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Crud Skiing

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
well we had one day of 'bad' snow and really it wasnt that bad well unless you live here.

conditions -Wet, heavy, crud some of it push piled into odd bumps. extremely flat light.

slopes first slope is a unmarked lower face in Pervian Gulch that on the ski patrol map is marker "oh my god" 30ish degrees solid black pitch. camera hides pitch very well.

last clip is on the wilbere lift lineish black pitch but not quite as steep as the first 2 clips, but much bumpier.

My goals were slower than normal speeds, staying balanced, bending the ski, and working with the terrain and not against the terrain.

have at it

FYI'the where the grooming " was because the light was so flat I ended up on a groomer that I didnt see, and I didnt want to be there.
post #2 of 23
I like the joy and playfulness you show always in your skiing. The last clip makes this evident as does the smile you nailed in the first.

It's just fun watching people have fun. Thanks for sharing.
post #3 of 23
Nice job bush. Ummm I didn't know they had Bad snow in Utah.;-)
post #4 of 23
You gotta come ski with me, Slider, and Dawg if you want to see some crud.
post #5 of 23
Originally Posted by Max_501 View Post
You gotta come ski with me, Slider, and Dawg if you want to see some crud.
Gotta love those Carve skis in the Crud, eh Maxy.
post #6 of 23
Bush, since no one has given you an MA yet I'll toss out a few tips of advice. Feel free to take them or leave them.

Most of your turns seem to consist of pivoting and steering a flat ski and most of your edge angle develops later in the turn. I think that this is actually preventing you from working the skis with the terrain like you were intending to. Once you begin to steer into the top of the turn, your become very static in the fore/aft plane and seem to just "wait the turn out" until it's completion.

I have a crud clip in somewhat similar snow (8 inches tracked out from the previous day and had sun all day the day after, until I wanted to film of course... on top of that really hard chalky Utah surface that forms when it doesn't snow for awhile). It isn't the greatest skiing ever (three seasons old now) and only few worthwile turns because the pitch is so short, but it does show a difference from how you are approaching crud currently. You have seen the clip before.

Work on a few things:
  • Don't rush your transitions: you are better at this when you're not on groomers, but you could still lengthen your transitions and make them more smooth versus abrupt and forced.
  • Establish an early edge angle: This will actually bring your big clunky skis around a lot faster and aid in using flexion and extension to work with the terrain versus trying to steamroll it with a flat ski. You will be able to shape the turn with the ski, versus shaping the turn primarily with steering - especially in the top of the turn. This is not to say that steering will not exist, but it will not preceed acheiving edge angles.
  • Continue to move ahead of the skis: Right now you are not necessarily behind the skis, but you are also not leading them through the turn. You tend to get into a position and just stick with it until the next turn. Remember, you can use flexion and extension to not only work with the terrain, but also move fore and aft on the skis through the turn (working the skis AND terrain). One interesting facet to extension in the turn (think apex) is that it allows your hips to catch your skis again even though they may have been slightly lagging during the flexed portion of the transition.

post #7 of 23

You asked for this via IM, so here it is ...

First off we need to acknowledge that the terrain is relatively steep
(at least in the third clip), the snow conditions are relatively cruddy and the visibility is flat. As much as we'd like to see offensive movements all the time, unless you are a Kool Aid carrying ski God we should expect to see some defensive movements pop up in these conditions. In general I see good rhythm and flow down the slope and an overall good absorption of terrain. I'm also seeing some edge engagement above the fall line with simultaneous edge change and some great angulation occurring above the fall line. Your balance is pretty solid as evidenced by the tall stance and generally quiet upper body. BTW - the air in the third clip is especially nice with the style of the skis rainbowing in mid air and the very aggressive landing powering through the next mogul in a strong balanced position.

My first observation at full speed was that your flow was a little jerky. You're turning out of the fall line too quickly and then getting a little park and ridey going across the fall line. When I investigated to find the root cause I came across a dilemma. Normally in crud/powder, you do want to close your stance up a bit and stay more upright over the skis. But you are able to get some nice powerful angles going in this snow. In this case, I'm expecting to see a little wider stance width and more long leg/short leg differentiation. For the turns I'm seeing here, I'd like to see even more aggressive edge tipping above the fall line to compliment the nice angulation that you are building. Using a wider stance width is the first component of getting the more aggressive edging to occur.

