words by Jeff Schmuck

photos by Daniel Eros & Sarah Richards

The 6th annual Candide Invitational has begun in beautiful and scenic La Clusaz, France. The highly anticipated event kicked off yesterday under sunny skies with many of the invited athletes in attendance.

Some of the highlights this year include the return of Big Bertha (a 35-meter stepdown), and the 10 foot high log jib, plus a 35-meter gap jump, a quarterpipe that looks like a castle and the most talked about of them all, the loop, a feature that hasn’t be attempted since Anthony Boronowski and JP Auclair slayed one at Mt Hood in what seems like ages ago.

Candide & The Loop

Most of the boys reportedly spent the day warming up on the course yesterday during the slopestyle photoshoot portion of the event, while some of them turned on their A-game.

Richard Permin on Big Bertha

Laurent Favre climbs the castle

Colby West on the quarterpipe

Today was supposed to be the second day of photoshoots, but unfortunately, a massive storm rolled into the Haute Savoie region, blanketing La Clusaz with over 30cm of new snow and canceling all of today’s festivities.

With more snow forecasted over the weekend, everyone is on pins and needles waiting to see what will go down, or what won’t. The best trick contest is scheduled to begin tomorrow (and continuing on Sunday) along with the nighttime jib jam that is slated to go down tomorrow night in the village. If the snow continues, there’s murmurings that perhaps Candide will make the call to extend the event till Monday to make up for the lost time. But the skies are clearing as I type this. Stay tuned to NS over the weekend for the latest and greatest from La Clusaz.