1955hey, I was just thinking about this concept, and zap, there you are. pretty cool. I like it because skiing is a sport that is richer the deeper you go, and skiing has an amazing history, from Bud Werner making a 70mph left turn in the Hahnenkahm Downhill on his left inside edge with his right ski straight out from his hip in the air, to Killy's ridiculous line in the Insbruck Olympic downhill of '64, to McKinney machin at Portillo back in the day, to Sylvain windshield wiper turning down some sick high angle pitches, the Herminator's massive crash, Picaboo Street taking guts (the tiger) to the way next level in women's downhill, the huge loss of Craig Kelly, and so on. That is the STUFF.
woah, so back a few knotches to the thread specifics. I started skiing in Anchorage Alaska in 1955, at Arctic Valley Ski Bowl, as an Army brat. The lifts headed up toward the Nike Missles that dotted the ridge line above, aimed at Moscow. I idolized the ski patrol, and was their little mascot. They even took my rope hook into their shack one day and hit it with the blow torch to tweak it a little and make it grip better, not slip or fall of going over the pulleys. One Christmas eve, at 20 below, they opened the hill for me alone, fired up the tow, and let me ski the mountain under the lights by myself. I was such a fanatic about skiing that I thought that was just the best. The ski patrol. totally my gods in 1956. The rope tows were a mile long (it seemed to a 50lb skier), and once an adult snapped the rope off the pulleys and it crashed me onto the track , pinned me there like that, and slid over my leg until someone could lift the mother off me, leaving a huge blister/rope burn that is still a prominent mark on my leg some 52 years later. Oh, and the binding I longed for because the racers used it: it was called a suicide binding, and that only made it more desirous to me. It was like this: You had a steel plate bolted to the toe/sole of your leather boot. There was a corresponding longitudinal pin screwed to the ski for the toe piece. The pin fit into the hole on the steel plate on your boot toe. then there were two D-rings screwed into the sidewall of the ski right under the heel of your boot. To one of the d-rings was attached about 6 feet of 3/4"leather strap. You took that leather strap and wrapped it up around your ankle and back through the opposite d-ring, repeat, repeat. It was so f-ing cool. Maybe I'm lucky that the patrol told my dad not to give them to me.
I moved to Garmisch Partenkirchen in the German-Austrian Alps in 1960, where I learned Stein Erickson's reverse shoulder technique, which is very close to the block your shoulders down the hill simple concept used today, except back then, I swear to god, a turn had a mandatory 5 moves to accomplish. It had you talking to yourself. In Europe, they had T-bars that went up huge mountains over pretty gnar terrain, and if you were a tiny kid, you had to balance on your tips or even maintain up off the track at times when the track went into a dip and the T-bar went straight on up. You had to be freakin' good just to ride the thing at 65lbs soakin' wet. Anyhow, it has been the best journey of my life, and I'm aiming for 80 years on skis before I add the last pair to the museum rack.