Written by Robert Malone
Rail Jam has become an unforgettable night for many at Colorado College. This is an event that separates us from nearly all other colleges. It sounds bizarre that we spend money on shipping in truckloads of snow and building a few jumps and rails.
Not only did I get to witness this event my first year at CC, but I also got to compete in it. This was the most exciting skiing event I have ever participated in. Having the privilege of creating a ski park on campus is something special. This is something that I am already looking forward to next year.
I remember walking over to the Preserve hill in the late afternoon and seeing a single block of snow at the top of the hill. I was handed a shovel and you can predict what the next few hours had in store for me.
Eventually, the features were completed, the sun set, and it was time to go. I wonder what the Colorado Springs residents thought as I walked through a crosswalk with a pair of skies on my back. I was amazed at how quickly people showed up to Rail Jam. We, the riders, started warming up at 7:30, and by the time the event started at 8, the hill was packed. This in fact was a very competitive event. All of the riders were throwing tricks that many thought couldn’t be landed.
One of the crowd pleasers threw his first backflip on his first attempt on the jump. Dylan Ward, who finished in second for the male skiers, tested not only his ability on the jump but also the jump’s ability. Dylan landed the first ever cork seven at a Rail Jam competition. Matt Saraceno was again the champion of the competition. Saraceno may not have been attempting the crowd-pleasing acrobatics that many riders displayed, but his tricks were more technical and difficult than many of the other riders. He impressed the judges by landing nearly all of his tricks and stringing together some steezy runs.
Rail Jam proved to be a wild night at CC. From the beginning of the day to the end, it was an adventure. I personally have to say that Rail Jam was one of the best things I’ve experienced at CC. The crowd created an environment where the riders pushed themselves, and eventually found a winner. If you didn’t attend Rail Jam this year, make sure to check it out next year because who doesn’t want to see the best skiers and snowboarders at CC throw down.
Check out more photos of Rail Jam 2016 here