Welcome to another weekly update from SnowSkool HQ in Big White where the countdown is on as there’s only one more week of lessons until Level 2 exams begin! But let’s not get too ahead of ourselves and get back to what we’ve done this week, most of which you can glean from the photos below ...
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We finished off last weekend with Send it Sunday where eight of our park rats made it to Telus Park and showed us how it’s done. Luke became the first Skooler to claim the points for tackling all 3 XL jumps (25, 35 and 45 ft respectively). Well done dude! Joao took the title of Stack of the Week after a mistimed spin resulted in a mini face plant. Thankfully, he got up and dusted himself off unharmed. Most of the Skoolers met up in Sam’s that evening for a few drinks before putting heads down ready for the week ahead.
Monday morning greeted us with sunny skies and good snow conditions so Javier took his skiers for two warm-up laps before heading straight to mogul central – aka Dragon’s Tongue! Everyone killed it although a slightly hung-over Nick was heard saying, Shoot me now and put me out of my misery! After the moguls had been conquered, Wolf threw the most tweaked mute grab possible off a roller but sadly, a camera malfunction meant no footage was captured. Sorry dude! Both ski groups worked on their teaching skills while the boarders worked on their analysis and improvement skills by critiquing each other’s riding … in the nicest possible way! The sun set and we made our way to The Moose Lounge for a group dinner. Some of the boys fell in love with the shaved beef dip, reportedly a favourite with previous Skoolers. After dinner, a small posse headed to Raven to try out Luke’s new toy, a snowskate! Basically a skateboard with no trucks or wheels and designed to slide on snow, Robbie was first to jump on, closely followed by Jack P showing us his skateboarding répertoire. Things were ramped up (literally) when SnowSkool Scott made a ramp-to-bar for the guys to grind on. Skier David D, having never been on a board of any type, decided this was the time to try. Unfortunately, it wasn't his day and he landed in a heap in the snow.
The weather continued in the same trend and some of our groups headed to the more challenging terrain in Gem Lake. Dom’s boarders were giving a master class in carving and most of the resulting photos were just powder clouds – we promise your beloved SnowSkoolers are in there somewhere! Meanwhile David S was out to get some SnowSkool games points by beating SnowSkool Scott’s speed record of 95 kph and raising it to 104 kph. Good luck to anyone looking to beat that.
Wednesday morning saw the Snowboard groups working on their teaching with each given a scenario focused on helping a student looking to develop or learn a particular new skill. After lunch, everyone headed to Powder Gulch where an 8-metre slalom corridor had been set up to test the skills of skiers and boarders alike. After instructor Javier set up the track, Poppy, Alix, David D, Dan, Will W, Olly, Nick were the first lucky lot to try it out and everyone looked really comfortable and confident. Next up, our boarders gave it a go but with the icy conditions, everyone found it a little more challenging but still did really well.
With 2cm of new snow overnight, instructor Scott opted to take the skiers up the T-bar for a few blasts down Sun Run instead of hiding inside watching the video reviews. With the snow falling, everyone worked on getting as much angulation in their turns as possible. The rest of the groups fine-tuned their teaching in preparation for the looming L2 exam in the final week. Instead of the usual Thursday night movie, the snow sports school put on a Level 2 session to make sure everyone was aware of what they should expect before the exam.
Friday saw a return to sunshine and blue skies and so the day was spent shredding all over the mountain getting plenty of mileage up while working on the feedback they’d been given for the week. After reviews, everyone hung out at Sam’s for a quiet pint before heading home.
This weekend, 15 of our SnowSkoolers attended avalanche safety training; some shadowed lessons to hone their teaching skills and others took a much needed rest before heading out for the last week.
That's it from Biggy this week. Back same time next week with news of our final week of training.
SnowSkool Dave and SnowSkool Scott
Course Hosts - SnowSkool Big White 2015
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