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Wednesday March 1, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

Skiing Secrets may or may not have something to do with skiing.

Often it doesn't - we fill it with anything that takes our fancy.

See here for a flavour of what it is all about from last month's ramble.

Thursday 30th March

Aerial View of Calgary Olympic Park

PlanetSKI was flying into Calgary airport and spotted this tiny oasis of snow from the air.

That white splurge on the landscape is the Calgary Olympic Park that was constructed for the 1988 Winter Olympics.

Its the site of the Ski Jumping that became famous and featured the British Ski Jumper, Eddie the Eagle Edwards, who won the hearts of the Canadians.

It is also the location where Michael Edwards aka Eddie the Eagle Edwards, returned on Sunday March 5th to have another go at the Olympic jump - See here for that report.

The site is still used by local ski jumping clubs and for slalom training.

Aerial View of Calgary Olympic ParkAerial View of Calgary Olympic Park
















Good skiing or lucky escape?

Reine Barkered from Sweden in Alaska leg of Freeride World Tour as avalanche nearly sweeps him off his feet.


Monday 27th March


The girls donned their ski boots and their costumes for a cancer charity.

Teens Unite is the only charity in the UK to provide on-going support to 13-24 year olds fighting cancer from diagnosis through to post-remission.

Seven young people are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK and Teens Unite brings them together through workshops and activities so they can spend valuable time with others their age in a similar situation to themselves.

The charity helps to rebuild the confidence and self-esteem of those it supports and prevents feelings of isolation during what can be a long and lonely battle.

The photos were taken by @MelodySkyPhotography and @La Boit'askis Verbier provided the ski boots.

And if you want to make a donation then follow this link.

Well done girls!

Verbier bunniesVerbier bunnies














Verbier bunniesVerbier bunnies












Verbier bunniesVerbier bunnies















Friday 24th March


President Donald Trump's daughter, her husband Jared Kushner, their children and the President's other son Eric took to the Rockies earlier this week.

There's been speculation about the price of ski suits, the cost of the holiday and rumours about the logistics behind the break.

Headlines of "Ivanka Trump's family skiing 'funded by the taxpayer'" are drawing widespread criticism.

The ski trip reportedly required 100 Secret Service agents to travel with the group - just a no-fuss breezy nip to the mountains for the Trumps.

The US Secret Service, which is funded by American taxpayers, is reported to have spent $12,208 on ski equipment, though the Aspen Valley Ski & Snowboard Club says this bill is new to them...

Some residents staged a protest in opposition to the President's cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency, highlighting to everyone what the cuts will do to beautiful natural settings like that they are enjoying.

Lara Trump InstagramLara Trump Instagram
















Lara was wearing a red all-in-one Spyder ski suit costing $1,250.

There's been worse... And she has had it for three years.

Tristan Trump, Donald Jr's son pictured below, unfortunately had an accident on the first day of the Aspen ski trip and has ended up in a cast with a broken leg.

@laraleatrump posted from Trump Towers New York to the rest of her family on the slopes after her return to the city.

Tristan Trump - @donaldjtrumpjr InstagramTristan Trump - @donaldjtrumpjr Instagram




















Friday 24th March


Australia's Mt Buller ski area has just made its first snow ... on 23rd March and the temperature was a warm +15ºC.

They have used their brand new $1.6million snow making machine, the Snowfactory SF220 from TecnoAlpin that can make snow at any temperature.

Not sure how 'green' this kit is but judging by the amount of snow produced in the video below, it looks effective.

Mt Buller hopes to 'guarantee skiing between opening and closing weekend'.

Over on the TecnoAlpin website they comment:

"This snow machine is not intended as a substitute for classic techniques but is more of an addition to the possible applications of snow-making technology.

The Snowfactory is mainly suitable for events, for snow coverage on relatively small slope sections, and Nordic centers."


When there is so much snow in Jackson Hole that a deep layer of snow accumulated under the world famous aerial Tram, and needed to be dug out, and pretty quickly too, for the Tram to pass over safely!

Mind your heads guys, and dig, dig, dig.

