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Is this normal?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Let me preface this by saying that I am not a ski patroller, nor have I had any patroller training.
I was at a local area a few nights ago and there were about 3 teenagers that decided they were going to duck the tape and ski an unlit closed trail after dark. There happened to be 2 kids that were probably around 13 or 14 asking me about the condition of a certain trail and also saw the other teens duck the tape. About 30 seconds later there was a pack of ski patrollers coming over towards where we were and the kids next to me decided they were going to tell them what they saw, well one of the ski patrollers comes right back in sarcastic shock, basically mocking the kids. The trail is fairly narrow and generally icy and I am sure that it gets skied after dark all the time but I still thought it was in poor taste to mock a kid like that.
post #2 of 5
Yep, sounds unprofessional. We are employees of the mountain and guests should be treated with respect. Many skiers don't understand why trails are closed at times. Sometimes it's just because they are unlighted but sometimes it's more. There could be a disabled snowcat or bare spots or unmarked hazards just to name a few reasons. Closed trails are not continually swept and if someone were to get injured, they might be there a long time.
post #3 of 5
Another non-patroller opinion:

It sounds like that patroller was sending (inadvertently or not) the message that ducking ropes is harmless. Those kids will probably start thinking it's A-OK to poach closed trails and who knows, they could end up in a bad situation one day (i.e. the avy death in Aspen this year). Even just the an unlit trail can be dangerous...

I think it's definitely the wrong message to send to young skiers. My guess is that's the last time those kids will try to notify a patroller that something wrong is going on, and that's a shame.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Forgot to add, there is(was? I haven't been down yet this year) a tree smack dab in the middle of the trail and it also has a rep for being icy
post #5 of 5
Weird and unusual behavior, I agree. At our area, skiing a closed trail is an immediate loss of pass if caught, no alibi or explanation accepted. And we do try to catch them. We're not hard cases at all, but that is like Rule #1...AND if we know or suspect somebody went down a closed trail, the patrol HAS to check it...which is tricky and rather dangerous in the dark...so we'd rather not...and the best plan is to come down hard on that and the word gets out quickly. Fortunately we only have a couple unlighted trails.

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