Metro

Snow sport junkies find a way to ride without having to pay

Mount Pleasant resident Zach Andrews, 27, grinds down a rail made north of West Campus Apartments off of W. Campus Drive Saturday.  (Samantha Madar | Photo Editor)

Mount Pleasant resident Zach Andrews, 27, grinds down a rail made north of West Campus Apartments off of W. Campus Drive on Saturday. (Samantha Madar | Photo Editor)

After record cold and tons of snowfall, Andy Rovinski and Zach Andrews were sick of sitting inside.

The duo was inspired to build their own snow ramp out of a pile of snow next to Andrews’ apartment building.

“It’s one of those things,” Andrews said. “Why sit inside and complain about the weather you can’t change? Go outside and have fun in it.”

Three weeks ago, the pair found a pile of snow next to West Campus Village after the plows cleared the parking lots.

One pile in particular was the perfect location and size for snow boarding and skiing.

“We just started shaping it and building a couple (of) ramps,” Rovinski, a Southfield senior, said. “We already had a homemade rail and box, and we just started shredding on it.”

They and their friends have been riding the hill ever since the idea came to fruition.

“It’s kind of a very small taste of what you would get going to an actual hill,” Rovinski said. “Zach works during the day. We’ll exchange text messages and bring out the box and ride.”

Located right on the edge of the parking lot, the hill is far enough away from cars not to create a hazard, but close enough to allow late-night boarding and skiing after a long day working and in classes. 

“The spot where it’s at is perfect,” Rovinski said. “There’s just enough light so we can see it during the night.”

Andrews, a Mount Pleasant resident, said he was happy to have a place to board again without having to go to a resort.

“I work during the week, and I can’t get outside and do as much as I want,” he said. “You can go to the resorts on the weekends, but I like to be on the board as much as possible.”

The avid snowboarder and skiers said they would rather ride a small hill than shell out $60 for a lift ticket that they might not be able to use.

“I’m kind of an adrenaline junkie,” Andrews said. “I do pretty much every board sport out there. I love being outside and riding.”

Rovinski and Andrews have been riding their hill for three weeks and hope to keep adding to the height and length as more snow comes their way.

So far, Mother Nature is ready to provide more snow, too.

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