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What is it about skiing?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
What makes you love skiing so much? My wife doesn't understand when I say some of the best days skiing I have ever had have been in near whiteout conditions with heavy snow falling. (reason - fresh tracks every run, and everyone else is in the lodge).

She doesn't understand why I love standing on the edge of a cornice looking down a steep face, and then taking the plunge.

Never could explain it until today. It makes me feel alive. There's something about the cold air, the adrenaline rush, and the 100% focus on the moment and nothing else that makes skiing great.

The situation that brought it home occurred a few weeks back entering the Cirque off of the Peak Chair at Whistler. Lack of snow and very hardpack snow condtion was the order for the day. Balancing on about 6 inches of edge, my tips and tails hung in the air as I looked over the little ledge of rocks below me. A falty first turn, a tip or tail snag, and I'd slide the entire length of the 55degree face. Probably a few bounces of the rocks included.

I plotted my moves, weighed the consequenses, and focused my mind on making the first turn perfect. This turn had to thread between two rock outcroppings and dump me back in the center of the Cirqe in order to make a successful 2nd turn. With adrenaline flowing, I zeroed my focus in on executing that first turn.

The exposed rock and slope below me vanished from my vision as I saw my skis arcing gracefully through the narrow path that laid before me. With one last exhale, I pushed off. Immediately the slope seemed to flatten out. The mountain guide says this is a 55 degree slope, but once I started making turns it seemed a gentle 30 degree cruiser.

Skis gripping well, flowing from turn to turn, adjusting my line as I went. The only sound I recall is the sweet sound of skis carving on hardpack. Cut 1, cut 2, hop a rock, pickup speed, cut 3, scan ahead, more speed, cut 4, cut 5, back under the cliff band, hop another rock, back to the left, speed as fast as I want to go now, big downhill turn to the right, another back to the left and the Cirque was a memory. Wow, what a rush.

That's why I love skiing. What's your reason?<FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited March 17, 2001).]</FONT>
post #2 of 27
Because it's like flying, and what was impossible yesterday I am doing today. By the way, I live and ski in New England. What do you call "hardpack"? Would you be interested, say, next season, in coming here and trying OUR "hardpack" [this wonderful year excepted]?
post #3 of 27
post #4 of 27
Flying, a feeling of freedom, letting go of the mundane world, or the cleansing of ones soul.

The best times I have ever had is a day when no one is around, and I can let go.

"Fly like an Eagle" -
Steve Miller Band
post #5 of 27
because i am better than you at it!!!
post #6 of 27
I like the snow and the scenery, pine trees, no trees, mountain peaks, fresh air. Sometimes I even have liked falling down because it gave me an excuse to make a snow angel. Skiing is one of those things that is still hip for adults to do. After all, if you don't have kids, you've got basically no excuse for lego!

post #7 of 27
So much to love! Its like flying! Its about people who love being outside as much as you do! As a pro its about spending 1/2 the year driving up into the mountains to fly down the snow every day . . . while you watch everybody else headed towards their cubicles. Its about the ultimate in hedonistic pleasure and freedom!

And G-Dubs . . . for you it must be especially great, I mean being better than all of us at it and all! <FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by Gravity (edited March 18, 2001).]</FONT>
post #8 of 27
Congradulations BillH on your rippin run the other day. I don't think I can explain why I love skiing - a combination of too many things.
post #9 of 27
I notice the word "flying" appears regularly in this thread; and I agree. I hate to go "literary" here; but I am reminded of a poem by Gerard Manly Hopkins..The Windhover...
"...dapple-dawn drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off forth on swing,
As a skate's heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the the big wind. My heart in hiding stirred for a bird -
The acheive of, the mastery of the thing!"

To me, anyway, that kinda says it.
post #10 of 27
The feeling of a bird soaring and swooping, no speed limits (except in certain places), laughing and having fun.
post #11 of 27
I love the feeling of freedom on the slopes, flying thru the air, the gratification of a run well skied, the camaraderie of like-minded individuals, the feeling you get when you drive into the mountians and leave your worries behind, the chance to behave like a kid again.
And of course, the suntan.
post #12 of 27
I like skiing because...
I love the sensation of being chased by an angry father and being charlie horsed by him :O!!!

post #13 of 27
When I ski, I am in a beautiful place having a fun time. And, by golly, I get to be a teenager again for a few hours. It works every time.
post #14 of 27
Beer tastes better after skiing. (Malt liquor too)
post #15 of 27
The immediacy and purity of the movement. The absence of things to hide behind. (You ski the way you ski and nothing you can SAY about your skiing changes how you ACTUALLY ski.) The three-way "dance" with you, the mountain, and gravity.
There is ALWAYS room to "improve," if you want, and room to not improve, if THAT'S what satisfies you. (All things to all people.)
I can do it alone, and find that special serenity and peacefulness, and check in with myself, in body/mind/spirit. Skiing shows me my (im)balance(s). I can do it with friends and leave the "seriousness" behind and just kick it, just...enjoy the company.
EVERY new ski day IS, for me, a new ski day, an entirely separate ski day, apart from previous days and days to come.

