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SEPTEMBER SKIING SECRETS

Snow Leopards, the camera never lies – or does it? French Alps chef in row over cheese, ski training on treadmill + how many calories does skiing burn? ROLLING

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Here on Skiing Secrets we post articles, pictures and videos that take our fancy.

They are usually about skiing and snowboarding – but not always.

SKIING SECRETS STORIES FROM AUGUST 2019

 

MONDAY 30TH SEPTEMBER
SNOW LEOPARDS

The snow leopard (Panthera uncia), is a large cat native to the mountain ranges of Central and South Asia.

It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List because the global population is estimated to number less than 10,000 mature individuals and is expected to decline about 10% by 2040.

Watch the two Snow leopard cubs that are 5 months old playing in the tweet below.

SUNDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER
THE CAMERA NEVER LIES

Unless of course uninformed words are put around it.

The image below was used to illustrate a story that is doing the rounds about how a glacier in the Tirol in Austria is being destroyed in order for a ‘ski resort’ to be built.

“A glacier attacked by bulldozer. Two machines that eat, crush, annihilate a glacier, that of Pitztal,” said one article.

“It is incomprehensible why such destruction is accepted. The glaciers melt away under our feet. At the same time, pristine streams are being used to snow glacier ski areas and reservoirs have been built,” said Robert Renzler, Secretary-General Austrian Alpine Club.

The only problem is the picture is of bulldozers doing what they always do at this time of year – filling in the crevasses on the glacial ski slopes so people don’t fall in them in the winter.

Not quite as it seems

Not quite as it seems

Here is the response from Tirol Tourism.

“Dear all,

Unfortunately the article is not correct.

The current works do not have anything to do with the planned interconnection between Ötztal and Pitztal.

Since the glacier moves all the time, these are regular works where crevasses on the slopes are filled with snow and chipped ice in order to secure that the slopes are safe and the crevasses are filled.”

THURSDAY 26TH SEPTEMBER
FRENCH ALPS CHEF OUTRAGED BY ‘CHEDDAR’ CLAIM

Imagine accusing a famous French chef of using English Cheddar cheese in his recipes.

Sacré Bleu!

But it’s no joke for the celebrity chef concerned whose restaurant is in the Haute Savoie region of the French Alps.

Marc Veyrat’s La Maison des Bois is in Manigod, not far from the exclusive ski resort of Megève.

According to The Local France, an English language website, the restaurant lost its prestigious 3 Michelin star status after an inspector accused him of using Cheddar in his soufflé.

La Maison des Bois, Manigod, France

La Maison des Bois

He is now suing the Michelin guide and says the loss of the star plunged him into depression.

He says the downgrade from the maximum rating of 3 stars to 2 came because the inspector mistakenly thought he had used English Cheddar instead of French Reblochon, Beaufort or Tomme cheese because the soufflé was so yellow.

But Monsieur Veyrat says it was yellow because he put saffron in the soufflé.

Marc Veyrat

Marc Veyrat

The chef was forced to give up cooking 10 years ago after a serious skiing accident but he came back to earn the coveted 3 star Michelin status in 2018.

In the past he has held 3 Michelin stars for two other restaurants.

A court hearing is due to take place in Nanterre in France at the end of November.

In a statement Michelin said it “understands the disappointment for Mr Veyrat, whose talent no one contests, even if we regret his unreasonable persistance with his accusations.”

It said it would carefully study his demands and respond calmly.

You can read more on this story in The Local.

WEDNESDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER
TRAINING FOR THE INFERNO

If you’re planning to take part in January’s notorious Inferno race, then you might want to start getting into some very serious training.

This guy has and is getting a serious workout on the treadmil.

Now in its 77th year the International Inferno race will take place in Murren from 22nd and 25th January 2020.

SKI ALL DAY AND BURN 2,000 CALORIES

We all know skiing is good for us but just how good?

A study has found that skiing for whole day can burn between 2,000 and 2,400 calories.

The research was carried out at the Chill Factore indoor snow centre in Manchester.

Ski instructors at the centre put pupils through their paces while the calories they burned and their heart rates were monitored.

An hour of skiing was shown to burn more than 350 calories for women and 400 calories for men, while snowboarding burnt just over 400 calories for both men and women.

An average heart rate of 130bpm was measured during the ski and snowboard lessons.

Chill Factore indoor snow centre

Burning calories

The Chill Factore commissioned the study to promote National Fitness Day, which is today.

The centre is offering a 2-for-1 Lift Pass deal today to encourage people to get active together or try snowsports for the first time.

“High intensity interval training (or HIIT) is a major trend in the industry right now and works by alternating intense bursts of exercise with rest periods – and skiing and snowboarding work in exactly the same way,” says personal trainer Dominique Binns who was involved in the study.