What I see in many of the turns is a heel push and some skidding as you pass through the fall line (e.g. tiny little bits at 7 and 8 seconds, 18-19 seconds, 23 seconds, 1 minute [using original time coding or 25 seconds for you viewers at home] ). In these turns your highest edge angles come at about 30 degrees after you pass through the fall line. The visual cues say that the highest edge angles should come at or near the fall line.

The next thing I see in many of the turns is an up move at turn initiation. I love the cross under move that you do after the up move, but I'd like to see more cross over in these turns too. To get there we're
going to need to get the hips moving inside the skis earlier in the turn. A wider stance width is going to help allow the inside leg to flex more at turn initiation. This will help get that hip moving. But we've still got a bit of a catch 22 because the heel push after the fall line puts you in the back seat briefly. You recover nicely by cramming the ankles forward, but now you've got no forward movement left to go "fore-agonally" into the new turn (what the visual cues calls forward and lateral contact with the boot cuff). So we've got the up move causing a delay in getting onto the new edges aggressively, causing the need to heel push to get out of the fall line, which causes the need to do the up move. Uh oh.

How are we going to break this cycle? Let's compare two different turns for a clue. In the second clip, right before you come up to the camera (1 minute 1 second in original time code) you are making a left turn. As you're entering the turn, you encounter a little mogul that deflects the inside tip. I see a great recovery and re-engagement as you enter the fall line, but freeze the position there. Check out the banking with respect to the inside hand and shoulder being lower than the outside hand and shoulder. Next comes the heel push of the outside ski, and the inside ski comes completely off the snow all the way to the toe piece. See how both legs are flexed almost equally throughout the whole turn? OK, some of this is probably avoiding the cameraman, but I'm only giving you a free pass on that for the last part of the turn finish. In the third clip, the turn after the landing of the jump is the reference turn I want to you have an image of. While you are in mid air, the extension of the legs to absorb the landing is accompanied by an extension of the ankle to push the tips down. As you land, notice how you bring the inside hand up vertically as you enter the fall line. Entering the fall line, the hands and shoulders are more level and the hips are further inside the turn than the turn in the second clip. The corresponding long leg short leg differentiation is masked by the explosion of snow, but checking the position of the ski tips shows that there is a significant difference compared to the turn in the second clip. Granted that the next mogul also helps to eliminate the heel push coming out of the fall line and that in general there is much less heel push on your right turns than your left turns. Nonetheless, this turn is the image that I want to see for all turns. We just have to figure out how to get there without going airborne on every turn.

There's one more turn I want you to look at: the last turn in the third clip. It ends with a smile, so I know that you know that you were caught cheating. Yes it was a wicked bump. But your lazy pole swing lets your uphill ski and hip slide forward when you need the opposite to be happening. By driving both of your knees forward before the bump,
your upper body becomes committed to going right into it. Imagine how much more stable you would have been with your upper body coming to the inside of that bump instead of smack into it. You could have been there if you had used the touch as a cue to move the hips into the new turn.

So I'd like to see you try two more things in addition to the wider stance width: changing your pole touch and ten toes. For your pole touch I want you to reach more down the fall line (away from your downhill ski) with your pole touch and I want you to imagine a string between your elbow and your hips. As you reach downhill for your touch, have that elbow pull the inside hip across the skis and forward. While you're doing this, extend the uphill ankle (not just the knee - there are a whole separate set of exercises for this). For ten toes, I want you to have more patience with your skis in the fall line. Make sure all ten toes are pointed down the fall line before you turn out of it. This attacks the problem from two sides. Using the pole touch to move the hips inside should help to allow higher edge angles to build before the fall line and reduce the need to heel push. The mental patience to stay in the fall line longer should help reduce the urge to heel push when the skis aren't turning fast enough out of the fall line (i.e. in case the pole touch thing does not help enough). The result I want to see is the hips moving more into the new turn as you come out of the fall line of the previous turn. This will reduce some of the forward flex of the new inside boot and translate that into more lateral contact and move the point of maximum edge angle closer back to the fall line. With the hips moving more laterally and a wider stance, we should also see less of an up move at turn initiation. The bottom line from these changes will be an even smoother, more efficient flow.
post #8 of 23
great post Rusty!
post #9 of 23
Originally Posted by patprof66 View Post
great post Rusty!
You know, it's guys like Rusty that make Epic such a great place.
post #10 of 23
I'll give it to you straight: I will ski with you here, I will ski with you there, I will ski with you anywhere CUZ you have fun.

I like what Hellava said and what Rusty said but let me simplify it for you. You do not hit neutral before you start the next turn. Square them tips up and hit a good athletic stance before you begin the next turn.

