or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › Into the Crucible - Level 3 Skiing Exam
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Into the Crucible - Level 3 Skiing Exam

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
I just have a couple of minutes to post about day 1 of the exam which began yesterday at Stowe. I was hoping for a nice dump of pow (that's what they were calling for last week), but figured we'd get heavy rain or bulletproof ice. That's just the way the season has been. In fact, we got neither. 2 or 3 inches of snow on Sunday night followed by rain to compact it into about an inch of near slush. A very nice surface for the first few runs.

The examiners are Bart Hayes, Rick Svencer and Barb Marshall (I will have her today).

Skiing tasks were (by memory here, sorry if I forget one) Wedge, Wedge Christie, Open Parallel, Short Radius, Med Radius, Bumps, StemStep, GS there was also a spot on the score card that said Agility/Adaptability or something like that. There are sixteen in the exam in two groups. I'm in the last group. I didn't locate any barking Bears (although I did meet the Dev Team guy from Windham who I thought was one). My fellow Stowe compatriots are in the other group. In my group we have people from Stowe, Smuggs, Jay, K, Bolton, Saddleback, and Ski Sundown.

I guess I don't have time for a whole lot of blow by blow except to say conditions have been crazy. The first run a warm-up run, of course, was the best of the day because it was still raining lightly then. After that, the fog came in thick. It got thicker all day to the point where we couldn't see either side of the trail. I think even the examiner was experiencing vertigo, and in fact, we got all lost on Hayride. We were all there, but it took us about a half hour to find everyone and get to the bottom of the hill. We pretty much aborted the rest of the afternoon after that. It was tough trying to perform in that. You had to hope the one or two turns the examiner saw were good ones because that's all he would see. The group is generally good. I had a few times where I wasn't sure which way was up, and which way was down. Sometimes my knees would just come up and hit me in the chest for no apparent reason, or the ground would just be gone. I had a little moment in one of the bump runs. I kicked off a ski, and knew the rest of the group was right behind me and couldn't see either, so I skiied three more bumps and stopped next to the examiner. He was like "why are you stopping?" I said, "I think I'll go back up and get that" then he saw that my ski was missing. I hiked back up to get it, and skiied back down to him, when he said somethig like, "It's a good sign when your ski comes off, and I can't tell". The day wore on a few though, and I think the Stem Steps seperated the strong from the weak. I think 3, maybe 4, will pass.

I don't know if I'm passing or not (sure do hope so), but so far in all honesty, it's felt pretty easy. I'll let you all know tonight.
post #2 of 42
Nice post epic. Good luck today!!
post #3 of 42
You could be the "shining star" if you could hide a GPS and navigate in that fog!

Good Luck!
post #4 of 42
The examiners pretty much know who's going to pass from meeting and talking with the group at the morning get-together. Then they go out on the snow to confirm their expectations. Sounds to me like you're doing just fine, Epic.
post #5 of 42
Cool, Epic!

If you ran into Mark P (Dev Team from Windham, and one of my best friends, and I coached him through his L2 and L3 exams when he was at Whitetail), he is a very occasional Epic poster. He goes by Tibetan Tree Frog.

If you see him again, tell him John H said hi (seriously... tell him!) Also, if Doug Stewart is there, tell him I said Hi also.

You should be getting some snow today or this evening, according to the weather guessers down here in the south.

Good luck. I hope you do well!
post #6 of 42
I know the feeling about the ski popping off, but in my Level II exam, in bumps, mine crossed, BADLY, and I salvaged it and changed my line (the examiner was below and the group above), the group was laughing when I got down, and the examiner commented on it wondering what happened, why everyone was laughing, and I told him, needless to say, he just thought I changed line and chuckled when I showed him how crossed up they were (and yes I was passed on it).

Sounds like you are having fun in your exam though. That was what I found to be the most important aspect of success in exams, to not be intimidated by the exam and to just have fun with it.

Remember, the examiners may be struggling a bit as well (given the described scenario), so the motto will hold true, for level III, ski anything, anytime, any condition, and ski it well.

Good luck, and continue to have fun.
post #7 of 42
I think 3, maybe 4, will pass.
You mean out of the sixteen, right? That sounds about right. . . although be prepared for only 2 to pass
post #8 of 42
Mark P. the Dev team menber is a friend from windham. Sounds like you are doing strong at the exam. Stay in the zone---- We (at Windham) got over a foot of powder today, WooooHHHoooo!

Bart likes you to stay tall and long, and balance from the center of your ski, that goes for any of the examiners. The ability to open and close your ankles is what it is all about. Any pivot must come from the middle of the foot.
So, rip on!

post #9 of 42
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by JohnH
Cool, Epic!

If you ran into Mark P (Dev Team from Windham, and one of my best friends, and I coached him through his L2 and L3 exams when he was at Whitetail), he is a very occasional Epic poster. He goes by Tibetan Tree Frog.

If you see him again, tell him John H said hi (seriously... tell him!) Also, if Doug Stewart is there, tell him I said Hi also.
Too late. Oh well, I skiied with Mark this afternoon. He was with Terry Barbour's bumps group and I jumped in for a few runs after lunch. I asked him what his role was in the event. He said, "Normally I'd be giving individual feedback or lead the group for an hour or two, but this is Terry, I'll just watch".
post #10 of 42
Thread Starter 
Today we could see better, but the snow wasn't as nice. It froze up late, and they couldn't groom it. Not much of it anyway. It was pretty slick stuff. We had Barb Marshall todday. I wasn't really loving my skiing today. I think I was too much onstage and not just doing what I normally do.

