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The Truth [of why some ski trails are harder than they look]

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Yes, the truth most be told. Some are "secrets" (things that can only be seen if you had done the trail) and some are just simple reminders, or things you didn't notice. I am about to explain why some trails are harder than they look, or what I say, BEASTS.


Ripcord is "the trail" at Mount Snow. It is the only double black, but there are other true double blacks (at south east standards) at Mount Snow (Lower Challenger, Jaws of Death, Falling Timbers). The 37 degree pitch is fab (on the other side of the mogul). But that 37 degree pitch should not be fab. It is why Ripcord is one of the toughest ski lift-accesed trails in the east. So what is the pitch on the "skiable" sides of the mogul (to the left or right of the pitch)? (trust me, the mogul is NOT skiable. i've gone over it.) 30-35* supposedly. Now add moguls, BIG moguls, one mogul wide. Then add one of the biggest sheets of ice that you'll ever see. And now add that there is no way out, up, to the side. Only down. Big moguls, 30-35*, biggest load of ice ever seen. You now got a run that is one of the toughest in the east.

Everyone boasts about Hunter West at Hunter Mountain being the hardest terrain until you get all the way north to Killington. That is probably true, but the steepness and moguls is not what makes Claire's Way under the Y Lift at Hunter challenging. Most know this, but Claire's Way is what I consider "Ice and Moguls". No, not icy moguls! But big loads of ice (... this is worse than Ripcords...) that last over 10 yards than head to 5 yards of moguls, then back over to the ice (this is my least favorite trail I have ever done because of this crapload). While on a consistent 25-30 degree pitch. And over 1200 feet of vertical. It is harder than K27, no doubt.

Talking about K27, let's talk about K27. Or should I say "Lower K27"? (Upper K27 is a simple trail that has a headwall of ?35*? that only lasts about 5 yd. with moguls) While all experts head over to Hunter West, K27 remains a frightening gem (maybe it's just looking at it because it's pretty frightening just doing that). Yes, it's scary looking at it, holds a 38 degree pitch for a long time (20 yd.?) and the main fall line is about 35* on avg. But it's more to that then what I just said. There are 2 secrets to be told, but they can only be found with your own eyes at the mountain. First of all, the main fall line is only about 65-75 yards. Then the moguls end. Turns into an easy blue. Not too hard after all? Still, the main fall line is a killer. But the most challenging aspect of Lower K27 is the lookout. There is sort of a "lookout" where you can lookout on to the trail (good idea Hunter Mtn! Sure scares people away from the trail!) but as a result of the lookout, there is about a foot of 90 degrees to jump on to the trail and then going straight into 33ish plus degrees, starting the main fall line. Around 90% of the people I saw (me including) who were going onto Lower K27 sat on there butts to get on to the trail. And then who have to stand up on the crazy trail. Crazy! It's icy too.

I'll post more later. Hoped you liked it!
post #2 of 23
Huh?
post #3 of 23
I can think of a few easy blue trails that are fine till you hit a section with a "double fall line" .... getting through the piles of lifeless bodies on a crowded Sunday can be quite a challenge.

:

Actually, this area lost one it's most senior instructors in this section when he was coming through at speed and caught an edge that put him into the trees.
post #4 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post
I am about to explain why some trails are harder than they look, or what I say, BEASTS.
Awesome.
Quote:
It is why Ripcord is one of the toughest ski lift-accesed trails in the east.
Heh.
Quote:
all the way north to Killington.
Hah, that is a good one.
Quote:
K27 remains a frightening gem (maybe it's just looking at it because it's pretty frightening just doing that). Yes, it's scary looking at it, holds a 38 degree pitch for a long time (20 yd.?) and the main fall line is about 35* on avg.
Sounds like some serious GNARRRRRR. I haven't been to Hunter in years, but I don't remember any 38 degree pitches.