Video by @Naterossphoto

Time to dig out the Tram at Jackson HoleTime to dig out the Tram at Jackson Hole




















Hard at work - Short video clip below.....


When there's too much snow in Jackson Hole for the Tram to pass!When there's too much snow in Jackson Hole for the Tram to pass!














And for a PlanetSKI report on the snow across the USA and Canada this winter then see here.

It's been a good 'un!

Tuesday 21st March


The PlanetSKI editor, James Cove, has just arrived in El Tartar in Andorra with a few hours to spare so he decided to go for a little hike....

Now I have to declare an interest.

Not just for this post but for much of what I will write about Andorra over the coming days.

I love the place... the skiing, the mountains, the food, the culture, the hiking, the people and pretty much everything about it. 

I spent a lot of time here in the winter and summer over a decade ago.

My children, now mostly grown up, learnt to ski here and we used to come here in the summer for 8-weeks at a time.

One of the places we used to hike and free camp was the Incles Valley, just above El Tartar.

I decided to take a trip down memory lane...

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















It is one of the prettiest valleys in Andorra but I had never hiked it in the winter.

The Pyrenees and Andorra have some beautiful and wild scenery.

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















I don't do religion and am a confirmed & practicing athesist - but I love the buildings.

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















The cafe in the valley that I used to frequent remains and the coffee is just as strong:

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















Turning a corner a snowboarder was coming in the opposite direction.

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra
















"How's the snow up there?"

"It was a 2-hour hike up but some of the sweetest snow I have riden," he said.

A snow shoer was out for an afternoon stroll.

Incles Valley, AndorraIncles Valley, Andorra


















WOW!  Austrian Stefan Kraft jumps a massive 253.5m & sets a NEW world record in Vikersund on 18th March 2017.

Stefan almost sits down, however he manages to maintain his balance and does not touch the ground, making his jump officially the longest so far.

Watch him fly the flag for austria

Monday 20th March

Skiers & FIS official had a 'minor' disagreement over cancelling slopestyle...

There was a storm of protest and outrage from the contestants at the Sierra Nevada World Cup event in Spain last week, when the FIS boss tells the skiers that they don't do anything....!

Ooops.. they only provide the show.

"You Guys Don't Do Anything"












"We don't do anything..?"













Flight over Mont Blanc captured with 360° camera:

Watch this short film of these guys flying over Mont Blanc.

Its a 360° perspective and the scenery is incredible.

Drag the cursor round to get the complete picture.

360 Panorama Mt Blanc360º Panorama Mt Blanc













Sunday 19th March


This poor skier must be in so much pain, as he slams into a tree.


Friday 17th March

When you can ski as a practical mode of transport to get you from one ski resort to another then why drive?

PlanetSKI's senior reporter, Katie Bamber, has just taken a trip through the Dolomites from Cortina to Val Gardena on her skis instead of by road.

Loaded like a pack horse, Katie set off from Cortina and headed to the top of the Lagazuoi cable car at 2,778m.

All packed upLagazuoi, setting off
















It was a near three-hour ski, mainly on shallow slopes moving through the mountains, covering distance over vertical.

With some stunning scenery en route.

Skiing the Hidden ValleySkiing the Hidden Valley














Katie on the goKatie on the go
















Over the back of Lagazuoi and into the Alta Badia ski area via skitouring routes down into the valley and village of San Cassiano.

There was lot of time spent in the mesh of busy blue runs and chairlifts aiming for Corvara and its gondola to further on through the jagged rock mountains.

Corvara - finally a sign for the Sella RondaCorvara - finally a sign for the Sella Ronda
















At midday it was 13+ degrees.

The green signposted route of the Sella Ronda before the big Sella rock appeared.

Heading anti-clockwise - the big ride-around goes in both directions, on different routes - the slopes were noticably steeper in the Val Gardena area.

And harder on my poor knees that were feeling the extra weight of my luggage on my back.

And there Selva lay down in the green valley.

It was a leg burner - with 10kg luggage on my back and front - but otherwise a complete treat to travel a way through the jaw-dropping scenery of the Dolomites on a sunny day.

