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Pass Suspension Advice?

post #1 of 89
Thread Starter 

I would greatly appreciate some advice from my fellow mountain enthusiasts who have had the misfortune of getting their pass suspended.  On Sunday 2/17 I was stopped for jumping in a “no jumping” zone.  Totally my fault, very aware of that fact now. .  The end result is that I received an email today, stating that my pass is now restricted for three weeks.  In all the years I’ve been riding in Colorado I’ve never had any incidents with ski patrol until this season, both incidents at Breckenridge.  The 1st encounter was in November when a “mountain safety” professional physically tried to remove my pass from me (for speeding), things got well passed uncomfortable and his supervisor had to reprimand him.  The 2nd incident on 2/17, I simply asked the Breck employee to explain why he needed to see my pass and he told me “hand it over or this is going to get worse for you buddy” I complied, and now I’m banned from riding all mountains for three weeks?  Any advice as to who I should contact or the best course of action to remedy this situation would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

post #2 of 89

Subscribed!

post #3 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdougyj View Post

I would greatly appreciate some advice from my fellow mountain enthusiasts who have had the misfortune of getting their pass suspended.  On Sunday 2/17 I was stopped for jumping in a “no jumping” zone.  Totally my fault, very aware of that fact now. .  The end result is that I received an email today, stating that my pass is now restricted for three weeks.  In all the years I’ve been riding in Colorado I’ve never had any incidents with ski patrol until this season, both incidents at Breckenridge.  The 1st encounter was in November when a “mountain safety” professional physically tried to remove my pass from me (for speeding), things got well passed uncomfortable and his supervisor had to reprimand him.  The 2nd incident on 2/17, I simply asked the Breck employee to explain why he needed to see my pass and he told me “hand it over or this is going to get worse for you buddy” I complied, and now I’m banned from riding all mountains for three weeks?  Any advice as to who I should contact or the best course of action to remedy this situation would be greatly appreciated.


Thanks!

Go talk to the pass office in person - there is probably a first time offenders safety class you can take?
post #4 of 89

agree, 

Your steps are to talk with the people who have the power to reinstate you, not a bunch of yahoos on the internet. 

If you put aside your pride, you may get back on the mountain, and is that what matters more that theoretical principles of who was right or wrong.

 

ski jail isn't as serious as real jail, they are in the fun business and want you to have fun, but safely.

 

Don't do this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjqyfTw6pM0
Do this instead:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEcvPhP4tqc


Edited by raytseng - 2/18/13 at 9:24pm
post #5 of 89
post #6 of 89

What's a no jumping zone?

Pulling a pass for speeding or jumping, especially for 3 weeks, seems ridiculous. Unless you're a repeat offender a warning seems appropriate, maybe a rest of day suspension the next time. Glad I don't ski there.

post #7 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgoat View Post

What's a no jumping zone?

Would love to know also.

post #8 of 89

Go talk to the folks as close to the top as possible.  You'll have to figure it out; it may be the head of the pass department, or the head of mountain operations, etc.  Act as contrite as possible, hold your temper, and don't castigate, blame, or trash the folks who pulled your pass.

 

But I will say this:  Is it mere coincidence that the two most egregious examples on Epic of over-zealous enforcement happen to both be at Breckinridge?

post #9 of 89

It seems that everyone should get at least one warning per day before getting pulled with the 2nd time in the same day being justification to clip the ticket for the day.  As for passes, season pass holders are sometimes held to a higher standard of behavior since they should be more familiar with the resort and its policies.  It still seems harsh though if this was just a little air off a rut or something like that.  If Op went big air (like with a long run at a whale) in a clearly marked slow beginner zone or crowded catwalk than I can see the patrol's side of this story.  Regardless, the worst cases I just described are things I was also guilty of not just as a pass holder but also as a resort instructor upon rare occasion in my teens... although when I worked there I didn't hit anything like that without a spotter warning others I was coming and warning me if it really wasn't clear to hit safely.  Still could have gotten in trouble if the director heard about some things we did there..

post #10 of 89

Our no jumping zones are usually on open runs where there is a lip/drop off on the hill that people can catch air on if they are going fast enough.  I assume they worry about people jumping and hitting people below the drop off or jumping and losing control and wiping out other full speed skiers/riders.  I've only ever seen them yell at people for violating this.  I'm curious if OP has had multiple warnings?  Also, sometimes patrol will keep an eye on idiots and watch them do their shenanigans multiple times then bust them.  They aren't generally out to catch the guy that does something once on a spur of the moment type deal.

post #11 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdougyj View Post
The 1st encounter was in November when a “mountain safety” professional physically tried to remove my pass from me (for speeding), things got well passed uncomfortable and his supervisor had to reprimand him. 

