The concept of the end-of-season meltwater pond skimming competition is long-established and has spread to ski areas around the world.
But one French resort takes the ‘skiing/boarding down a snowy slope and then seeing how far you can get across a pool of water’ to another level.
La Clusaz in the Aravis mountains near Lake Annecy stage their Défi Foly contest, not on a pool of meltwater, but on the local Lake Confins with competitors seeing how far they can get across it before they sink.
The hope is that one day someone will get to the other side, but so far the record is 155 metres (that’s 509 feet), set by one Philippe Troubat back in 2010. He broke the old record of 145m that had been set five years earlier by a Freddy Quenet.
First launched 32 years ago in 1987, the spectacular event brings together 150 participants and several thousand spectator.
This year the contest has been extended over two days, today April 20th and tomorrow, Easter Sunday, 21st April, when the main event will once more be staged.
Along with the main competition, and the new monoski competition, other categories include the USO (Unidentified Slippery Objects) category which sees various crafts used to try to slide across the lake, but inevitably sink.
Tomorrow will see two qualification rounds for each participant of the main waterslide competition, starting at 8am, followed by the USO fun event and then the final of the watersliding, when the competitors will attempt to break the 155m record.
An award ceremony with a concert and DJ set will round off the day.