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Ski Area Archtype

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

What is the archtypical skier at a given ski area? That would involve: foremost the personality; manner of skiing; style of dressing; skis and equiptment favored; and so on and so forth.

 

My hypothesis is that this varies by resort quite a bit, say JH and Deer Valley at polar opposites.

 

The archtypical skier may be the model for an "in-crowd" or not, can't say.

 

And, who or what may have contributed to the formation of this model?

post #2 of 22

Whitefish Mountain Resort -- telemark skier, backpack and necessary side country or back country equipment, layering system like Columbia, telescoping ski poles, more than likely a good deal of facial hair.

post #3 of 22

While Jackson may not be the magnet for luxury oriented posers tha DV is, it certainly isn't a polar opposite, but the fact that you think so suggests that you only ski at major resorts.

 

I'd say the polar opposite of DV would be a place like Turner Mountain MT, where there are virtually no amenities, and there is little to no grooming. The skiers there reflect the terrain rather than the amenities.

 

 

post #4 of 22

I lived in Vail for about 12 years (now in Switzerland: NEW mountains). My own 'generalist' comment was that Vail Tourists were the 'captains of industry' types (plus Drs. and Lawyers)... while Aspen was 'Hollywood and the wannabes' (or 'wannabeseennear'?)

 

Living here now, I think one might agree that the greater the 'reputation' of a ski area (vis-à-vis tourists), the poorer the quality of the average tourist on skis. Corollary: I'd avoid ski areas with the biggest ski schools (again Vail, how many hundreds of instructors?).

 

Here, the best fun are at ski areas one rarely hears of: 

Grimentz/St. Luc/Zinal (3 areas in the val d'Anniviers : http://www.swisswebcams.ch/english/webcam.php?wid=1081149461  )

Portes du Soleil: the largest interconnected Swiss-French area:

http://www.portesdusoleil.com/index_hiver.asp?lng=en

 

ZENmud

post #5 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by volantaddict View Post

While Jackson may not be the magnet for luxury oriented posers tha DV is, it certainly isn't a polar opposite, but the fact that you think so suggests that you only ski at major resorts.

 


I was surprised how affluent the clientele was at JH (I guess there's a reason they have a "Four Seasons" hotel there).  Yeah, there are a lot of hardcore rippers, but I saw a ton of families with kids, and plenty of uber-rich people that couldn't ski too well.

post #6 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZENmud View Post

I lived in Vail for about 12 years (now in Switzerland: NEW mountains). My own 'generalist' comment was that Vail Tourists were the 'captains of industry' types (plus Drs. and Lawyers)... while Aspen was 'Hollywood and the wannabes' (or 'wannabeseennear'?)

 

Living here now, I think one might agree that the greater the 'reputation' of a ski area (vis-à-vis tourists), the poorer the quality of the average tourist on skis. Corollary: I'd avoid ski areas with the biggest ski schools (again Vail, how many hundreds of instructors?).

 

Here, the best fun are at ski areas one rarely hears of: 

Grimentz/St. Luc/Zinal (3 areas in the val d'Anniviers : http://www.swisswebcams.ch/english/webcam.php?wid=1081149461  )

Portes du Soleil: the largest interconnected Swiss-French area:

http://www.portesdusoleil.com/index_hiver.asp?lng=en

 

ZENmud

Gruetzi, ZENmud. welcome!

While I agree with the assumption that greater the reputation - poorer the avg toruinst on skis qualtiy, I'd say that Portes du Soleil isn't really an unknown area...I'd expect it to be like the Dolomiti Superski...

 

post #7 of 22

Mt Bohemia THAT is the polar opposite of DV!

No grooming, instead of a lodge with a cafeteria, they offer Yurts and ramen noodles that you can cook yourself.

A one word description of the Bohemia skier is = Capable 

post #8 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZENmud View Post

 

Here, the best fun are at ski areas one rarely hears of: 

Grimentz/St. Luc/Zinal (3 areas in the val d'Anniviers : http://www.swisswebcams.ch/english/webcam.php?wid=1081149461  )

Portes du Soleil: the largest interconnected Swiss-French area:

http://www.portesdusoleil.com/index_hiver.asp?lng=en

 

ZENmud

I was at Portes du Soleil on Sunday and Verbier on Saturday. While Verbier without doubt has the superior terrain, the atmosphere at Portes du Soleil was much more inviting.

 

Verbier seemed to full of rich 20-something English spending daddy's money. Portes du Soleil was entirely locals (although my view is probably skewed having entered through Les Crosets rather than Avoriaz).

 

Polar opposites? Not quite, but certainly different.

 

post #9 of 22

I love the assumption that 'wealthy skiers at resorts' can't ski and the old scruffy guy at the little mid western hill CAN.

 

Nothing like blanket statement generalizations.

