Words: Joel Muzzey
This one-of-a-kind event began back in 2011 as a creative response to the predictable swingset-style limitations of standard competitive pipe riding. And over the years it has continuously evolved to become an incubator for experimental park and feature design. It has had a direct influence on parks that the public now enjoys as well as influencing competitions that are bringing in more creative features, and ultimately more creative riding. Peace Park is the brainchild of all-terrain soul man Danny Davis, who works in close partnership with Snow Park Technologies to turn his ideas and bar-napkin sketches into the dream setup it has become. For one week every spring, he brings together a crew of his own choosing to session that park and party in the mountains.
"Peace Park has been around for five years now, and every year it's the highlight of my season," Danny says. "No matter what I'm doing, all season I'm looking forward to Peace Park in the spring." For the past three years the event has been hosted by Grand Targhee in Wyoming. "I love doing it at Targhee," he says. "It's such a rad spot. We have so much freedom, and if it happens to dump a foot of fresh, like it did this year, we have the ability to just call a down day and go ride pow in real mountains, which is insane."
What began as a modified Superpipe in year one has evolved into a sprawling, snaking top-to-bottom park run. "It's to the point now," Danny explains, "where it's so much about flow and lining features up, I think of it like a skatepark. With Peace Park, it's like we get to build a new skatepark every year."
With change and evolution being the key elements of the event, the inevitable question becomes: What next? "There are so many ways we can move forward with it. Honestly, I'm not sure where to take it. Do we do a tour? Do we build these at four different resorts? What was cool about this year," Danny says, "was that there were a couple features that really lined up and made me think we can do this as a contest tour. It would be like its own discipline: a full top-to-bottom run where everyone takes their own line and does whatever they want."
What sets Peace Park apart from other pro-level events is the vibe: It is truly rider-run, and the flow of the sessions is dictated by what the riders want to do and when. "When we're all together, just hanging out for a week, all staying in the same lodge and hanging, you start to feel like a family," Danny says. "No matter what happens with Peace Park in the future, we want to hold on to that vibe."
Check out the full gallery above, watch the teaser below and stay tuned for more action dropping from Peace Park soon.