There once was a skiing magazine called Edgework. The staff of The Nightshift produced it and when we decided to do something digital on skiing, we brought the name back. It was not like any other skiing magazine because it covered territory that other magazines did not, with an attitude that other skiing magazines could not match. It was intense, it was funny, it was rebellious, and it was innovative. It was about edgework–the ability to ski the way you wanted to ski, with the attitude you wanted to bring to the sport–and about working the far reaches of the sport, from helicopter skiing to the downhill.
The presentation today is of the film “The Thin Line”. Credits: Rush.ND presented it, Jalbert Productions gets the producing credit, it was sourced from YouTube.
The text above the opening screen of “The Thin Line” notes that it is a “must see” for any ski racer. That is an understatement. The film–and it’s full length, over an hour long–is about the very edge of ski racing, the extreme space that is home to the downhill.
The downhill is the most dangerous event in skiing. You can get maimed, paralyzed, broken up, or killed if things go wrong on your run. It takes massive nerve to be a downhiller and the downhiller who hasn’t crashed doesn’t exist. It’s a part of the sport (ask Lindsey Vonn). The question is never will you crash, just when will you crash and what injuries–physical or mental–will be a part of your aftermath. The downhill is a dance with danger down a very slippery, treacherous slope. The sheer strength required to do the sport is amazing; the mental strenth is even more impressive. Perhaps that’s why we hold the top downhillers in such high regard.
There is nothing in the paragraph above that is hyperbole. It’s all true. For people who talk about making it real, downhill is the sport. Life gets very real when you leave the gate and quickly becomes surreal as you head down the course. In seconds, you can be flying along at 6o, 70, or 80 MPH, on skis, on a bumpy track that’s probably got some ice on it and at least one big jump that can define your day or ruin your career. It is the ultimate expression of skiing: go down the mountain as fast as possible and bring your A game because nothing else will do.
This is not to stay that the other alpine skiing disciplines are not so tough; they are. But they don’t have the subplot of possible death if you make a mistake or run out of luck. The Downhill can kill you.
“The Thin Line” is a great survey of the sport–it covers the people, the mountains, the highs and the lows of one of the most compelling sports ever created. It deserves 100% of your attention, especially if you have ever thought of making a downhill run (think again) or are raising a downhill racer (get the best coaches, conditioning, and gear available and stay on the right side of right). The script fits the film–it’s dramatic. But the subject matter requires it.
A must-see film in this years Winter Film Festival, “The Thin Line” is a shot of adrenalin. This one really deserves the flat screen treatment.
See you at the bottom (hopefully in one piece).
Reminder: The Winter Film Festival is now in process. New videos are put up daily at 12:15PM Central/18:15 GMT.
The Fine Print: Embed courtesy of our friends at You Tube, who have an amazingly large collection of great ski (and ice boating) videos available for your viewing pleasure. Thanks, guys, for sharing. This post is number 964 for this site. All rights belong to their respective rights holders. Story (c) 2017 donald pierce.