SnowSkool (SS): So what’s the story Andy?
Andrew Jay (AJ): Well I did my SnowSkool course last season passed my Level 1 in Biggie then broke my collar bone but SnowSkool helped me out in getting to the Banff course where I passed my level 2 and level 1 park headed back home to England sorted my working visa then got a call from Big White Ski & Board offering me a job! And the rest they say is history!
SS: Nice. And how does Big White compare to England?
AJ: Ha…well it’s a lot more friendly and there’s more snow. Plus its in Canada!
SS: Nice, man! And how is the season going so far?
AJ: Yeah, very good thanks…I am stoked to be back out in Big White this season, there has been a lot of snow and I have been getting a lot of work so far, especially considering I am a Rookie!
SS: What’s a typical day for you?
AJ: I’m an early riser so I’ll check the day’s conditions over breakfast and, normally there’s been a lot of new snow – which is pretty common in Big White – I will head out for a few runs with the other instructors before line-up [line-up is when all the instructor meet to find out what lessons they will be teaching that day]and often meet some of the guys for a Tea and a donut at the café in the village centre mall. Normally something has been going on and there are often a few stories being bandied about…the banter’s good too! We then teach from 9.30am until 12noon, break for lunch and go again from 1pm until 3.30pm.
SS: So what are your favourite lessons?
AJ: Any lesson! I love teaching snowboarding, and I’d do it for free if I could [don’t tell Big White that] the terrain park though has to be my favourite place to go for a lesson.
SS: And does the day end when the lifts stop running?
AJ: Well Big White has the longest night-skiing area in North America which is open four nights per week and so we’ll often do a park session under floodlights or head to one of the bars for a game of pool and a relaxing drink.
SS: What’s the big difference between training in Big White and working in Big White?
AJ: During the training, a lot of the guys were partying quite a lot whereas when you work here you realise that you have a responsibility to the Ski & Board School and your clients to be on-form and fully prepared for the day’s lesson. You also need to take care of your body – late nights and alcohol are not good when you are riding the next day. Our top instructors here at Big White are athletes, they are doing extra fitness in the evenings and watch what they eat. I am learning a lot from the more senior instructors because I want to make this career last!
SS: Any last words
AJ: SnowSkool SUCKS!!!
AJ: Nah…it’s cool…do it, do a SnowSkool course its an awesome experience and you meet some awesome people, 301 Crew forever!!!!