 

Here's my theory, if you are serious about skiing odds are you will spend as much time as possible at the area that offers the type of skiing you enjoy the most with income and job/family being the limiting factor. If you have a family and job that requires living near a major city like Boston, you'll ski east coast ski areas and travel a little (TOURISTS!!!). If you have a flexible living situation maybe you ski bum somewhere... guess what a 'ski area' with no amenities means NO JOBS. Dear Valley means making pretty good money and it's a quick trip to Snowbird.

 

The original question is kind of interesting, I do think that there are very strong regional styles that develop due to snow and terrain which influence ski gear which influences style. Money has nothing to do with any of this.

post #10 of 22

Like, the skiers at MRG are much more "core" than anyone who skis at Stowe.  

Whiteroom, you ski?

 

FWIW, I agree with your theory

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

I love the assumption that 'wealthy skiers at resorts' can't ski and the old scruffy guy at the little mid western hill CAN.

 

Nothing like blanket statement generalizations.

 

Here's my theory, if you are serious about skiing odds are you will spend as much time as possible at the area that offers the type of skiing you enjoy the most with income and job/family being the limiting factor. If you have a family and job that requires living near a major city like Boston, you'll ski east coast ski areas and travel a little (TOURISTS!!!). If you have a flexible living situation maybe you ski bum somewhere... guess what a 'ski area' with no amenities means NO JOBS. Dear Valley means making pretty good money and it's a quick trip to Snowbird.

 

The original question is kind of interesting, I do think that there are very strong regional styles that develop due to snow and terrain which influence ski gear which influences style. Money has nothing to do with any of this.

 

post #11 of 22

Psssst, notice the dripping with sarcasm?

Point is that skiers are more alike than not, no matter what mountain we call home.

 

Note:

I've skied Stowe and have a ton of respect for it as well as those like you who call it their home mountain.

 

post #12 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

I love the assumption that 'wealthy skiers at resorts' can't ski and the old scruffy guy at the little mid western hill CAN.

 

Nothing like blanket statement generalizations.

 

Here's my theory, if you are serious about skiing odds are you will spend as much time as possible at the area that offers the type of skiing you enjoy the most with income and job/family being the limiting factor. If you have a family and job that requires living near a major city like Boston, you'll ski east coast ski areas and travel a little (TOURISTS!!!). If you have a flexible living situation maybe you ski bum somewhere... guess what a 'ski area' with no amenities means NO JOBS. Dear Valley means making pretty good money and it's a quick trip to Snowbird.

 

The original question is kind of interesting, I do think that there are very strong regional styles that develop due to snow and terrain which influence ski gear which influences style. Money has nothing to do with any of this.

 

post #13 of 22

TC, you are an excellent example. You live where you do because you have a good business that allows you and your husband to live the way you want, you get time to do what you love and (I'm guessing here) probably have family and life-long friends in the area. Uprooting to be 'core' instead of a 'tourist' would be stupid. I'd say that's more 'core' than someone who moves to Alta for 1 season after college then moves to LA and never sees snow again.

post #14 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

Like, the skiers at MRG are much more "core" than anyone who skis at Stowe.  

Whiteroom, you ski?

 

FWIW, I agree with your theory

 


 

No, but there is a different subculture.

For one thing, there are many, many more telemark skiers at MRG.  And many more people who ski there almost exclusively.

 

I noticed is that telemarking is so mainstream at MRG that there are actually free-heelers there that can't ski.  (I heard a protracted husband-wife argument where the wife was complaining that skiing was too hard, and the husband said "well, <insert name> suggested you'd have an easier time and enjoy it more on alpine bindings."  "He doesn't know what he's talking about." 

post #15 of 22

 Quote:

Originally Posted by mdf View Post

I noticed is that telemarking is so mainstream at MRG that there are actually free-heelers there that can't ski.  (I heard a protracted husband-wife argument where the wife was complaining that skiing was too hard, and the husband said "well, <insert name> suggested you'd have an easier time and enjoy it more on alpine bindings."  "He doesn't know what he's talking about." 

rotfl.  Great Story.

 

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 

Of course there's truth to what VA says. However, for the sake of the OP's hypothesis, and the polar opposites example is not the point of the post, it's more interesting to compare the differences in style and persona of skiers. Otherwise it falls into the comparison of judgemental lablels of ski areas and people there: good/bad, big/small, rich/poor which are boring distinctions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by volantaddict View Post

While Jackson may not be the magnet for luxury oriented posers tha DV is, it certainly isn't a polar opposite, but the fact that you think so suggests that you only ski at major resorts.

 

I'd say the polar opposite of DV would be a place like Turner Mountain MT, where there are virtually no amenities, and there is little to no grooming. The skiers there reflect the terrain rather than the amenities.

 

 


And yes, I don't travel, unfortunately, and only ski at one large resort. Thus the query, inviting those of you that have the knowlege base to illustrate the point with details.
 

