Friday, 17 January 2014

Skier: pronounced (Ski'er)

Ice flow on the road to Panorama Mountain Village
Definition of a Skier: The art of catching cold and going broke while rapidly heading nowhere at great personal risk!
Skis:  a pair of long,thin, flexible runners that permit a skier to slide across the snow and into debt.
Bindings:  Ingenious automatic mechanisms that attach the skis to the ski boots at the heel and toe. Bindings very effectively protect skiers from potentially serious injury during a bad fall by releasing the ski from the boot, sending it skittering across the slope where it trips another skier, who avoids serious injury when his bindings release, allowing his skis to spring loose and trip two other skiers, who fall, causing their bindings to release before they suffer serious injury, sending their skis into the path of four other skiers, and so eventually causing the entire slope to be closed, thus protecting every skier in the area from serious injury.
Boots:  (see: pain)
Happy to be on the hill again
Yes, we both need new ski boots.  Bragging rights to actually wear out your boots. So, off to Cranbrook shopping.  Gerick's Ski and Cycle shop was recommended to us and this is where it all begins.  Shane is our boot fitter today as he begins to questions us on skill level, preferred ski terrain, age (ha ha), weight (you think?) and ability.  After the interrogation, it is time to try on boots.  My turn.  A quick measure and we begin.  I have always had good luck with Nordica Boots as this is my first pair to try on.  As I struggle, push, and squeeze my foot into the liner, then repeat into the boot shell it is then to shackle tight any air space left between my toes. not bad, but not perfect.  I requested a stiffer boot with more ankle support. Shane recommended a new model "Soul Sister" by Full Tilt Boot Company and made in Italy.  Pretty funky looking boot, as it looks like a retro cable boot right out of the 1970's.  Shane recommended this boot as it would be a more customized fit for comfort and ability. Perfect fit! Of, course, it is considerably more expensive!  Since, our VISA card needed to be cancelled as it was compromised during our travels, Bob insisted he wait for his new pair of boots. We will definitely return to Gerick's.
Time for custom fitting my new boots. remove my socks, stuff cotton balls between my toes, Shane tapes my feet with green drywall tape (very attractive) slides on a stocking, then a neoprene cap, another stocking, then the boot liner, another stocking and into the cooked (and very warm) boot shell.  Shane did warn me that this would be a bit uncomfortable. He shackles up the boots very tight.  "O.K. now stand up and invert your toes on this wood plank and balance for approx 20 minutes."  Sounds like a mid 13th century torture chamber.  When the hammer stops hitting you in the back of the head, it feels good!  Off with the boots, tape, cotton, etc. and back into the newly formed Soul Sister.  WOW...just heavenly, and time for lunch.
The Cottage Restaurant:  Borscht, home made breads, a BLT with chicken noodle soup.  I say, one of the best lunches on our list! Beth and Pat Thom, have been owners for 24 years. Everything served at this lovely establishment is hand crafted every day.

Cat skiing on Outrider...66 kmph!!! Woo Hoo
Once back from Cranbrook and a sound sleep, it is time to work my new "Ballerina Slippers"  I strap on my gear like an over anxious child.  Out we go with phone in hand with a new ski app. "Alpine Relay". I tend to be an  endorphin junkie, and this new app is just more encouragement that just isn't necessary!  A few days with new boots skiing with my nee app, I reach 66 km per hour.  Crazy, for an old girl.  I think 66 km will be my max. speed as we aren't made of rubber and bounce like we used to.
Bob, Husband and best friend

It is great to ski with my Best Friend, and husband Bob (who is 130% recovered from surgery) for another glorious season. Panorama does feel like home....our winter home.  We have been visiting here for the last 15 years to ski. The terrain has everything a skier would want from greens to double diamond bowls.  We are breaking in our muscles, joints and bones gently this year as we have been taking more days off than our previous seasons.  More room for Apre's ski time.
After a morning of great skiing, we break for lunch in the Great Hall at Panorama.  Since this is the year for the Sochi Winter Olympics, and Para Olympics, Panorama is host to the most incredibly talented Para Olympians in the world. Sochi 2014.
Ski Team from Japan
All the Alpine teams are here.  We met, Mick Brennen, U.K. a hopeful for
Mick Brennen
His inspiration, drive and talent is such an inspiration to both of us.  A very humble and wonderful athlete!  We had the pleasure speaking with him, as well as learning about his journey here.
Mick's Sit Ski 
 Mick served his military life in Iraq, where he was severely injured. After a long recovery and rehabilitation, he was introduced to the world of the Sit Ski.  Mick has only 4 years of skiing under his belt.  His strong drive and determination through his injury and recovery to be one of the best athletes in the world as he approaches Sochi.  Words cannot express how this young man inspires the rest of us!  We wish him all the best in his Olympic journey and his journey through life.  Go for the Gold!!!!!!!!!!!!!  We will be watching.

Bob and I are skiing all day these days.....Building stamina despite all the training we put ourselves through to prepare for the three months skiing.  Time for some apres' time.  An evening of  presentation, "The Geology of the Panorama Ski Hill" by Walter Benstead BSc, P. Geol.  and a very good ski friend.  Walter, who has and interest and passion for rocks as well as skiing, wrote and published this very informative book.
Bob & Walter
"The rocks beneath and around us are a fascinating story. The Panorama Ski area is an 18 km. drive from the town of Inveremere. It is along this road that we see some of the best, most easily accessed exposures of the area's bedrock foundation. They are an intriguing story that enhances our area ski trip with a knowledge of the geological history and structure on which we traverse"  So..without the rocks, there is no skiing! Actually, it is these same rocks that cause injury to the bottoms of our skis!  Bitter sweet rocks, snow snakes, land sharks and death cookies.  Skier beware.

Snow Snake:  an invisible but malevolent creature whom skiers, blame for causing their falls.  Other troublesome unseen slope dwellers include the rack rat, who knocks over carefully propped up skis; the pole cat, who snatches ski poles from skiers' hand just as the chairlift starts and flings them into the snow below; the piste weasel, who momentarily obscures or reversed trail marking signs; and the powder parrot, whose weird squawks make it appear that an exasperated skier has just said something extremely crude.

Time to ski.....

No comments:

Post a Comment