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Thredbo's Parks are Lacking this year

Discussion in 'Thredbo' started by Toddo, Jul 27, 2009.

  1. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    I feel that thredbos parks are lacking this year compared with last year and compared with the progression shown by other australian resorts (even selwyn sounds like they have a better setup form the reprots). It's about time they lift their game imo. There is so little on offer and lack of variety at this stage of the season it's not funny.

    Basically all there is is a beginners park with 2 miniture jumps, 2 flat dance floor boxes and 1 flat box.

    and the high noon park with a down box or down bar, then a 3 jump line, then either a c box or a flat ironing board, then a stall bar.

    The step up between the tiny jumps in the cruiser park and the smallest jump in the high noon park is not very progressive friendly for those looking to improve.

    The lack of variety in jibs is a joke also, basically you go from a flat box. to a very steep down box or down rail and that's it (apart from the c box). how about some variety such as rainbows, battleships, flat downs, up flats, etc etc.

    in the conditions we have, you'd think they would be putting in more of an effort to improve the experience for the freestyle inclined. I know they blame snow conditions for the lack of features, but at this stage of the season they have more than enough snow. besides putting in jibs takes very little snow anyway.

    IMO in order to improve the current situation they could/should:
    - Build the cruiser parks jumps bigger, the sizes last year were small enough for beginners but big enough for other to practice spins etc on. If need be provide dual take offs on each jump so you have a large/small option.
    - Build dual take offs for jump size options in high noon park.
    - perhaps have some step up style jumps rather than cheese wedge style. steps ups are much more progressive friendly.
    - get antons jump line up and running
    - build a lot more jib options and space them so that you can hit a variety of features on each run.

    A better scenario would be if they would dedicated an entire run to making a park (as most decent resorts in north america and even japan do), rather than a little section fenced off here and there as is the current situation. In my opinion the playground run off the cruiser would provide a good place for this.
    - there is plenty of space and good slope up the top to provide 2 x 3 hit jump lines (an intermediate and an advanced line)
    - keep the smaller jumps down the bottom where they are for beginners
    - there is a lot of places down here where the natural land provides scope for smaller individual jumps, hips and transfers on the sides of the runs. by having more spread out features like this would help with congestion of people (especially snow school) lining up to hit the 2 tiny jumps as is. If one feature is crowded you can ride around it to the next.
    - there is plenty of space to provide a large variety of jibs from mellow to advanced scattered down the entire run to match in with the natural terrain.
    - provide a few more jibs, or even a 1 or 2 jump line in the area above and next to where the dance floor box and flat box are now. It's a large enough area to have more than 2 small boxes and a roller.
    - I don't think it would affect non park riding people too much as they still have walkabout, squatters run, ballroom and valley view serviceing the same area and keeping them occupied.

    If they were to do that they could then turn the high noon park into a more advanced slopestyle course like perisher have done with front valley.

    Would love to hear other opinions on this. I might email Thredbo and see if they could get a rep to provide some further insight.
     
  2. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    PS i didn't write this just to have a whinge but to provide my thoughts on how they could improve... would like to hear how others think they can improve in this area.
     
  3. telecrag

    telecrag Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    One problem with parks is the carnage. I know of quite a few injuries from the high noon park, this and last season, skiers and boarders, all of them experienced. I agree that having a well designed park is a drawcard. I do think that they should have a manned booth to:

    a) try and prevent accidents by controlling skiers/boarders (like in slow zones)

    b) act quickly when the inevitable happens.

    An interesting stat would be what percentage of injuries occur in/out of the parks.
     
  4. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    i think the cheese wedge style jumps and steep landings in high noon park would be a factor into lots of injuries in there... it is easy to over jump them. or knuckle out from trying not to overjump them.

    step ups or more table top styled jumps are heaps safer and you can still get the same amount of air time if designed well. on these style jumps the landing catches you higher rather than you fall down onto the landing.
     
  5. jilimbilo

    jilimbilo Hard Yards

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    i don't get why they dont build jumps in the summer like they do overseas. then when it snows a little, you have jumps!
    and you dont have to wait for 75cm to fall.
     
  6. JOSAF

    JOSAF First Runs

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    Probably because they can't decide if they actually want to have a park year to year, and what jumps to build. By not having them their permanently it gives them a choice in what to build.
     
