Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tips for The Tour

With The Tour now only less than 6 weeks away I figured it might be nice to give a few tips to aspiring competitors.
This week's tip is a pretty obvious one. I can't remember were I heard/read it now but is a goodieand one I heard a few years ago when preparing for my first ski mountaineering race.
TIP # 1- Back country ski your ass off.
Like I said its a pretty obvious one, but it's surprising how few people really do it. Rock up early this weekend to your local ski hill and start skinning pre-opening (check with patrol first!). Do a lap (or 3) either in-bounds, or if the avalanche hazard is suitable (you can check HERE) head into the back country. Get familiar with your gear, the techniques and systems that you'll use.
Once you're done skinning then hit the lifts!
If you can't get to the snow, play around with your gear in the living room, getting familiar with it all. And go for a few runs, bike rides or hikes in the hill for your endurance.
Above all, make it fun!

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"The skier who forsakes the lifts to climb under his own power to a mountain summit is a very different person from the downhill only piste basher and is often regarded by the latter as something of a curiosity.
But he was the creator of the sport; and possibly with him lies the future"
-Robin Fedden, The book of Europen Skiing, 1966
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