Yesterday, Nevis Range hosted the very first pre-season Backcountry Gathering. A very informative day with lots of people doing lots of cool things. However, it got me thinking about the ski industry.
I am a skier and I have skied (not very gracefully for 35 years).
However, skiing can now be classified as:
So, here's Di's descriptions:
Freestyle & Freeride: basically this is 'twirly jumps'. I might leave this department to those who bounce and don't break since my mind would write cheques that my body can't cash. These guys bounce.
Side Country & Off Piste: ideal when you really can't be arsed to skin anywhere. Uplift required and then loads of 'whoops' and 'yeeeee haaaaaarrrrrrsssss' compulsory. Deep powder the pre-requisite and off the groomed runs.
Back Country/All Mountain/Ski Touring/Ski Mountaineering: basically these are all exactly the same thing. A journey involving skinning, fresh tracks, good banter, great views in a mountain environment. Mountaineering skills essential.
SkiMo: for those who enjoy breathing through their backside - i.e. ski mountaineering with a sense of urgency.
Steeps: best left to the Gods of the ski world (in my humble opinion) - you only have to look at the pictures in Bauds guidebook to Mont Blanc and the Aiguille Rouge to see what I'm speaking about here. [WHAT - I could sell my second hand book for £1,499.00!) Or, you could just check out Ross :)
Now, I am sure that I will offend some people with my crude description, but somebody has to make sense of it all for mere mortals!
If it gets people out, thats the main thing :)