Truck loads of snow turn Hilden backyard into preseason ski hill

Monique Chiasson
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Truck loads of snow turn Hilden backyard into preseason ski hill

HILDEN - Charles Stevens was tired of waiting for winter, so he brought it to his neighbourhood.
The 18-year-old free-style skier from Hilden held a snow day in his family's backyard on Edward Drive Saturday.
"The (ski) hills are not open yet," and he was tired of waiting, said Stevens as about 30 skiers and snowboarders took their turn flying down a ramp/hill. Some executed flawless jumps and spins, while others took a spill along the way.
Even with mishaps laughter ruled the day and safety was a priority with participants wearing a helmet.
It took Stevens most of last week to bring in an estimated four tons of snow from area rinks.
"It was so warm through the week ... we got a load of snow (last) Monday, five more on Wednesday and four more on Friday," said Stevens.
Participants had to climb 25 stairs to the top of the 16-foot high, four-foot wide ramp. The length of the ramp/hill was about 150 feet, almost the length of the yard.
In addition to the snow-packed yard, Stevens constructed two rails on the hill, two boxes for stunts and placed a lawn roller at the end of the ramp.
"I had this idea two years ago and had one on a smaller scale last year," said Stevens, who has been skiing since the age of five and spent August in New Zealand skiing. "It took four weeks to build. I love it."
As participants gathered, ages nine and up, a barbecue was also made available by Stevens' mom, Janice.
"Wow, this is awesome!" she said. "The kids have so much fun ... and you know where they're at."
Truro's Dirk Taylor was also impressed.
"I can't wait for winter," Taylor said regarding why he headed to the make-shift hill.
"I learned about this from Facebook and it's awesome. You can show your talent and (having it in a backyard) is unique for this area."
Kim Sutherland also heard about the event from Facebook and travelled from Windsor to attend.
"It's a little pre-season treading," she Sutherland.
"It's probably better than (Ski) Martock. It's in his backyard! I've been to them before, but not to this extent."
Stevens is interested in carrying on the backyard event on a more regular basis, until the "real" ski hills open.

Geographic location: New Zealand, Windsor

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Recent comments

  • Jason
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    Ciao Gail .. you obviously have not been to New Zealand.. Huge Mountains on that little island.. (ever see Lord Of the Rings?) and when it's summer in Canada, it's winter there vice versa. I highly do recommend a visit to New Zealand.. A very beautiful island.. even recommend it over Australia. :D Good job Charles!! Awesome idea!

  • Gerald
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    I am so impressed with these young people! I wish them well....and I hope they have a blast for as long as possible.
    Just goes to show ya! If you want something bad enough and you're not'll find a way to acheive it! And people like BJ above...probably seldom gets off his (that other word for donkey!!)it wouldn't let me use A_S!!

  • Wendy
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    To everyone who thinks this is a great idea...bear in mind that you didn't have to live next to it. This did not take place in a remote location but rather in the middle of a residential neighborhood. There are small children, elderly and working residents all around who I assure you did not appreciate being inundated with the loud music (which lasted over 8 hours and shook neighboring homes), huge crowds or bright flood lights in their once quiet area.

    I appreciate what Charles is trying to do and applaud his ingenuity, but he should have done it some place else. It is one thing to have a few friends over to enjoy something like this; it is another thing all together to post it on Facebook!

  • Bailey
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    Hahaha, you really have no idea what you're taking about, do you BJ?

    Thanks to Charlie, his family, and anyone else who made this jam possible. It was a fun set-up to jib.

  • Diana
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    This is AWESOME Charlie !
    Props goes to everyone to built it - you guys did wicked !
    And to the BJ guy .. atleast he's doing something with his talent .. and allowing other kids to do the same ... he's a dedicated athlete who just wants to better himself .. how can you even judge that ?

  • Country
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Lol,what do you say to that BJ from Truro?

  • Rob
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    BJ from Truro, NS writes: .
    It costs huge bucks to ship that amount of anything like that especially for something that'll be gone in days. I can't help but wonder who paid for this. If it was the parents they must be pretty well off... If it was the rinks it was a huge waste of money.

    I am sure it was the snow that builds up after the zamboni cleans the ice and what difference does it make if the parents drove back and forth to collect it. The kid could be out getting into trouble and you'd complain but he's being constructive with his time and you take weird little shots!

  • Nancy
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Hey Charles... Way to Go. You kids ROCK. Your Uncle Myron and Aunt Cricket are very proud of you all. I know you use your own money that you make after school to help with the gas bill trucking snow. It's worth every cent if you having fun and not getting into truouble. You train all year long for ski season so keep doing what your doing. It's AWESOME. Luv Ya

  • Gail
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Snow here? How about New Zealand! Sounds like fun, but rather odd.

  • 40
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    BJ knows less about skiing than I know about putting out double platinum selling records! Do something constructive with your life like Charles and his Family. 40!

  • Sam
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Oh to be young again. When I saw that picture and realized it was in Hilden my immediate reaction was to cring not chear lol

  • BJ
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I'll say it again... maybe a different way. It would be a huge expense for a parent to pay for this... I hope they ARE the one's paying for it.

    Is that better?

    So I take '...weird little shots.. and I have idea' what i'm talking about...', I know nothing of skiing, I'm doing nothing constructive with my life and I'm a naysayer who won't get off his 'A_S'.

    Really people, listen to yourselves.

  • ROSE
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39


  • Tracy
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I think it is great what Charles and his family did. Great clean family fun! And inviting others to share is awesome! Way to go! This is what the world needs more of - not naysayers like BJ.