  7. telecrag

    telecrag Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    They could incorporate permanent park features into the MTB tracks for summer, come on KNP, let us have more fun.

    Toddo, I think you are right, I know two injuries from overshooting the landing, one resulting in over rotating in a 360 that was a season ender.

    Star note: I dont really use parks in winter, but would love to hit one in summer on my DH bike. Weird, Im a better skier than rider, yet I would jump higher on the bike than the skis [​IMG]
     
    #7 telecrag, Jul 27, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  8. HappyGirl

    HappyGirl One of Us

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    Why is Thredbo being singled out in this question? Why not apply the question to all Australian Ski Resorts? Resorts have to cater for everybody from babies to grandparents, boarders to skiers and when it comes down to it....what freeskiers want can never be truly met by any one resort. Australian resorts are too small, have limited seasons and have to cater/pander to all snow lovers at the same limited time, yet have all terrains available to all level of snow sport lovers and simultaneously maintain much untouched natural terrain as possible and need a broad-based income to continue to exist fullstop.

    It's like wanting councils in all beach communities circumnavigating Australia to dig out beaches to create sand bars just for the minor surfers that want high rollers. And as for wanting summer time cutouts for the bikes as well....wake up! Operators has enough political bullcr*p as it is with the NPWS to keep the ongoing harmony.

    If it weren't for one person taking over the original Lend Lease lease of Thredbo back in the 80's, Thredbo would never have implemented snow making, nor have had built the Gunbarrel, the Cruiser, Kosci Express and developed Friday Flat along with car parks and further bed counts qualified always by NPWS for YOUR PLEASURE.

    Just give the Aussie Resorts a break and appreciate what they are....and if they don't give you great mojo....then go overseas to live your wildest dreams like most addicted Aussies do every Summer.

    PEACE ALWAYS
     
  9. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    Because I think the other NSW resorts are putting in a better effort at this stage. Perisher has 3 parks up and running with about over 10 hits and a large number of jibs, even selwyn has a larger variety of jibs this year.

    IMO parks are a good way to make average conditions a lot more fun to ride, with that mindset, you'd think that the resorts would put in a bigger effort.
     
    #9 Toddo, Jul 28, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  10. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    Perisher has it over Thredbo in spades this season. The reality was ever since Perisher put an advanced jump line on Front Valley it has just gone from strength to strength.3 Solid parks now. More features to come as well. Thredbos parks have been stagnant in progression since 2002 IMHO. Though they did build some sweet jibs around 2006.2007 ish.

    The boys wanted a bigger booter on FV. So the cats went and pushed it up. Not just for a comp. But for the riders.

    Maybe Thredbo has cut its park budget right back?. It seems to be having a few other issues at the moment with late lifts etc.
     
    #10 Donza, Jul 28, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2013
  11. scottik187

    scottik187 Hard Yards

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    Thredbo are defiantly behind Perisher right now. Perisher parks have gone from strength to strength because they actually care about getting features up and have a progressive attitude towards using their space. The introduction of the Piper park last season is a perfect example, they had a line of small-medium jumps there that could be hit all in a row...sure there were a few complaints about the layout etc, but at least they are having a go.

    I think the Playground idea is great...a few years ago they used to have that whole area as a boardercross track (back when boardcross was cool). The run is already loaded with the natural terrain as you mentioned, they could build any number of hits on that run, it's set up perfectly.

    Thredbo is being singled out because they are lacking. Perisher can build 3+ parks that are well designed and have resources, Hotham has 3 parks open, Selwyn has 2 parks open, Falls can build monster features for Style Wars later in the season...yet with an official base of 121cm Thredbo has 2 lame parks open.

    Freestyle snowboarding and skiing is not going away, if you build it...they will come.
     
  12. Phalanx

    Phalanx Hard Yards

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    Might also have to do with the government not giving out many visa this year for groomers. They told the mountains to use truck drivers, which lead to poor grooming on all the mountains at the start of this year (and very dangerous too at times). I think they moved the guys who worked on the park in the past to main runs.
     
