“Who’s gonna carry me off this mountain?”
I suppose it’s only fitting I had a date with the Trikke Skki around the two-year anniversary of my initial discovery of Trikke’s amazing three-point carving vehicles.
Still, fear rattled my gut upon first glance at the towering rock that was the big mountain at Mountain High East, a resort a short drive from Long Beach, California, home of TrikkeWorld Magazine.
Is this skkiing or sky diving, wondered my anxious mind as I stood at the foot of the mammoth edifice along with the other roughly two dozen carvers ready for a day of Super Saturday Skkiing on February 5, 2011, the day before Super Bowl XLV.
Me super Skki? WTF? I’d only skied the old-fashioned, two-bladed way a couple of times, a couple of decades ago, so the idea of bombing down slippery, snow-covered slopes was virtually brand new to me.
Sure, I could Trikke. I love carving. I live to Trikke. But can I Trikke Skki? Will I love it? Who’s gonna carry me off this mountain?
I was on the mountain because of a super deal put together by Trikke, Trikke Academy and SouthBay Trikke: cheap lift tickets and free Trikke Skki rentals. Super Saturday’s Skki-fest was a must-see event for the publisher of the new chronicle of the carving revolution, true?
But can I get my Skki on? Will I love it? Who’s gonna carry me off this mountain?
I was promised a short learning curve via a relatively brief introduction that could have been called Trikke Skki 101. Fred Welch, director of the Trikke Academy, served as our instructor, breaking us into small classes while giving us thorough, easy-to-understand instructions.
Just like my Trikke, standing on the Skki was a breeze, which put me somewhat at ease. Next hurdle: mastering the ski lift, or make that, Skki lift. Did that. Then there was the rise to the top of the roller coaster, er, mountaintop. Thrilling. Terrifying. Awesome.
Once on higher ground, Skki Instructor Welch began schooling us in earnest. We took baby Skki steps, carving down the bunny slope in intermittent stages, each time practicing an important and vital technique. Talk about a confidence builder. Maybe I wasn’t gonna need anyone else to carry me off this mountain after all.
With the help of Welch and fellow instructor (and TrikkeWorld contributor) Andy Pliska of SouthBay Trikke, I was able to get grounded with getting my Skki on in very little time. After only a few mini-runs down the mini-slopes, I felt comfortable and confident. After my first longer run, the verdict was in. I knew I’d be digging the Skki.
Ironically, because I am a trikker, I had a unique challenge in the snow: mastering snow carving without street carving. Downhill on the Skki, you’ve got gravity on your side, meaning all that arm strength involved in trikking is unnecessary, well, unless perhaps you’re a super hero making super tracks on your super Skki’s.
I have more to learn about snow carving, but this much I know: on Super Saturday I began wondering: Will I be digging the Skki more than my beloved three-wheeler?
The Skki is a drug I could get hooked on. The rush: exhilarating. The thrill: unmatched. The fun: off the charts. The towering rock that was the big mountain: carved her. More than once. More than twice. She got me good one time, a hard fall on what ended up being my last run (but only because time ran out!). Got too eager on the downhill fly, bit the powdery dust near the bottom of the big rock. I’m not worried. We’ll dance again.
Snow carving near the two year anniversary of my initial discovery of Trikke’s amazing three-point carving vehicles made Super Saturday super special, but the best part of the day was meeting the man who made it all possible, Gildo Beleski, inventor of the three-point toys that bring me such joy.
Normally, I’m not a starry-eyed kind of guy, but for me, meeting Gildo, as he’s commonly known in the Trikke world, was like meeting one of the Beatles. After all, he is the man who invented Rock n Roll, Part 2.0.
If I could bottle up all the great energy created in my life thanks to Gildo Beleski’s dreams, I’d be one energetic supernova. And to think the family man from Brazil expressed his gratitude to me for taking his inventions and running with them in my own dreams–carver- Randy-style.
Gildo Beleski is humble. He’s easy to talk to. He’s also one of my heroes. Thanks, Gildo.