 

Since when do mountains have a speed limit? What a bunch of BS. 

post #12 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by core2 View Post
I'm curious if OP has had multiple warnings? 

 

He said this was his second infraction this season at Breck.

post #13 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toecutter View Post

 

He said this was his second infraction this season at Breck.


Yeah I meant if he had multiple warnings that day for jumping.  After reading it again it sounds like they can see if you've been busted any time that season.  Nice technology.

post #14 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by doublediamond223 View Post

 

Since when do mountains have a speed limit? What a bunch of BS. 

when people started dying or getting injured and suing the resorts.

 

Go buy your own mountain and you can do whatever you want.

post #15 of 89

Meh, I don't have any real good advice except to try and make nice with the people in charge, as others have said.

 

I will just voice my frustration with Breck.  In the past 2 years they have heavily enforced and expanded slow zones, no jump zones and such to such an extreme level that  significant portions of all groomed runs now have armies of men in bright yellow jackets who want to pull you over.  Moreover, there are no objective limits in place.  The whole system is based on subjective observations.

 

I've been skiing for 25+ years, I know my limits. I know how to scale my speed based on snow, light, traffic, level of fatigue and so on.  I don't drink and ski.  I don't ski with music, ear buds or anything else that would reduce my ability to see, hear and react to people and objects around me.  If conditions allow, I like to ski as fast as I can and hit rollers and catch air.  Skiing at Breck is frustrating as hell because I am always concerned about getting 'pulled over' and having to deal with my pass getting suspended.  Consequently, I ski slower and more cautiously than is required.  Thankfully, I have never received anything more than a cursory "slow it down" motion.

post #16 of 89

I find a case of beer and a bottle of Tequila BEFORE you get into trouble is a nice insurance policy.  Helps with the rope drops too.

 

A polite mea culpa is the best you can probably do now.

 

PS:  Just avoiding VR resorts too.

post #17 of 89

I find it weird that you would get your pass suspended for 3 weeks because of a little jump.  I think there's more to this story than the OP is letting on...possible a near collision or someone thought you almost hit them and complained.  It just seems unlikely to me...

post #18 of 89
I ski and teach at Breck. It is very crowded and the number of collisions has soared in the past few years. Several of my instructor friends have been seriously hurt by out of control skiers and riders. Something has to be done.
post #19 of 89

Sometimes I think your whole perspective changes when you start skiing with your little nieces and nephews (or have your own kids for that matter).

 

All of the sudden, I've become a defensive skier and I'm trying to teach my niece and nephew to be the same way. At 8 and 12, they are both strong blue skiers. Yes, they ski all the black diamond runs at Eldora and think they're experts, but we know otherwise. They love the steeps and glades, but they are always in control and I'm teaching them to be hypervigilent.

 

I ski behind my 12 year old niece to make sure no one plows her down. She does not go too slow or too fast--but she's always in control and can stop on a dime. (She is also a figure skater.) She's a little pixie so I'm even more cautious There seems to be people coming out of the woods from behind her or taking a jump without looking ahead all the time. No one seems to know the rule that the person above needs to avoid the person below or at the very least yell "On your left". When we were stopped on the side of the trail, a bunch of kids tried to stop above us. The boarder went skidding on his butt past us, but at least they weren't mad when I talked to them about stopping below your group instead of above of them so that they don't start a human domino chain. (I didn't get angry or anything. I just made a suggestion and they actually did appreciate it--it's just something they were never taught!)

 

For the OP, think again where you were when you took this little jump. I wasn't there so I don't know if a 3-week suspension for a 2nd offense is warranted or not. But just remember that there are some talented little skiers out there looking up to the big guys like you and besides wanting to be a good role model, you don't want to plow them down by accident either.

post #20 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by huhh View Post

I find it weird that you would get your pass suspended for 3 weeks because of a little jump.  I think there's more to this story than the OP is letting on...possible a near collision or someone thought you almost hit them and complained.  It just seems unlikely to me...

