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Why do people like powder? - Page 6

post #151 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smushie View Post

Funny, love of "powder" made me think of a different video.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rS3sEvRffbI

 

"White lines........blow away."

 

Wow, I know every word to that song, but I had never seen the video ... 

post #152 of 174

Since a lot of posters here are hard-core skiers who often fall back to the bare essence and let's call it salt-of-the-earth element of skiing, anything that lends itself to comfort or luxury is frowned upon - this is a by-and-large observation of how people post here, or could be a simple self-selection bias (there are notable exceptions), and I for one am firmly in the low-cost, low-rent hoping camp!

(Personal whoa: I like to ski powder and being from the NE, grab every chance I can to learn, heck, still learning on groomed. Part of the reason is once one "floats", the anti-gravity feeling is quite like a drug one is trying to find again. )

 

So with that caveat upfront, here is what this intermediate skier has noticed with respect to the OP's original question and this is about Europe and Europeans of Swiss, German and Austrian origins that I have seen:

 

1. In Europe, generalizing again, I noticed first most/average local or those from the 3 countries I mentioned, skiers are better skiers than the average (note average) skier on North American slopes. 

2. Surprisingly to me, most of the civilians, i.e. ordinary visitors to resorts like skiing on-piste, i.e. groomed runs, most are not hungry for moguls as many people here and on other forums always rant and rave about. In particular, I have noticed excellent graceful and powerful skiers in Europe rarely want to ski powder, they like "on-piste". Something to be said for that since these folks are experts, not novices, nor intermediates, but good solid skiers. 

3. Well, moguls out west which have softer crowns etc can be fine, but moguls like rock and sheets of ice are never fun other than for the ones with that very special taste for them and they are a serious minority of skiers. Though if one reads any ski blog, or forum, one would think all skiers love moguls. In fact, every great skier north of 40 I know has zero interest in moguls, their only advice is that one needs to ski them in control since that is what skiing down steep un-groomed/off-piste terrain is, but the snow better be soft, otherwise there is no satisfaction save for the knowledge that one can handle such difficult terrain safely, which is important, absolutely, mountains do not cooperate always and knowing how to manage terrain one is faced with is key to enjoying the passion that is skiing.

 

So in summary, I do not know why, but in general, most people who ski prefer groomed runs, and I guess that is why mountain management grooms many runs! Logical no?

 

Anyway, no argument from me, I want to be able to ski powder and experience 'outer-space gravitational fields' on Earth, reasonable moguls or survive them, and improve but I daresay, most skiers, good or bad in the end prefer groomed on-piste runs, why? I can guess but that is what that would be, a guess.

post #153 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by dustyfog View Post
So in summary, I do not know why, but in general, most people who ski prefer groomed runs, and I guess that is why mountain management grooms many runs! Logical no?

 

Most people who ski prefer groomed runs because they lack the skill set to ski anything else.

post #154 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by dustyfog View Post

 

So in summary, I do not know why, but in general, most people who ski prefer groomed runs, and I guess that is why mountain management grooms many runs! Logical no?

 

 

Most of us learned first on groomed surface. It's consistant, allows snowplow and stem christie etc. So if I were never bother to move beyond that, that's what I know how to ski.

 

 

Quote:
Though if one reads any ski blog, or forum, one would think all skiers love moguls.

Moguls are test of techniques. Many of us know intuitively "whatever flaws in my skiing, it shows up glaringly in moguls!" It makes for a good challeng for some of us.

 

But not everyone is on a quest to "ski better". Plenty of people are happy to "be in the mountains". (they pay for the grooming!). Ski blogs are a self-selected minority.

post #155 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by dustyfog View Post

2. Surprisingly to me, most of the civilians, i.e. ordinary visitors to resorts like skiing on-piste, i.e. groomed runs, most are not hungry for moguls as many people here and on other forums always rant and rave about. In particular, I have noticed excellent graceful and powerful skiers in Europe rarely want to ski powder, they like "on-piste". Something to be said for that since these folks are experts, not novices, nor intermediates, but good solid skiers. 

 

 

 

I have never skied in Europe but I believe a large part of this is do to the way "off piste" is treated in Europe. As I understand it as soon as you leave the groomed piste you'r basically considered back country and responsible for all rescue medical costs. On piste I believe you are provided some protection. There are also more serious dangers like crevasses at some of the resorts. In other words, for better or worse there is a lot more personal responsibility taken on in Europe by skiing off piste. I attribute this to deterring a lot of people from skiing off piste there.

post #156 of 174
At the risk of a thread highjack, I'd love to hear what the Europeans have to say to this. Do you stay on groomers in Europe, but seek out our ungroomed when you come here? Is all inbounds terrain groomed daily over there?
post #157 of 174

I think talking about "Europe" is too vague, since in some countries / regions going off piste is actually illegal.  That will certainly defer a large portion of the masses.

