It has been a HUGE week here in Banff for the Snowskool guys! Copious amounts of snow and great weather were on hand to aid the group through their level one instructor exams.
Monday kicked off the first day of examination riding for both skiers and boarders with a chilly morning around the negative 25 mark and 20cm of fresh snow. The conditions were definitely an
extra challenge for the group but they handled it well and showed the examiners their ability to adapt.
On day two of the exams the mercury got a little higher as the sun was out in full force. The snow quickened up and the group got to showcase their full potential of riding to the
examiners. The skiers were brought down some of the hardest mogul sets on the mountains and the boarders spent plenty of time practicing their switch riding, an important skill for the budding instructors.
Wednesday capped off the level one ski and snowboarder instructor exams with a resounding success! Day three of the exams revolved around the students ability to teach. Mock lessons
were set up and the group took turns taking the other students on a ‘lesson’. By 3:30pm everyone had their results and were well and truly ready to celebrate. Drinking games in the
Hostel Bar, The Storm Cellar, were followed by bar hopping downtown. Alex Woods was lucky enough to win an awesome snowboard from a give-away in the bar The Devil’s Gap! The night
ended for most of the guys in the Sasquatch nightclub.
Thursday proved a little slow starting for the majority of the group. A free-riding day with amazing conditions at Sunshine Village provided an extra bonus to anyone who managed to wake up!
Another free day on Friday with more new snow and the temps pushing the positive mark, a much larger group got up and went riding. With the new certification fresh in the mind and skills at an all time high, everyone was skiing and boarding like madmen and women! Backflips and backflip attempts were a definite theme of the day. Tom Howse put plenty of crazy tricks to his feet!
Hugh Mason, Lana Culley, Alex Johnson, Sammy Jefferies, Freya Ballard along with a bunch more swapped their skis for snowboards or vice versa for a great swap day! A gear giveaway in the Storm Cellar Karaoke night saw Sammy Wright winning running up and getting a bunch of gear from local shop ‘RudeBoys’ and Connor Thompson walking away with a brand new Ride snowboard! Around 30 of the group spent half of Saturday in the classroom learning all about avalanches and rescue techniques. The group earned an Avalanche Safety certification and much knowledge about avoiding avalanches and emergency procedures.
On Sunday, the Avalanche Safety course continued in the field out on the Side country of Sunshine Village. Learning how to use an avalanche pack, probe and beacon/transceiver was
the main aim of the day. The guys took turn burying beacons and using them as mock patients, locating them with the transceivers and safely finding and removing them.
Mason Schlosser, Nicolas Duvivier, Miyako Rogers, Harry King, Harrison Gatch, Will Hunt, Damian Makris, Somerset Maitland-Robinson, Keir Coupland and Milo Crewe departed Sunday
night on the BackCountry tour. These guys will spend the night in the wilderness and ski/board some of the best backcountry terrain available in the Rockies, a spot known as Bow Summit,
where their guide, Mark, has spent the past 40 years skiing!