Honest words from a snowboarder currently locked down in Victoria...

Words: Mark Catsburg

I woke up early and I knew it had snowed.

It was cold as all hell last night and the storm that had now passed was pretty brutal. I looked out the window, the sun was shining, birds chirping, a quintessential winters morning. I got super excited thinking about going snowboarding, but there was a bit of wind and I was pretty hungover.

Did I go snowboarding? No.

Why the heck not you ask?

Well, could I have gone if I wanted to? Fuck no. I live in Victoria

Victorian pow day…last season. | Image: Nitro Snowboards

The State of Victoria is 3 weeks into a second COVID lockdown. This time the rules have changed, masks are compulsory when out in the world, you need a permit to go to and from work, and if not, you have a 5 km radius from your house to shop and get in your 1 hour of daily, government sanctioned exercise.

I’ve read my share of post apocalyptic/dystopian future style novels and I’ve watched the shows they then made about those books, and all of this doesn’t really feel too far off. However, we won’t take the long, steep, toeside traverse down that giant rabbit hole and just talk about the matter at hand, which should be snowboarding, and my lack of it.

Falls Creek…last winter. No air-time for Victorians this spring. | Image: Nitro Snowboards

Can’t go. VIC resorts are shut. Borders are shut. New Zealand is shut. I write this as my Brother and Sister in Law post instagram stories of the day they just spent heliboarding in NZ. They absolutely scored it. Bluebird, deep, untouched powder, a once in a lifetime, snowboarding experience of a lifetime. And guess who was supposed to be there? You got it, yours fucking truly.

COVID has been hard on everyone. In so many different ways. It downright sucks. But without a doubt it has been harder on the Victorians, the VIC resorts, and Victorian snowgoers than other Australian states.

Theres always going to be a state to state battle, and in the age old tale of NSW vs VIC, well this year, you win.. big time, pile driver style K.O. Wiped the floor with us, no contest.

Even doing this right now would feel good. | Image: Nitro Snowboards

So feel free to languish in your victory, but spare a feeling for us, if you can, because apart from the few lucky punters who got some early season, man made snow turns on Bourke st, everyone else in VIC might not see snow until next winter. The days grow longer and the weather is getting warmer, and there’s a high chance the resorts simply won’t open by the time its gone. Spare a thought, if you will, for the businesses that have missed an entire season of income, their employees who have sacrificed so much for the promise of a winter spent loading chairlifts by day and getting loaded at night, and the die hard snow chasers who now, without a winter on snow this year, and overseas travel out of the question, may not see the snow until it rolls around a year from now.

So if you can, take some turns for Victoria, we will take the crust, the ice and all the slush we can handle, cause it sure beats sitting on the couch thinking about it.

Dreaming of soul turns. Christy Prior, soul turning in VIC last winter. | Image: Nitro Snowboards.

Live it up. If its a bit windy, if you’re a bit hungover, too bad. Go fucking snowboarding. For fuck sakes, spare us a thought, and go.


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