More than 100 skiers and snowboarders will descend upon Revelstoke Mountain Resort this week with the hopes of qualifying for the Freeride World Tour.
The resort is playing host to the RMR Freeride Open this Thursday and Friday, Jan. 14–15.
The event is a three-star qualifier event for the Freeride World Tour. It is sanctioned by the International Freeskiers & Snowboarders Association.
“It’s basically people who are aspiring freeskiers and snowboarders participate in these events and try to gain points,” said Peter Nielsen, the resort’s vice president. “This is a level three event. At the top level would be the Freeride World Tour.”
The event takes place over two days. On Thursday, the 120 competitors take part in a qualifier on Separate Reality. On Friday, the finalists will compete in North Bowl. It’s a similar format to the Freeski World Tour event that took place at RMR from 2010–2012. That event was usurped by the Freeride World tour in 2013, but they pulled out of Revelstoke after the 2014 competition was canceled due to high avalanche hazard.
“The FWT is a bit of a media circus,” said Nielsen. “This is more about the nitty gritty of the actual sport.”
The 120 competitors are divided into four categories — skiing and snowboarding for men and women. They’ll earn points which will help them qualify for the Freeride World Tour.
There will be terrain closures during the competition. Separate Reality will be closed on Thursday, while parts of North Bowl will be closed on Friday.
“We’re really excited to host this,” said Nielsen. “We think Revelstoke is at the heart of the freeskiing world in many ways and we’re really looking forward to hosting some of the best skiers in North America.”