After a two-year hiatus, ski and snowboard camps are on track for their biggest year yet
When Momentum Camps owner and manager John Smart got the green light to return to Horstman Glacier to host his annual ski and snowboard camps, he wasn’t sure what to expect.
After being in business for 29 years before the pandemic shut them down for two, Smart thought he might see a slight dip in enrollment as the camps begin to gain traction again.
However, that wasn’t the case, and 2022 is set to be Momentum’s best year yet, with 900 different campers expected over the five-week camp schedule.
“It’s been kind of a shock at the same time as it’s been great. The shock being realizing how involved what we’re doing here is,” Smart said, adding that after two years of hiatus, putting himself aware posed a challenge, not to mention the added pressure of accommodating the most campers that Momentum has seen in its 31 years.
“It takes us to a new level of operation where we have to be more on our game,” he said. “But the best part is seeing how thrilled everyone is.”
With elite coaches including Olympic medalists like slopestyle skiers Alex Hall (gold in 2022) and Joss Christensen (gold in 2014), among other equipment like trampolines and landing bags set up on the snow, and the ability to run camps through the summer, Momentum Camps offer athletes a unique chance to hone their skills like few other places in North America can.
“We train from the base all the way up to the national team and we have such a friendly and safe environment for learning,” Smart said.
“To have a snow landing bag, right next to a snow jump, they can learn their first double flips on the bag, then get them on the snow right away, super fast. It’s just a turnkey operation in that sense, they don’t wait another day or week or until next year. They knock him down. »
Initially aimed specifically at skiers, Momentum Camps opened their doors to snowboarders in 2019 and have since hosted many members of Canada’s National Snowboard Team.
Last week, Whistler national and local team member Juliette Pelchat attended one of Momentum’s camps for the first time and said she couldn’t have been more impressed with her experience.
“It’s a really sick setup. They know what is going on. They have features for everyone. And it’s open to anybody of any ability and I think it’s a pretty sick vibe up there,” she said.
“I’ve done a few glacier things in the past, although it’s quite a different vibe, which is really cool to see and I’m excited to be up there and just have another opportunity to training for me in my snowboard. I’m really lucky to ride in the summer, super lucky. But yeah, I’m just working to progress, have fun on my snowboard and improve.
With only a few weeks of this year’s camps still to come, Smart said the best-case scenario for the rest of the year is to just keep the momentum going.
“My biggest priority is keeping everyone safe and making sure everyone is happy. Best case scenario is just good weather, [but] Not too hot. We want this glacier to last longer and the kids to be completely thrilled until the end and leave with big smiles,” he said.
“And we’re looking forward to the winters staying cold and lots of snow on the glacier like we did. Hopefully that continues for several more years, because that’s rare. only a few places you can do it in North America and it’s becoming more and more valuable because there are fewer places you can do it.