Sledding down an empty road in Birmingham, AL




I like this guy. this guy is cool.

a bit of luck that he happened to have a runner-sled in Birmingham. I had to scrounge a beer box out of my local's dumpster. the 4-color printed coating worked dangerously well.


I could probably do that on my road, but for some reason, assholes keep plowing it.


Used to do this as a kid. A friend would be a spotter for cars. Realized recently that my mom didn't know that I did this, she assumed when we were going sledding it exclusively meant sleding on a hill that did not contain a road. It hadn't occurred to us to ask if it was ok.


I remember doing this in our local park. After a big snowfall, there was a 3 mile long hill that became virtually impassable until the spring thaw, so the Park Service bowed to the inevitable and closed the road until usually mid-March. The best method was a cooperative parent or older sib who would pick up up at the bottom of the hill and drive you back to the top.


Just for people out of the South wondering why this storm is so bad, our winters are normally pretty wet but it's mostly rain. It's not unusual for us (say, near Atlanta) to get a two or three inch snow storm. (I've actually heard reports that we get as much or more precipitation than the Pacific Northwest) But this storm was presaged by about two weeks of really dry, freezing cold weather. When we get snow, it never accumulates on road surfaces, the moisture on the blacktop coupled with a usual warm trend keeps it from happening.
This storm was the perfect trifecta of cold, dry and snow. It turned our roads into ski rinks. I didn't know if this was being talked about so I thought I'd put it out there in case anyone was curious.


As soon as I saw his Flexible Flyer sled I had no doubt that he would be soon be pushing 30mph, especially on that ice-covered street. That was awesome. "Here we go!!"


Just to add to that (fellow Atlantan); usually when we snowy/icy weather hits and sticks, it does so at night. This one hit during the middle of the day and caught a bunch of people unaware. Couple that with the fact that we only have a handful of salt trucks and snow plows for the entire metro region and you've got issues.


PEDANTIC NERD ALERT! Using "advanced" tools (google maps and timing the video from one point to another) it takes the sledder approx 10 seconds to cover 400 feet. (passes under traffic lights at 1:35s to crossing an easily distinguishable road sign/light at 1:45s) Around 27 miles/hour! The clue to making this possible comes when the sledder notes he's turning onto 54th street, giving me the cross-street to help locate his slide location. I'm amazed he got his speed that close (his 30 Mile/hour claim)


Right on! Math FTW!


Pics and horror stories all over my FB feed from friends down South. Here's a slideshow from Birmingham with some really scary and some really fun pictures:


"Dixie Luge".


inquiring minds want to know: was he SITTING, or lying stomach-down for this?


". . .and there's a tree."


Remember that carnival that came into town every year? Well, this year, they came through with a ride called The Mixer. The man said 'Keep your head--and arms--inside The Mixer at all times.' But Bill Jr, he was a daredevil! Just like his old man. He was leanin' out, said 'Hey everybody! Look at me! Look at me!' POW! He was decapitated! They found his head over by the snowcone concession!
–The Dead Milkmen, Stuart

Here's to the daredevils! beers




My grandma used to live in Birmingham, and I remember she lived in an apartment complex in what seemed like the steepest, hilliest part of town. It sure would be cool if he could make his way out there to do some sledding.
Of course, white-knuckling it when she'd stall out her VW type III on those hills was pretty exciting in itself...


There's a hardware store at 5 Points that sells those type of sleds. They keep a few in stock all the time. Of course they sit their for years but they sell out every time it snows.


My favorite line.


there's a hardware store in 5 Points? Forgive me for being skeptical, but it's been hiding from me for over a decade, including several years when I lived on Trinity. Maybe you mean the army surplus on the north end of downtown? Otherwise I'm stumped.

EDIT: Sorry. I'm sure you mean there's a 5 Points in Birmingham. I thought you were reacting to my avatar and sharing about our atlanta's 5 Points. I'm pretty dense sometimes.