 

Out here, to follow up on the tele-character, free-heelers are a little more likely to be low-key in dress, less show-offy, very athletic, and nature and avi savy due to their mobility providing B.C. acess.


Edited by davluri - 4/17/2009 at 03:34 pm GMT
post #17 of 22
Thread Starter 

I'm quoting a racecoach buddy, and neither of us really feel this way in general, but one day he asked me, like a real question about words originating in a scandinavian or other language: "do you know what telemark means?" answer: "make your friends wait!" heh, heh.

 

But then another similar from a tele-skiing woman friend: "Do you know what Randonee means?" answer: "Can't tele!" 

 

I swear, both these comments did occur on the hill. I'm not making it up. Different ideas of the soul skier

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Lee View Post

 Quote:

rotfl.  Great Story.

 

It's a slight digression, but staying with the tele thing, is skiing tele a statement? given how much harder it is to do on high angle gnarly lines, could the statement be: not only am I skiing this, I am doing so with the handicap of fore and aft instability, so I'm _____________ (fill in statement).

 

post #18 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

TC, you are an excellent example. You live where you do because you have a good business that allows you and your husband to live the way you want, you get time to do what you love and (I'm guessing here) probably have family and life-long friends in the area. Uprooting to be 'core' instead of a 'tourist' would be stupid. I'd say that's more 'core' than someone who moves to Alta for 1 season after college then moves to LA and never sees snow again.


Allright. I misunderstood the question. I wasn't thinking at all to "ski skills" but to people behaviour...

Big name areas need crowds to survive and the average "quality" of a ever increasing crowd isn't really high, IMHO. The bigger the crowd, the bigger the percentage of "bad apples"...

As an example, when still to become famous areas were relatively unknown, almost everyone knew almost everyone else. Theft was unkown of. Then the name started to become big and attract crowds, ski became more popular (thanks to Tomba, I shall say) and people with different behaviour and not enough respect for others started to come...hence theft was brought into the equation. This is just an example.

Compare it with a small area...one can still feel "safe" leaving his/her skis outside the lodge to take a quick (or not) lunch and still be confident to find the skis again. Heck, a friend left his sons skis hanging all afternoon near the base station of one of the main lifts, in the middle of the town literally, and still found 'em at the end of the day.

 

This said, I fit your description 97% (the 3 % being obvious) and I never thought myself as "tourist", rather as "mountain gypsy", someone who likes to ski different resorts on day trips and is not "faithful" to one only. Probably it helps that nearly 97% of the resort available to me for a day trip are in the 2-3.5 hrs drive, from Val d'Aosta to Trentino Alto Adige and the area where I spent my week long ski vacation is 4 hrs away (by bus).

Again, you're spot on, the limiting factor is my salary/my family...and now age...driving fatigue is kicking in, and I no longer enjoy to go far for day trips. I'd rather get tired skiing, than driving to a palce to ski

(most of the timesI go "solo"...)

Of course "locals" or "core" think of me as "tourist", a necessary evil to their beloved mountain survival...

So, I don't know, I steer away from places like Cortina and Cervinia, but I go to places like Champoluc in the west, Madesimo in Lombardy, Tonale in the East (it's on the border between Lombardy and Trentino), Colfosco in the Dolomites, Engadin (St. Moritz/Corvatsch) on Switzerland...

Some are "core" some aren't...But I do remain the same guy throughout. ;-)

post #19 of 22

 Quote:

Originally Posted by davluri View Post

 

It's a slight digression, but staying with the tele thing, is skiing tele a statement? given how much harder it is to do on high angle gnarly lines, could the statement be: not only am I skiing this, I am doing so with the handicap of fore and aft instability, so I'm _____________ (fill in statement). 

 

Dunno about that, I just do it 'cause chicks seem to dig it.  An unforeseen and unintended side-effect is that snowboarders will also chat you up.  

 

post #20 of 22

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

TC, you are an excellent example. You live where you do because you have a good business that allows you and your husband to live the way you want, you get time to do what you love and (I'm guessing here) probably have family and life-long friends in the area. Uprooting to be 'core' instead of a 'tourist' would be stupid. I'd say that's more 'core' than someone who moves to Alta for 1 season after college then moves to LA and never sees snow again.


Gee thanks.  For once I'm used as a good Example instead of a "how not to".

 

I'll buy you that beer at Stowe again in December, eh?

post #21 of 22

Mt. Baker Archetype:

 

 Duct tape.  Backpack with probe and shovel poking out.   Two day old beard. (Not the women, however.)  Big, fat skis.  Free heel or not.  Looks like he/she means business

 

This person likes to huck cliffs, ski powder most of the time, ski the OB, ski only off piste.

 

The old ones don't huck cliffs anymore and they have a full beard.

post #22 of 22

Everybody in Aspen skis like this! 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZCqWxEBBpg

 

Does everybody that skis Squaw, live in the Bay, drive a Bmer and compete in the bumps?

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