“It’s those cardiovascular bursts working the heart and lungs that improve aerobic capacity and burn more calories, alongside lowering blood pressure and improving insulin levels.”

MONDAY 23RD SEPTEMBER
DO YOU LIKE YOUR TECHNO?

If so Verbier has announced the acts for its Polaris Festival in December.

Polaris welcomes a bunch of house and techno names such as current cover star Seth Troxler, Omar-S, Honey Dijon, Bambounou, D Tiffany and Glenn Underground.

Honey Dijon heading to Polaris

Honey Dijon heading to Polaris

Palms Trax plays for four hours, while Carista, Kerri Chandler, Jayda G and Floating Points are also on the bill.

The event runs from November 28th to December 1st.

Carl Craig presents a live set of his alias Paperclip People, which will see him play tracks from his 1996 album ‘The Secret Tapes of Dr. Eich’.

Willow, Anthony Naples, Nicolas Lutz and Paquita Gordon are among those playing afterparties.

See the Verbier web site for more on Polaris.

The full line up

The full line up

FRIDAY 20TH SEPTEMBER
POWDER QUEEN?

The Queen of Speed Lindsey Vonn may soon be known instead as the Powder Queen.

No, she’s not moving into freeride skiing after hanging up her racing skis.

The most successful female alpine racer of all time has announced that she’s launching her own cosmetics company.

Its name is being kept top secret until it’s launched next spring but we hear it will include five beauty products and a perfume.

“I didn’t know what to expect when I retired, but now I’m focusing all of my competitive energy and drive into starting my own business,” Vonn is reported as saying in The Denver Post.

The 34-year-old American retired in February after an incredible 82 World Cup wins – just four behind the record held by the legendary Swedish skier Ingemar Stenmark –  and three  Olympic medals.

Lindsey Vonn

Racing queen

  • What Next For Lindsey Vonn?
  • Vonn Crashes Out
  • Tributes As Lindsey Vonn Retires
  • Vonn has always been a bit of a glamour queen and says being an athlete does not mean you can’t be feminine.
    Lindsey Vonn

    Glamour queen

    “To me, putting on makeup is like putting on my game face,” she says.

    “When I have my makeup on, I feel like I’m ready to attack the world and anything is possible.”

    If she puts as much commitment into in as she did racing downhill it’s bound to be a huge success.

    THURSDAY 19TH SEPTEMBER
    SO HOW WOULD YOU TEACH YOUR TODDLER TO SNOWBOARD?

    Get the lessons in early, we say.

    Toddlers usually reach the walking milestone between 9 and 18 months.

    The young toddler in the video below would barely be walking at 6 months.

    But this guys is uber keen to get the toddler used to a snowboard.

    He’s perfecting his teaching method, with a few bounces on the mini trampoline and then hitting the rails.

    The youngster though doesn’t seem too enthralled as he’s being bounced along.

    #uberkeenparenting

    Early snowboarding lessons

    Early snowboarding lessons

    WEDNESDAY 18TH SEPTEMBER
    BEIJING 2022 MASCOTS UNVEILED

    The next Winter Olympics and Paralympics may be more than two years away but it’s time for the work to begin for the Games mascots.

    They’ve just been announced at a lavish bash in Beijing.

    Meet Bing Dwen Dwen and Shuey Rhon Rhon.

    Beijing 2022 mascots

    Beijing 2022 mascots

    Not surprisingly, perhaps, one is a panda.

    Bing Dwen Dwen will be promoting the Olympics.

    Beijing 2022 say the mascot has a “suit of ice, a heart of gold and a love of all things winter sports”.

    Launch of the Beijing 2022 mascots

    The big launch

    We’re not so sure about the red one.

    What is it?

    Apparently, it is a ‘Chinese lantern child’.

    Shuey Rhon Rhon is the Paralympics mascot.

    Get used to them.  You’ll be seeing them a lot.

    MONDAY 16TH SEPTEMBER
    HALF TERM FAMILY SKI LESSONS

    It may seem a bit early to be thinking of such things, but there is a clear message from our friends over at Maison Sport: Book now to avoid disappointment!

    “When it comes to February half term, private lessons start being booked up as far as 1 year in advance,” said Ollly Robinson, the co-founder of the online booking platform that represents independent ski and snowboard instructors.”

    “Although the dates can change year on year, February half term is by far the busiest week in ski resorts across the Alps.”

    This means that by the end of summer to early Autumn, many of the good time slots are already taken.

    Generally, mornings are the most popular during February half term, so if you don’t mind taking an afternoon lesson, this will increase your chances of finding the instructor that is right for you.

