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Cliff hucking tips

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

I'm 15, will be 16 for next season, and ski at Snowbasin Utah. Im a lvl 7 or 8 ish skier. Can ski everything inbounds from steep bumped runs, to tight trees, and the park. One thing I cant seem to do though, is recover from jumps into less than ideal conditions. I have hucked a few small cliffs/cornices/rocks in the 5-10ft range but always struggle on the run out. I hit the ground and have a ton of speed and when conditions are anything other than smooth, I get bucked around and end up cartwheeling. So usually, as soon as I land, I am instantly trying to scrub speed and crash in the cruddy/bumpy conditions underneath. 

 

I just got some new 188cm Rossignol Soul 7's for next season so maybe that will help. I just don't want to only be able to hit big jumps in the park on non-powder days. 

 

Any recomendations on some cliffs/rocks/drop offs/ to try at Snowbasin. Ive hit the one under Middle bowl lift (unsuccesfully) one of the drop offs in Sisters bowl (succesfully), and various other drop offs scatered throughout the mountain. I saw a youtube video of a cliff in the Pyramids I would like to try but dont know where it is.

post #2 of 21

Get lots stronger.

post #3 of 21

Okay, let's back it up some. You say you're struggling on the run out, but in all reality your problem most likely stems from far above that. When you huck any cliff, from 4' to 40', you need to have a good approach and launch, which is going to make the landing and recovery much, much easier. 

 

What is a good approach? Well, the best approach starts the run before. If possible, check out as much of the lead in as you can. Ski as far down to the cliff as you can without committing to going over it. Ideally, practice in spots that are discrete boulders/overhangs, things you can ski right up to the lip of, but still bail to the side without committing to the huck. Then, ski around the drop, and thoroughly scope the landing. On both sides, be looking at how you're going to ski it. What line are you going to take into it? What angle are you going to drop? Most drops, the ideal angle is not straight out from the cliff face, but some type of oblique angle. Approximately where are you going to land? What do you need to expect to encounter immediately upon landing? It is so helpful to be ready to tackle what you're going to hit, rather than  having to think about it and improvise in the moment. 

 

Once you have your line scoped, ski the line as you planned it. When you launch off the lip, you need to be aggressive. Every ounce of instinct is going to tell you to  lean back as you go over the lip. Ignore that. Drive forward as you pop off the lip. While it feels like you're taking a swan dive off the cliff, you're really getting your body angled so that you'll land centered on your skis, and not on your tails. 

 

If you have gone over the lip correctly, you're going to land in a good position to maneuver your skis immediately, and while you will absolutely be going fast, you'll still be able to control yourself. 

 

Long story short, the biggest reason you're feeling out of control on landing is likely because of a bad launch. If you're too far back, you land on your tails. That means you need to recover and recenter yourself on your skis upon landing before you can make any kind of maneuver. At the speed you're going after landing, there isn't time for that. So you lose control and crash out. 

 

I've been hucking drops for a couple decades, and I've spent the last decade teaching kids ages 5-15 how to huck. Leaning back on launch is the cause of about 90% of all problems I've encountered when you're hucking. 

post #4 of 21
Yeah, leaning back on launch explains at least 90% of the problems I've had when ... Oh! Hucking, okay, forget it.
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'll have to work on that. I never thought about the actual huck.

Any dry land practice I can do until next season. I have access to a trampoline and a few garages I've jumped off of but there's no runout on those.
post #6 of 21

Pretty tough learning to huck when your landings are rutted up and bumpy. I remember your post about not getting much powder this year. Hopefully next year you will have better luck with the snow and be able to practice on softer landings with less chop suey. Do your current skis have a good amount of rocker? That can help smooth out some of those ruts as well as practicing absorption at speed. Maybe those 188 souls will have a bigger surface area and make it easier for you. Practice being very very still in the air in a tucked position with your hands forward and down. You can practice this in the terrain park or on the trampoline in the off season. Good luck next year. I love Snowbasin!

post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
I love snowbasin to! I guess we didnt have a bad snow year, but we finished around 260" and the average is 300". And I missed several powder days because they all came at bad times for me.

I tend to have no problems hucking cling on powder days but its the rougher days that I struggle with. I now think that the powder days have been hiding some flaws in my technique though.
post #8 of 21

A trampoline is useful for aerial comfort and such, but not really directly applicable to this. To get used to the sensation of driving forward, you need to be moving forward into and through the air. Skateboarding would be good for that. Mountain biking or BMX would be good as well. The activity that would translate the most directly would probably be rollerblading over ramps and jumps. 

post #9 of 21
I agree with the advice to lean forward - when I started doing jumps, landing on my tails was the biggest problem. Powder can hide some of these issues. And keep your knees loose and soft, tuck on the take-off. A friend used to tell me to think of driving my helmet over my tips. Practicing in the terrain park was important for me in order to feel more comfortable on natural features - start off on some smaller boxes and focus just on leaning forward and move onto bigger jumps while focusing on your forward lean and landing centred. For off season stuff - I've found the combination of running and mountain biking to have helped a lot with skiing - both in terms of leg strength but also my balance. Biking has helped a lot with my balance and coordination and made me, I think, more adventurous in the park. Good luck!
post #10 of 21

Just ski down there and jump off something.

post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kano View Post
 

Just ski down there and jump off something.

post #12 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm planning on doing a fair bit of mountain biking this summer so i got that covered. I like the idea of practicing leaning foward off of boxes.

