Friday, September 23, 2016


What to expect when you ski for the first time


The cool mountain air breathing into your face as you speed down a beautiful snow covered mountain is one of the most fun and exhilarating experiences out

there. Skiing is an incredibly addictive sport and one that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Skiing for the first time can be a scary and daunting experience, but get it right and you’ll soon fall in love. We’ve come up with a simple guide for first time skiers on what to expect when skiing for the first time.

It’s going to be challenging
At first, it’s going to be challenging. Unless you have ice-skated or rollerbladed in the past, skiing is a completely different experience to anything you might have done before but will be an amazing experience. Once you get started, you’ll soon start to relax and enjoy yourself.  The more you ski, the more your confidence will grow and the easier it will become. Remember, everyone feels the same when they ski for the first time, so you're not alone. 

Ski Lessons

When skiing for the first time, it is highly recommended to take some lessons. How about with Meribel ski school? Even if you just take one to get yourself familiar with the basic skills and manoeuvres needed, it’s going to greatly enhance your experience. It’s most likely that you’ll have a group lesson, with people that you probably don’t know, so don’t feel embarrassed. It can be easy to get intimidated when having lessons with strangers. Everyone is in the same boat as you, with everyone focusing on themselves so no one will be watching you. Usually in the first lesson you’ll learn how to turn, slow down, stop and how to ride the ski lifts. Lessons are usually half a day, so you’ll have the morning or afternoon to practise on your own with friends and family. You might only want one lesson to get the basic skills, or you might prefer to have more, it’s going to depend on how quickly you pick it up and what you want from the lessons. If you really want to learn quickly, having private lessons can be an advantage. The instructor is going to be focusing only on you, allowing you to progress quicker than if you were in a group.

You’ll be in the beginner’s area

When you’re a beginner you’re going to be starting in the beginners area, especially if you’re with a ski instructor. This will have a lot of flat area and a very small nursery slope, as well as a simple ski or button lift to take you to the top. It’s great for practise and to help get your confidence up. Even if you’re not going to have lessons this is still a great place to practise at the start before going onto the bigger slopes.

You might lose your balance

One fact that you need to remember and understand before you start is that you’re going to lose your balance! It’s par for the course with skiing; everyone falls. The key is just to laugh and get straight back up. It doesn't hurt because the snow is soft and you won't be going that fast. Part of the fun is watching your friends and family fall. It’s important to remember that it’s going to happen, even when you get more confident and advanced. Sitting in your cosy chalet at night talking about the laughs you had when everyone was stuggling to stand is one of the best parts of the experience! Just learn how to quickly get back up and have fun! 

Don’t get intimidated

When skiing for the first time, you’re going to be slow and shaky at first. What can become really annoying is when you’re taking your time going down a slope and a small 6 year old child whizzes past you at breakneck speed. It can be very frustrating when you see just how young these children are and how good they are! Don’t let them put you off and just keep going. They ski all year so it’s what you’d expect!

Ski boots will feel different at first

Ski boots will feel quiet different to your normal shoes and might take a bit of time to get used to. When getting fitted for snow boots at the ski hire it’s important to remember that they’re not going to be the most comfortable in the world, but your foot should be snug and not move about too much. If by the end of the day your foot is in crushing pain, go and change them. Excruciating pain is definitely not right and you need to make sure you have reasonably comfortable ski boots to have an enjoyable time. It’s also important to remember that it's not the easiest to walk in ski boots! If you have to walk to the slopes in your boots leave plenty of time if you’re a beginner, as it’s quite difficult, especially if the roads are icy and you're not use to them. If possible it is a good idea to carry your ski boots and change into them when you’re at your destination. This might not always be possible, so just be aware it might take you a bit longer that you planned. Over time, you should get use to it. 

Quick Tips

  • Don’t wear cotton or nylon clothes, as these absorb water, so make sure you have good waterproofs. Waterproof trousers and a waterproof jacket/coat are good and wear warm thermals underneath. It’s not going to be any fun if you end up getting soaking wet by the end of the day. You want to be cosy and warm not wet and cold.
  • Get good gloves. There’s no point taking your favourite knitted mittens onto the slopes, as these will soon become soaking and your hands will be freezing. Good waterproof gloves are a must. Try to get ones that won’t let in any snow,  long gloves or ones that can be tightened are good.
  • Ski passes are very expensive, but usually they will offer access to the whole of the resorts terrain. For a first time skier this is going to be unnecessary as it’s unlikely you’re going to be going on the black and red runs! It’s better to go for a less expensive ski pass with limited access. It’s a good idea to ask your instructor what they recommend. If by the end of the holiday you’re getting more confident and want to experience some different slopes, you can always upgrade your pass
  • Take lip balm and sun cream with you. It’s odd to think that on a mountain where it’s freezing that you might get sunburnt but often it is very sunny. The snow also will reflect the sun back up to your face, making it very easy to get burnt, so remember to apply sun cream to your face and behind your ears. Lip balm is also essential to stop getting dry, cracked lips.
  • Don’t be pressured into going onto bigger slopes by your family or friends who are more advanced. It takes a long time to build up your confidence but only takes seconds to shatter it, so resist and only go where you’re confident. An easy slope for them might not be easy for you, so stick to what you know and build your confidence gradually.
  • Because it can be very sunny, it’s advisable to take sunglasses or skiing goggles onto the slopes. The sun reflects on the snow to make it incredibly bright and difficult to look at, so having sunglasses handy can be a real blessing.