  13. scallywag

    scallywag First Runs

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    The problem is thredbo's management. I don't thing they like the idea of there resorts being turned into a freestyle meca. but they better wake up soon because it will affect business in the future if they don't start letting good parks be built for the public. the park boys ideas are good, just look at last years rip curl freeride seriers held at thredbo for example and if given the chance to build what they have planned than thredbo would have quality built parks, but while the old management are around there will be no good parks and no new features. It's a shame, im calling out a boycot.. whos in? they'l get the idea eventually.
     
  14. telecrag

    telecrag Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    The more people that go to Perisher, the happier I am [​IMG]
     
    #14 telecrag, Jul 29, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  15. FourSquare04

    FourSquare04 A Local

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    Sorry Happygirl but that is a VERY defensive post - are you by chance related to any of the park staff at thredbo?!!

    I completely agree with Toddo on this one - The parks at thredbo are definitely lacking this year especially in comparison to Perisher who seem to be killing it (IMO hands down best parks in Australia - forget falls creek aka flat creek - took them ages to get anything up on ruined castle this year).
    However, I think the point Toddo is trying to get across here (and I think telecrag nailed this on the head) is that the same features (rails,boxes etc) are being used, there's nothing new this year (or even last year?) and there's not a lot of variety in the features being provided, nor is there any sort of realistic progression in the parks on offer too.

    Toddo - your idea of turning playground into one long park run is worth considering, however, I would honestly doubt that thredbo would want to turn one of their most popular high level beginner/low level intermediate runs into a park (remember the public outcry when they lost high noon? there was some seriously peed off people on here that's for sure!).
    But where else could you move the park too? IMO there ain't a lot of options at Thredbo for it - the further higher up you go the more weather prone runs and areas become.

    Also interesting that they've moved the ridercross over to the meadows from sponars this year....

    I still feel they could do A LOT more with the beginners park at the cruiser and create some fun beginner lines (from the top of the easy rider t-bar they could devote that entire area and have a couple of lines full of progressive features, not just 3 or 4 in total for the whole area!) but it just ain't happening.....and again, IMO (as others have suggested) something definitely seems 'up' at thredbo this year, with the lifts breaking down, etc etc
    Can't remember who suggested it, but the possibility seems to be there in terms of a park budget being cut or reduced for sure......

    Another thing worth considering Toddo - is Nokia still sponsoring the parks at thredbo or have they pulled their sponsorship $ out? As you can see at Perisher - Sony sponsor the PSP park on Front Valley, Coca Cola sponsor the park at leichardt and Columbia sponsor the park at piper.
    Maybe they lost a marketing / promo person at thredbo?

    P.S. the latest thredbo roving pics show them prepping the Antons park for opening so it looks like that will open maybe end of this week (same time as the pipe opens at perisher?)
     
    #15 FourSquare04, Jul 29, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  16. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    FS04 - some good points you make, i'm not too sure about the sponsorship thing, i don't recall seeing any sponsors plastered around the park and could be a major reason. Surely the thredbo marketing crew need tojump on this and get it fixed if that is the problem - it's hardly an excuse.

    I agree 100% that they could do a lot more with the cruiser area park - and my thoughts to extend it up the playground run were off the back of that thought. not sure where else on the mountain they could do something similar. the cruiser area is perfect for it. Only other area I can think of would be the basin, but it probably gets a bit too wind scoured up there.

    With a bit of creativity they don't need a huge area to create a great park. just look at parks like the blackcomb glacier park, or something like hakuba 47 for example - both are great fun parks with lots of variety and a mix from total beginner to expert level features in a relatively small area.

    I think my main gripe is the lack of varity and the lack of progression friendly features, which they could probably provide in the areas that they have with a bit more creativity. Maybe it does come down to the lack of sponsorship - but who is going to sponsor a crappy park - if they build a high class park to compete with perisher they could probably get a decen sponsor to contribute. I noticed nintendo had a tent setup at the friday flat ticket office the other day with demos - they would be perfect sponsor (opposition to sony at perisher & nintendo sponsors other parks such as whistlers)
     
  17. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    another thought on the sponsorship thing (if money is the key issue behind the state of the parks) - with a little more effort they could easily sell individual rail and kicker space to individual companies - ie. the electric visual rainbow box, the 3CS outerwear jump line, the toyota flat to down box etc etc... in addition to this have naming rights to the park that appear in all of the promo material... it's definately not rocket science.

    most of the big parks in USA have different sponsors on a lot of features
     
  18. Donza

    Donza Pool Room

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    I reckon its coin. Budget balancing at all that. Kat time, workers, money for boxes, rails etc.
    Sponsorship for a park would mean sweet FA money wise IMHO for the resort.