Gosh dangit... Why can't utah have a glacier or somthing I can ski on over the summer.

Edit: that's a joke ^
Edited by kbat11700 - 4/21/16 at 5:58am
post #13 of 21
Don't get whiny or mother nature and karma will slap you right into place. You already live in an awesome place and look at all the opportunities you already have.
If you want to go to a glacier or summer season, use you own effort and means to make it happen and get yourself to a glacier or southern hemisphere skiing. Don't just sit on your butt and whine that poor old you only has a winter ski pass, a mtn bike,a trampoline and how come you don't get a glacier to come to you too.

Sure you may feel you are trapped because you're a teenager; but free old guy Internet advice here, take your own life into your own hands instead of moaning and whinging about things even if it's a joke.
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
Sorry, it was a joke... Should have added a wink.gif i guess.

I don't have a mountain bike or a trampoline. My being to has the trampoline I can use and the mountain bike is my dads

Sorry if that offended you, I didn't mean for that. I'm just trying to get some help on how to get better.
Edited by kbat11700 - 4/21/16 at 8:46am
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by raytseng View Post

Don't get whiny or mother nature and karma will slap you right into place. You already live in an awesome place and look at all the opportunities you already have.
If you want to go to a glacier or summer season, use you own effort and means to make it happen and get yourself to a glacier or southern hemisphere skiing. Don't just sit on your butt and whine that poor old you only has a winter ski pass, a mtn bike,a trampoline and how come you don't get a glacier to come to you too.

Sure you may feel you are trapped because you're a teenager; but free old guy Internet advice here, take your own life into your own hands instead of moaning and whinging about things even if it's a joke.


 Really? You couldn't figure out that statement was in jest? That was WAY over the top even if you didn't somehow realize. Sheesh, you must be done skiing for the year. If not, you really have no excuse for that post.

 

kbat, you have no reason to apologize or edit. I would think 99% of people would know that was a joke especially when prefaced by a "gosh dangit" :)

post #16 of 21
Yea I got that it's a joke, nor should you feel you should jump straight to an apology because you are who you are and think how you think; so nobody should tell someone else who they should be except your parents possibly. I am not offended by what you do or how you choose to live your life. So no apology needed.

I am the one who should apologize as you guys rightly show my post is over the top and doesnt acomplish my goal to get my point across if the first thing that kbat jumps to is thinking he needs to apologize.

All i wanted to say is if you want something, you need to go out and get it instead of thinking the world will just come to you even as a fleeting thought of fancy. It was more the different perspective I wanted to get across especially considering how lucky we all are.

Anyway on a positive note, you are already doing great by putting in the effort to work on these things over the summer. Use that same initiative to reach any goal or thing you want to do.
Edited by raytseng - 4/21/16 at 9:17am
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 

Pretty much, this is what i'm trying to learn how to do. Being able to ski so smoothly with some drops and grabs and on days that are not full of untracked just looks so cool to me. I have a workout plan for the summer and I will see if I cant get to snogression a few times throughout the summer.

 

https://vimeo.com/157932405

post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbat11700 View Post
 

Pretty much, this is what i'm trying to learn how to do. Being able to ski so smoothly with some drops and grabs and on days that are not full of untracked just looks so cool to me. I have a workout plan for the summer and I will see if I cant get to snogression a few times throughout the summer.

 

https://vimeo.com/157932405

 

This is a great video, because it shows kids your age, and their talent level isn't in the Shane McConkey/ Candide Thovex level that's hard to relate to. I'm going to point you to two competitors that illustrate what we're talking about really well. The first kid in the black and red isn't pushing himself forward as he launches. You can see him clearly land on his tails both times he launches. Easily seen on the second launch, like such:

 

 

Contrast this with the second skier, in the green pants. You can clearly see that skier move forward into the launch, which means that they land centered and more in control, like such: 

 

 

 

It's useful to see the stills, but also to watch it in action. Go check it out, and you'll really see what I'm talking about. 

post #19 of 21

Mod Note: Thread moved from General Skiing to Ski Instruction & Coaching

post #20 of 21

One of my favorite little sayings:

 

"If you don't throw the air, the air will throw you"

 

JF


Edited by 4ster - 4/25/16 at 4:00pm
post #21 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by freeski919 View Post

This is a great video, because it shows kids your age, and their talent level isn't in the Shane McConkey/ Candide Thovex level that's hard to relate to. I'm going to point you to two competitors that illustrate what we're talking about really well. The first kid in the black and red isn't pushing himself forward as he launches. You can see him clearly land on his tails both times he launches. Easily seen on the second launch, like such:




Contrast this with the second skier, in the green pants. You can clearly see that skier move forward into the launch, which means that they land centered and more in control, like such: 





It's useful to see the stills, but also to watch it in action. Go check it out, and you'll really see what I'm talking about. 
Cool, I'll look for that sort of thing when I watch it again.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4ster View Post

One of my favorite little sayings:

"If you don't throw the air, the air throw you"

JF

So basically commit or get destroyed, got it smile.gif
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