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Skiing chopped-up powder - Page 7

post #181 of 199
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelA View Post
Wow, what's all this talk about 'suck it up', 'speed up' and 'power through it' all about?
Hi Michael,

What I've gleaned from the MAGGOT's (and other's) advice is this:

Don't be afraid to point into the fall line. Don't be afraid to pick up some speed. Give into gravity, and let your momentum do the work for you. MAGGOT demonstrated great insight - he wrote of a "switch" going off in your head. It's a switch in perspective: from just making it down the hill to skiing it; from being at the mercy of conditions to making the most of them; from just surviving to living.

A story by Ernest Hemingway illustrates that switch: "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber."

I'm very well aware that defensive skiing is one of my great weaknesses. I get in my own way, making skiing way more difficult than it needs to be.

As for bump strategies...I've never had any intensive formal training, but have tried to absorb what I've read at Epic and elsewhere. I started to get the hang of them about two weeks ago, starting off just traversing across the fall line, letting my legs absorb the up-and-down of the terrain, then picking progressively steeper lines down.
post #182 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
skiing time will be the only thing that will get you there.
This is the only real answer. BwiPA for the win!

Ultimately it's about standing on your skis and pointing them down the hill. It is difficult at first, but with experience your mind learns to apply your body to deal with varying conditions, even as your body develops the strength to apply that experience.
post #183 of 199
Learning proper technique on groomed runs before skiing crud helps a great deal. Once you have the technique then take it into the crud. No doubt that speed helps with blasting through stuff. But falling at high speeds can lead to injury so its a good idea to be well balanced and able to make good turns on groomed before blasting in crud. You don't want to put the cart before th horse.
post #184 of 199
Quote:
Don't be afraid to point into the fall line. Don't be afraid to pick up some speed. Give into gravity, and let your momentum do the work for you. -Acrophobia
Don't forget you're going to ski moguls this weekend!

PhilT: "yeah that's right Acro, just point 'em down"
Acro: "straight down there!?"
PhilT: "yep the moguls will take care of it. see you at the bottom"
Acro: "Phil, what equations do you think about in the bumps?"
post #185 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post
Don't forget you're going to ski moguls this weekend!

PhilT: "yeah that's right Acro, just point 'em down"
Acro: "straight down there!?"
PhilT: "yep the moguls will take care of it. see you at the bottom"
Acro: "Phil, what equations do you think about in the bumps?"
Pain = (Firmness of mogul * Depth of mogul ^ Length of mogul field)/Skill of skier.
post #186 of 199
Let's not drag Hemingway into this.
post #187 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by spindrift View Post
Heh - but getting to that spot pretty much is. And reasonably steep by most peeps reckoning...
Also about the worst snow on the hill if I am seeing the photo correctly. isn't that just to skiers right just below Lower Int'l?
post #188 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilT View Post
Pain = (Firmness of mogul * Depth of mogul ^ Length of mogul field)/Skill of skier.
Well, that denominator explains why skiing moguls causes me infinite pain... :
post #189 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post
Also about the worst snow on the hill if I am seeing the photo correctly. isn't that just to skiers right just below Lower Int'l?
Yes. Quality on the day I took the pic was very nice. Not so much the next day...
post #190 of 199
Acrophobia,
You might enjoy The Centered Skier by Denise McCluggage which by now I'm sure is quite out of print but probably readily available used. It's not a technique book really but a thinking/approach book more from an eastern perspective. There's some good stuff in there though she does kind of drive me up a wall with excessive verbiage/stories and repetition but it's a bit of the times-late 70's.
Quote:
Pain = (Firmness of mogul * Depth of mogul ^ Length of mogul field)/Skill of skier. philT
good one
post #191 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilT View Post
I think most of those comments were directed towards crud. I'm not sure anyone is suggesting that acro "power through" moguls. They are kind of unpowerthroughable
Phil nailed it.


I didn't mention moguls anywhere in my post. I'm not really a fan of skiing moguls. They're all right, but I prefer to seek out steep places where I can make bigger smoother turns.

To each their own, but acrophobia, try a bit of everything. Women ussually tend to favor the finesse method more than the power method, but give em both a try.

A disclaimer though, the power method requires more strength, so it would probably be easier to pick up the finesse method quickly, without getting tired.

Its not really an either/or but more of a "how much of each". Any good skier should be able to do both. If nothing else, being able to point it out of the end of runs will save you a lot of time poling and skating on catwalks.
post #192 of 199
OK I'll buy that. The discussion had migrated into surviving Alpentalian Bumps in Springtime and I got the sense people were overly equating the skiing of Chopped-Up Powder with the skiing of Slushy Spring Bumps.

Finesse isn't really a requirement in tough snow conditions, but it helps a lot by making it much easier to initiate turns. Finesse is a core part of Bumps skiing.

I agree with women favoring finesse over power in skiing. I actually prefer teaching women because they're more interested in learning exactly how a thing is done (and done well). Guys tend to just plow on ahead trying to force turns using only haphazard, partial interpretations of what I suggest they try.