    I get a feeling they push stuff up for the pros, make an effort, get the shots in the mags all around comp time and thats it.
     
    #18 Donza, Jul 29, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  19. Vego

    Vego Hard Yards

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    Toddo, why note write to Thredbo and give them your ideas?? [​IMG]
     
    #19 Vego, Jul 30, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  20. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    i did when I posted this and included a link to here, in the hope that a rep will give us some insight. no response yet.
     
  21. scallywag

    scallywag First Runs

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    they got the coin. and the plans. but managment won't allow it. it's not going to change with sponsorship.
     
  22. VSG

    VSG Crayon Master Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Why does one need a park in the snow?
     
  23. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    When i ski at or through thredbo this year the park on High noon has been all but vacant. I think a clear majority go skiing to ski the runs. I'm guessing that less than 5% want to ski in a 'park'. I say piss the whole thing off and put high noon back the way it was.

    I don't think Thredbo would lose much if all the park people went to Perisher. Actually i bet they'd make money out of it. They must waste many groomer hours building these things for a very small percentage of their skier days.
     
  24. telecrag

    telecrag Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    On the express yesterday a lady was complaining about the ski cross setup taking up too much room. A patroller on the lift said that it was there for the rest of the season. I made the suggestion that they could build those berms in summer, let us at em on the MTB, then 30cm or so of snow and they are ready for winter.

    Not many people were going down it, I had a go on a smaller one they had last week, it was pretty fun. (I dont huck, so the big jump parks dont interest me).
     
  25. powderplayer

    powderplayer First Runs

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    Ban snowboards and twin tips while you are at it, make one peice suits compulsory in fluro too. High noon does not get used somedays because of the icy location the park is in. It would be a lot more than 5% if the parks were designed and maintained properly. IMO some of the forum members here would fit in well in thredbo upper management with those 1980's attitudes towards the australian snow industry.
     
    #25 powderplayer, Aug 1, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  26. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    If you re-read my post you will see i wasn't having a go at anyone. Just noting that there are several hundred skiers crammed into the left hand side of High Noon whilst the park side was totally empty. I don't know how much it costs to set up a park but my guess is it takes a fair bit of time. That's time Thredbo should invest in their core business, which from my observations, is people who want to ski decent length groomed runs.

    Thredbo is a business and they should run to make profit. From what i observe i think they would get better return from giving the park a miss altogether. If parks were where the profits are i'm sure they would convert the whole resort to one.
     
    #26 Snow Blowey, Aug 1, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  27. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    sounds good to me [​IMG]

    I really can't see the point of parks, and I am very resentful when they stuff up a good run (ruined castle steeps [​IMG]). I can see the value of having them in marginal conditions when they provide entertainment for some. in that case, making preformed features that require little snow would make sense. just keep them away from interesting ski runs. and ban the playing of music in parks, or anywhere else outdoors at the snow
     
    #27 currawong, Aug 1, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  28. powderplayer

    powderplayer First Runs

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    Anyone heard of snowpark? Parks make a profit in their own way through media coverage in magazines/net. I think high noon and antons parks should both be moved as antons winds make those kickers (which are well done) very sketchy on a lot of days and the high noon park suffers from a lot of ice. These would both be replaced by one large park on sundance, There are a number of postives out of this move.

    1- it's in an area of the mountain that never really gets a lot of ski traffic anyway and opens high noon up for intermediate cruising again.

    2- Make slowgums useful again as park users could use that and jump off at lovers leap which in turn would take some pressure off of gunbarrel lift lines and wear and tear on high noon ski run thus making it last longer.

    3-Grooming would be cheaper due to the fact the cats don't waste time/fuel traversing the mountain to get to the parks, the park would begin skiers left of the catshed.

    4-The chance of a night park for pretty small investment as most of the infastructure is already there.

