News Flash: Week of February 1, 2023

News Flash: Week of February 1, 2023

“News Flash” is FREESKIER’s online column designed to keep you up-to-date with snippets of outdoor news you need to know about. This article is published weekly on Wednesdays and updated throughout the week.

PHOTO: Matt Power

The tragic passing of beloved skier Kyle Smaine has rocked the industry

If you were lucky enough to call Kyle Smaine a friend, you were lucky enough. An infectious, fun-loving attitude and an unwavering passion for skiing, particularly with friends, made Kyle Smaine one of the best damn skiers and humans to ever grace this Earth. The professional skier lost his life in a tragic avalanche in Japan last week and our thoughts and prayers go out to his friends, family and his wife Jenna.

PHOTO: Mark Kohlman/X Games

X Games Aspen 2023 was full of historical moments

The biggest and rowdiest snowsports competition went down in Aspen this last weekend and it’s safe to say the X Games just keep getting more extreme. Canadian Megan Oldham became the first woman to ever land a triple cork in competition and a perfect 50 score from the judges. Mac Forehand also scored a perfect 50 in Ski Big Air for the first-ever forward double cork 2160. Read the full competition recap, here.

Riders dominate the first stop of the Freeride World Tour despite less-than-ideal conditions

The first stop of the 2023 Freeride World Tour kicked off in Baqueira Beret, Spain, this weekend. The Tour was originally supposed to kickoff at Canada’s Kicking Horse venue but a historically low snowpack forced the competition to reorganize the stops, making Spain the inaugural competition for 2023. Sweden’s Max Palm navigated the rocky and low-tide snowpack masterfully, throwing in a high-consequence 360 as well as a big, clean backflip. On the women’s side, FWT rookie Addison Rafford took home the gold for a solid run with multiple big airs.

The second stop of Level 1’s Rail Jam Tour went off at Trollhaugen

There’s not much to write home about the small Wisconsin ski area but this past weekend at Trollhaugen was one for the storybooks. The second stop of Level 1’s Rail Jam Tour, the kids showed up and put down their best tricks for the chance to win some cold hard cash and the epic bragging rights. Congrats to Jackson Karsteter and Audrey Friess for taking home the hardware!

Kye Petersen drops third episode of new series: ‘Migration’

Part three of Kye Petersen’s new series takes us on an annual migration east from the coast into the Selkirk mountains of interior BC. Here, Kye and his buddies visit one of the interior’s top pillow skiing destinations and explore new corners of a zone they’ve revisited time and time again. The crew sets up a basecamp in the serenity of the subalpine bowls and live amongst a deep storm to be close and ready to jump on the stacked pillows only minutes from their camp.

Magma does Minnesota

Alex Hall, Hunter Hess, Willie Borm, Reece Rule and Owen Dahlberg pack up the wagons and head east for some good old-fashioned Minnesota skiing. Below-zero temperatures couldn’t keep this crew from heating up at Hyland Hills.

Michelle Parker brings industry legend Ingrid Backstrom onto the podcast

Ingrid Backstrom has been a professional skier for over 20 years, starring in her fair share of Matchstick Productions films, bagging first descents in China and ushering in the next generation of ripping female freeriders. Michelle and Ingrid sit down to chat freeride skiing, film skiing, starting a family while maintaining sponsorships and so much more.

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