Words by Matt Harvey

Photography by Matt Harvey

Cinematography by Patrick Gray, Chris McMahon, Chris O'Connell

Video editing by Matt Harvey

On Friday March 7th, 2003, the NS crew set out on an eleven hour drive; destination: Kissing Bridge Ski Resort, a half hour from Buffalo, NY. We were on route to the first stop of the NS Slopesteez tour. We arrived in the cozy town of Springville around 7pm, and checked into our hotel. A long and busy day was ahead of us, so we quickly set out on a beer hunt. All of us Canadians were mesmerized when we entered Wal-Mart, only to find a BEER isle! In Canada, there's nowhere that you can buy dinner, diapers, beer, and a gun all in the same spot.

The Friday night was a relaxing one, hanging out in the hotel watching American TV, drinking imported Canadian beer, and planning out the following day's festivities.

The woke up bright and early Saturday morning, and headed for the hill. We parked a couple steps from the main village entrance and looked around the hill under the brightly shining sun and +5 degree (celcius) weather. It was a friendly little resort, which seemed to cater mostly to families. The registration booth was setup, and we headed out to the park to see the competition grounds. We were stoked to find about 10 rails and three jumps setup and raked to perfection. Everything was ready to go, so we sat back and waited for the skiers to arrive.

And arrive they did. By the time the comp started, around 50 skiers were present and the jam session went off. The competition format was jam style, with four judges judging over-all impression. We started with the 15 and under age group, and the first two spots were claimed faster than you can say 'corked 1080'. The 16 and over age group followed, and the growing crowd was witness to styled out corks, zero spins, and switch tricks.

After a couple hours of non stop jump sessioning, all competitors moved over to the 35 foot battleship rail for the rider-judged, winner takes all session. By the end of the lengthy jam, the rail had been completely destroyed by just about everyone. Switch ons, one foot slides, 50-50 to slide to switch 50-50, 270s off, switch ups, blind-side switch ups, and all the rest. The judging was really close, coming down to just two guys. The winner walked away with a pile of NS swag, and some random Kissing Bridge clothing.

After the on-hill sessioning, we moved the festivities to the main bar where free food was distributed by the tray full. I'm not sure how the serving lady go out of the mob alive, but the pizza and wings disappeared faster than free Red Bull. The winners were announced, competitors got their $8 Freeskier subscriptions with free clothing, and acquired stupid amounts of Freeskier stickers.

When the on-hill festivities were all wrapped up, the NS crew headed back to our hotel room for a little R&R before heading to the bars. An in-house version of Mardi Gras ensued so we didn't actually make it out at all... but hey, we got some great footage from it. :)

The tour stop was a huge success with a positive vibe flowing the whole time. Special thanks goes out to Drew Krawczuk at Kissing Bridge for setting everything up. Also the park staff totally killed it with their constant help maintaining the jumps and rails. Huge thanks of course to everyone who came. We fully appreciate your support!

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Video is unoficially rated AA. Viewer discretion is advised.