Remember, it's all about having fun!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

How to Stomp a Back Flip

Go through the motions. Before you head to a 20-footer in the backcountry, practice back-flip rotations on a trampoline or diving board.

Start small. Try a back flip off a mellow jump with a steep takeoff and a soft
landing. Jumps will help you rotate faster, while downward sloping cliffs will fight your rotation. If possible, send your buddy off the jump first so you can see what kind of speed you’ll need and what the landing will feel like.

Stay centered. When it’s your turn, ski toward the jump and stay in the front seat. If you’re sitting back, you’ll fling your head backward and over-rotate the flip. That’s bad. Instead, drive your toes forward and push them up over your head. This will give you more control over the flip and more loft.

Look ahead. Keep your head up and look forward until you can see your toes in front of you. Then, as you reach the highest point of your air, start looking for your landing. When I back-flip off cliffs, I like to rotate quickly off the takeoff, then stall a bit while I’m falling over my stomach. This way, I’m in a better position to correct errors. Plus, if you hit a rock coming off the takeoff, it can grab your feet and slow the rotation down. So if you rotate early, you’ll be ready.

Land it. Now you’re looking forward at the landing and dropping over your belly. When you’re ready to land, pull in your knees to finish the rotation, and straighten your back out to prepare for touchdown. Land with both poles and both skis hitting the snow at the same time, and keep your hands in front of you.

More tips from Mike: Don’t overthink it. The trick is easier if you just do it. Don’t learn a back flip on the biggest jump you’ve ever hit. And I’ve heard back flips are much easier if you have a mustache.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

I am a cyclist and you hate me


Get off my road, you shout, as if I’m an immigrant ahead of you in the doctors, a leech on your neck. You are vocal yet you are in the minority. Venom for no other
reason than I check your progress, your assumed and ill conceived right to the road makes me your enemy, a fly you must swat aside, a lesson you must teach.
Once you’ve scared me, passing so close that I could touch your car with my elbow, I wonder how the kids in the back seat of your car perceive you, I wonder how you react at work when you’re told to do something, or how your partner puts up with you after you’ve had a few beers, or how you feel when you look at yourself in the mirror. Proud probably, unfortunately.


I am a cyclist and you, yes you, drive your car oh so very close to me to teach me a lesson, one I understand oh so very quickly, your educational pass teaching me that you are a moron.
I am a cyclist and I am cheating you of time because I undertake you.
I am a cyclist and I am depriving you of five seconds because you cannot overtake me on a bend despite trying four times.
I am a cyclist and I am ignoring your imagined rules of the road because I do not ride in the gutter.
I am a cyclist and I do not think it is funny when you wind down your window and try to push me off my bike.
I am a cyclist and I am not taking responsibility for your actions because I do not wear a helmet
I am a cyclist and I could tell you how to overtake me without over revving your engine and drafting on my rear wheel
I am a cyclist and I do not jump red lights but you saw someone once and so therefore I must be punished
I am a cyclist and you are the judge, picking and choosing road laws you only half grasp or have only half made up
I am a cyclist and I am a human
I am a human just like you except our transport differs
I am a human and I get scared when you pass me too closely
I am a human and have family just like you, except mine worry I won’t return home from my daily commute
I am a human and I make mistakes, just like you
I am a human just trying to get to work
I am a human and when I take the lane as the highway code advises, it is to protect myself not to delay nor anger you
I am a human and I don’t want a fist fight because you do not understand the laws of the road
I am a human and I get angry and shout when scared because you almost knocked me off my bike
I am a human and I have a right to point out that you are breaking rules and that speeding or driving when using your phone is against the law
I am a human and I will get upset when your version of justice is passing me very closely in a fast moving car
I am a human and I will bleed when you knock me off my bike
I am a human, are you?