 

Totally agree.  There's a part of this story that's been left out or seriously downplayed.

 

IAC, I had also read somewhere that Breck has more skier visits than any other resort in the U.S., so it wouldn't surprise me if they were a little extra vigilant about behavior that could lead to collisions...just out of a necessity to reduce liability, if not exclusively the safety aspect of it alone.

post #21 of 89

Will second rx2ski's comment. No jump zones, like slow skiing zones, tend to be in areas where there are lots of beginners, lots of kids, topography that can create blind or obstructed visuals between someone above and someone below. Plenty of places on mountains to get your testosterone rush, these areas are not among them. OP could have done his air off the top of the Lake Chutes, if he's all that...

 

And given that this guy joined Epic to complain, perhaps worth holding off on the assumptions about resorts restricting our God Given Freedoms... wink.gif

post #22 of 89
Thread Starter 

Just to clarify, there were two offenses;  both of which occurred at Breckenridge.  The first encounter was ugly, I was in the process of leaving the mountain when one of the “mountain safety” officials grabbed onto me and told me to hand over my pass.  I resisted and asked that he explain why I should do so (asking what I did wrong.)  This earned me, according to the suspension email I received, a label of being “confrontational.”  The 2nd offense was totally my fault and I owned up to it. 

There is a lip off peak 9 that is a plethora of fun to hit and I did so at 3:00 when the crowds had died down.  However, I was flagged down and handed over my pass to a mountain safety official when I was caught for hitting the lip.

I’ve had to involuntarily bench my pass over the past few seasons due to a reconstructive knee surgery and then an ankle surgery.  This is the first year I’ve felt close to 100% since 2010 and I don’t want to miss out on what might be the apex of this season.  Thus the reason I’m seeking advice.  If my knee was still in a sad-bastardish condition and I didn't feel like this was unjust, wouldn't waste my time or your reading time.  My conversations with Breckenridge Ski Patrol regarding this matter haven’t resulted in any progress.


Edited by cdougyj - 2/19/13 at 11:46pm
post #23 of 89

Your season isn't over, just like getting a traffic ticket, you now have to pay to play now.   You'll have to pony up for day passes-or take it as an opportunity to try a different resort.  

post #24 of 89
Quote:

Originally Posted by rx2ski View Post

 

I talked to them about stopping below your group instead of above of them so that they don't start a human domino chain. (I didn't get angry or anything. I just made a suggestion and they actually did appreciate it--it's just something they were never taught!)

 

Tangent: Is stopping below another group proper etiquette? I've always thought that doing so would be rude, like pulling your car into traffic then hitting the brakes, or cutting in line in front of someone. 

post #25 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdougyj View Post

The first encounter was ugly, I was in the process of leaving the mountain when one of the “mountain safety” officials grabbed onto me and told me to hand over my pass.  I resisted and asked that he explain why I should do so (asking what I did wrong.)  This earned me, according to the suspension email I received, a label of being “confrontational.”  The 2nd offense was totally my fault and I owned up to it.

It sounds like the first encounter was totally your fault also, and you haven't owned up to it.  I doubt if you were just "leaving the mountain".  What else did you do?  I suspect  that you know, but aren't being honest about it.

 

It's only three weeks.  I'll second the advice to go buy a ticket somewhere else.  Try Loveland, you may swear off the big places forever (that's basically what I've done the past few years;  I don't know if I'll ever go back to Breckenridge again).

post #26 of 89

 

Quote:
 
Breck has more skier visits than any other resort in the U.S

 

 

Quote:

 
Plenty of places on mountains to get your testosterone rush, these areas are not among them.

And also there are plenty of areas that don't have the most skier visits in the US. A groomer at Breck is the last place I'd assume I could go at high speeds or jump.

post #27 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgoat View Post

What's a no jumping zone?

Pulling a pass for speeding or jumping, especially for 3 weeks, seems ridiculous. Unless you're a repeat offender a warning seems appropriate, maybe a rest of day suspension the next time. Glad I don't ski there.