My advice: At least once this year, get in your car earlier and head north. And by north, I do not mean Killington. You seem to like to get the butterflies going...go for it.
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post
...I'll post more later. ...
So, where is it? You promised! We're dyin' here!
post #6 of 23
MRG has some of the toughest greens and blues around.
post #7 of 23
this thread makes me laugh
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Uh, I don't seem very supported to post more so I'm not going to waste my time
post #9 of 23
Sniff, sniff.
post #10 of 23
OK, that was the Benjy segment...now we need a Quentin segment.
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post
Uh, I don't seem very supported to post more so I'm not going to waste my time
Here's a guide for this forum I kind of figured out since being here:

Don't let the lack of responses or snooty comments deter you from posting. There is some good info to be found here - you just have to know where to look, who to go for it, and how to sift through the constant background static. That's the internet.

Like all internet forums a clique forms and if you are not part of the clique you are not going to get much in the way of serious feedback or responses accept from the moderators. This place is no different. It's more about human nature, than subject matter. It is hard to start up a thread and expect a lot of serious responses if you are new and not well known here. Also, some folks come to internet forums just to provoke, insult, or simply act up, so snooty responses or put-downs will be common. Anonymity gives people the license to behave in ways, or say things, they never would in person. Also, there are always going to be people with tremendous egos and aggressive personailites - the internet only magnifies this effect due to the anonymity. This is not a cut on this forum in particular, as this goes on anywehere on the net.

As far as the information here it doesn't take long to figure out this forum is geared up more towards the higher end on the skill level. I am just at the lower end so obviously it was a struggle here when I came. I really don't fit in but stick around for the information. They have added a beginner forum for folks like me but I think most beginners figure out the epic ski forum in general is geared towards the more expeienced so dont saty around long unfortunately.

The bottom line is, unless you are part of the clique in-crowd you definately need a thick skin to post here. You are not going to get much in the way of volume if you are not well known. Thats just the way the internet is.

Stick around. Just ignore the static and ever-present arguments.

As far as this post, I think most trails are harder than they look, given my skill level with new gear.
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post

I'll post more later. Hoped you liked it!
I did. You captured the feeling of challenge and thrill of stepping up to your limits. Well done.
post #13 of 23

Nominated for 'Sticky'

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulR View Post
Here's a guide for this forum I kind of figured out since being here:....
PaulR; your post should be a 'sticky' placement in Community Announcements & Site Administration. Nice review and consisderation for oldtimers and first time posters alike

Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post
Uh, I don't seem very supported to post more so I'm not going to waste my time
OP; finish your thought process...stick with it. More people read than ever reply. Do your thing :
post #14 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by DonDenver View Post
PaulR; your post should be a 'sticky' placement in Community Announcements & Site Administration. Nice review and consisderation for oldtimers and first time posters alike


OP; finish your thought process...stick with it. More people read than ever reply. Do your thing :

True, there are more lurkers than posters on internet forums. Also, the OP needs to keep in mind if this post was made by a veteran here, or someone in high regard, it would have 200 responses by now. The OP is fine. This is normal as it's just human nature. Most folks respond to friends or those they know, and then there is the popularity factor. So don't take the lack of responses as deoragtory or negative. Regarding the sarcasic quips - some folks just like to instigate, and will do or say things to light a fire, or just enjoy insulting someone for any numbers of reasons - who knows what people are thinking. The net is a world of it's own and has little resemblence to the real world and normal patterns of human communication, so do not try to interpret such communications in one way or another. As I said earlier, anonymity gives bored individuals a license to behave in ways they never would in person - on the net you can act like a total jackass, and get away with it.

On this subject here is a nice poem I pulled from the net a while ago:


Oh the Internet how I love thee !
Your anonymity brings out the best to see
It leaves one free to be belligerent and crass
Without having to watch one's own ass

No fear of being called on the floor
I can continue to be all this and more
I can be anything I ever wanted to be
Without having the requisite ability

I can be a Doctor, a Lawyer,or a Navy Seal
For nobody knows the real deal
Armed with the ability to post at will
Wikipedia allows one to fill this bill

So with a PhD in the subject at hand
I can surely be considered part of the klan
The goal is to lay clam to being an Intellectual
All the while I am not being that effectual.