Not hitting neutral will cause all the problems mentioned including the static hessitation. From an old inside ski forward position you cannot move the new inside hip into the new turn. You can only bank and twist.

Progressively square em up before beginning the next turn. Then lead with the new inside half (hip, knee, foot, ski). Your turns will be smooth as silk.
post #11 of 23
Originally Posted by therusty View Post
As much as we'd like to see offensive movements all the time, unless you are a Kool Aid carrying ski God we should expect to see some defensive movements pop up in these conditions.
Sounds like you need to try the Jell-O instead.
post #12 of 23
Great skiing bwpa. Thanks for posting the vid. Crud skiing is always worth a look.

I did not read the other posts because I saw patpro's post. TheRusty's MAs keep getting better and better. There's a bunch of stuff in his post that I will take out Friday where I hope to encounter powder then crud.

I think it's important to get the ski up on edge. When it's flat it gets deflected. Bottoming out at the end of the turn needs to be avoided. Transition becomes more important in crud - so spending more time in the turn ie 10 toes. (avoiding: "turning out of the fall line too quickly") I also like to add some speed if possible, that help edge angles.

This stuff is great.
post #13 of 23
Replace all that up motion with some down motion letting the skis cross under the body. This will improve your stability, balance and liven up the feet .... the rub is that you are going to have to ditch those phat noodles you are on and get a ski with some shape so that you don't have to do so much leg steering. i.e get some skis that let you learn and progress

Rustys post is way too long winded and there is no way in hell you need a wider stance. Why post a thousand words of detailed mumbo jumbo when a student has presented a clip of flowing balanced skiing.

Look at the whole picture Rusty not the freeze frame "every thing in the book" approach. It will make you a far better instructor trainer.

If that is crud I will steam flatten every twin tip sold.
post #14 of 23
Thanks for the kind words Paul, Pat and Slider.

And thanks to Oz for being honest. FWIW I do start with the whole picture and tried to present that first for those with short attention spans. I will continue to do long winded MA's when I get requests for them and I'm not repeating what's been said already. But you make an accurate assessment of my reliance on freeze frame and my need to become a far better instructor. Having different opinions posted helps me to get there. Thanks again.

I've skied with Bush. You'll get him to ditch those phat noodles when you can pry them out of his cold frostbitten fingers. And for Snowbird, that's crud. If the pow has tracks in it, it's crud. Hey - it is the "greatest snow on Earth". They're spoiled.
post #15 of 23
Thanks for the memories. I remember skiing snow like that with skinny skis. It looks like you are deliberately trying to scrub some speed here and there, skiing on top of most of it. You know, with skinny skis in that snow you would be doing the opposite, looking for more speed.
post #16 of 23
I didn't mean to bash you up too much rusty but IMHO the teacher needs to give the student one thing at a time and let them integrate it.
post #17 of 23
It's good for Therusty to get all the longwindedness out of his system here. No offense, but I just couldn't follow it, you are usually more easy to understand.
post #18 of 23
In rusty's defense-we're talking about giving solicited advice to a very high-level skier (who is an accomplished instructor himself)--there is a lot more room for 'kitchen-sink' analysis and advice here as Bushwhacker is more than up to taking it all in.

Pierre-I did want to hear a little more on how to square them hips and tips in a more athletic stance for crud skiing as I think that's what I fail to do in my own crud skiing (oh-and Bushwhacker's cold, Snowbird January crud is what we call around here 'epic powder'!).

post #19 of 23
Originally Posted by Man from Oz View Post
I didn't mean to bash you up too much rusty but IMHO the teacher needs to give the student one thing at a time and let them integrate it.

No worries. I have a thick head and I need this kind of feedback to get better. That's a good principle to follow for on snow lessons.
post #20 of 23
Originally Posted by MilesB View Post
It's good for Therusty to get all the longwindedness out of his system here. No offense, but I just couldn't follow it, you are usually more easy to understand.

Where did I lose you? In the past I've excerpted some animted GIFs to highlight the moves I'm talking about. That's a lot of extra work that I did not think would be necessary for Bush.
post #21 of 23
To be honest, once I saw that it was not even close to what a PMTS skier would do to improve, I started tuning out. Then I saw that I was only on the second paragraph, lol.

But it's OK, you don't have to please me all the time!
post #22 of 23
Heck, if that's all you wanted, then ...

Bush -> flex to release.
post #23 of 23
Originally Posted by therusty View Post
Heck, if that's all you wanted, then ...

Bush -> flex to release.
Succinctly put, tr.

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