My observation, based on what i have read, and what i know about the legalities of fighting. I am not a lawyer or law enforcment official.
Incident 1: Boarder is at fault on hill and words may or may not have been echanged. Boarder moves on.
Incident 2: Skier is at fault on hill and words may or may not have been exchanged. Boarder moves on.
Incident 3: Skier and boarder just happen to be too near each other on hill, no real fault.
Incident 4: Skier just doesn't want to ski around another boarder releasing a binding.
Studip mistake 1: Skier curses at boarder.
Stupid Mistake 2: Boarder gets pissed and takes off after skier and decks him.
Stupid mistake 3: Skier fights boarder after he controls the fight.
What I learned about the legalities of fighting from Karate. Reguardless off what prompted the expletive, the skier increased tension between the two parties. The boarder is then guilty of assualt and battery, self defence is not applicable, since the boarder ran after the skier. The skier is able to claim self defence, since he was attacked, but once the boarder was on the ground under him, he, the skier, was in control and no longer defending him self.
Of course i was not there, and made a couple of assumptions base on the "eye witness posts". Even if the boarder was "in the way" of the skier, since the boarder lower on the hill than the skier, the boarder had the right of way, and since it was posted that the skier was skating, then the skier should have been in better conrol.
Regardless of the poetic justice that seems to have been served, the skier can be also charged with A&B. Vermont laws probably are a little different then Mass laws.
People need to chill out. If i or my son were hurt by another skier or boarder, i would be pissed, but in the end, i would use what ever legal means in my disposal, if there was no immediate appology. If it was a major injury or broken equpment, an appology would not be acceptable, but neither would violence.