Let me explain the title of this post now. Day 1, skiing with Bart we do a warm-up run or two and then take it over to the waterfall pitch on Hayride for some Short Radius turns. No problem, how many SR turns have I done? Tom Ashworth is with us as understudy and Bart has him go first to show his interpretation of the SR turn. Now let me go back another 20 days or so.... skiing with Kristi Robertson, and she is being merciless on my SR turns. Too much pivot at the top of the turn, be patient. Message received. I've been working hard on that ever since and "own it". Well what do I see Tom do? I see more pivot and less edge than I am expecting. "I can do better than that" I think. Tom and I ski together a lot and can get a little competetive. Then I see Bart go, and I see the exact same thing. Uh-oh - the alarms go off in my head. I've already been volunteered to go first. What do I do? What I've been told to do, or what I just saw? And I know that's what I saw, don't tell me I didn't. Well, I figure go with what you know and rip down it the way I have been practicing, the way I do it free-skiing. Soon enough the rest of the group pulls in, and Bart says (paraphrasing) "Let's take another shot at that. Remember in a Short Radius turn you are steering from the top of the turn with the legs". Damn It! I chose wrong. I know he can't give individual feedback, but he must be talking to me, right? So on he next run I pivot more and don't go for the early edge as much.

So there you go, first task of the exam and I'm already thinking about it. Here we go.

You want to know what all of my comment cards said? "Short turns showed too much tail-pushing", "Slow down transition of turn to shape more at the top", "You push the turns at the top - need to be more patient..."

But the important part is I passed. Thank Goodness for the freeruns and the bumps.

Oh yeah, The three in my group that I thought would pass did the one that I wasn't sure of didn't. 6 out of 16 overall, so I guess our exam was stronger than average.
post #11 of 42
post #12 of 42
Way to go Epic!!! Congrats. They have confirmed what you already knew. You now have your "license to learn".

Okay, there's that thing about Part 2 of the exam, but I'm sure that will feel easy after this.

Also, if all 3 examiners said the same thing, then it could possibly be that even in your first demo of SR turns, they wanted even less tail moving up the hill, and Bart was not talking to you. Either way, while it may be the weakest link in your skiing, it still meets the L3 standard, so it's not like you are doing pivot slips while trying to make SR turns. If, after he made his comments, you did pivot a lot, he knows that you know how to do it right because of your 1st demo and also that you are easily coachable, which they like a lot. The fact that you pivoted more in the 2nd try was not held against you since you did what he asked.
post #13 of 42
Way to go epic! That's fantastic.
post #14 of 42
Ba Da Bing Roomie!
post #15 of 42
Congrats Epic now you join the ski gods eh.
post #16 of 42

pass out the sunglasses ..

The gleam of the sun off that shiny gold pin is gonna' blind folks for miles!

good goin'
post #17 of 42
Thread Starter 
I should mention too - I talked to Bart today and told him that story in great detail. He goes "My first set was shitty, I was sliding all over the place" and said he was hooked up and carving more on the next set. He watched those from above, so I never saw him do that set.
post #18 of 42
Look like drinks are on you! Good Job!!!!

post #19 of 42
Way to go Epic!-------Wigs
post #20 of 42
post #21 of 42
post #22 of 42
Like someone else said, now the real learning begins. Great going, Epic.
post #23 of 42
Good on you!
post #24 of 42
when's the teaching exam? do you expect the teaching or skiing exam to be more difficult?
post #25 of 42
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by klkaye
when's the teaching exam? do you expect the teaching or skiing exam to be more difficult?
I guess I expect the teaching to be harder. Like I said, I didn't find the skiing to be all that hard. You wouldn't believe how much training I did though. I certainly made it hard for myself. Even so, I would have liked to perform better atthe exam. Performance anxiety I guess. My demos were so much better teaching today than they were in the exam. I did some short-radius turns and was like "where were you on Tuesday?"

I am hoping to take the exam at Cannon in a week and a half. I think I'm as ready as I'll ever be.
post #26 of 42
Good on ya, Epic! Knock 'em dead at Cannon!
post #27 of 42
I think the high pass rate was due to it being the first L3 exam on the east coast. I took the first L2 on the east coast this year and the pass rate was extremely high and I cou;d tell the level of skiing was really high. 19 outta of 22 passed then almost unheard of I think.

Congrats epic too bad my buddy didnt make it.
post #28 of 42
Thread Starter 

Part 2 Cannon

Well, I'm back from Cannon now. I had 2 days of fun and games down there. 5 people in my group, 11 in the exam. 3 were in my group at ProJam, so it was just like a little reunion. I guess for now, I'll keep it short. I passed. You don't want to know the details anyway, right? In fact, 8 of the 11 passed. My group really jelled and tried to help each other out. 4 of us made it, 1 didn't, and she had 9 out of 10. It really took some of the fun out of passing to know that she didn't make it. I think we had a pretty good time of it. The best part for me was seeing the schedule and that Dutch Karnan would be doing the MA segment. He failed me on it at my level 2 a year ago at Pico (although I still maintain that he wrote on the wrong scorecard, I got 0 out of 4). I nailed his segment (again), and I have to say I felt like Vader when he first crossed lightsabers with Obi Wan and says "When last we met, I was but a learner, now I am the master". He gave me 4 of 4 which was nice. Oh yeah, Jeb Boyd put my pin on me, and now I can go to Masters Academy. Sweet.
post #29 of 42

Way to GO EPIC!

3 of the Pro Jam group? Uh oh - had to be Liberty guys? Who were they?
post #30 of 42
Congrats epic.. Way to go..
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Instruction & Coaching
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › Into the Crucible - Level 3 Skiing Exam