Bump Lines

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Bump Lines

Postby jbotti » Wed Mar 28, 2018 6:25 pm

Most of us have noticed over the past few years just how many intermediate skiers are skiing more difficult terrain. I don't like skiing rockered skis but they have been game changers for those that pivot and or pivot from the back seat. I wasn't skiing 20 years ago much less skiing bumps but what everyone says is that first, good bump lines got destroyed by snowboarders and then more recently they have been destroyed by intermediate skiers on rockered skis. My two favorite bump lines at my home mountain get some lines that no good skier would ever produce. There is no rhythm whatsoever to these lines and I often finish skiing those lines feeling I never got in any flow. Then one day recently I started skiing close to the rope line or on another run on the left or right rock line. Wow, none of the mediocre skiers ski these lines and the bumps are made by all good skiers. And these lines have rhythm, flow and and can be skied faster. So much fun.

So if you find yourself skiing a bump run with a line that makes no sense look for a line that poor skiers would avoid and you will likely find a much better, more fun line.

Not sure why it has taken me so long to figure this out. It certainly beats cursing the bastards that cut this shitty line!!
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby Jwthe2nd » Wed Mar 28, 2018 7:29 pm

You are right that less competent skiers and boarders have changed the surfaces of bump runs. The bump shapes have become steeper, troughs are deeper, and the alignment of the bumps more irregular and erratic. Definitely much more difficult to ski them smoothly and even more difficult to ski them fast and gracefully. However, it can be seen as a challenge to accomplish just that and will be very rewarding if one succeeds. Less fun if one fails.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby CO_Steve » Wed Mar 28, 2018 8:39 pm

Going to the edge negates some of the effect of the traverse skiers.

I remember in my last days as a Tahoe skier (late 90's) bumps in the center of the run would have a 90 degree V set 45 degrees to the fall line on the back of the bump. This wedge would be 6-12" tall or more. Come over the shoulder and you would slam down into the trough. There were always places the intermediates wouldn't go. Under the old Red Dog chair. Of course those were the size of VWs.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby blackthorn » Wed Mar 28, 2018 9:02 pm

JB - great observations. Very much agree. :)
Having said that, good carving snowboarding looks great. I presume most are just railing, but some can genuinely carve.
In general the line that most snowboarders take is just so different from the skiers line, and they ruin the surface with their scraping. This leads to even greater need for the essentials.
But then the line of proper carved round turns are very different from the line that TTS skiers generally take.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby A.L.E » Wed Mar 28, 2018 11:40 pm

It feels like we are seeing less snowboarders as the years go on.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby HeluvaSkier » Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:37 am

I've always thought it would be fun to get a group of good [pmts] skiers together to create an 'ideal' bump line simply by skiing it a bunch of times repeatedly. Obviously this would have to be done at a quiet mountain, but in the right snow conditions, in a low-traffic area, it would be easily doable.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby skijim13 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:24 am

At my mountain the bumps are seeded for zipper line bump skiing and then skied on by skiers that skid down the bumps very fast. These bumps are usually had ice very close together with no real line except the zipper line. Lorie and I were at the PMTS bump camp and find the black diamond bumps at the basin much easier to ski. We get very little bump practice at our mountain because I know if I ski these I will not be using the PMTS movements I learned in the camp and will resort to my old movements. This weekend it will be warm and they should soften up to make them better.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby skiffie » Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:01 am

skijim13 wrote:At my mountain the bumps are seeded for zipper line bump skiing and then skied on by skiers that skid down the bumps very fast. These bumps are usually had ice very close together with no real line except the zipper line. Lorie and I were at the PMTS bump camp and find the black diamond bumps at the basin much easier to ski. We get very little bump practice at our mountain because I know if I ski these I will not be using the PMTS movements I learned in the camp and will resort to my old movements. This weekend it will be warm and they should soften up to make them better.


I've always wondered if you can ski the zipper line with PMTS movements. My impression from reading some old posts including by Jay is that the answer is no?
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby LiquidFeet » Thu Mar 29, 2018 1:52 pm

I attended a Donna Weinbrecht mogul camp at Killington two weekends ago.