Breck, like many large destination ski areas, has lots of blue groomers filled with kids and tourists who don't ski as well as they think they do. Because of this, I suspect those areas see more than their share of accidents. Bad for those involved, bad for the ski area. So the ski area starts to clamp down to reduce the accident rate and enforce some discipline on those who are legends in their own minds. The "slow" zones include speed limits, no jumping, no switch, etc. Regard these places as a good place to practice your pivot slips, your slow round short turns, your balance drills, whatever. If you can't do some of these things, there's a hint.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JaySuds View Post

 

I will just voice my frustration with Breck.  In the past 2 years they have heavily enforced and expanded slow zones, no jump zones and such to such an extreme level that  significant portions of all groomed runs now have armies of men in bright yellow jackets who want to pull you over.  Moreover, there are no objective limits in place.  The whole system is based on subjective observations.

 

I've been skiing for 25+ years, I know my limits. I know how to scale my speed based on snow, light, traffic, level of fatigue and so on.  I don't drink and ski.  I don't ski with music, ear buds or anything else that would reduce my ability to see, hear and react to people and objects around me.  If conditions allow, I like to ski as fast as I can and hit rollers and catch air.  Skiing at Breck is frustrating as hell because I am always concerned about getting 'pulled over' and having to deal with my pass getting suspended.  Consequently, I ski slower and more cautiously than is required.  Thankfully, I have never received anything more than a cursory "slow it down" motion.

Maybe Breck is overreacting. Maybe not. We don't really know. We do know that many people take groomers as an invitation to cruise well beyond their ability to stop or change direction, although they think they're fine because the snow is smooth and they can stay upright.

 

If all the groomers at Breck are overpopulated with both guests and enforcement, ski somewhere else. Colorado has lots of choices. When on those groomer runs at Breck, if you must ski them, exaggerate your level of control, just to show it off to those subjective enforcers. As suggested above, ski slow, round, highly edged and completely finished turns. Keep them within a corridor no more than 2 groomer widths wide (one groomer width is better), with no Z-shaped turns and minimal skidding. Show them some perfect pivot slips. Now your corridor is 1.5 ski lengths. Or less.

 

Any monkey can cruise,and the enforcers know it. Take their presence as an opportunity to demonstrate some real skill. Groomers are there not to provide some kind of speedway, but because most of the guests can't ski anything else.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

Will second rx2ski's comment. No jump zones, like slow skiing zones, tend to be in areas where there are lots of beginners, lots of kids, topography that can create blind or obstructed visuals between someone above and someone below. Plenty of places on mountains to get your testosterone rush, these areas are not among them. OP could have done his air off the top of the Lake Chutes, if he's all that...

 

And given that this guy joined Epic to complain, perhaps worth holding off on the assumptions about resorts restricting our God Given Freedoms... wink.gif

  icon14.gif  If there's too much restriction of your God Given Freedoms on the cruisers and you're so hot, then ski somewhere else.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrbd View Post

It sounds like the first encounter was totally your fault also, and you haven't owned up to it.  I doubt if you were just "leaving the mountain".  What else did you do?  I suspect  that you know, but aren't being honest about it.

 

It's only three weeks.  I'll second the advice to go buy a ticket somewhere else.  Try Loveland, you may swear off the big places forever (that's basically what I've done the past few years;  I don't know if I'll ever go back to Breckenridge again).

Yes, we suspect there is more here than is being admitted. Maybe Breck is overzealous, but we're not getting an objective view on these incidents.

 

And if you're actually good, you can get lots of air on a bump run.

 

Old quote: "It's not that you can't ski the bumps (or crud or trees or ...), it's that you can't ski and the bumps show it."

post #28 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdougyj View Post

 

There is a lip off peak 9 that is a plethora of fun to hit and I did so at 3:00 when the crowds had died down. 

 

 

3pm is a good time to jump off a lip in a no jump zone  - the fewer witnesses the better if you came anywhere near my kid.

post #29 of 89

No question resorts are tighter about this kind of stuff than they used to be.  I got a slow-down from patrol this year--first time in nearly 50 years of skiing.

post #30 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Christy319 View Post

And also there are plenty of areas that don't have the most skier visits in the US. 

All of them, in fact.

 

(Except Breck.)

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