post #158 of 174

Here's what I think ,, I am a very average weekend skier trying to relax and have fun , 50 Years old  x Boxer that thought the mountain couldn't hurt me , Till I fell off an Icy edge , I now have fear of the mountain ,

   Powder looks really cool in the ski films , It makes it appear to be so fun and epic , I of course have had to try it , I don't really know how to do it , And have preferred groomed , Even bought Atomic Blackeye Ti   , They are a hardpack ski and are quite fun ,,,,,The atomics suck in powder , so I Ebayed some Rossi B4   s    , They are better in powder , At crystal mountain if the powder is not wet , It feels pretty floaty and seems like it could be much fun if I could do it better , so I took lessons , Which made it better , My answer about powder is ......   It would be fun if I master it better , but then again I have fun everywhere I ski , I enjoy the blue groomed runs , The small Moguls I can handle and the Black diamond Hills I can handle for short bursts until I skid out and start over , I like the trails , There's not much I don't like about skiing , I have had to increase my ability because My son now beats me , I took lesson on the jumps , Moguls ,Powder and just plain how to turn better , The more I learn the more I relax and enjoy everything.. If you act like a know it all no one will help you ,,, If you just act like yourself and try to improve , People will  help you for free in [limited]  time frames , I have passed info I learned in a lesson to others also ,So the other half  of all the fun is to be a good human and laugh ski and help others ,

post #159 of 174

The observation later about 'off-piste' in Europe seem to have some validity from my limited experience. For instance, Zermatt-Cervinia in terms of the perimeter of the inbounds area and length of single runs is huge, but the immense bowls flanked by these runs, well most of those which would be 'in-bounds' in North America are 'off-piste' and not controlled for there. So a huge amount of terrain is 'ski-at-your-own' risk, and given the difference in terrain type, i.e. glacial, and snow cover over huge rocks not enough to protect the skier, one is forewarned that crevasses, rocks and cliffs show up out of nowhere if going off-piste. This might lead to a certain element of risk-aversion since crevasse-falls are rarely heard about in North American resorts, and the bowls stateside are usually the skiers paradise. I mean Blackcomb glacier is probably unmatched worldwide in terms of the hug expanse open to the skier to drop in and let it rip, and it is always open. Am no mountaineer, but will add an affirmative to the observations above, it is possible, this lack of patrol control and riskiness may add to skier aversion to venture off-piste. On the other hand, one should note, most people skiing those mountains are really good skiers, but often it appears they come for long, fast cruising runs, the sunshine, the one-plus-hour-lunches, with wine, beer and if Russian, vodka, etc. A different and fine way to live for sure. 

post #160 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

At the risk of a thread highjack, I'd love to hear what the Europeans have to say to this. Do you stay on groomers in Europe, but seek out our ungroomed when you come here? Is all inbounds terrain groomed daily over there?

Not European but I've skied over there a couple of times.  While most people prefer the pistes, easily accessed, easier off piste terrain like the Vallee Blanche, most of the off piste at Grand Montets, Col d'Arp and Col de Youla in Courmayeur, for example gets enough people to get completely moguled if it hasn't snowed in a while.  Most marked pistes are groomed daily, but there are marked pistes--marked by wands and signs--that are not groomed at all.  By being marked they are identified as being controlled for avalanches, free of crevasses (there are marked pistes on glaciers), not going over a cliff, etc.  And the wands let you find your way down in low visibility conditions. We were skiing a piste at Grands Montets in March that had big, icy moguls, while the slopes on either side of the piste--immediately adjacent  and just as safe-- had smaller, less icy moguls--obviously a little less skied even though easier. I've heard it said that Europeans are less likely to ski off piste then Americans, no doubt because of the lack of avalanche control, crevasses, etc as mentioned, but there are still plenty of folks who do. And I can't say that as a group the French and Italians I saw were any better or worse skiers than Americans. 

post #161 of 174

In addition to the natural hazards and lack of avi control mentioned above, I think there are two other reasons why you see fewer people on ungroomed terrain in Europe.

 

First, there's the influence of World Cup racing. It's just so much bigger in Europe than it is in North America, which is why you'll see more groomed blacks and more good skiers carving around on their race skis.

 

Second, many people in Europe seem to favor gradual progression rather than jumping into the deep end. One of the first things I noticed when I started skiing the Alps was that there was so much less survival skiing being done compared to North America. It's quite rare for me to see people who are in way over their heads in difficult terrain, whereas I see it all the time in North America (gotta love watching lower intermediates throw themselves down double-blacks).

 

That said, there are quite a few skiers in Europe who take advantage of the off-piste terrain, and more and more resorts are offering controlled but ungroomed runs.

post #162 of 174

This page is really lame. After finding out about Segbrown's name in Nepalese, I realized I was reading the single coolest thread wander in the history of Epic. Now you guys had to bring it back to OP troll land. Urge the moderators limit any posts after the yak dung (and can attest that they do it that way in Tibet, too, although not always side of house) to issues surrounding livestock in deep powder. Or at least livestock's preference for (side)cut and edge sharpness while carving...

post #163 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by at_nyc View Post

 

Moguls are test of techniques. 

