Rob Kingwill won the Men's Pro Snowboard division. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
The 14th annual Dick’s Ditch Banked Slalom contest held last weekend at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort was as mentally challenging and physically exhausting as it has ever been. Competitors qualified Saturday in extremely low visibility conditions, with areas of up to 10 inches of blower pow across the mountain. Sunday’s finals saw polar opposite conditions of blue skies and temperatures in the upper 30s.
The contest this year, as typical of years in the past, showcased technical banked turns intertwined with gaps, whoops, step-ups and step-downs and finishing out with two massive hip jumps. For even the fastest of racers, it is a true test of endurance and skill to race for a minute and a half through seemingly endless berms. With Dick’s Ditch gully running from near the top of the gondola to the nealry the bottom and being one of the highlight black diamond runs of the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Dicks Ditch Banked Slalom could be the gnarliest contest of its kind.
During the awards ceremony, the après ski crowd reminiscent of gaper day came to see many familiar faces on the podium.
Rob Kingwill, Mikey Marohn , and Blake Paul took the Mens Pro Snowboarder podium in first, secind and third, respectively.
Pat Owen, Max Hammer, and Tristan Droppert took the Mens Pro Ski division.
For the ladies, Cecilia Kunstadter, Amber Nelson, and Sarah Baca took the Women’s Pro Snowboarder division.
Alexa Owen, sister of Pat Owen, took first for Women’s Pro Ski, Kristin Waddle and Morgan McGlashon took second and third, respectively.
Pro divisions earn cash prizes of $600 for 1st place, $350 for second place, and $150 for third place. First place winners earn the highly acclaimed gold belt buckle.
The diverse conditions of the 2012 Dicks Ditch Banked Slalom may have just marked Jackson Hole’s transition from winter to spring, but lets just hope that’s not true.
Top of the course. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
Mid course. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
The Terje hit. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
The Men's Pro Snowboard podium: Rob Kingwill 1:31.92; Mikey Marohn 1:32.38; Blake Paul 1:34.35. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
The Men's Pro Ski podium: Pat Owen 1:24.23; Max Hammer 1:24.32; Tristan Droppert 1:25.35. Photo by Wade Dunstan.
Cecilia Kunstadter 1:49.61, Amber Nelson 1:52.72, and Sarah Baca 1:54.78 took the Women’s Pro Snowboarder division.
Alexa Owen, 1:31.72, Kristin Waddle 1:31.80, and Morgan McGlashon 1:32.38 took the Women's Pro Ski podium.