Tons of actual snow, with bumps all over the moutain.
There were sometimes visible direct lines when the pitch was not steep, but not always.
The steep pitches with big bumps mostly lacked any visible lines, at least to my eye.
However, our instructors could take a direct line easily down these irregularly clumped large bumps.
Downhill sides were typically cut off... vertical walls of nothingness.

Donna skied behind me shouting "Hop"!
Hop and pivot, land, absorb and back-pedal. Feet together.
Fast feet. Face downhill with upper body, flick wrists, arms quiet.
For speed control, spend more time on the wall of the trough, with skis traveling diagonally across the snow (make friction your friend).
All the demos were done in the direct line, straight down the fall line between bumps.

Initiation strategy: shorten the new inside leg, lift or lighten its tail, turn that foot, roll that knee.
Rest of turn strategy: land on new outside foot, and collapse at end of turn, pull feet back, press tips down while repeating the former.

This was not PMTS type skiing. Just thought I'd report to let people know what's being taught out there.
Last edited by LiquidFeet on Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:43 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby dewdman42 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:22 pm

skiffie wrote:
skijim13 wrote:We get very little bump practice at our mountain because I know if I ski these I will not be using the PMTS movements I learned in the camp and will resort to my old movements. This weekend it will be warm and they should soften up to make them better.


I've always wondered if you can ski the zipper line with PMTS movements. My impression from reading some old posts including by Jay is that the answer is no?


Of course you can use PMTS in the bumps! What specifically do you think is not compatible? In fact PMTS is in many ways more compatible with zipper line bump skiing then any other method out there, because of the simple fact that you flex to release and transition your CoM across while flexed. This is a key aspect of skiing the bumps well, especially in the zipper and directly opposite of what you will hear at your local PSIA ski school.

Do you tip your skis in the zipper line? Of course! You can't make a ski turn unless you're on your edges! Most likely you're not edge locked carving, but brushed carving. Of course it works!

Do you use counteraction and counter balance in the bumps? absolutely...

I'm not seeing any incompatibilities, nor do I experience in my own skiing any.

The backside vertical drop of bumps is of no consequence whatsoever if you engage your edges and brush carve the top and sides/shoulders of the bumps.

I will say this. For any skier...PMTS or not...skiing deep and treacherous bumps as have been described, is not easy. It requires a lot of things to be happening correctly and the timing to be perfect in order to be in sync with the snow surface that is changing radically underneath you. Its hard enough to master brush carving and the bullet proof short radius turn, much less to have the size and timing of everything exactly matched up to the 3 dimensional terrain passing underneath you, and it becomes even harder if that 3D terrain is irregular with the zipper line non-existant or changing all over the place with closeouts. The simple truth is that sometimes you're going to miss the bump shoulder or whatever and you will probably need to do the dreaded pivot to stay on the zipper. Mind you, I feel a great many skiers out there OVER-use the dreaded pivot, and many bump skiers in particular are missing huge opportunities to brush carve their way through even some very deep trenches with much more control, finesse, balance and grace then hopping and pivoting your way down. The dreaded pivot should be reserved for as a correction device only, most of the time, BPST brushed turns are possible in even the deepest and knurliest bumps. The key is getting the timing right. If you miss the timing, well then...do what you must.

Me personally I find that after I hit a couple bump runs, my PMTS-style groomer performance improves simply because I was forced to flex-release every single turn and eliminate any and all of the dreaded POP.

I will also say that in bumps with poor zipper lines, you have even less of an excuse not to use PMTS or to resort to the dreaded pivot, because you basically can't follow a zipper so its of no consequence, just choose a larger rounder turn shape, and find place to execute smooth BPST brushed turns, they are all over the place in there.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby ToddW » Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:07 pm

42,

I think Jim was saying that at this point in his development as a skier he would be overterrained on those bumps and would revert to old habits. I respect that candor and honest self evaluation. He isn’t asserting that PMTS isn’t the best way to ski that run for those with sufficiently developed PMTS skills like 501 or Geoffda or Jasper or Walter.

