Flight board: how the largest snow park in the country was opened in Sochi

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In Sochi, in the Krasnaya Polyana ski resort, a large-scale Happy Hour Camp festival was held from 5 to 11 April. It took place on the basis of the country’s largest snow park with an area of ​​about 30 thousand square meters. m, which was built by the organizers of the camp. More than a thousand participants came here to ride, have fun and have a great time. Izvestia attended this event to look at the ambitious project and find out which winter sports lover should go here.

To Sochi from Chelyabinsk

Initially, Happy Hour Camp was created as a week-long camp in a ski resort 150 km from Chelyabinsk. The local snow park was known to many fans of snowboarding and alpine skiing, the Russian national snowboard team came here to train, stages of the Russian championships were held here, and the local halfpipe was legendary. However, after several events, it became clear that due to the remoteness and lack of tourist infrastructure, it was impossible to develop this location., says the organizer of the Happy Hour Camp, Kirill Odnoletkov: “It was clear that if you were to do a festival, then people simply wouldn’t go there”.

Then the resort Krasnaya Polyana invited them to move to the Krasnodar Territory. The organizers, says Kirill Odnoletkov, gladly agreed to this: “We had a good plan in our head how this location could be used in our concept. We wanted to build something big to attract as many people as possible, and we succeeded. “

The idea, he said, was to attract the maximum number of professional athletes: “After all, this sport (extreme freestyle, skiing and snowboarding) is now on the rise, a very strong generation of athletes is growing up, who at the age of 14 are already doing the most difficult tricks.”

The project team announced plans to build the largest snow park in the country in 2020 and even published a finished project. It was impressive, but many then doubted the possibility of realizing their plans. A pandemic intervened, and the camp had to be canceled altogether. However, the team’s enthusiasm did not fade away during this time, and in 2021 the organizers took up the project again.

As a result, says Kirill, they fully succeeded in realizing their plans: “We did not expect so many people, we knew that there would be many, but now we already understand that the snow park needs to be done even more”.

Weather changes plans


Photo: Happy hour camp

Mountain weather is another story. You can leave the hotel and understand that the mountains are covered with clouds and you simply cannot see them, but as soon as you go higher on the lift, the sun is already in front of you. The successful choice of the location of the snow park greatly influenced the work of the entire camp, because it was located in a valley where “milk” was not always dipped. Therefore, it was possible to ride perfectly in the park even when nothing was visible on the other slopes.

But on the first day, according to the organizers, a meter of snow fell at the resort, and on the next day, there was a heavy rain of sand. These two days were the main test for them.… “People started skating, and there was a negative, but many also had an understanding, because we dug up a meter of snow per night,” recalls Kirill Odnoletkov.

On the third day of the camp, the park was already in perfect order, the builders managed to eliminate all the shortcomings. It was built mainly at night, Vitaly Migov, a designer and builder of snowparks for Wintershapepro, which worked on Happy Hour Camp 2021, told Izvestia: “The rattracks left after the Circus was closed (the name of a part of the resort. – Ed.). During the construction there were, of course, a lot of difficulties – difficult weather conditions, equipment breakdowns ”.

The lion’s share of the work, he said, went to create the so-called pro-line, intended for professionals. It took about 30 thousand cubic meters of snow and about a month of work. The rest of the park, with a total area of ​​30 thousand square meters. m, built a little over a week.

the sun

Photo: Happy hour camp

We must pay tribute the organizing team tried to adapt to the weather as much as possible – they promptly reported changes in plans in social networks and messengers and specially adapted the schedule… So, for example, the skateboarding competition took place a day earlier than planned, because the next day, according to forecasts, it was promised rain.

Competitions, trainings, parties

The competitions themselves are an important part of the camp program. In the snow park, they took place every day, or even twice a day. To take part, it was enough to register, get a shirt front – and go to the rolling

“Every day we hold one and sometimes two contests, which include competitions for both skiers and snowboarders, both for girls and young people. That is, in principle, everyone can take part and win their prizes in various nominations, ”says Happy Hour Camp host Daniil Melnikov.

As a bonus, in addition to the sports and entertainment program, it was possible to take part in training workshops with eminent athletes. For camp participants, such events were held free of charge.

For those who came to the camp, but doubted their own capabilities and wanted to improve their level, trainings were held twice a day for snowboarders and skiers of different skill levels. However, to take advantage of this opportunity, it was necessary to demonstrate a good reaction: the number of seats was limited, and the record was closed, as a rule, in 10 minutes.


Photo: Happy hour camp

If, after skating, there was still strength, then every evening the participants had the opportunity to attend a party. And the festival program was full of various music: from rap and rock to electronic… The headliner was FEDUK, who gave a free outdoor concert.

Impressions from the park

In total, during the work, the camp and the snowpark, according to the estimates of the organizers, were visited by from 1 to 2 thousand people… The reviews were diverse, shares Kirill Odnoletkov: “Someone who has a lower level of skiing does not understand this park. Because it turned out to be complex and variable. In Russia, such people are almost never built, and at first people are not used to it. “ Most of those with whom Izvestia spoke positively assessed the opportunities offered by the park, noting, however, that the large number of people and the diversity of the program require more space.

The camp is more likely for athletes, both beginners and progressives, Olga Smeshlivaya, a three-time Russian snowboarding champion, told Izvestia. And this, in her opinion, is one of its advantages: “There is a more sporting program here, which differs from other camps, where there is more festival and show format. And here the camp is designed for beginners as well. I like this format, when something is constantly happening – competitions, training, parties, even a skate contest. “

“The park is normal, and in some places creative,” says snowboarder Anton Soloviev, who came here. – Next year, I would recommend making the park as long as possible, dividing it into setups. Thus, there will always be enough overclocking for all the pieces. There will be no need to start from the very top, and everyone can choose the shapes they like. Plus, you may not have to close half of the park for competitions. “

The park is suitable for people with different levels of skiing, says snowboarder Alexander Yakovets, but because of the large number of participants and the competition, queues gathered: “I think that one more lift would not hurt. And less to close the park for competitions in the public ski area. “

The organizers say that they are already thinking about next year and the further development of the park. They plan to set aside a special training area in the park. “That is, we will have a park purely for skiing and some simpler one for master classes,” concludes Kirill Odnoletkov. – We are now faced with a situation where it is difficult to breed competitions, master classes and just skating in the park. So we will develop. “