Black Run Friday

Craig Profile

Take a break from the 'Black Friday' sales, make a cup of tea and enjoy 'Black Run Friday' instead, where our team reveal their favourite and most memorable steep and deep adventures.

The Cliff - Big White, Canada

Jade Pritchard - The Cliff in Big White was the first double black I ever snowboarded, and the scariest moment ever - I was only 10! I had just finished a week long kids camp during the Easter holidays, progressing from feeling nervous boarding on blues to comfortable on blacks, and my instructor decided I was ready for cliffs! It was terrifying dropping in for the first time, and I think I only turned three times on the way down.

Delirium Dive - Sunshine Village, Canada

Rupert Hatfield - Not for the faint-hearted! Hard to get in, but once you're in you have access to some epic skiing. Delirium Dive in Sunshine regularly makes 'world's scariest runs' lists but if you like to push your skiing to the limits this is the area for you.

Rupert Hiking Galaxy Ridge to Delirium Dive
Rupert Hiking Galaxy Ridge to Delirium Dive

Björnfjellsbranten - Riksgränsen, Sweden

Andy Hemingway - You start skiing Björnfjellsbranten in Sweden and end up across the border in neighbouring Norway, returning to Riksgränsen by train. This is the world's most northerly ski resort and this run makes you feel like you're truly out in the wilderness with spectacular scenery all around and no ski lifts blotting the landscape.

Couloir Extreme - Whistler Blackcomb, Canada

Kat Bouch - I worked on Blackcomb Mountain during my season in Whistler, and I skied Couloir Extreme at least once a week on my break! It's pretty exciting getting in at the top (turn, stop, turn, stop etc.) but once you're in the pipe you access glorious, fluffy, untouched powder opening out onto a lovely, steep powder field with a smooth run out.

King #4 Lift - Niseko, Japan

Andrea Selig - The famous and much-photographed single-seater King #4 Lift in Niseko brings you to the peak of Mt Annupuri and an open bowl of ungroomed, powdery goodness. What not to do - face plant and get buried right under the chair to applause and whistles of about 20 hard-core backcountry skiers and boarders.

Dre - King Lift Niseko
The single-seater King #4 Lift in Niseko
Dre - King Lift Niseko Down
Andrea shows us how not to ski back down

The Black Forest - Solitude, USA

James Rivers - The Black Forest in Honeycomb Canyon, Solitude, is a north-facing powder bowl with perfect ski pitch and well-spaced trees. A proper local secret spot where you can do laps all day in fresh pow! On a big snow day your tracks will even fill in between laps... those were the days!

Rolex - Steamboat, USA

Victoria Davies - My first ever black run was Rolex in Steamboat with colleague Jade and Steamboat's International Sales Manager, Jenny. It was tackled in complete error whilst shadowing the superiorly skilled aforementioned boarders. Fortunately, it was rather forgiving as it was covered in deep powder, but I still remember one or two graceful falls whilst making the descent.

Dutch Wallet - Kicking Horse, Canada

Andy Knights - Dutch Wallet in Kicking Horse is hands down my favourite. Roping down a cliff face, strapping into our boards and shredding this thin sliver of rock in deep powder on a 40% pitch was incredible.

AK - Dutch Wallet Down
Looking down Dutch Wallet in Kicking Horse
AK - Dutch Wallet Up
The view from the end of the run

Rendezvous Bowl - Jackson Hole, USA

Vicky Bamford - Riding the Rendezvous Bowl in Jackson Hole in January '14 in a blizzard has been the most memorable black run so far - I couldn’t see my hand in front of my face but I knew it was deep and steep. I ignored the fear and stopped falling over and after the first few turns it was the most amazing feeling floating down waist-deep in powder.

Silver Fox - Snowbird, USA

Claire Jones & Kirstin Thatcher - We remember it well! We were out in Snowbird with a guide and we had the option of taking the easy trail round to the bottom on Rothman Way or the shortcut down a little mogul field, called Silver Fox. It turned out to be one of the best skiing moments in our lives and we were really happy we pushed ourselves.

Dave Murray Downhill - Whistler Blackcomb, Canada

Craig Charley - I took on my first black run, the Dave Murray Downhill, in the middle of a snowstorm - which probably helped as I could only see a few metres ahead. Arguably easier than some of Whistler's blues, it's a gentle introduction to groomed black terrain with a few surprisingly steep sections - staying on my feet for the whole run provided a great confidence boost!

Experience it yourself

If you'd like to experience any of these runs for yourself, call us on 01273 224060 or request a quotation online for advice from our ski specialists.

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