And far better than sitting in a car for hours on end. Smile

Friday 17th March

Many ski resorts have statues of mountain men starring up at distant snowy peaks.

In Italy, and Cortina in the Dolomites in particular they, er, focus on other matters.  

Cortina, The DolomitesCortina, The Dolomites
















See here for what else is special about the beautiful town in the Dolomites. 

Thursday 16th March

Powder Tracks

Regular PlanetSKI readers know we love trains ploughing through snow.

We especially love this one as it races past, and heaps a whole lot of snow on the bystanders.


Its worth watching to the end as it also shows the train approaching in slow motion.

Hehe! ☂️

Amtrak Train appraching Rhinecliff (New york)Amtrak Train approaching Rhinecliff (New york)













Wednesday 15th March

Candide Thovex is at it again in Montgenevre

Guns 'n Skis ..  sales on the road

You see some unusual advertising boards on the side of the roads in the United States.

This one was at Idaho Falls.

Guns 'n Skis - what more do you need in life?

Ski & guns for Sale by the road in Idaho FallsGuns 'n Skis for Sale by the road in Idaho Falls
















Sunday 12th March

Moose on the loose!

Cher Luther was snowboarding down a run at Breckenridge, Colorado, on Friday morning, when she became aware of an animal galloping behind her.

It turned out to be a Moose. 

She pulled out her mobile phone and then realized what the animal was and managed to record the Moose charging along beside her.

Her video below shows the moose came within feet of her, but it ran past her heading toward the trees.

She was clearly worried by her situation, judging by her shrieks.

Moose are dangerous territorial animals that can run up to 35mph.

John Buhler, vice president and chief operating officer of Breckenridge Ski Resort, said in a statement, “We share the mountain with a number of animals that live in the area and this is a good reminder for guests and employees alike to keep away from wildlife and report any moose sightings right away.”

Chased by a MooseChased by a Moose on Breckendridge ski slope
















Friday 10th March

Now this is a gust of wind!

Literally blown over by a 100+ mph gust posted by Mount Washington Observatory.


Thursday 9th March


As seen on sidewalk in the ski town of Ogden, Utah, as our monster North America road trip ends.

Now that would be a way to do a US road trip though perhaps a bit impractical.

Perhaps better for a summer tripPerhaps better for a summer trip
















The PlanetSKI editor, James Cove, has ended his 4-week road trip around 18 resorts in the USA and Canada.

His final day was in nearby Alta in Utah where he saw two strange sights.

A camouflaged snow cannon (military use or environmental reasons?) and a political protest:

Can you spot it?Can you spot it?
















Message to President Donald Trump perhaps?Message to President Donald Trump perhaps?
















See here for PlanetSKI's closing blog from Utah as the road trip ends.

A rocking-chair-lift!

An incredible blizzard and tempestuous wind is captured in this video.

It shows winds so fierce and powerful the chairlift (initially we thought it was a cable car) rocks in the gale, like the 'shaker' fairground ride.

The white out conditions are on Mt Kopaonik on the border between Serbia and Kosovo. 

The video was filmed on 8th March. Why would anyone be out in weather like this?

(Video: Boban Kurandić)

A rocking-chair-lift!A rocking-chair-lift!




















Wednesday 8th March

Snowboard mayhem

This could be snowboard-cross only there are far too many people and snowboards involved.

Red Bull said "The First one gets the best powder"!

Great footage.


Skiing without skis!

What do you do when you're on the mountain and your bindings break?

If you're Michael Reed you simply throw the skis over your shoulder and ski down in your boots.

And very impressive it is, too.  He looks better than many of us would do in skis.

It happened in Sun Valley, Idaho, and was filmed by Michael's friend, Joey Petelle.

Sunday 5th March

Powder Bomb Alert!

So we've had a snow-nado, below, and now here's another powder puff, but this one involves a skier.


There really is a person shrouded in this ball of powder snow... and he's probably using a snorkel!

The location is Saas Fee, Switzerland, and the skier bombing down the mountain is Warren Smith from the Warren Smith Academy.

