Hotshots’ Randy Wieman reckons they’ve already snapped their shot of the season. Randy was out skiing and shooting with protégé Mark Tsukasov who was armed with a Canon 40D, which rattles off 9 frames a second.
“We’ve had lots of snow but not a lot of sun this season, but that day we got it,” beamed Randy.
They were at the top of Hirafu when the Ace Four Pair (on the Higashiyama boundary) opened for the first time this season. “It had been pretty sunny and cold all day and most of the mountain was tracked out,” Randy tells us.
“A few people had hiked up underneath the chair already but there was a little gully that was untracked. I said to Mark, ‘If you go down below there I’ll traverse a little further and I’ll ski right at you. If you get down low you’ll miss the orange rope and just get blue sky.’”
“I started off and wasn’t going too fast but all of a sudden the pitch steepened a bit and the snow got extra deep. I sped up and the snow just hit me. I got a face shot and thought ‘You’re kidding!’ It was so deep and so light. I got about five turns in before I reached Mark and I thought, ‘If Mark’s got this it’s going to be unbelievable – and he nailed it.”
“Last year I got one photo like that – it’s a once in a season thing when everything comes together like that. If I don’t get any other shots like that this season, I’m happy.”