Fernie Alpine Resort reported over a metre of snowfall in twenty four hours, which resulted in some of the most epic powder skiing in memory (and… it didn’t turn to rain!) On February 26, local skier Dylan Siggers got the GoPro lens nice and snow covered with this Niseko-like footage.

4)      Embedded and Waiting for Winter – The ski and snowboard season started out in fine fashion with the Embedded video project, a collaboration between Mike Douglas’s Switchback Entertainment, Origin Design, and Whistler/Blackcomb. Ensconced in the patrol shack (they didn’t even let him down for his birthday), Douglas waits for winter to come and it does, with a vengeance.

5)      All.I.Can. and JP Auclair – It says quite a lot about how consumers are viewing videos when a six minute segment gets far more play than an entire movie. Sherpas Cinema’s All.I.Can. – the award-winning documentary on skiing and global warming – featured a mind-blowing urban jib segment filmed on the gritty streets of Trail, BC. Even non-skiers got a huge kick out of this one.

6)      The Year of Robin O’Neill  – The Arc’teryx Deep Winter Photo Challenge is one of Whistler’s most highly anticipated events – where five photographers are given 72 hours to come up with dramatic footage set to a groovy soundtrack. (No Sigur Ros or Magnetic Zeros songs, either). For the first time a female photographer walked off with first place. Robin O’Neill won under challenging circumstances – there was no new snow – at all – during the three days. So maybe her title of ‘Queen of Storms’ is a bit of a misnomer. View O’Neill’s award winning entry, here, along with her fabulous Breaking Trail documentary on the first Spearhead Range traverse.

7)      POWDER Magazine’s 40th Anniversary Issue – The cover features a Neil Leifer photo from LIFE magazine that featured a story on hot dog skiing, which is what freestyle was originally called. Powder, known as ‘the Skier’s Magazine’ has always been at the forefront in searching for the ‘pure’ ski experience, and although it’s come to depend on pro skiers and film crews to fill its many pages of eye candy, this commemorative trip down memory lane takes you back to a simpler time when skiing in jeans wasn’t necessarily an ironic fashion statement.

Have a great off-season! Just a reminder – and a plug for Whistler-based Extremely Canadian – that there’s fabulous summer skiing in Las Lenas, Argentina!



One Response to “Last Ride! Final Vancouver SUN blogpost for 2012!”

  1. sofiawinterstays Says:

    Haven’t seen all.i.can yet, seems like an awesome documentary. Have a great off-season!

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