I smile when I ski <FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by ryan (edited March 21, 2001).]</FONT>
post #16 of 27
You know that feeling you get when you're pushing yourself just a little bit above your level and you know you can do it and you're going to be in control and you've just pushed off the top and you're into a bit of air....................... Yeah,,,, that's it.
post #17 of 27
Skiing is like so many other pursuits that are a combination solo/group experience. You usually ski with a group, but you are having a solo experience for the most part. You are in your own world, pushing, testing, experiencing something on a personal level.

I have often been asked by friends what is it you so like about skiing, sailing, diving, mountaineering so much? After years of futile attempts to try to put "it" into words, trying to open their eyes to something thing have never really experienced on the level I have. I have finally come to the conclusion that when asked by someone outside of a sport what do you like so much about it, the answer is if a person asks, they don't get "it", there is simply no answer to give them. You can be the best writer, able to create prose that sings off the page, but you will be writing to someone who can't see. After rambling for 10 minutes about what it is you get out of it, they stand there nodding their heads, "Ah, yes I see", but you look into their eyes, and they still don't get it, nor will they ever.

The fact that they have to ask is answer enough that nothing I can say will ever convey to them what "it" is. They will trully never understand all the combinations of the experience that make it so wonderful and fullfilling to a person that gets it. I believe there will always be "us" and "them".

We get it, they don't.

Make it steep and deep!
post #18 of 27
For me, it's the ferrits (Powderhound!)
post #19 of 27
Hugo started it with his poetry...

"Sometimes the blood is privileged to guess
The things the eye or hand cannot possess."

From "The Signals" by Theodore Roethke

"...more things move than blood in the heart."

From Louise Bogan's "Night"

And by Robert Dana

"And the one horse in the heart
that runs
and runs"

These corpuscular poetry quotes go beyond all the worldy why's to more deeply express how it moves me bodily and spiritualy.

Then there is this one, from a rather nasty Japanese porn internet site:

"The intolerable moment of the mania!"

That happens too. And its fun.
post #20 of 27
I found this and thought it would make a good discussion as we all wait for the first run of the season.
For me it's the sensation of flying down the slope, the adrenalin rush, heart stopping fear........where's the snow.

66 days
post #21 of 27
It's the only thing I can think of that consistently takes away my "ills".

If I'm sick as a dog, put me on skis, and within 3 runs, I feel great. It's happened quite a few times (Mt. Bachelor, most recently : )

If I am depressed, I'm jacked the minute I hear the click of bindings and boots.

If I'm worried, stressed or depleted of the energy needed for everyday life, after a couple of runs, I just don't care and can't think of anything but the moment, and I am refreshed at the end of a day. A bad day of skiing is still better than a good day of anything else.

It's a soul dance I do perhaps clumsily on the outside, but I think I'm perfect--in my head. Skiing is a blend of art, ballet, the discipline of martial arts, but you can call it bliss, Nirvana, euphoria..... :
post #22 of 27
Every since I was a young child I've had this wonderfull feeling inside every time I'm near a ski area. The smell of the alpine air, the white snow, people having fun sliding down the hill, there's just a magical thing about skiing that some of us feel and some of us dont.I once had a wife who didnt like to sk i!
post #23 of 27
You can fly
You can fly
You can Fly. [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #24 of 27
Everything above is exquisitely true and are also my reasons.

In addition:
1. It's about self extension. Becoming more than I seem to be. Going beyond my apparent limitations.

2. I've done it all my life. It's what I do and who I am. I understand it, and am sometimes the person I aspire to be when I'm doing it.

3. Doing it and teaching it seems to be how I add value and contribute.

4. I don't know how to do anything else.
post #25 of 27
For me the love of skiing is dreaming of floating through powder on that perfect blue sky morning. From the planning of a trip, then traveling, and finally arriving at the top of a mountain; the journey is a fun part of skiing. The freedom to choose what trail and the spontaneous decisions to ski any way I feel at the moment is the most precious freedom that skiing gives me.

I always appreciate the people I meet and the fun during and after a day or night of skiing. I also treasure the many times I have skied with my father, wife, and family.

My memories about skiing are priceless. From Ptamigan Ridge to Minturn with my father for beer and dinner. Or Pink Floyd on the headphones in a NH snowstorm. Or a hungover New Years Day down the Cirque at Snowbird.

What future memories will be? I'd love to find out!
post #26 of 27
"Who can do justice, for example, in mere printed words, to the thrill that comes from speed under human control, two mere strips of hickory winging you down in rythmic turns through miles of white velvet? Who can paint in words the breath-taking and soul-inspring beauty of a winter landscape, when the sun is tinting the peaks a pale saffron, and smoke of tiny villages curls up from the Valleys?"

John Jay, 1947
post #27 of 27
Skiing is so much more kickass than anything known to man in the earthly world, bar nothing!!!!!!

Thats my reason.
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