    5- Lets face it, lots of people get injured in parks, having the park on sundance is perfect from a patrol point of view as it would save them time in not having to bring people dow on the akja from say antons. On sundance you can pretty much see the doctors surgery from most of it.

    6-A little life to the place, a well built park here would add a lot of life to the village, when the big air was on last september with the big showcase booter was at the bottom of sundance it added something
    the village, it nice to sit in the village and see some of the action( the bistro has the perfect view of this). Gives you free entertainment which is where I think lights would be a good thing as a saturday night big air competion would a great thing to see and give people something to do.

    This is only my opinion on how to make an improvement over the current situation, I think Charles is doing all he can with what he has got, it would be good if management gave him sundance and creative freedom in park design. It's cool if you like skiing on groomed runs and for you that is why you travel to the ski fields, I can respect that. But what Thredbo needs to understand is that there are a lot of us who travel to the snow to seek our enjoyment on a different level. We pay the same as anyone else yet would only use one lift and 5% of the mountain if the park was on sundance.
     
  29. scallywag

    scallywag First Runs

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    this would be perfect. those winds up at antons makes the park unridable on alot of days
     
    #29 scallywag, Aug 1, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  30. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Your suggestion sounds good to me powderplayer. Getting enough snow down there may be an issue though - although i suppose summer earthworks could help with that.
     
  31. powderplayer

    powderplayer First Runs

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    Earthworks in summer would really reduce the amount of man made snow required to get the park open, I can't see how some mounds of dirt in the middle of the ski run would negativly effect the ecology of the national park. There is extensive snowmaking down this run which at the moment kind of goes to waste. Temperatures in spring would mean the closure of the park maybe 2 weeks earlier then their current locations but with earthworks and early season snowmaking (very cold part of the hill overnight) the park could be opened up a couple of weeks earlier in the season then what is possible on high noon and antons.
     
  32. Toddo

    Toddo One of Us

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    snow blowey, i think the high noon park seems empty at times because it is prone to having icey landings and the jumps are too intimidating for anything less than high intermediate.

    this weekend however in the cruiser park, was packed all weekend... line ups fr runs, so I don't think there is a lack of interest at all.

    NOW ON A GOOD NOTE - credit given where credit is due:

    the crew have upgraded all parks last week. Changed the layout of the cruiser park to include more boxes, extra jumps and he jumps were a much better size for anybody better than beginner level. The crowds in the cruiser park all weekend would indicate the new layout is better. would be even better if they could start it further up the playground run [​IMG]

    the high noon park is in the process of being extended with the addition of a long flat box, picnic table and a down rail at the bottom of high noon. also have a bit more variety with a new bonk bin and a flat down box as well as another flat box.

    antons park has started with a step up - butter pad - step down jump... looks like it will be very fun and is a welcome change to the typical chees wedge jumps they put up there, but was a bit icey up there today so I gave it a miss.

    lets hope the improvements continue and make a fool of this thread!
     
    #32 Toddo, Aug 2, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  33. scallywag

    scallywag First Runs

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    well lets hope they do toddo!
     
  34. FourSquare04

    FourSquare04 A Local

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    hey toddo, see they pushed up the advanced park up at antons?

    those 2 x booters look seriously sick - there's multiple pics of them on popmag......

    can anyone confirm if there are any decent booters built inside or outside the report up at thredders? usually the range behind karels (ramshead?) gets quite a few built on it....
     
  35. sara777

    sara777 A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Ummm... for fun? To do something different? Broaden your skills? Why water-parks, for example? I prefer natural off piste jumps and small cliffs myself, but that's got to do more with confidence than with anything else.
    My skiing / boarding buddies go to park often and I also like to watch guys in Perisher Front valley to rip the air. It would never occur to me that it shouldn't be there - and I am not in my twenties, for the record. We are all in the mountains for fun, one way or the other, so I don't question how or why can someone have a fun in park as well as I don't question a skier in VERY tight pants, cap and sunglasses going down one groomed run over and over - each to its own! Surely, there is enough room for everyone? [​IMG]
    Perisher is much better when it comes to parks - and Leichard is very often overcrowded!

    ( Sorry if its off topic, couldn't help myself )
     
    #35 sara777, Aug 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013