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What the heck, might as well ask here.(17 posts)

What the heck, might as well ask here.cioccman
Dec 12, 2001 12:00 PM
I don't participate or even know of any good skiing DG, so I'll ask here. I'm an inter/expert skier but have never skied knee deep powder. Any recommendations besides tips up and lean back? Just made reservations for Utah, be there in about 3 weeks. Yeeeehawwwwww!!!!

Today's pic from there. WOW!!!!
I have skied the deep stuff...RS
Dec 12, 2001 12:21 PM
I have skied since I was 4 and am now 30 something (I often forget). I am not an instructor (but my sister is and I slept at a Holiday Inn) so I will give a couple of pointers that work for me. First, I think it is a mistake to think "lean back". I always think "stay centered". I try to keep my weight in the center of the ski. Second, I want my tips to float but I don't concentrate on pulling them up. I just make sure that I am not driving them down. Third, I try not to change my technique too much but I try to turn light and I obviously don't set an edge or worry about carving the ski hard. Fourth, unweighting (as in all forms of skiing) is crucial. Fifth and perhaps most importantly, I try to float. I don't know if this makes much sense to you but it is what I do and I seem to make it down the hill. I went heli-skiing in Canada several years ago and had a blast. You are going to have a lot of fun. It is a good thing you are a cyclist cause you are gonna need all the breath you have. Oh ya, and when you pile and find yourself buried, dont panic...just laugh and try to figure out which way is up.

Have fun and let us know how it goes!
RS is right, stay balanced at all times. Resist the urge...RhodyRider
Dec 12, 2001 12:36 PM "sit in the back seat", it will kill your legs and you won't have good control. Think light/float, like RS told you, and groove on the champagne! Don't forget your snorkel! ;-))
RS is right, stay balanced at all times. Resist the urge...I AM
Dec 12, 2001 2:11 PM
One more thing that I learned.
When you go down( and you will ) and lose a ski it's not nearly
as far away as you would think and usually uphill from where
you ended up.
Thanks people!cioccman
Dec 12, 2001 1:30 PM
I've been skiing since I was 6, about 30 years. It's mostly been Mammoth and Tahoe though and I've never experienced the deep stuff. Now, I'm going to the fluff capitol of the world. Really lookin' forward to it. I think I'll check out a powder suit tonight. Most of my stuff is geared for a whole different world. Thanks again!
Skiing powderBrooks
Dec 12, 2001 3:01 PM
All good advice above. One other thing...get to the slopes early. Powder hounds here in Utah will be waiting to make first tracks after a new snowfall. It can get cut up pretty fast. Look me up in Park City if you get up this way. I mountain host at Park City Mountain Resort on Saturdays. Lots of great snow since Thanksgiving.

i was at Alta on 12/2Js Haiku Shop
Dec 13, 2001 6:23 AM
but didn't make it off the rope-pulls. :o) it's a lesson in humility to see 5-year old kids, 3 feet tall, blowing you away on the slope where wooden teddy bears mark the changes in elevation.

first time i'd ever been skiing, had a couple hours of lessons, did pretty well, the instructor left and i had lunch, went back out there with my wife and fell on my arse over and over and over and over and...

it was beautiful, cold, and snowing (nearly) the whole time. we took public transport (bus) from SLC to Alta with all the gear (rented), i kept thinking what a great ride up (& down!) it would have been on a road bike. roads were clear, too, 'cept for several feet of snow plowed to the roadsides, and all the salt/whatever. don't know if i'd have wanted to ride in those low temps, though.

have fun! and...bring your own beer, if you're so inclined. $4 for a draft microbrew at alta. lunch (2 burgers, fries, o-rings, water and a coke) was $23. nearly bad as disney! guy i spoke to in the locker room had his own beer in bottles with him, and had packed lunch for the trip.
Dec 13, 2001 6:29 AM
1) if you have time, check out the olympic park where they have the luge and ski jumps. very cool for a tour. i think they open at 8:00 or 8:30 on weekends, but can't remember.