Friday, September 9, 2016

Water for Hiking

Water

 Don't even think of starting on a hike that takes you more than a mile from home without a bottle of water along. You should have at least two quarts of water with you and drink 1/2 to 1 cup every 30 to 45 minutes. Keep the water coming into
your body even if you don't really feel very thirsty. If you are hiking, you are losing moisture and you need to replenish it.
By the end of a 4-hour hike, you should have drunk both quarts of water and you should be able to use the toilet. If you don't need to, then all that water came out as perspiration and you still need to drink more water to stay hydrated. After a hike, you should drink additional water until you need to use the toilet. I don't mean chug it down, I mean drink a 1/2 cup or so every 5 minutes or so.
Water is THE most critical survival item - whether in the wild or at home.

Rule of 3:
  • You can live 3 minutes without air.
  • You can live 3 days without water.
  • You can live 3 weeks without food.
You'll have air to breathe unless you're under water or in a cave-in.  If you run out of food, you can struggle on for 150 miles if needed.  But, if you run out of water, you have only a day or so to figure out a solution.

Water Needs
How much water do you really need? Does it matter where you are, the time of year, or the elevation?
 
Water Treatment
Once you locate water, you're not home free. There're lots of critters living in that water and they'll make life miserable for you. It's a good idea to treat all water you find and here's how to do that.
 
Carrying Water
Now that you have all the water you need, your stomache will only hold so much. You need to carry the rest down the trail until you find more water. Secure, comfortable, inexpensive transportation of water is the key.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Telluride Ski Resort to Join the Mountain Collective for 2016/2017 Season

Today, Telluride Ski Resort announced that it would be joining The Mountain Collective alliance, a collaborative pass program providing access to some of Colorado and North America’s best ski mountains. With the addition of Telluride, Mountain Collective pass holders will now be able to experience some of the best and most varied terrain in North America.

“Telluride is excited to join the Mountain Collective family of resorts,” said Bill Jensen, CEO of Telluride Ski & Golf Resort. “Being a part of the Mountain Collective is an outstanding opportunity for passionate skiers and snowboarders to experience Telluride’s extensive terrain and benefit the resort community as Mountain Collective pass holders add Telluride to their list of destinations to experience this winter.”
As part of the Mountain Collective pass, skiers and riders enjoy two days at 14 notable ski resorts, including Alta/Snowbird, Aspen/Snowmass, Jackson Hole, Sun Valley, Taos, Whistler Blackcomb and more with no blackout dates. Additional days at The Collective destinations are available at a 50 percent discount and pass holders are also eligible for special Mountain Collective lodging specials.

“We are thrilled to welcome Telluride, one of the world’s truly iconic resorts to the most incredible lineup of destinations on one pass ever assembled. The Mountain Collective is made up of a collection of independently owned, big mountain, life list resorts and we couldn’t think of a better new addition than Telluride,” said Christian Knapp, vice president of marketing, Aspen Skiing Company, “With 14 destinations located around the globe, the Mountain Collective Pass is the perfect incentive for passionate skiers and riders to embark on the winter adventures they’ve long dreamed of.”
When visiting Telluride, Mountain Collective pass holders can take advantage of an exclusive lodging deal with The Peaks Resort & Spa, with 10% off lodging with a three night minimum and a $150 Peaks Resort credit that can be used at the Resort’s newest restaurant, Altezza at the Peaks, or The Spa at the Peaks.

The Mountain Collective pass is now available online at www.MountainCollective.com for $409 for adults and $99 for kids aged 12 and under. For a full list of participating resorts and pass benefits, please visit the Mountain Collective website. For information on Telluride-specific benefits, or to plan your trip, please visit www.TellurideSkiResort.com.
Today, Telluride Ski Resort announced that it would be joining The Mountain Collective alliance, a collaborative pass program providing access to some of Colorado and North America’s best ski mountains. With the addition of Telluride, Mountain Collective pass holders will now be able to experience some of the best and most varied terrain in North America.
“Telluride is excited to join the Mountain Collective family of resorts,” said Bill Jensen, CEO of Telluride Ski & Golf Resort. “Being a part of the Mountain Collective is an outstanding opportunity for passionate skiers and snowboarders to experience Telluride’s extensive terrain and benefit the resort community as Mountain Collective pass holders add Telluride to their list of destinations to experience this winter.”
As part of the Mountain Collective pass, skiers and riders enjoy two days at 14 notable ski resorts, including Alta/Snowbird, Aspen/Snowmass, Jackson Hole, Sun Valley, Taos, Whistler Blackcomb and more with no blackout dates. Additional days at The Collective destinations are available at a 50 percent discount and pass holders are also eligible for special Mountain Collective lodging specials.
“We are thrilled to welcome Telluride, one of the world’s truly iconic resorts to the most incredible lineup of destinations on one pass ever assembled. The Mountain Collective is made up of a collection of independently owned, big mountain, life list resorts and we couldn’t think of a better new addition than Telluride,” said Christian Knapp, vice president of marketing, Aspen Skiing Company, “With 14 destinations located around the globe, the Mountain Collective Pass is the perfect incentive for passionate skiers and riders to embark on the winter adventures they’ve long dreamed of.”
When visiting Telluride, Mountain Collective pass holders can take advantage of an exclusive lodging deal with The Peaks Resort & Spa, with 10% off lodging with a three night minimum and a $150 Peaks Resort credit that can be used at the Resort’s newest restaurant, Altezza at the Peaks, or The Spa at the Peaks.
The Mountain Collective pass is now available online at www.MountainCollective.com for $409 for adults and $99 for kids aged 12 and under. For a full list of participating resorts and pass benefits, please visit the Mountain Collective website. For information on Telluride-specific benefits, or to plan your trip, please visit www.TellurideSkiResort.com.
- See more at: http://blog.coloradoski.com/2016/08/09/telluride-ski-resort-to-join-the-mountain-collectivetm-for-2016-17-season/#sthash.0K97eONn.dpuf

