Pushing the limits
Matchstick Productions, the Crested Butte-based ski movie company, is on tour with “Ski Move III: The Front Line.” It will be shown at 8150 in Vail at 8:30 p.m. today. All proceeds will go to First Descents, a local kayaking camp started by Brad Ludden for youths fighting cancer.
“The Front Line” is another step for Matchstick, which has built a reputation on taking some of the most proficient athletes and letting them loose on daunting terrain. This time crews went to Alaska, British Columbia and Norway.
The movie features Seth Morrison, Shane McConkey, Wendy Fisher, Tanner Hall and more. Steve Reska is the tour director, and has been traveling with the film to various parts of Canada and the United States. He says audience reaction has been positive.
“They’re loving it,” he said. “Pretty loud and energetic. This movie stacks up to our past ones. It’s pretty similar in the sense that it’s a year in the life of some of the best athletes in the world. But the places they’re finding to go are incredible.”
According to Reska, the northern part of British Columbia has become a favorite spot for them because of its inaccessibility, which translates to privacy.
“Alaska isn’t tapped out or anything, but anyone can go heli-skiing there,” he said. “Every year they’re outdoing themselves, both in their ability to perform and their passion to seek out places that are still untouched.”
He promises never-before-seen footage of both British Columbia and Norway.
“Everyone is into the jibbing scene and the parks,” said Reska. “But you’ll see more cliff jibbing in the movie, and out in the backcountry with snowmobiles. We think that’s where the sport is going. Parks are good for practice, but if you’re hucking off a cliff and still doing the same cliffs, that’s better.”
At this point Reska has seen the flick about 40 times. He says he still has to drop everything and watch Seth Morrison every time his segment is on. “He really stands out as a premier athlete,” he said. “There’s no one skiing the terrain or doing the tricks on the kinds of features that he is. People try to copy what he’s doing.”
In addition to showing the movie, tonight ought to be a schwag fest, too. K2, Solomon and Nordica gear will be given away. All proceeds go to First Descents. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. For more information call 8150 at 479-0607.
Wren Wertin can be reached via e-mail at email@example.com or phone at 949-0555 ext. 618.