JP Auclair, freestyle urban skier. Courtesy of

As the snow sports industry continues to struggle with how to make itself a more eco-friendly business and outdoor technical apparel companies struggle along the same course, some skiers and snowboarders are figuring out ways to make the most of their urban environment, save on the cost of lift tickets, and utilize the local bus rather than energy-consuming lifts in mountains to catch a ride to the top.

First, it’s a known fact that most ski resorts reside in hilly our mountainous towns. But there are even more towns and cities that have sloped parks and tree-lined landscapes with just enough tilt to ride. While on the one hand, hardcores often go off-piste and hike for the turns in the backcountry, there’s a growing movement of young entrepreneurial types with no money that are building their own local snowparks in a park or hilly backyard and incorporating homemade railslides and various obstacles, or simply riding their streets.

Take for example, freestyle skier JP Auclair from Nelson. BC. Instead of looking at hiking the peaks, he took a bus to the top of his town and forged first tracks down to city-center. Captured by the equally talented film team Sherpas Cinema (who also did an amazing eco film on skiers and snowboarders), they captured freestyler Auclair riding the streets of Trail, Uphill, and Rossland in Nelson.

Urban sports in general are a new movement for which brands from apparel and footwear to energy drinks and cars are tapping into “owning” via various new athlete sponsorships and sporting culture lifestyle campaigns. From parkour to urban wave gardens, to the growing scenes of synchronized b-boy and b-girl street dancing and flash mobs, to the resurgence of new-school of inner urban inline, urban skiing and snowboarding is just a part of a growing scene.

Check it out here:

JP Auclair Street Segment (from All.I.Can.) from Sherpas Cinema on Vimeo.