Snowmass Mountain in Colorado’s Aspen has pointed the future of halfpipe competition in a whole new direction.
In a historic event March 19-23, Snowmass offered two pipes to riders, side by side, for a snowboard competition which allowed athletes to transition back and forth between the two pipes, getting major air over the deck between the two.
Both pipes had rails, wallrides, channels and other unique features. The format allowed riders to extend their runs, doing tricks as they transitioned between pipes that would have been impossible to do with only one pipe, with a near endless selection of lines.
Snowmass, home of the Winter X Games, has always been innovative in winter sports, but the double halfpipe goes to an amazing level of new development for the sport.
Resort spokesperson, Meredith McKee, says, ” Spectators can see both pipes easily. One of the half pipe is the same location as the X games. the one next to it was created from some jumps and snowmaking. We had a plethora of snow this seaszon, so this is a good year to make it happen, because you need a lot of snow to accomplish the double pipe feature.”
Each pipe was more than 550 feet long, 68 feet wide, and a gulp-making 22 feet high. But combined, riders had 1,100 feet to play in, making the course the largest pipe feature ever built. The riders agreed that this was a great progression for the sport, and though the double pipe is difficult to build, it will soon take its place as an accepted new form of competition.
As of March 23, the Snowmass double pipe will be open to the public to ride. While few will be able to air out of one pipe and transition into the other, they can land on the deck and drop into pipe next to it.
Congrats to Snomass to breaking new ground in an ever progressing sport!