Those ugly ice bumps will still be there waiting when he’s progressed enough to tackle them with bulletproof PMTS movements.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby dewdman42 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:26 pm

I don't disagree ToddW, I was more responding to the assertion by a few that PMTS doesn't work in the bumps. It does! It is, however, more difficult without question.

As to whether someone should avoid skiing them until they have PMTS absolutely mastered, that's a personal decision, but I don't think its necessary to completely throw the baby out with the bathwater and avoid PMTS altogether in order to ski some bumps with friends.

You can still flex to release! and I view this as fundamentally one of the most important things a PMTS skier should remember to do in the bumps always...always, always..

You can still use the phantom move though truthfully, if its not programmed in for quick tempos, lt may not always happen, but it can and should be attempted.

You can still counteract!

You can still transfer weight to the stance ski!

etc....

Where is the discrepancy I think is that some seem to feel that in order to survive the bumps they may need to throw in some pivots or twisting of the skis that they ordinarily would not be doing if they were being strict with their PMTS. That very well may be in some cases, but they don't have to throw out the rest of PMTS along with that. Even in the iciest of zippers.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby skiffie » Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:49 pm

dewdman42 wrote:I don't disagree ToddW, I was more responding to the assertion by a few that PMTS doesn't work in the bumps. It does! It is, however, more difficult without question.


I meant like a zipper line bump skier... not the bumps themselves! :mrgreen: This is the relevant bit of Jay's that I was referring to (emphasis mine):

First, if you want to ski the trough zipper-line, using the movements that you see competition bump skiers use, that is not PMTS technique. The movements are different and the recommended line would be different. In fact, competition bumps are artificially created for the line and technique that you see competition skiers using. With that said, here are a few comments on PMTS technique for bumps. At Mt. Hood and in S. America, I sometimes jump into the artificial bumps that are used for training and enjoy them, but it is clear that I am skiing them differently. I choose to ski them as I would real mountain bumps as encountered in all mountain skiing.


I assumed that was what Jim had meant by 'the bumps are seeded for zipper line bump skiing' :)
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby dewdman42 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:57 pm

skiffie wrote:
dewdman42 wrote:I don't disagree ToddW, I was more responding to the assertion by a few that PMTS doesn't work in the bumps. It does! It is, however, more difficult without question.


I meant like a zipper line bump skier... not the bumps themselves! :mrgreen: This is the relevant bit of Jay's that I was referring to (emphasis mine):

First, if you want to ski the trough zipper-line, using the movements that you see competition bump skiers use, that is not PMTS technique. The movements are different and the recommended line would be different. In fact, competition bumps are artificially created for the line and technique that you see competition skiers using. With that said, here are a few comments on PMTS technique for bumps. At Mt. Hood and in S. America, I sometimes jump into the artificial bumps that are used for training and enjoy them, but it is clear that I am skiing them differently. I choose to ski them as I would real mountain bumps as encountered in all mountain skiing.


I assumed that was what Jim had meant by 'the bumps are seeded for zipper line bump skiing' :)


Again, the insinuation is that PMTS is not appropriate for zipper line bump skiing and I strongly disagree. I also don’t agree that all zipper line bumpers ski in a non pmts manner. You are correct though that many do hop and pivot their way down which is definitely not pmts.
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Re: Bump Lines

Postby B.Mulligan » Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:35 am

1. Best bump lines in the east are either narrow natural snow lines that run at about 28 degrees of pitch or narrow lift line runs. Liquid Feet , at Killington, I think the run off the north ridge triple, Powerline-formerly west glade- is the one of the best and most overlooked bumps runs at the Big K. Holds nice snow and the high north exposure keeps it wintery when all else has gone to seed.
I'd also put what they're now calling 'Stitch Line' that runs under the Needle Eye's Quad as one of the best bump line, and funky terrain lines in the east.

2. Out west, best bumps are in Colorado. I haven't skied them, all, but I love those runs at Copper on the Alpine chair and Those big, shelf bumps that run under and to the skiers right of lift one at Loveland. But, Colorado bumps really are a different game than VT-NH shark teeth.

3. We've all see the Reilly, Lorenz, Berger, Geillie, Japanese skier of the week, tight line mogul ripping. Technical mogul ripping is certainly something to aspire too.
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