Among all the possibilities that this unique sport is offering, the one attracting the most Arthur, Niels, Clement and Baptiste is by far the images that you can get from it. This particular intense moment finally made eternal thanks to photography or filming. However, behind all these marvelous shots, reside countless hours of work, shaping, missed shots, frustration finally leading to joy and relief… And for them, all of this makes the beauty of a perfect photo.
We are right now on the third spot of this series and as usual, you always manage to find a very nice spot?Arthur – That’s called experience ahah. Nah, to be honest, we are always scouting, in observation mode. And since we ride every day, it helps to find them. Well, you need to have a sharp eye. I think that you can find a good idea in all the places – a step up, a transfer, a step down or anything else. The search makes the whole thing exciting and motivating. For this photo, Niels was the one who found the spot, the goal was to find a dome or to shape a safe and massive step up so we could get a maximum of photos from it.
This spot is quite fat – you must have had a hard time shaping it no? Arthur – We met around 10 am. All the squad was there and down for it. But the sun was also there and it was quite hot! Anyway, after 6h of shaping, and a big sweat it’s always a good time to build something with your buddies. But the most important thing is that the beast is finally done and we can finally tame it.
Baptiste – I joined them around 2pm and it was really easy to find them. Once I was on the slopes, I was able to spot far away in the background a huge inrun followed by this big jump! Once I arrived, the guys were already done. They got me when they told me “we just need to increase the kicker and tamp the inrun”… Seeing this huge transition to get to the kicker, this tamping will be very very long to finish.
The infamous moment of the crash-test. Who among you was motivated this time?Arthur – Hmmmm, we were actually all down for it this time. But on this spot you had to be in shape physically. 20 minutes to go up, 30 seconds of pure speed for half a second in the air. The verdict – maybe we went a little bit too big on this ahah. The transition is way too long and the speed is really missing. So we waited for the sunset to see if the inrun would freeze a lil. We then headed for the park to make some shots with the team.
Second run and a massive flat5 for Arthur. After this session in the park, the guys go back to their spot. Clement joins them. The sun is already really low and a good part of the inrun is already in the shade. A small tamping for good measure. Baptiste then searches a good spot where he will be able to shoot the scene with a good warm and soft light, typical of the sunsets. Everybody is hyped and Niels goes up first.
What were your premonitions when you saw Niels taking his momentum?Arthur – Once he launched himself, I thought right away that it was going to be a wrap. I can see him rocketing out of the kicker, he makes a jump of around 2 meters high to land directly in the wall. Then I start to be pessimistic about the whole thing and I figure that we shoveled all day for nothing. But Clement has more faith than me and goes up too. He lands farther than Niels this time, but it’s still way off.
Baptiste – I was at that moment very far from the spot. But I was able to hear them screaming in the background. Despite the massive inrun, they were not really flying high. But I know them quite well, they are super hardheaded – When they want to shoot on a spot they will always stop at nothing to find a solution. And believe me, it did not take them long before they found one.
Arthur more determined than ever, goes up for his first try. He climbs 20 meters higher than the others and goes all out for it. Meanwhile, Clement had the good idea to bring a snowmobile to do the rotations. At the same time, in full speed mode, Arthur takes his compression and tries to keep all the speed that he can… Everyone looks at him as he flies over the jump, but he lands also halfway between Niels and Clement.
The snowmobile for savior?Arthur – I really cursed this spot you know?! We shaped it during at least 8h and it was very frustrating! So when I saw that snowmobile, I couldn’t have been happier to see one! I go back up while the guys install all the gear to drag me. Baptiste signals me to go because the sunset is almost over and the colors are incredible. I pump myself up and without any hesitation launch a rodeo 5. I land it but barely miss a damn rock who was passing there. Just after the landing I immediately tell myself – well this spot is dead…
The guys then gathered one last time to decide that they had to put an end to all of this. This time, the spot was stronger than them. Baptiste joined them, and surprised everyone with a great photo that he had been able to capture. Instantly, everybody changed their mind – instead of being irritated and demotivated, they were all happy for Arthur and relieved because they did not shape all day for nothing. The sunset was ending and all of them enjoyed this moment to have a drink before they went back home. 🍻🍻