2) there's a pearl izumi outlet store in the outlett mall at park city. worth the drive. this is what made my entire trip worth the trouble.

oh, and

3) if you're flying, and haven't had the pleasure since september, take some valium first. the flights that weren't canceled were half empty on huge planes, the ones that were canceled shuttled us to others that were jammed full and we were strewn across the plane in different rows (my wife and young son and mother in law were in the group). the MIL was singled out and searched at EVERY gate. on the last leg home, after having our flight canceled and us being hustled to another concourse in dallas, we had to go BACK THROUGH security twice, then all three of us (including the toddler) were searched at the gate, as well as the stroller, diaper bag, wife's purse, blah, blah, blah. then, they lost our luggage AND THE STROLLER CHECKED AT THE GATE on the trip home. luckily, luggage and stroller arrived at my front door one and two nights later, separately, each at around 11:20 PM.

enjoy your trip.
Glad to hear you enjoyed your stay..Brooks
Dec 13, 2001 8:54 AM
even if the flight situation was a bugger. There is an annual Snowbird Hillclimb (next to Alta). It's ten miles and starts in the flats before the mouth of the canyon. If you finish under an hour you are doing ok. The ride down is an absolute blast. The next day is the mtbike portion from the base of Snowbird to the top of the tram. A real puker. Best elapsed time for both rides is King of the Mountain.

1. Olympic Park is cool. Check locally if there are test events or trials going on to watch possible Olympians. A couple of my friends do skeleton (on your belly, head first, scary) on the national team.

2. Pearl Izumi outlet could be the death of my bank account. My wife keeps me on a short leash in there. Great for off-season buys and jerseys from different rides, companies, clubs, etc., though.
what's the elevation gain from SLC downtown to Alta? nmJs Haiku Shop
Dec 13, 2001 11:19 AM
I think about 4000 feet. nmBrooks
Dec 13, 2001 5:14 PM
keep centered and float 'emTig
Dec 13, 2001 7:31 AM
RS said exactly what I'd say about being centered over your skis and float them through each turn. I haven't been to Park City since the mid 80's, but loved it. We took the interconnect tour between 5 resorts which puts you in the back country. It dumped 24" the day before we arrived so there was still plenty of deep powder backcountry. That was the time of my life!

My favorite big mountain is still Jackson Hole. Grand Targee on the Idaho side was the best snow and least crowded place yet. Big Mountain MT, was a great, quiet place. I could live in White Fish, MT at the drop of a hat. Dang, I miss skiing!
keep centered and float 'emJon
Dec 13, 2001 9:30 AM
Ditto all the "stay centred" advice with lots of up-unweighting. Two other things to add:
narrow up your stance as much as possible and think as if you're on a mono-ski, i.e. both
feet want to act as one "platform"; if you don't own them, go rent fat, powder skis. They float
much better and will accelerate your learning curve like crazy. The deeper the powder
the steeper the pitch you need in order to get some speed happening. Happy snorkelling
you lucky dog!!!!
Make like a porpoise!js5280
Dec 13, 2001 9:41 AM
What I like to tell people about skiing deep powder is to pretend your skis are a pair of porpoises. As you gather speed, you weight the opposite ski in the direction you want to turn and angle your tips upwards to that both skis start floating to the top, like a porpoise breaking the surface of the water. If you can't get up on top of the snow, then you need to pick more speed, kind of like a water skier getting up to the surface by planing on the water. When you're up top, that's when you can initiate you next turn because now you don't have all this snow to push. Most people try to turn when they are way deep in the powder and it takes massive amounts of energy to fight all that snow. Once you're turned, let you self sink back into the powder, like a porpoise diving back under the surface. Now don't try to make large turns, your skis should only swing maybe +/- 25 degree off the fall line. You don't get sideways and slide like you would do in groomed, doesn't work in powder. What bleeds off speed is the up and down motion through the powder. The important things to remember is keep your speed up, that allows you to float up and initiate your turn. Then let the skis dive back in the snow and make a big divot in the soft powder, compacting the snow beneath your skis to bleed off the speed. Smile and Repeat! If you watch the pro's, you'll notice the porpoise action, you see the ski tips, then they're gone, then back again, over and over. Snowboarding in deep powder is very similar but 1000000000 times better because you have so much surface area to float. It's right up w/ there great sex in my opinion. Utah snow is the best! (lived there 3 years, 12 years in Colorado)

Powder to the people!

Any chance you're going to be there for Xmas? My parents live there so I'll be there for the holidays and Olympics.
Alta is incredible!MikeC
Dec 13, 2001 12:35 PM
Alta is so non-commercial it feels like you own your own mountain. Don't expect all the amenities of PC, but don't miss it.
A lot of people have a little trouble adjusting to the altitude (I think it's 12K), so stay hydrated and take some Tylenol along, just in case. Some people even need a sleeping pill at night to begin with.
Also, you may be surprised by how easy it is to get a bad sunburn. My wife was pretty badly fried, so use sunscreen on your face and lips.
And if you get the chance, check out the Stein Eriksen Lodge in PC.
Alta base elevation is 8,530 ft. Top 10,550 ft. (nm)bikedodger
Dec 13, 2001 12:43 PM
Salt Lake City at 4,200ft (nm)Brooks
Dec 13, 2001 5:18 PM