All For The Love at The K2 Senior Big Mountain Challenge 2017
Last weekend, The lake Louise Ski Resort played host to its 14th Annual Senior Big Mountain Challenge.
Here’s a hasty breakdown of how it all unfolded….
“We call this the beer league of Big Mountain Events,” says Sue Shih, a staple within the women’s snowboard category at the K2 Big Mountain Challenge.
Not because of the lack of talent…Lake Louise has produced some of Western Canada’s best Freeriders…but because this is a standalone event that doesn’t contribute cumulative points to a larger competitive circuit.
It still follows the IFSA judging format, but it’s detached from that governing body and doesn’t require membership before entry.
Men, Women, Snowboarders, Skiers.
You wanna enter a big mountain event? Just show up and do it.
Legacy of Shred
14 years running, the LLBMC has earned itself a position within the recent history of Canadian big mountain skiing and snowboarding.
Lake Louise has always been a pointsource for progression, sculpting shredders like Andrew Sheppard, Eric Hjorleifson, Chris Rubens, Greg Todds, Jonaven Moore and the whole new batch of Rocky Mountain Freeriders.
So it’s only natural for them to throw a rad freeride comp. And given the Lake’s longstanding history of snowboarders and skiers riding together, it’s also only natural that the LLBMC is open to both disciplines.
Day One – Groomed by God
Or maybe it was just the wind. Depends on who you talk to before you drop in.
Either way, what ER-3 lacked in softness, it made up in smoothness. Firm, buff and way less punchy than most of the other potential venues.
Kinda like a big mountain terrain park.
The light was good at the beginning of the day, not so much at the end.
Nevertheless, everybody made their mark on the face without any major injuries.
Of note this year, 19 male snowboarders showed up. As did 9 ladyboarders.
(Two years ago, there were only two riders in the men’s snowboard category).
Holy Sh*t Moment of the Day: Local shredder Noah Maisonet posting the highest score by linking together multiple airs and sending them about as deep as he possibly could without knocking out any more teeth.
Day Two –“Lake Louise Pow Day”
Between 1-2cms fell on the venue on Friday night, then the wind got in there and worked its magic. This made for fresher landings, pockets of legitimate pow and a tangible spike in the collective stoke of the competitors.
The lookers’ right side of ER-3 was opened up and, as is tradition, people got radical.
And, as is also tradition, the women’s ski category produced some of the most noteworthy shredding from the weekend.
Smooth, stylish and technically sound, especially the winner: Sarah Elliot.
Holy Sh*t Moment of the Day: Louis Panning-Osendarp laying out a perfect backflip off the natural hip and stomping his way into first place.
Holy Sh*t Moment of the Day #2: Snowboard men’s winner Owen McNabb pointing fall-line off that same feature and absolutely NAILING the hardpack landing.
The Hot Dogger Party
Whoah whoah what a night. Around 200 people, competitors and non-competitors alike, descended upon the Lodge of the Ten Peaks and got LOOSE.
And as is the case with most Skiitour shows, almost everyone rocked the retro theme and the daylodge transformed into a bootyshaking mass of neon-clad madness.
Good times you ask?
Oh hells yeah…….great times.
Check out the full event results here.
Huge shout-out to Lake Louise for throwing such a rad event. And an even huger shout-out to the athletes for getting as rad as they possibly could without hurting themselves.