Here reality is something that can vary
So most others will simply not be weary
I am free to create my own personality
And can do so in complete anonymity

So always be skeptical of most that you see
Don't take things as they might appear to be
Tis a world where women are all divas and chicks
All guys lay claim to twelve inch sticks

What's that you say - you don't agree???
Why I certainly don't see how that can be !!
Not having an egg placed in my basket
I will surely proceed to blow a big gasket

I kick and I scream and I get red in the face !
How dare them I will surely show them their place !
But one will remember the truth that is told
Not by the blood that ones face can hold

So what is it of which I thus speak?
Nothing but watch what comes from ones beak
For while your face may continue to glow
The world in it's own will continue to flow

Here one should not take things too serious
Or you too could end up becoming quite delirious
You would surely do better to take this advice -
just pull down your pants and slide on the ice
post #15 of 23
Dang, wish I had enough time in my life to read that poem. Although if I did, I still wouldn't

Original poster -- your post was kinda hard to follow..no offense. I think I understand your intent.

For example, my home mountain, there is a trail that is very popular. It's not that steep, nothing really dicey about it....and yet I really dislike skiing it, and when I do I find myself just wanting to get it over with as quickly as possible. I think it's because it's canted off to the right for the top part of the trail, yet the way the trail is cut you're forced to go left (well, if you want the best of the lower part you are)...so you're skiing against the natural fall line because the trail was poorly planned.

I think there are a lot of reasons to dislike a trail, or even be intimidated by a trail...not just difficulty. The trail I'm taling about ain't difficult...but skiing it is more difficult than it should be...maybe that makes no sense.

And..OP...if you got something to say, go ahead and say it...if nobody responds, then just assume nobody has anything critical to say
post #16 of 23
The problem is that some people think difficulty, risk, and steepness are the same thing. They aren't. Each is different. Steep trails are not necessarily difficult, and difficult trails are not necessarily steep. Risky trails aren't necessarily difficult either.
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett View Post
The problem is that some people think difficulty, risk, and steepness are the same thing. They aren't. Each is different. Steep trails are not necessarily difficult, and difficult trails are not necessarily steep. Risky trails aren't necessarily difficult either.

Good point Garrett. Kidn of reminds me of the debate that comes up every once in a while over on Boatertalk about river ratings. Haven't seen it in a while, but the crux of it was that one number (i.e. - class I, II, III, IV, etc) isn't sufficient to really describe what a river is like. A class IV rapid by a well travelled road, with a nice lazy pool below it is much different than a Class IV with a strainer below the last must-make one-boat eddy, in the middle of a deep wilderness run.
post #18 of 23
In your neighborhood I always think about this when I go to Tuckerman in the spring. Tons of people there skiing and having a grand time with ease, but I see a lot of people taking ski area type risks (hucking backflips, etc.) an awful long ways from help.

In skiing I would submit that the short, steep bowl with an ample obstacle free runout rated black is less scary than the green circle cat road with a no fall zone over the side...particularly if one is on the latter in fog or snow.

I don't boat but hopefully the river ratings are at least not inflated by owners. Seems to me many places in the east have pretty inflated ratings complete with scary "you'll die if you ski this 28 degree bump run" signs that spell trouble when people newer to the sport venture to places like Utah, California, northern VT., etc. where the "you'll die, experts only" signs are not just hype.
post #19 of 23
PaulR, you're making a lot of assumptions about why people here may ignore a post or be sacastic. The original post is neither news, nor funny, nor a sincere question, nor a sincere critique. It's oddly written, and any title that begins with "truth" and isn't tongue in cheek is begging for a jab. Figure how this would have been handled on TGR; the OP got off pretty well for someone with 16 posts who announces he's not going to "waste my time" when people don't line up to applaud his deep thoughts.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post
Uh, I don't seem very supported to post more so I'm not going to waste my time
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulR View Post
Here's a guide for this forum I kind of figured out since being here:

Don't let the lack of responses or snooty comments deter you from posting. There is some good info to be found here - you just have to know where to look, who to go for it, and how to sift through the constant background static. That's the internet.

