Top to bottom runs hold a special place in many snowboarders’ hearts. The concept of them? An honest, unedited run hitting everything and anything along the way.
Sort of like slopestyle runs minus all of the other contest bullshit, top to bottom runs give riders the opportunity to show off their skills and individual take on features without the added pressure of having to perform for their sponsors or to win obscene amounts of moolah…
Here are 7 sick top to bottom runs:
Austin Smith at Bear Mountain
Austin Smith filmed this top-to-bottom as part of his board sponsor Nitro’s ‘One Run’ series from last year. It’s definitely not the heaviest run in this list trick-wise, but it could very well be one of the most flowing.
It also gives us a proper good look at the snowboard freestyle mecca that is Bear Mountain. Is there a snowboard park in the world that competes with Bear in terms of the amount of features to hit in one run?
Forest Bailey, Nial Romanek and Will Bateman at Windells, Mt Hood
The second top to bottom run in this list takes us to Mt. Hood in Oregon, where Forest Bailey, Nial Romanek and Will Bateman take a cruisy run from the top of the Palmer chairlift, through the Windells park and public park to finish up at the Magic Mile chairlift – a total distance of over 2 miles!
This one is sort of a group top to bottom run, with the filmer flirting between the three riders the whole way down. Again, it probably won’t blow you away, but it does give a nice look at the way these riders interpret the mountain in their own way – and makes us want to go and ride at Mt. Hood really bad.
Stale Sandbech at Trysil, Norway
Stale Sandbech puts down a ridiculously stylish top to bottom run through the Trysil park in Norway before breaking out into a full Harlem Shake at the bottom with his fellow RK1 crew riders. Look out for the dude hanging upside down in the background...
Eero Ettala at Northstar, Tahoe
Eero Ettala is one of the best all-round snowboarders of this generation and it’s little surprise that he has filmed some rather good top-to-bottom runs in his time. Growing up in the remote resort of Ruka, Finland, with fairly limited terrain to ride, it’s not difficult to see how this type of flowing park lap is now Eero’s bread and butter.
Eero’s Northstar run from 2010 is probably the one that stands out to us most, featuring a nice mix of rail, kicker and pipe tricks and reminding us that he can chuck backside rodeos off just about anything…
Torstein Horgmo at Park City, Utah
No top to bottom run list would be complete without mentioning X Games winning, triple corking, park slaying Norwegian bossman Torstein Horgmo. He’s widely recognised as one of the most consistent park riders in the world and therefore rather unsurprisingly, has also filmed some of the most memorable top to bottom runs in recent memory.
This one was featured in his 2009 part in Standard Films’ ‘Black Winter’ and it’s a stomper. Skip to 1:57 for the complete, unedited top to bottom run, complete with enormous cab 9 and front 10s.
Johan Olofsson on steep-ass face, Alaska
Here's one that wavers slightly from the very freestyle oriented picks that we've had so far. Johan Olofsson's part in Standard Films' TB5 is an all-out classic and we just couldn't not include his incredible 3000 foot in 30 second top to bottom run on that 50 degree slope in Alaska in this list. Skip to 3:03 to remind yourself how epic it is or just watch the full thing because, you know, the whole thing is rad.
Torstein Horgmo at Northstar, Tahoe
You didn’t really think we’d missed Torstein’s Northstar run did you? Mr. Horgmo filmed this iconic top to bottom run for Standard Films’ Aesthetica in 2008 (a year before his Park City one) and it’s safe to say that no other top to bottom run since has had quite the same impact. Some will argue that by today’s stupidly high slopestyle standards, this run is only decent at best, but there’s just something so authoritative about the way he stomps his tricks that you can’t not be impressed by it. Plus, we’d rather see stylish 5s and 7s than robotic doubles any day…
Honourable mention: Seb Toots in Montreal streetcountry
Here’s a slightly more unconventional one to finish things off. Although not technically a top to bottom run, as these shots have definitely been edited together to give that appearance, this edit of Seb Toots hitting the Montreal streetcountry is still pretty rad. Can you imagine if you could actually hit all of these features in one continuous run? And just a stones-throw away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Montreal? If someone could make a legit top to bottom run of that it would actually be the best thing ever...
Which of these runs is your favourite? Of course this is by no means an exhaustive list as there are thousands of excellent park runs out there on film but have we missed any other classics?As always, let us know in the comments section below!