The forecast is dreadful: 15 degrees, and pouring rain. It's 8am and the clouds are looming, as if waiting to pounce on us as we step outside. We decide to chance the weather and head up to Mont Ste. Marie who, with the help of Mike Crichton, is to host the Orage Big Air. As we make our way towards the hill, the dark and ominous clouds slowly give way and allow the bright sunshine through. As we pull into the parking lot, we notice a thermometer showing 65 degrees. 65 and sunny: the perfect competition day. We walk towards the jump site, which is tucked away in a narrow run between a set of thick trees. The sound system is booming, skiers are surveying, and the judges are chatting. The jump is a 35 footer leading to a perfectly manicured landing. As the first skiers explode off the jump for their first time, the sparse crowds gather and the commentator commences his work. The field of skiers is split into two divisions: Pro and Am. Each competitor is allowed 4 jumps, and the best 2 are to be scored. Although only 3 pros show up, they put on a great show. Johan Kristofers stomps switch 900s, Patrick Cadieux defies style with 720 lui kangs, and Mark Crichton perfectly executes technical grabs in his enormous spins. The competition is fierce, and the judging is close. The skier's hit the jump for 3 straight hours, leaving only enough time in-between jumps to hike back up to the top. Other than skiers running into the fence protecting them from the forest on three different occasions, the jumps go off without a hitch, and the excitement remains high. As the competition winds down and we put our sweaters back on to counter the setting sun, we recall the skier's jumps, and feebly attempt to predict the winners. It was a close battle in both divisions. We make our way to the lodge to hear the results. Final Results (Am): 5. Jon Perry 4. Tyler Schram 3. Bryan Snow (64.2) 2. Shawn Kiselius (65.8) 1. DJ wilson (69.8) Final Results (Pro): 3. Mark Crichton (93.2) 2. Patrick Cadieux (111.2) 1. Johan Kristofers (123.1) Tyler Schram surveys the scene in warmups Johan accepts his first place (pro) award of $300 and an Orage fleece BJ Wilson accepts his first place (am) award of $100 and an Orage hoodie


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