    All resorts are different  – Maison Sport still has morning availability in Meribel but not in La Plagne.

    Maison Sport has 500+ instructors available across over 200 resorts.

    See here for more detains on Maison Sport.

    SUNDAY 15TH SEPTEMBER
    YAK DESTINED FOR SLAUGHTER ESCAPES TO MOUNTAINS

    The animal, named Meteor, was heading to a slaughterhouse in the US state of Virginia when it made a bid for freedom.

    Meteor broke out of its trailer and crossed a busy highway.

    Animal welfare officers were called in but the yak avoided capture by heading for the mountains.

    Yaks are a long-haired members of the cattle family, cousins to cows and distant relatives of the American and European bison.

    They are native to areas in southern Central Asia.

    Meteor remains at liberty in its new mountain home.

    The yak was last spotted Wednesday at an inn, where the owners tried unsuccessfully to lure it into a trailer using treats.

    FRIDAY 13TH SEPTEMBER
    RACE THE KITZBÜHEL DOWNHILL – WITHOUT SKIS

    It’s a race down the toughest downhill course in the world.

    In running shoes.

    And it’s coming soon.

    Aptly named The Descent, it takes place in the Austrian resort on 5th October.

    Runners set off at 30 second intervals, through the famous start gates for the downhill at the top of the Hahnenkamm.

    The Descent 2018

    The Descent 2018 – photo Michael Werlberger

    Just like in the alpine race, there are gates to negotiate while running down the insanely steep slope.

    And if you’re fast enough you get to do it twice.

    The fastest 30 runners in both the mens and women’s categories qualify for the final run where, as in skiing, finalists will start in reverse order at one minute intervals.

    Our knees hurt just thinking about it.

    Crazy!

    It’s the second year of the race.

    Have a look at the highlights from last year…

    You can do it at a more leisurely pace, as our editor James Cove, discovered a few years back.

    WEDNESDAY 11TH SEPTEMBER
    SPOT THE TYPO!

    Well, can you?

    It seems it might be worth travelling with Inghams this winter if you get a bit peckish after a bit of, er, you-know-what.

    Amazing what a difference 1 letter can make!

    Amazing what a difference 1 letter can make!

    The difference one letter can make!

    The difference one letter can make!

    And the article without the typo:

    On the other hand we may have just stumbled across a new type of holiday Inghams should offer…  it may turn out to be rather popular. Wink

    UPDATE:

    And after much reaction we have updated this story into a single article:

    WHO IS FASTER – LIFT OR CLIMBER?

    In an event to promote the Olympic debut of sport climbing, a Polish climber took on an elevator in a seven-story race.

    Marcin Dzienski, 26, took on the neon-lit elevator on the side of a Warsaw hotel.

    He climbed a 23-meter plexiglass wall as the elevator rose beside him.

    Dzienski is a speed climbing supremo.

    One of three climbing disciplines that will be contested next year at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

    He was world champion in 2016.

    TUESDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER
    DOG SLED TRANSFER TO SKI RESORT

    If you are heading to the Swedish resorts of Sälen you can arrive in in style with a dog sled transfer courtesy of 10 Alaskan huskies.

    There is a new SAS flight from Heathrow to the new Scandinavian Mountains Airport this winter.

    “We’re particularly excited to offer the unique experience of a dog sled transfer to Salen so guests can immerse themselves in the magical winter landscape as soon as they’ve stepped off the plane,”
    Mathias Lindström, Sales and Marketing Director at SkiStar.

    Road transfers to Salen take just 10 minutes.

    Arriving in Salen in style

    Arriving in Salen in style

    Dog transfer details:

    • Dog sled transfers bookable from December 15th to April 15th

    • Overalls, safety clothing, hat and warm shoes provided

    • Suitable for all ages but not recommended for children under five

    • The cost per sled is £421

    SUNDAY 8TH SEPTEMBER
    LIFT QUEUES

    Remind you of anywhere?

    Patience please...

    Patience please…

    Scotland perhaps?

    Cairngorm, Scotland

    Cairngorm, Scotland

    FRIDAY 6TH SEPTEMBER
    OUCH!

    Is this the most spectacular fall at the Winter Games NZ?

    Jennie Symons is uninjured after huge ‘tomahawk’ fall.

    Despite losing her helmet, goggles, and skis she walked away from the crash unscathed.

    THURSDAY 5TH SEPTEMBER
     

    PLASTIC BAGS & BOTTLES TO BE BANNED AT EVEREST

    The region of Everest is to become a zero single use plastic region.

    The rule is simple, from 1st January 2020, plastic bottles and plastic bags will be prohibited by the local authority that manages the region.

