Halfpipe Art & Grand Prix

Ever wonder how the 22' Superpipe is made? With hard work and a groomers' dream. Debbie Caves knows first hand how many hours of snow-love it takes to build the 22' beast at Copper. Copper goes behind the scenes of what it truly takes to get the Superpipe up and rolling for the winter season and ready for U.S. Grand Prix event.

We have a lot to be thankful for this winter season – super rad snowflakes, new Union Creek high speed quad, the U.S. Speed Center, early Woodward at Copper’s Bouncer Terrain Park, and of course our 22’ Superpipe!!


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On November 26, we opened our 22’ Superpipe for all the air boosting pipe-turkeys to enjoy. Our super-sweet pipe was the FIRST to open in the Colorado for the 7th consecutive year. But it takes whole lot of snow-love to create one awesome Olympic-standard Superpipe.


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 -Debbie Caves Terrain Master of the Year of 2010


Debbie Caves can cut one sick pipe. For the past three years, this Louisianan has been the main person cutting Copper’s Superpipe. And she’s straight killing it too. In June, Colorado Ski Country USA (CSCUSA) named Caves “Terrain Master of the Year” at their second annual Double Diamond Awards Reception in Aspen, Colorado. Award nominees are judged on criteria based on professionalism, dedication, contribution, leadership, and attitude. Move over fellas, looks like the ladies are taking over. Caves became the first female to take the trophy since it became an award category. Male or female, Copper’s pipe cutter is the best in the biz.


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-Debbie Caves (left) and Sabrina Straszewski (right) showing off their Double Diamond Awards presented by Colorado Ski Country USA (photo: Jeremy Swanson)


The journey becoming an elite female snow cat operator in a male-dominant industry started with a dream and hard work. In 1995, Caves began her career as a groomer. Three years later this snowflake-sculptor was invited to push snow for the parks and pipes arena. Here's a fun timelaps of the creation of the 22' Superpipe. Watch 18 days of its creation in 1 minute. 


In less than ONE week, Copper is hosting one of the longest-standing and celebrated tour in action sports history, the 16th Annual U.S. Sprint Grand Prix. This year will be the fourth consecutive year the Grand Prix has been at Copper  and the second year that freeskiing has been included in the previously snowboard-only contest. Top freeskiers and snowboarders from around the globe will come to compete on Caves’ pipe during the kickoff to America’s largest competitive tour. The Grand Prix will be front row and center in Center Village from December 5 – 10. Stick around after for the Paul Mitchell Progression Session from 7:00pm-8:30pm on Saturday, December 10th

This week, Copper’s Grand Prix event recently got a boost from the International Ski Federation (FIS). Caves’s halfpipe was added to the FIS Freestyle World Cup calendar along with 100 F.I.S. points which will carry over to next season and count towards the Olympics at Sochi, Russia in 2014. You can catch all FIS Freestyle Skiing Halfpipe World Cup competition action LIVE on our website on Friday December 9th.

We are sooo grateful to have such talented staff here at Copper like Caves. It’s the people at the end of the day that makes Copper awesome-city. Without them, it would just be another hill in Summit County.   Check out our most recent pictures from U.S. Grand Prix practice.


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