I read an article in the Zurcher Zeitung a few weeks ago about the BEO and it got me thinking about the 3 remaining public pipes, where have the pipes gone?
Switzerland currently only has 3 public pipes left that are shaped and maintained. Saas Fee, Laax and Davos.
Arosa used to have a stellar pipe, on the other side of Graubunden to Davos and Laax, shaped everyday. It used to hold the FIS snowboard world cup final, with people like the infamous Tore Holvik come there to get their dub 10's down. Last season, I arrived there for a 4 day trip with my family in mid December.Not too much snow, but a nice base and a good pow day. The pipe is pre built, but was chopped and icy and nothing built. I thought it would be there by February like their jumps which you would have seen in "Turd on the Run" by TJ Schiller and Arosa has a nice little park.
I went up there with a friend in mid March of 2013, coming to shred some new snow and park. We went over to the park about 11, and the pipe is gone. It's just ice blocks formed where the pipe would be, basically a shell of what it was. Big mounds of snow basically used then to drop into a hip and a box. The multimillion machines for cutting the pipe and snowblowers all pushed away behind the Weisshorn Bahn. Never used once that season.
Davos on the Jakobshorn used to have a mini pipe two years ago, never really shaped, but now that's gone. It's pipe at the bottom last year was only shaped for the Davos O'Neill Evolution and left to melt at 800m.
Flumserberg in the 1990's and early 2000's till about 2006 had the nearest pipe to Zurich. That's a thing of the past, gone alongside when their park was almost good.
Grindelwald in the Jungfrau region, one of the largest ski resorts in the county with great lifts, great terrain and the base for a great pipe. That's basically ended. This is what the former "superpipe" looks like (photo from 2 seasons ago with better snow and colder temperatures than this year, unshaped).
There used to be the Audi Open for pipe in Grindelwald, now stopped because the pipe isn't looked after.
It seems as though most resorts in the world seem to be focussing less and less on pipe shaping (Maybe apart from Flachauwinkl in Austria which just built its second pipe). Less kids want to get air in the pipe as now they'd have to travel longer or put up with worse conditions than Sochi had for snowboarding. How are kids supposed to see if they like Pipe if they can't get up the wall thanks to 15ft high bumps and unshaped vert?
So NS, what's happened to the era of at least a mini pipe at every mountain and even some monsters? Even the minis are gone. Will we see this one day happen to the bigger kickers at our mountain as well?
I want to see the worldwide spread of this so please post about and pics on what's happening. You must've noticed it