Six climate changes, 4 features, 3 flannel shirts, and 16 pearl jam songs later and we knew we had arrive in the Northwest. In fact, we had rolled up on the 2008 Oakley Uprising at Snoqualmie in Washington. We came to the Northwest to do two things; drink some coffee and kick some quartepipe ass; and the coffee was gone by 10:30am. The anticipation was flying through the air like that little baby that ended up in the pool on the old Nirvana cover. In the words of the famous Eddie Veder: “eeewrwweeerwwerr”. I think what our friend Eddie was trying to say is “set it free young quarter pipe shredders, set it free”.
Set it free we did. The chairlift ride to the “arena of awesomeness” was a wet one, but it was as if by some act of god that the second we approached the quarterpipe the sun came out. Of course it rained again five minutes later, but we were all certain that those were the tears of Quarterpipe legend Terje Haakonsen himself. This was a majestic quarterpipe, with none other then a 6 foot sword sticking through the deck of it. On the backside of this QP was the rail park where we would begin or day. If the rail jam was the appetizer and the QP was going to be the main course.
The rail jam was underway and these kids started devouring these poor rails. Kids were doing tricks so technical that not even Steven Hawkins could decode what was actually happening. If Steven was to build an equation to describe this rail mania it would look something like: “slide + combo + slide + spin + 13 years old = I have no idea what just happened”. I couldn’t agree more Steven. These kids were on fire, figuratively speaking. By the time the 15 and over men’s division finished the rails were begging for mercy, so we decided to move on to bigger and better things.
When I say bigger and better, I mean an 18 foot quarterpipe made of pure snow. Dr. Evil himself couldn’t have produced a better “Mini-Me Arctic Challenge Quarterpipe”. It was time for the nights of the northwest to begin taming this beast. We started with the 14 and under class, along with our women’s division, and it was 12 year old Jacob who claimed top honors along with winning a signature Terje Haakonsen goggle for biggest air. Jacob was a tough act to follow, even for the 15 and over open division, but these guys knew it was time to turn it on. There were Mctwist 720’s, Frontside 1080’s and big airs being thrown out, and it was young Austen Sweetin taking 1st place for the second year in a row. His technical prowess and dedication to amplitude set him apart. Sure Austen walked away with a ton of awesome free Oakley gear, and sure he was the envy of all his friends, but more importantly is that Austen had fun slaying Snoqualmie.
Not to sound like an after school special here, but as Austen showed it wasn’t all about winning on this day; it was about having fun with your friends. In fact, everybody who showed up to our free event “won” something because we did a goggle swap where we traded all the kids brand new Oakley High Definition Goggles for their crappy wannabe goggles. I guess you could say they “won” the ability to see clearly for a few more years.
Thanks to Krush and the crew at Snoqualmie for making a sick park, and thanks to all the kids for coming out and making Saturday so much fun. See you at the QP next year!