The best ten halfpipes in North America. Great pipes don’t just appear out of the blue. They’re meticulously planned out, sculpted, and maintained by experienced, professional shapers.
~ Note: don’t expect the pipe to be ready by the holidays; most don’t get going until late January. Check ahead with the resort to be sure. ~
1. Mammoth Mountain, California
“The pipes at Mammoth have always been a staple for progression,” says resort team rider Mason Aguirre. “Whether you go back to Trevor Andrew’s part in Amp or Danny Davis’ winning run at last year’s Grand Prix, it’s a place where people always seems to step up their game. It truly is pipe paradise here.”
If you pay attention to snowboarding at all, you’ve seen shots of Mammoth pipes-lots of them, in the videos and on magazine covers. And it’s not just because Mammoth gets lots of snow and 300 days of sunshine a year-those facts do help-but the best halfpipe riders in the world ride come to Mammoth for a reason. Lots of reasons, actually. Reason numero uno hits you as soon as you look uphill from the Main Lodge. The 22-foot deep, 550-foot-long, Zaugg-cut pipe is the site of all the major competitions. Last year it saw lots of action, two Grand Prix, one where Davis did “the best pipe run ever” and the other which landed Shaun White on the Olympic team. The Roxy Chicken Jam and the TransWorld Team Shoot Out also went down in this monster. There are two other pipes here, too. The eighteen-footer is 450-feet long and also sits front and center in Main Park. The mini pipe is over in Wonderland Park and built to help beginners and groms get stoked on riding tranny. Mammoth even builds a spring pipe way upslope when the warm-weather comes. This keeps your pipe dreams alive well into summer.
For the rest of the 2011 Top Ten Pipes, click the page numbers below.