Words & photos by Jeff Schmuck
Session 1 of Camp of Champions and Momentum has wrapped up and Session 2 is off to an epic start here in beautiful and now sunny Whistler, BC.
Last week the first batch of perma-stoked campers journeyed to Canada's skiing Disneyland for the best of times on the iconic Horstman Glacier at the top of Blackcomb Mountain. Unfortunately, as we reported last week, the weather left a little to be desired throughout the first session, but as a true testament to the always good vibe at summer camp, not a frown could be seen in the midst of the fog.
Jon Cosman, Evan McIntyre, Matt Margetts, Jack Sullivan & Kyle Coxworth
There was one or two somewhat sunny days which saw a selection of the bigger jumps get their cherries popped, but for the most part the campers and their coaches spent the better part of the week sliding the tidal wave of jibs that are drowning COC and Momentum's lanes.
Over at Momentum, the zoo of coaches including J-Bone (aka Justin Dorey), Chug (aka Ian Cosco), The Riddler (aka Mike Riddle), Turpentine (aka Chris Turpin), Frank the Tank (aka Frank Raymond), Mizz (aka Mike Henitiuk), T-Star (aka Trennon Paynter) and others continued to perfect the art of churning out future superstars by showing the ropes to one of the most solid and hilarious group of kids I've had the pleasure of being around at camp.
Justin Dorey, Knoll Master.
Peter Olenick, in the house.
Some of the sights included the defiling of the glacier's lightning rod, the Momentum wallride, much tom foolery in the rail garden beneath it, and trickery upon trickery on the jump at the bottom, where Mike Riddle was doing his best to take out his big air competition for the upcoming winter...
Mike Riddle and Paul Bergeron
But the biggest (literally) news at Momentum was the creation of quite possibly one of the best jumps ever to be built on the Horstman...the 80-foot step over gap in the old High North lane.
The 80-foot step over at Momentum
The brainchild of Chris Turpin, the jump loomed over the glacier like the grim reaper for the last half of the week waiting for the sun to emerge. And when it finally did on Momentum's day off yesterday...well, there's simply too much to say about everything that went down. So I realize how much this is going to piss all of you off, but I'm going to save it for the next update. But just so you're not as mad at me as you were on April Fool's Day, here's a little tease of the insanity that went down yesterday...
Meanwhile, over at COC the coaches with the mostest Matt Sterbenz, Joe Schuster, Matt Margetts, Griffin Cummings, Finn Anderson, Cody Barnhill, Jess Cumming and others were keeping their kids constantly entertained (even though their indescribably amazing lane does a good enough job on its own) by teaching them how to do more tricks than a Thai lady boy.
The well-rounded coaching crew at COC really has it going on this year and seeing the wall of pearly white smiles that fill the 4FRNT tent every day at lunch as the coaches banter back and forth undoubtedly proves that a week at COC is worth much, much more than the admission price.
In the middle of the session Sammy Carlson emerged through the mist to the awe of the kids with a rockstar entourage in tow including the legendary Tommy Ellingson, the soon to be legendary Willie Borm, Red Army member Ben Moxham, and filmers Justin Weigand of Nimbus and NS' very own Duncan Lake of Junction 133 (stay tuned for his edits!).
Duncan Lake, Tommy Ellingson, Ben Moxham, Sammy Carlson & Willie Borm arrive
Upon laying eyes on Sammy most of the kids at COC promptly left the underneath of their coaches' protective wings to ski side by side with the one and only Pasty C, and before you knew it the multiple X Games medalist had a tail roughly 20 kids long. This of course only made Sammy more stoked than he constantly is, as anyone who knows the man knows that he loves hanging with the kids, and as a result he spent hours upon hours giving them tips on how to nollie, nose press and backside switch-up like the best of em.
Sammy & Friends
Sammy Carlson shows the kids how it's done...
...and COC camper Charles 'I didn't get your last name and Margetts can't remember it but you're from Quebec' follows suit.
The Man, The Myth, The Legend...Tommy Ellingson
Willie Borm gives COC the thumbs up
Over the weekend the weather continued to sour, plaguing the usually sunny COC end of session barbeque with more rain than there was barbeque sauce (which is a tall statement considering how much barbeque sauce is flying around), but over at Momentum's good-bye party at picturesque Lost Lake things faired quite a bit better, as the sun finally came out just in time for the campers' departure.
Momentum's end of session party at Lost Lake
As anyone who's attended Momentum can attest to, things tend to get a bit wild at the end of session party, and the crew knew they were going to have to step it up this year to ensure that their reputation continued to precede itself.
The afternoon started off with some big volleyball action and Chris Turpin showing the kids how to fly fish as a tower of discarded pizza boxes grew, which camper Cam Macdonald decided to jump over on his BMX.
The contests then began with some skits from the kids which included future stand-up comic Bryce Klein breaking everyone's ribs with laughter via some improv comedy that would make most professional comics twice his age look about as funny as a funeral director by comparison.
Bryce Klein & John Smart
Following Bryce's show the coaches then presented awards to the winners from the mini-competition on the last day of skiing and who they felt improved the most and had the best attitude over the course of the week.
Watson Bay and his snazzy NS scarf
Frank Raymond presents a stunned Ian Simpson with a certificate for a brand new pair of Salomon Suspects.
Then it was time for the infamous Skullkley (Skullcandy + Oakley) challenge, brought to you by the mischievous Mike Riddle and Justin Dorey.
Riddle & Dorey and their Slurpee concoctions
Riddle instructed everyone on the rules which included running into the lake, swimming to the dock and back, and then summersaulting from the shore to the grass where Slurpees filled with clam juice and straws lined with mustard awaited. It was pretty awesome...
Mike Riddle to campers, "get in the lake."
tanned, jacked, and ready.
The Skullkley Challenge: run to the lake...
swim to the dock and back...
summersaults on the beach...
drink 'special' Slurpees...
spin 10 times around crutches...and race to the finish line.
The first two to finish then spun around crutches 10 times before racing like drunkards towards Trennon Paynter, who was holding the box of Skullcandy and Oakley goodies. It was a Kentucky Derby-worthy photo finish, but Aiden Vickers eventually emerged victorious after a hard fought battle in which he almost puked about 18 times.
Aiden Vickers picks up the win.
The Session 1 and 2 campers were then passing ships in the night on the always breathtaking Sea to Sky highway between Whistler and Vancouver, and the second and much larger army of kids are now off to a swinging and sunburning start under the bluebird skies that have been forecasted for the entire week...knock on wood.
Stay tuned to NS for more summer camp updates from Whistler, including the low down on what's been going down on the step over jump at Momentum, interviews with the camp directors, tons of athletes, and some surely not to be missed edits from Sammy Carlson and his crew at COC.
Momentum Ski Camps Video Blog - Session 1
by Craig Lamond, Frnt Row Productions