    There are some 35,000 visitors to the region, and the trash problem on the mountain and at Basecamp is an enormous problem.

    We reported on the ban earlier in the summer.

    Now watch the video below that highlights the enormous waste issue in the region.

    AVALANCHE ON MARS

    NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has captured an image of an avalanche on the Red Planet.

    According to NASA, avalanches on Mars regularly occur during springtime.

    In the image, a cloud of reddish dust can be seen on the side of a mountain on Mars.

    Avalanches on the planet occur during spring when the warmth from sunlight causes the ice layers to melt and crumble.

    “Every spring the Sun shines on the side of the stack of layers at the north pole of Mars known as the north polar layered deposits,” said Candy Hansen of the University of Arizona’s Lunar &

    Planetary Laboratory.

    “The warmth destabilises the ice and blocks break loose,” she added.

    NASA tweet

    NASA tweet

    And staying with stories about Mars…

    WEDNESDAY 4TH SEPTEMBER
    SPACE SUIT TESTED ON ICELAND GLACIER & VOLCANO

    A team of researchers and explorers went into a volcano and out to some of the most remote stretches of Iceland to test the prototype spacesuit.

    They went into the Grímsvötn volcano and across the Vatnajökull ice cap – the conditions on earth most like expected conditions on Mars.

    The suit is “not actually intended for use on Mars, but it’s intended for use here on Earth where people are doing analog studies to see what it’s like if you were to put people on the surface of Mars,” said the suit’s designer, Michael Lye.

    The the MS1 Mars prototype spacesuit was tested by a team incuding Helga Kristín, an Icelandic geologist, drone pilot and glacier guide.

    Iceland glacier test

    Iceland glacier test

    Iceland glacier test

    Iceland glacier test

    They tested the suit with standard activities astronauts might do – sample collection and basic movement.

    And more extreme activities.

    Iceland glacier test

    Iceland glacier test

    The group pronounced the tests useful and successful.

    Iceland glacier test

    Iceland glacier test

    (Image credits: Dave Hodge/Unexplored Media)

    And of course if the space suit is taken to Mars it may have to be used as a ski suit.

    And if man ever gets to Pluto:

    MONDAY 2ND SEPTEMBER
    CHASING THE EYE OF DORIAN

    It’s nothing to do with skiing, but a lot to do with weather.

    Watch the extraordinary footage below of what it’s like to be in the eye of one of the most powerful hurricanes recorded on earth.

     

    Here’s a video showing the powerful storm from above, from satellite footage..

    Watch one of the latest visuals of Hurricane Dorian whizzing round like a Catherine Wheels. As it moves the enormous sparks of lightning are visible as it progresses on its destructive path.

    It is moving with wind speeds of up to 180mph, recorded as a category 5 storm.

     

    Hurricane Hunters took this video as the brave crew chase and record the progress of the storm.

    The #ReserveCitizenAirmen fly through the storm in a Super Hercules aircraft.

     

    SUNDAY 1ST SEPTEMBER
    US CHAIRLIFT INFO GOES HIGH TECH

    Winter Park in Colorado will be installing digital displays on select chairlifts next season.

    They will have weather reports, snow reports, mountain maps, and, even live traffic videos of the I-70 freeway.

    Is it something you’d like?

    Or would you rather look at your phone for such information?

    Perhaps better still look at the scenery, chat to a friend (or stranger) and look at the runs and plan you route down the mountain.

    UPDATE:

    It seems not everyone (anyone) wants a computer screen on a chairlift if Facebook reaction to this story is anything to go by:

    Facebook reaction...

    Facebook reaction…

    Feel free to add your comments on the PlanetSKI Facebook page.
    LEGO PISTE BASHER!

    FIREFLY LIGHT SHOW IN GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS

    They don’t look much like a swarm of bugs.

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    They have been delighting the evening crowds this summer in North Carolina, USA.

    The 100s of firefly insects, that are a type of beetle, have become something of a tourist attraction.

    Visitors carrying red flashlights walk the Little River Trail to watch the fireflies in their annual mating ritual.

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    With the authorities on hand to marshal the crowds.

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    “There’s only a handful of species all around the world that do this, and for a long time, this particular species, the phenomenon of seeing large numbers of them synchronizing has been associated tightly with just a couple geographical areas,” said Dr Clyde Sorenson, an entomologist from North Carolina State University.

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    There are least 19 species of fireflies that live in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

    One species is the only one in America that can synchronise its flashing light patterns.

    Fireflies use their lights as a mating display.

    Each species has a special flash pattern that helps the males and females recognise each other.

    The males fly around and flash their lights.

    The females usually stay stationary, then respond with a flash of their own.

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    Firefly display

    For the Spirit of the Mountains – PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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