Scandinavian winters are tough and not necessarily ideal to keep skating all year round. Many guys turn to snowboarding as a welcome alternative during the colder days of the year, but for some, that in itself doesn’t quite seem to scratch the itch. Over the past few years, Ambition Snowskates has been popping up in our feed under the feet of some of our favorites like Karsten Kleppan, John Shanahan, and Jan Henrik Kongstein. Fueled especially by Janno’s enthusiasm to really get the most out of the boards with foam and plastic spikes for griptape and encouraged by the good times at Torshov Open’s winter event, we hit spots around Oslo for a mission and asked some fundamental questions to prepare you for your first snowskate session.
I would say the biggest difference between snowskate and skateboard is the inrun to a trick. On a skateboard, you can easily adjust angles, speed, and so on. With a snowskate, you have to prep the inrun since it’s super hard to turn and you would definitely want to go in a straight direction. Also, you have different snow conditions. One day, the snow can be super good and dry, and the other day, it can be slushy, which heavily affects the amount of speed you get.
There’s definitely more prepping involved. If you find a spot you want to hit, I would recommend to build the kicker or inrun the day before. That allows the snow to get firm and hard, which you would really want. I’ve seen people go straight through kickers that they just built. With that said, I would say it’s pretty sick to prepare the spot with your friends. That way, you appreciate it when you can finally hit the spots with the homies.
I would say the perfect conditions are dry snow and around -3 °C [about 27 °F]. That way, you’ll get good speed and it doesn’t hurt when you eat shit – and, of course, sunny weather.
The essential thing is, of course, a shovel, so you can build whatever you want and hit some spicy spots that you can’t hit on your skateboard – the sky is the limit. And, of course, your friends and family. I would also recommend bringing a little chocolate bar or something like that. It’s really tiring to walk up and down in the snow.
Check out Torshov Open's winter edition recap by Pekka below!