I ski moguls when there's nothing left to ski and/or the sun is shining on a bright spring afternoon. On a powder day I go from powder runs, to powdered mogul runs, to the trees and then back to the bumps when everything gets skied out.  If you know how to ski then you can ski any kind of variable terrain whether you actually ski the bumps or (especially at the end of the day) just give up trying to turn and soak up what's in your path. Either is possible with good body position and solid absorption technique. 

post #164 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

This page is really lame. After finding out about Segbrown's name in Nepalese, I realized I was reading the single coolest thread wander in the history of Epic. Now you guys had to bring it back to OP troll land. Urge the moderators limit any posts after the yak dung (and can attest that they do it that way in Tibet, too, although not always side of house) to issues surrounding livestock in deep powder. Or at least livestock's preference for (side)cut and edge sharpness while carving...

I'm thinking that "Urge the moderators limit any posts after the yak dung" is going to have to be my new sig.
post #165 of 174
delete
post #166 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post

 

...Still waiting to hear what kind of beer needs to get used to get a car unstuck.  smile.gif

Actually, it might have been .... Moose Drool!

post #167 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post

 

 

Still waiting to hear what kind of beer needs to get used to get a car unstuck.  smile.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by segbrown View Post

Actually, it might have been .... Moose Drool!

 

I think the reason Kevin didn't reply yet is because he fainted.  See what you did!!!

post #168 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

This page is really lame. After finding out about Segbrown's name in Nepalese, I realized I was reading the single coolest thread wander in the history of Epic. Now you guys had to bring it back to OP troll land.

 

While this thread was drifting off to the coolest of places, it dumped for three weeks in Colorado and the OP learned to love powder!  All is well in the world. 

 

I love this quote about powder from the OP's post in another thread:

 

Now I understand powder. Well, the Colorado fluffy powder. The feeling of having feet after feet of marshmallow powder underfoot is awesome. When you turn it feels like marshmallows. I can't really think of any other way of describing it. Totally not afraid of going fast since it's so forgiving.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/119747/just-got-to-colorado-skiing-here-for-the-fist-time-at-the-vail-mountains-advice-needed/180#post_1582167

 

 

post #169 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by tball View Post

 

While this thread was drifting off to the coolest of places, it dumped for three weeks in Colorado and the OP learned to love powder!  All is well in the world. 

 

I love this quote about powder from the OP's post in another thread:

 

Now I understand powder. Well, the Colorado fluffy powder. The feeling of having feet after feet of marshmallow powder underfoot is awesome. When you turn it feels like marshmallows. I can't really think of any other way of describing it. Totally not afraid of going fast since it's so forgiving.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/119747/just-got-to-colorado-skiing-here-for-the-fist-time-at-the-vail-mountains-advice-needed/180#post_1582167

 

 

 

It really is a magical thing the first time you loosen up, stop trying to fight the snow, and just start to glide...  I'm very happy the the OP got the experience, even if he ends up deciding that he really prefers harder snow...

post #170 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

 

I think the reason Kevin didn't reply yet is because he fainted.  See what you did!!!

 

No, Kevin's been busy riding his bike, working and lurking.  Still here!

 

We earlier worked on 1,000 uses for poop, we can try to come up with 1,000 uses for beer.

post #171 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post

 

No, Kevin's been busy riding his bike, working and lurking.  Still here!

 

We earlier worked on 1,000 uses for poop, we can try to come up with 1,000 uses for beer.

 

Working and lurking haha me too. Next week we will have at least 4 days with many of the usual suspects to see how many uses we can come up with for beer. I'm wondering if a Brown Ale is better than an IPA for getting the car unstuck? Would an Imperial Stout be better than a Scotch Ale as a macGiverish adhesive for climbing skins? Come to think of it 4 days will barely be enough time to scratch the surface.

post #172 of 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy View Post

 

Working and lurking haha me too. Next week we will have at least 4 days with many of the usual suspects to see how many uses we can come up with for beer. I'm wondering if a Brown Ale is better than an IPA for getting the car unstuck? Would an Imperial Stout be better than a Scotch Ale as a macGiverish adhesive for climbing skins? Come to think of it 4 days will barely be enough time to scratch the surface.

 

I'm only going to be out for three days...  Well, arriving Thursday, flying out Monday  morning.  Sounds like the drinking will have to start early to resolve these important questions.

post #173 of 174

I was reading this thread regularly but quit before the cows.  I finally returned today and found that it took a very useful and entertaining turn.  As I updated myself with all of the very educational posts (I also want to find out how to get a car unstuck with beer) the following video kept rattling around in my head.  So, no skiing, it's about cows.  Maybe this is a way to get them off of the mountain before the snow flies...

 


Edited by Posaune - 5/2/13 at 8:51am
post #174 of 174

I think the better question is, how could you not like powder? 

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