Fabulous! ❄️

Saturday 4th March

'Snow-nado' caught on camera:

Now here's a phenomenon we've not seen before, that is caught on camera by a driver in Colorado.

Its not often you get to see a snow tornado, or lets call it a 'snow-nado', whipping up the snow in a huge spiral, and even less frequently do you get to catch it on camera.

This one was taken a couple of days ago by Cori Cole aka @RustyWander and posted on Instagram.

A great little video snap of unusual weather.


A post shared by Cori Cole (@rustywander) on Mar 1, 2017 at 6:26am PST

Friday 3rd March

The Biggest 'Wow' and 'O la la' of the season!

This has to be the biggest 'faux-pas' and 'O la la' moment of the season.

We love the way they say 'O la la' in French!

Someone's going to be in big trouble for forgetting to shut the windows.

Love the effect though.

(Facebook - Le Panoramic Tignes Grande Motte).

That ... 'O, la la' moment!That ... 'O, la la' moment!




















Here's how the guys reacted when they walked into the ladies!

Wednesday 1st March



Iceland is shrouded in the thickest blanket of snow for years.

The record was set at 55cm in Reykjavík back in January 1937.

This video shows 51cm accumulating overnight.



24 year old Elias Ambühl from Graubünden in Switzerland sets a new world record for skiing backwards. 

He reached 131.23km/h -  81.5mph -  on the Weisshorn in Arosa.



Whilst in the mountains we breathe in glorious, invigorating fresh air, and sitting at our desks back in Blighty we sometimes reflect on those moments with nostalgia.

But here's the thing.  Reflect no more. 

We can now buy bottles of 'authentic' Swiss Air, and inhale, deeply, the fresh mountain air.

A month on from today and we would be seriously questioning this as an April Fool.

But no!

Basel based resident John Green (originally from Kent, England) has set up an online business bottling mountain air.

It's not just any old air, but Swiss air and from a secret Swiss location!

Genuine Swiss air can be bought online in branded bottles in 3 sizes, complete with a certificate of authenticity from $97 US to $247 US.

* Demi (1 pint -500ml) - $97

* Magnum (1quart /one litre) - $167

* Jeroboam (3/4 gallon/ 3 litres) - $247

..... and to top it all, worldwide shipping is included in the price.

Mountain Air – An “_airbrained idea” in jam jars!Mountain Air – An “airbrained idea” in jam jars!




















The bottling location is apparently secret, but it must be somewhere in Zermatt (the famous mountain being the give-away) as we surmise from the following comments on Green's website; 

"Let's just say it's collected by a babbling mountain stream, fed by melt water from a famous glacier, near a very famous mountain. We want to keep the location secret to protect supplies."

Green's sales pitch says,  "P.P.S You have had high calorie Swiss cheese, you've surely had high calorie Swiss chocloate (or maybe he means Swiss chocolate), now experience zero calorie Swiss air!"

It continues, "As you open your ice cold jar of air (it's recommended to chill in the freezer for full effect) you flick the latch open and there's a quick pfsst as the mountain pressure equalises and you can take a breath of genuine mountain air from Switzerland."

But wait, if you linger too long after flicking open the latch on the jar - poufff ... its all gone!

You can buy the freshly bottled Swiss Air on his website here.

It's an expensive luxury so before parting with your money you best read their Disclaimer 1.

And Disclaimer 2  is what it's all really about, some fund raising for Worldvision.

But bottling air is not new.... 😎

Back in 2015 we reported on the high demand of canned air in China.

We had heard about a Canadian company selling air bottled in a ski resort to Chinese customers.

The company was called Vitality Air, and it was canning fresh air taken from the Rocky Mountains of Banff in Alberta, Canada.

At the time the air was selling for $14 to $20 depending on the size of the canister.

Even the BBC reported on it at the time.

We just checked the Vitality Air website and you can still buy the cans of air  ".... only 385 bottles remain in stock...get yours now!"

Vitality Air from CanadaVitality Air from Canada















See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the world of snowsports.

PlanetSKI: No1 for ski news

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