Addicted to Late Season Snow
Colin Portice | On 03, Jun 2017
I was asked, “What drives a sledder to ride late into the year when everyone else has put their sleds away?” That confused the heck out of me because… well, what crazy person puts their sled away while there is still a chance of sled thrills???
But there are a lot of reasons why I ride late season snow.
First off, we don’t get a lot of daylight in central/northern British Columbia during the winter season, so usually it’s a mad rush to ride the daylight hours. When longer days do come, so does the time I spend on my sled. Unfortunately, longer days means faster melts, so I try to take full advantage of the snow until it’s just not possible to ride anymore.
Those that follow my social media accounts see what my diehard friends (mostly Wally Dagg) and I go through to ride late into the summer. Most people cringe and some actually get offended when they see what we put our machines through just to get that fix, but I see it differently. Really, what’s the worse that can happen…? A set of sliders, maybe skis worn down or a wrecked cooler from bagging tough miles of dirt. I don’t care about that stuff because it can easily be replaced. Riding some dirt seems like a small price to pay for the priceless feelings and thrills that come from spring riding.
Warning: Audio track contains explicit lyrics.
I find the journey is just as much fun as the riding part, not knowing how far you can drive, chewing through progressively deeper, shady snow spots on the road. Just not knowing what’s in store is exciting. It’s my version of hunting. We all hunt for some sort of rush, and being addicted to late season snow is definitely my habit of choice. Ironically, it has helped me through the tough times in my life that we all have to deal with.
Late Season Snow
Up top, it doesn’t matter what kind of snow conditions there are: powder, ice, hero snow, slush or rotten snow, I’ll take rotten, slushy summer weather on a sled any day. In mid-winter, coming into a jump at 60mph is kind of hard to do on pow days, and when all I think about is jumping, naturally late season is my time! I’ll stay up for days, driving and riding, just to get that fix. I honestly get a sled hangover as I call it (even though I don’t drink) from these “diehard trips”.
Being lucky to live where I do, and having the people in my life that have the same drive to ride, makes it fun and most of all memorable to go search for it. Pictures just can’t describe the views, and on a long, warm, sunny day, riding in a t-shirt, skipping water holes, followed up with a badass sunset and realizing that holy smokes! it’s 10:30pm. Then you recognize what a perfect day you just had, and that makes it addicting as well as rewarding.
Hard Work Pays Off
We work hard to get where we need to be to squeeze that throttle in late spring, knowing that every ride could be the last of the year. The sad reality of it is that our late season riding will come to an end at some point. And when it does, you’ll see me, my pal Wally and a few other diehards sitting in the parking lot covered in slush and mud, while quadders go by thinking we are just some morons wrecking perfectly good sleds.
At the end of each ride, I feel blessed and privileged to be able to live my passion and ride for so long every year, and thankful that my family, friends and sponsors understand my passion and way of life. Because this isn’t a hobby, or just another fading interest to me… It is my way of life. There are others out there with the same drive to ride and I think that’s so badass because I know the sacrifices—work, time, money, wear and tear on equipment—that it takes to just squeeeeeeze that throttle for possibly the last time of the year. Definitely mad props go out to those riders.
I’ve always said to live every day like it’s your last, and believe me, I do when it comes to riding into June and sometimes July! I’ll always do what it takes to ride!