Introducing New All Access Pass at Copper Mountain

Introducing New All Access Pass at Copper Mounta
Introducing New All Access Pass at Copper Mountain
 
The Copper Mountain family has come together to offer the All Access Pass, a new season pass option for guests to both Copper Mountain and Woodward Copper. The All Access Pass provides unlimited skiing and riding at Copper Mountain for the 2016/17 winter season as well as full access to the Woodward Copper Barn from now until April 2017.


All Access passholders receive all the benefits and perks of a Copper Mountain Season Pass including three free days at Purgatory Resort, Monarch Mountain and Taos Ski Valley. Passholders also receive free skiing at Grand Targhee Resort with the purchase of Grand Targhee lodging. This pass also includes 10 Copper Mountain friends and family discounted lift tickets and a variety of activity, retail and food discounts around the resort.


The All Access Pass is currently on sale for $559 for adults ages 18+, $469 for teens ages 13 – 17 and $389 for children ages 6 – 12. Passes can be purchased online at CopperColorado.com or WoodwardCopper.com or by calling 888-219-2441. For guests who have already purchased a Copper Season Pass or a Barn Pass and would like to upgrade to an All Access Pass, please contact Central Reservations at 888-219-2441.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Bike Fitting For Better Performance

Bike fitting for better performance? When it comes to bicycles, one size doesn’t fit all. In fact, one size fits some and then each bike must be further tweaked to fit the individual. Even the lightest, fastest bicycle is useless if it doesn’t fit the intended rider. So many people ignore their bike fit until they experience discomfort, pain or injury. A reputable bike shop should provide basic bike fitting services with the purchase of a new bike. Not sure how your set-up fares? Try these tips for a basic set-up. 

Saddle height

If you have an indoor trainer, mount the bike and begin pedaling. Or position bicycle seat.
yourself in a doorway and backpedal. After a few spins, enlist a friend to look at the angle of your legs. They should bend 80 to 90% or if you’re able to measure the angle, you should have 25 to 35 degrees of knee flexion, as measured at the actual knee, not the angle between the thigh and calf muscles. A higher saddle height is more aggressive and produces more power, but also places greater strain on the knee. If the back of your knees hurt, try lowering the saddle by a few millimetres. A lower saddle height, on the other hand, is better for spinning, but places greater stress on the knees. If you have pain in the front of the patella, try raising your

Saddle position

Saddles or a bike seat can move in many directions, up, down, back and forward. Begin by using a level to ensure your saddle is parallel to the ground. Now set up the fore and aft positions. Have a friend use a plumb line (a nut tied to a piece of string works well) and stop your foot in the 3 o’clock position. Your friend should place the end of the string directly on the side of your knee and let the plumb line hang down to your foot. When properly set up, the plumb line should intersect with the ball of your foot.

Handlebars

To avoid neck, shoulder and hand pain, check the reach to the handlebars. A comfortable reach should keep hands wide enough so that the chest cavity is open and arms are straight with a slight bend in the elbow. You shouldn’t feel uncomfortably stretched out. If you are, swap to a shorter stem or one that is more upright. If you’re unsure of your position, take a video or photo of yourself riding to check that your upper body is relaxed.

Other bike fitting considerations

When you purchase a new bike, be sure to check the stand over height. You should have at least an inch between your body and the top tube.
Invest in the frame first and components second. Components can always be swapped out down the line, but you’re stuck with the bike’s frame size. Do your research first and be sure it’s the right one.
These guidelines aren’t hard and fast, as some people find that a tilted saddle or wide handlebars provide the perfect fit. Bicycle fit is dynamic, so periodically check your set-up for changes. If you’re having trouble with clipless pedals, experiencing pain or discomfort, it’s always best to seek out a professional for a proper bike fitting.