London to California… without leaving Manchester: Downhill Dave reaches 5,000-mile skiing feat

By Josh Nicholls

An adrenaline junkie has skied the distance of London to California at Manchester’s Chill Factore… even though he has never been on a mountain in his life.

Dave Knowles, a 57-year-old taxi marshal, skied more than 40,000 runs on the indoor ski slope and has admitted his addiction to the sport.

Nicknamed ‘Downhill Dave’ after he once took a tumble over a snowboarder, Mr Knowles takes the phrase ‘regular’ onto new levels.

“Dave is a legend here,” said Chill Factore CEO Morwenna Angove.

“All the staff knows him by name and it just wouldn’t be the same without him here.”

The silver surfer, whose skiing obsession began following a lesson three and a half years ago, has spent a cumulative 106 and a half days on the slopes.

Mr Knowles, proud owner of three pairs of skis and one snowboard, dreams of gracing the piste at a mountain ski resort one day, but concedes the Chill Factore will always be special to him.

“I love the Chill Factore,” he said.

“I love the fact I can meet lots of people from all walks of life here.”

With 852 lift pass bookings and 46,008 descents down the slope to his name so far, the story of Downhill Dave will most certainly keep on running.

For more on this story and many others, follow Mancunian Matters on Twitter and Facebook.

Related Articles