TomB. I didn't feel like wading through 9 pages of this right now. I will later so that I can get more out of this. But I have a question for you (and feel free to retort, anyone, I'm just exploring a little).
You stated that the cross under situation in powder is similar to the same situation on hard pack. That there should be no difference. My stand would be that although the movement might be similar or even identical, but the application is totally different. Tom, would you think that our POSITION, with relation to the hill, in both instances is identical? I only want to talk about this because I'm Curious George right now.
On hard-pack, we tend to build up "gravity" forces throughout the turn. The best way to monitor these and control speed is to make a round turn, where we finish with our skis facing across the hill. Now when we cross under, our center is projected Down hill, or toward the path of our next turn, whichever applies.
In powder, our skis will tend to "float" a little and "look" for a plane of existence that is more level than the pitch we are skiing on. The platform you were discussing isn't at the same degree of pitch as the mountainside.
Also, the platform we build when skiing powder can only give back to us what is put into it. Try straight-lining through the pow and let the skis find level... now bounce once. Your "platform" has just disintigrated and changed for an instant. It's not a constant. Groomed hard-pack, on the other hand, is much more reliable. A skier can put everything they've got into the snow and it will simply give it all back, with more where that came from. It's surface can be counted on and trusted, and the skis will glide across the same pitch as the mountainside.
So our tactic in powder, as opposed to hardpack, changes from speed control via edging and turn shape to speed control via pressure control and turn shape. When cross-under happens, we can move more intuitively... not so much downhill, while simultaneous with a deliberate rotation of the legs. Because I'm standing more upright, and not relying so much on edging movements, it's really closer to doing low-level, skidded parallel turns than it is to carving on groomers. I realize you never mentioned carving, but there is a difference between high end Pow skiing and high-end Cord trenching.
All the elements are still there, but the blend and intent of those elements are only barely related.
:[ November 21, 2002, 07:57 PM: Message edited by: Notorious Spag ]