.ma
post #193 of 199
Thread Starter 
MAGGOT - I'm a cyclist, so I've got a bit of power in my legs. I actually get out of breath before I get any leg burn.

MichaelA - bumps skiing is one of my goals for next season. It's difficult; but looks so good (and probably feels so good!) when done well. As for "knowing" how a thing is done - the trick in skiing is getting a movement out of the prefrontal cortex and into the basal ganglia.

I'm grateful to you both and to everyone who's commented helpfully on this thread. I owe all of you a beer, and will make good on the offer, given the opportunity!



post #194 of 199
There were large completely unbumped pitches off of chair one yesterday.
post #195 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilT View Post
There were large completely unbumped pitches off of chair one yesterday.
They actually decided to groom:
post #196 of 199
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilT View Post
There were large completely unbumped pitches off of chair one yesterday.
Are you going back tomorrow?

You know, after Timberline's vast expanses of bland smoothness, I could almost go for some bumps...
post #197 of 199
I think I know exactly what the poster is describing. Maybe I can explain and tell me if I am correct.

The first few hours of the day, a lot of intermediate runs have a couple of steep sections. At these points, less experienced skiers start to really take slow sharp turns and that layer of powder, if it wasn't groomed/packed, starts to turn into ruts and very bumpy uneven looking snow when you are going slow and stare at it.

So the more people that hit these steeps sections slow way down, they make sharp hard turns rutting up the snow making it "bumping appearing". And indeed it is, but it usually isn't that hard packed and some force will flatten it out, which is what many people say about speed and weight.

What you do is the same thing they do, you look right over the front of your skis staring at all of the bumps and the steep sections and the fear sets in and you want to go back to the lodge and grab some hot cocoa if you ever make it back alive. So you work your way down doing sharp turns on your edges in the same ruts making them worse.

Of course, during this time, people are flying by you at warp speed and you wonder why they make it look so easy. But you need to really watch as somebody who goes fast as they hit some of these piles/ruts what their skis actually do. They plow right through the stuff and are not even thrown off balance or up in the air, because it isn't a terrain bump, it is just piled snow.

I've been there.

I ski with friends who are excellent, and of course, while you are working your way slowly through the muck/bumpy looking fluff, they are already back at the lift line wondering if you are stuck in the trees.

I then asked them, how the heck do you guys go so fast through there and not get affected by the rutted up snow and bumpy looking stuff.

Their response:

1) Go fast! Much faster. This is entirely fear based. They just said, hey, forget the fear and go fast, try it.
2) Look downhill at your line and ignore the scary looking rutted slop of snow..obviously you are going to see it, but don't stare right over your skis waiting for a wreck to happen.
3) Be ready for some bumps and keep your legs flexed and ready to maintain balance.
4) Did we tell you to go faster and just fly/plow right through that stuff!?!?!?!

So I started to just say, ok, screw it, I AM GOING FOR IT, LIVE OR DIE!!!

Bonzai!!!!!

Anyway, what I found out:

1) Speed is indeed your friend. Since we are guys and 5'10" in height average upwards of 200lbs...our speed and body weight made nothing of those scary looking rutted snow sections. You will literally plow through them and they hardly affect you at all often.
2) The ride got much smoother and easier on my body and legs. I was much less fatigued. Doing all of those sharp turns in that crap is very hard work and time consuming. Going faster is actually much easier on the body/legs and your stamina with descent form/technique.
3) Watch out for the big bumps that are really bumps, those will throw you for a loop, ignore the small stuff, watch out for those big ones that can really get your airborn so you can try to avoid those or be ready for a small jump and get airbon.
4) Carve larger sweeping turns while doing this. Don't dig in the edges like on hard groomed runs that is required.


Much better now, and I am not exhausted after a simple intermediate run that gets rutted up..and I can now keep up with my friends and have more confidence/fun.
post #198 of 199
I would second that last bit and relate it to the earlier advice about skiing chop as you would powder, softer bumps and soft snow. Narrow your stance a bit so that your feet are doing the same thing, do not dig in your edges, let your skis smear the end of the turn for spead control, keep your legs loose to absorb irregularities.
post #199 of 199
I only recently got over this fear myself, the fear of crud. I think the people who are saying it is in the head are correct to a point.

when you can rip a powerful, aggressive, clean turn on the groomers, this crud thing becomes nothing.

so, if your technique is there, you don't even look down or notice you are entering a crud feild when you get over that fear. you begin to seek out large fluffy piles of snow just because you know you can. you start playing with the terrain instead of shrinking from it, and it becomes joyous!

being timid is an invitation to crash...to bury your tips in a pile, (which was my worst fear, until it happened and i was able to just lift them right out mid turn like it never happened)

if you ski conservatively in this stuff or in ANY stuff for that matter..(BF has a wonderful term for that, he says "you gotta stop skiing like a sphincter.") it can be disasterous.

be confident, be strong, be this way on groomers and it will translate to crud, and you will ski it effortlessly.

moguls on the other hand....I cant ski. I dont wanna ski them either, but I suppose i need to learn to increase my 'range'.
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