A wake for winter: Spring Splash celebrates ski season
It was a grey bird day in the Fraser Valley as Winter Park Resort marked the end of the 2018 – 19 winter ski season with its annual Spring Splash event, held on Easter Sunday.
Several hundred skiers, snowboarders and an enthusiastic and rowdy crowd of spectators gathered into the Winter Park Resort base area Sunday for the popular event that marks the impending end of the ski season. Over 100 daredevils tried their luck at the pond-skimming event, the centerpiece of Spring Splash.
For Spring Splash event participants cruise down a brief banked slalom course before reaching a short run-out that culminates in a shallow pool that skiers or boarders attempt to skim across like water skiers. The transition from slushy spring snow to clear water is difficult and many participants find themselves taking an impromptu bath before getting back out of their ski gear.
The entire event evokes a beach party atmosphere, which the visiting participants are only too happy to embrace.
“Spring Splash is one of the best events at Winter Park,” Resort Host Kevin Crowe said, just as he prepared to push off from the starting blocks at the top of the Spring Splash slalom course. “You’ve got spring skiing and you’ve got parties. How can it get any better than this?”
Crowe was participating in the Spring Splash event with his adult son Ryan Crowe though the two were not the only duo trying their luck on the water. Denver area brothers Jordan and Josh Jones are fairly young but they have been attending Spring Splash events for nearly two decades already. On Sunday both brothers took a turn on water, with mixed results. Jordan Jones, who has participated in Spring Splash in previous years, unsuccessfully attempted a front flip.
“It didn’t work out so well,” he said with a smile. “But it’s okay, the water’s cold and the weather’s nice. It has been a blast, a fun day in Winter Park.”
Josh Jones on the other hand found a bit of beginners luck perhaps. Jones made it successfully across the pond on the first attempt of his life.
“This was my first time doing splash and it was awesome,” he said with a beaming grin. “I have been watching it for years so doing it myself was unreal. I took my first ride on the pond and made it across.”
Following Sunday’s festivities the Winter Park Territory at Winter Park Resort will shut down for the ski season. Local shred heads will still be able to whet their appetite for late season turns though as Mary Jane Territory, including the runs in Parsenn Bowl, are set to remain open through May 12.
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