Like all internet forums a clique forms and if you are not part of the clique you are not going to get much in the way of serious feedback or responses accept from the moderators. This place is no different. It's more about human nature, than subject matter. It is hard to start up a thread and expect a lot of serious responses if you are new and not well known here. Also, some folks come to internet forums just to provoke, insult, or simply act up, so snooty responses or put-downs will be common. Anonymity gives people the license to behave in ways, or say things, they never would in person. Also, there are always going to be people with tremendous egos and aggressive personailites - the internet only magnifies this effect due to the anonymity. This is not a cut on this forum in particular, as this goes on anywehere on the net.

As far as the information here it doesn't take long to figure out this forum is geared up more towards the higher end on the skill level. I am just at the lower end so obviously it was a struggle here when I came. I really don't fit in but stick around for the information. They have added a beginner forum for folks like me but I think most beginners figure out the epic ski forum in general is geared towards the more expeienced so dont saty around long unfortunately.

The bottom line is, unless you are part of the clique in-crowd you definately need a thick skin to post here. You are not going to get much in the way of volume if you are not well known. Thats just the way the internet is.

Stick around. Just ignore the static and ever-present arguments.

As far as this post, I think most trails are harder than they look, given my skill level with new gear.

Skskskier, don't take this so personally, everyone has different interests, viewpoints and preconceived ideas of what is important to them. PaulR's post described some of the Web indiocyncrasies quite well. When I found Epic about a year ago, I read and listened. At first I posted some rather sarcastic remarks on some sociology and political posts and was admonished by Lars a moderator. He was right and re-evaluated why I was on Epic to begin with and that was because I love to ski. Since that date I almost exclusively use Epic for skiing reasons. Because of Epic I have been able to ski with some BEARS and have some fun. Received some really good insightful answer to some of my ski questions. I spent some time helping start the Beginners Forum and have written a few pieces for that Forum.

Above all I feel welcome at Epic, I am not part of any Clic but still feel some identity with fellow rabid skiers.

skskskier, stick with us , Epic is Worth your time, my time and a lot of others time. It is what we make it to be. Hang in there.

Oh Yes, solid sheet ice sucks thats why I moved to No Idaho - we don't have any ice just cool white smokey pow.
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by skskskier View Post


Ripcord is "the trail" at Mount Snow. It is the only double black, but there are other true double blacks (at south east standards) at Mount Snow (Lower Challenger, Jaws of Death, Falling Timbers). The 37 degree pitch is fab (on the other side of the mogul). But that 37 degree pitch should not be fab. It is why Ripcord is one of the toughest ski lift-accesed trails in the east. So what is the pitch on the "skiable" sides of the mogul (to the left or right of the pitch)? (trust me, the mogul is NOT skiable. i've gone over it.) 30-35* supposedly. Now add moguls, BIG moguls, one mogul wide. Then add one of the biggest sheets of ice that you'll ever see. And now add that there is no way out, up, to the side. Only down. Big moguls, 30-35*, biggest load of ice ever seen. You now got a run that is one of the toughest in the east.
What do you mean by "on the other side of the mogul" and "the mogul is NOT skiable. i've gone over it."??? :
post #22 of 23
fab means exactly what??
post #23 of 23
For one I welcome more eastern posts. Keep em coming.

But be aware that in this forum anyway, hyped or sensational-type postings do open you up for some criticism. There are a lot of instructors on here who I presume have seen a lot of skiing and might be a bit more jaded.

I do like that side of Mt Snow btw. Try Magic some time too - there are some great double fall line trails up there as well.
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