Summer 2014 - get out there and #keepdryslopealive
It is evident that dry slope snowboarding has become less of an occurrence in the UK since back in the day. People can argue that a statement like the latter is a little harsh, but it is a clear observation that only a select few are still hammering their local dry slopes every week. From the age of 9 I was at Rossendale dry slope every single weekend, it was packed, even week days after school I had to que to get on the lifts. The 'intermediate' slope (the one with the kicker) was absolutely jam packed with guys and girls from the local community, it had a buzz about the place. Unfortunately if you were to venture down on a thursday night this week then the atmosphere would be the complete opposite of that 10 years ago. The obvious argument for the drop in attendees at local dry slopes can be put down to the indoor domes cropping up all over the place, but lets not forget what these have done for snowboarding as a sport. I don't have a credible source to back up this point but it seems to me that a lot more people are interested in snowboarding than there was 10 years ago. The easy access to a 'real snow' experience has obviously increased the attractiveness of snowboarding than what it was 10 years ago, when the only facilities we had were dendex slopes and breaking your thumbs was just your typical saturday. It would be a crying shame if dryslope snowboarders became a dying breed. It is quite clear how important these facilities can be to UK snowboarding and producing the talent we have (Jamie Nicholls, Billy Morgan etc). I don't want to sit here and blag that if you only ride in domes then you won't become as good as our Olympians, because that is not the case. The exciting thing about riding your nearest hill is the opportunity to support and get involved in the community, something which some snowboarders might find hard to be part of in their local domes. This summer, strdywngs headwear and Jamie Keeble (a seasoned rossendalian (if thats a word)), have began to bring back this scene to Rossendale dry slope. Encouraging as many people from Manchester's chillfactore to take a drive down the m60 and experience a change. The first session a couple of weeks back saw the biggest amount of people take to the kicker for a very long time and finally the UK's most iconic dry slope had a buzz about it again. Hopefully, with a little bit of word of mouth, we can spread this message to the rest of the UK and have a rad summer shredding the surface what made UK snowboarding what it is. So grab your board, light up a BBQ, help support your local hill and #keepdryslopealive. If your riding dry slope this summer and have videos and snaps to instagram, give it a hashtag #keepdryslopealive.