Friday April 18, 2014

Last update09:23:58 AM PST

Kelly Marren: New Zealand Adventures

KellyMarrenNZPipe.JPGNew Zealand is the only country I know that would allow a racecar to jump a snowboard jump next to a snowboarder on an ordinary sunny Winter's day. This summer was, as expected, complete with its own adventures and surprises.

I traveled down to the South Island of New Zealand to compete in the FIS World Cup. The competition didn't go as well as I hoped, but on the bright side, I still provided some entertainment for all Kiwis' watching the event. I, hands down, won the best crash of the day on a backside 900 attempt which a friend accurately described as a "half a rodeo to face deck, a face bounce off the deck, to heel edge catch on the wall, and head smack in the flats." (Don't worry Miah, no more concussions. I surprisingly walked away from the crash injury free!).

Luckily, that was just the beginning of my trip, and I soon settled down to get some good training in before our northern hemisphere winter. The halfpipe at Cadrona was world class. Head of the Park Crew, John Melvin, designed, built, and drove his very own pipe cutter. The 22-foot pipe he cut was almost perfect and Cadrona was not afraid to supply die, salt, or anything we needed to better our training conditions. In true New Zealand fashion, John shut down the pipe one afternoon, cut it, and opened it especially for our Lake Tahoe Riders to night session it. (A couple of New Zealanders squeezed in too like Paula Mitchell, Jossi Wells, and Ben Stewart). What more could we ask for?? Bellow is a shot from the session.

One day, we came home and our New Zealand neighbors, The Walsh's, had adopted a COW. Her name was MooMoo, she played soccer with a giant tennis ball, and she stole all the attention from her older brother Jay who complained about his new little sister everyday on the hill while we rode together. Only in New Zealand would a parent spoil her baby cow more than her own kid. The trip was never without an amusing twist and turn. I am so fortunate to have returned from New Zealand with all sorts of new experiences as well as some new tricks!

Oh P.S. This is me at New Zealand's famous historic site…it's a rock!

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