‘Tis the season for ski and snowboard video market saturation, top-tier talent getting wild under bluebird skies, enshrouded in a golden haze of sun-lit powder to entice enthusiasts into early-season and holiday gear upgrades. Of course, much of the United States’ hills are still waiting for their first good dump of snow. It can be hard not to feel a little bitter when you’re a wannabe ski bum staring out the lodge windows at mud and brown grass, and all you have for inspiration are endless clips of beautiful people riding perfect conditions. Well, it’s your lucky day. France’s Candide Thovex has proven that you don’t need great, or any, snow to shred a mountain on skis.
Casually charging across matted grass, tossing backflips in fields of wheat, kicking up sparks on gravel roads, bombing through trees in the woods, and sailing over a ridiculously gnarly road gap to stick a raspy dry landing, Thovex proves it’s passion, not powder, that makes the rider. Well, that, and a free gear hookup. No way any of this is easy on the skis. Watch for yourself below, and try not to let your legs bounce too hard with stoked anticipation.
In case you missed it, last year was one of the worst ever for snowfall at U.S. resorts, with usually snow-inundated locales like Tahoe reporting snowpacks down 40 percent. It’s a trend that may well spiral onward as climate change rears its ugly head, and one that has the multibillion-dollar snow-sports industry weak in the knees. Lucky for them, folks like Thovex aren’t taking no snow for an answer.