Hintertux 04

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Hintertux 04

Postby tommy » Mon May 17, 2004 12:14 am

Just back from a week of skiing with Harald, Diana,Rich and 17 fellow campers in Hintertux.

This year Hintertux presented a very different face - a foot or more of fresh (but somewhat heavy) powder almost every day, and heavy mist/fog, visibility down to maybe 5-10m.

What amazed me most was that despite the fact that even those of the campers who were not very athletic, with very little previous experience in this type of difficult conditions, they coped quite well! No major problems linking turns, despite the skis sinking a foot or more into snow. On the other hand, most of the other people on the slopes (they were not that many, most non-campers took one run and went directly for after-ski for the rest of the day) struggled severely getting down, some even took their skis off and hiked back hundreds of meters uphill to take the lift back down! Even the various national race teams present left on some days after the first run.

Most of the campers skied 6h or more each day despite these heavy conditions. To me, that middle aged or older skiers are able to cope 6h + in poor visibility and heavy snow, on seriously pitched slopes, is telling a lot about the power of PMTS: those that even tried to steer or wedge their skis in these conditions inevidiently ended up exhausted in a deep snow pile!

The istruction was excellent as always, and the social side of the event was great, with people from a handful different countries attending.

I'll be there next year for sure again!

Cheers,
Tommy
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Postby giuseppe » Mon May 17, 2004 3:25 pm

hi tom,
very pleasure to meet you in this forum.
I agree completely with you.
cheers to you and Minna
giuseppe :D
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Postby *SCSA » Mon May 17, 2004 3:52 pm

So did you he/she/its make good turns? Did you have a good time? You he/she/its have any plans to come to the states next season? If so, make sure you let us know!

Be cool,
*SCSA
 

Postby tommy » Mon May 17, 2004 11:07 pm

Saluti Giuseppe,

it was nice to meet you, and Minna & I are looking forward to skiing with you again some day, perhaps in Bormio, where we try to go at least once a year!

Ciao,
Tommy
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Postby beppe_rm » Tue May 18, 2004 2:41 am

Hi Tommy,
keep in touch, so we can try to arrange to ski together in bormio.
ciao
giuseppe
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Postby piggyslayer » Tue May 18, 2004 9:44 am

From what Tommy is describing the attitude towards powder skiing seems to be different in Europe.

In US both East and West any powder conditions light or heavy act like a magnet bringing crowds of skiers and you really need to be fast to ski on any of it, fresh or even cut snow conditions disappear fast. I am not saying everyone in US knows how to ski powder, I am saying everyone is attracted by it.

I do not remember much about that from my growing up in Poland but I am a bit surprised because what I recall is total admiration for powder amongst skiers.

Tommy, do you see it a difference, or there is more to it and I am missing it?

I am very happy you had a great camp with interesting snow.
Piggy Slayer
let the piggy breathe
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Postby *SCSA » Tue May 18, 2004 3:40 pm

piggy,

Important that we get the terminology right.
"It's Milk! Milk, I tell ya."
*SCSA
 

Postby piggyslayer » Tue May 18, 2004 8:23 pm

I get the picture (and it is all white): above tree line, no visibility, add some bumps. Fresh snow is not the problem.
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Postby tommy » Thu May 20, 2004 1:46 am

Right, the visibility was of the kind where for instance after stopping on some slope you thought you were static, but in fact your skis were sliding away, accelerating in some direction, without yourself noticing! Quite an interesting experience!

When skiing after your instructor, you could only see the first 2-3 turns, then he/she disappeared. Hollering and Joddling was frequently the only way to locate your group, even though they were only 50m away.

It was very easy to get lost on the mountain. Unless you'd skied the pists previously, thereby having some sense of your whereabouts, you'd really have no way to know where to go. The only way to decend was to strictly follow the pist markers, going from marker to marker.

In these conditions you had to learn to "ski with your feet", since there was basically no visual feedback to rely on.

The poor visibility in conjunction with varying snow conditions (due to e.g. wind) where you'd be in foot of powder, and all of sudden enter a patch of ice, made skiing quite interesting. Great practice though!

--Tommy
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Postby jclayton » Fri May 21, 2004 2:58 pm

Reply to Piggyslayer,
there is a big tradition of pwder skiing in most big european resorts , St. Anton for example gets skied out very quickly after a storm and lots of people hike for their turns , I have seen more fat skis there than anywhere else . You can hire anything from Head ImM75 'd to Volkl Gotamas . Les Trois Valle?s and Val d'Isere are the same not to mention Verbier etc , you can buy books with detailed maps of off piste runs , some quite extreme . In many other resorts the "recreational" skier is predominant who doesn't like to ski in difficult conditions or with poor visibility . In many of these resorts the occaisional powder hound has free rein .
J.Clayton
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