There are only a few places on the planet where you can shred waves and powder on the same day. Cantabria in the North of Spain is one of them; embedded between the Atlantic Ocean and the Pyrenees it takes less than one hour to switch from surfing to snowboarding! That's what the Völkl riders Simon Pircher and Chris 'CK' Kröll did last March when they participated in the Obsession A2 Fusssion Surf & Snow Contest.
It was a pretty cool but also exhausting trip as we visited a lot of different spots and were either surfing or snowboarding each day!
ALTO CAMPOO (1650-2200 meters)
Season: Beginning of December until beginning of April
Slope kilometers: 28
Snow park: Small, Medium & Big Kicker Line, various rails
Day ticket: €30
More information: www.altocampoo.net
The Obsession A2 Fusssion is a crossover event that combines a surf contest with a banked slalom. Taking place for the second time, the entire Spanish boardsport scene came to compete, amongst them snowboard legend Iker Fernandez, former international pro rider Cuca Aranda and local surf hero Axi Munain. Chris 'CK' Kröll and Simon Pircher didn't want to miss this unique event. "I love going snowboarding in Spain", explained CK. "The scene is really small but very passionate, and the Spanish Pyrenees can definitely keep up with the Alps." After Sara from the Spanish Völkl distribution picked them up from the airport in Bilbao, they drove straight to the sea. "Fortunately the waves weren't as big as two weeks before when beach houses were washed away", Simon said after their first surf session. However, the two Austrians didn't have a lot of time to get used to the water as the surf contest was scheduled for the next day.
"We aren't the best surfers but participating in the contest was a lot of fun and a welcome change after a long winter", said Chris who also enjoyed the one-of-a-kind atmosphere during the event in Somo, with its surfers, skaters, kids, old folks, tents, workshops, SUPs, bodyboards, music and tapas – Spain olé!
The next day Simon and CK stowed their surfboards and headed for the Pyrenees, or more precisely to Alto Campoo, one of the biggest resorts in Cantabria. Here, the riders competed in a perfectly shaped banked slalom, while enjoying spring-like temperatures, bluebird sky and fiesta vibes.
The end of the event signaled the beginning of a new trip for Simon and CK as they would stay in the Pyrenees for seven more days. Spain had experienced an extremely good winter with loads of dumps, and the riders wanted to take advantage of the still promising snow conditions. "In no time at all we found a nice spot in Candanchu and built a step up which was a lot of fun", Simon recalled. Their splitboard tour from Astun in Spain over the French Pyrenees and back was one of the highlights for both riders. "From here you could see how massive the mountains really are", remembered Chris.
In no time at all we found a nice spot in Candanchu and built a step up which was a lot of fun
After numerous good shots and a short stay in Bilbao, which included a visit to the famous Guggenheim museum and a bit of partying, the two riders returned to Austria after ten incredible days. "It was a pretty cool but also exhausting trip as we visited a lot of different spots and were either surfing or snowboarding each day!", remarked Simon. "Furthermore we had to try all these different regional delicacies. In total, we drove 1300 kilometers and ate 100.000 calories each – a pretty productive trip, right?"