DECEMBER SKIING SECRETS
1st December 2019
Last modified on January 3rd, 2020
* Grouse attacks Russian snowboarder
* Official on course as ski racer speeds towards him
* Check out the black + white ski video
* Woof, woof
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 NOVEMBER 2019
MONDAY 30TH DECEMBER
GROUSE ATTACKS SNOWBOARDER AFTER BEING SPRAYED WITH SNOW
The 27-year old Russian snowboarder, Igor Popeliukh, was in the powder in the resort of Sheregesh in Siberia.
A wood grouse was minding its own business when Igor gave the bird a passing spray.
The bird was not amused!
The birds can weigh up to 9lbs and have a wingspan of as much as 4ft.
They can be up to 2ft 7ins in length.
Apparently the males are prone to be aggressive when they are lovesick.
Perhaps the bird was not amused at being dumped on by snow when he had just been dumped by his mate.
SATURDAY 28TH DECEMBER
NOW THAT’S WHAT WE CALL A NEAR-MISS!
The Croatian skier Filip Zubcic was hurtling toward the finish line in the World Cup Giant Slalom at Alta Badia in Italy.A race official decided to stroll across the race piste..Here’s the run in full… wait until the end!
FRIDAY 27TH DECEMBER
There’s no sound, but just look at those skis.
And the ski fashion…
TUESDAY 24TH DECEMBER
A-BASIN TRAINS A NEW MEMBER OF STAFF
She’s a golden retriever.
At just over 1 1/2 years old, she’s still just a puppy, but by the end of the season, she’ll be Arapahoe Basin Ski Area’s newest avalanche rescue dog.
Tikka, A Basin avalanche dog, Colorado”We do a bunch of personality tests with the dogs between 4 and 8 weeks to get an idea of what their personality is like,” said her handler and veteran ski patroller Erich Swartz.
“We want to know if they’re going to have the drive and motivation we’re looking for. We really don’t want her to be too fearful, so we’ll make some loud noises and gauge the reaction of the dogs – do they run away, charge at you or just take a look at you? … We also need a dog that can sit here and be nice and not intimidate the kids in the ski school. Tikka was the right mix for us.”
SUNDAY 22ND DECEMBER
THURSDAY 19TH DECEMBER
BOOK A SKI LESSON WITH A DOWNHILL RACER
Our friends over at Maison Sport have just added a new ski instructor to their list.
He’s none other than Graham Bell, the British former Olympic ski racer and TV presenter.
Graham, who presents the BBC’s Ski Sunday and was the ski coach on Channel 4’s The Jump, is offering his services as an instructor in the French resorts of Val d’Isere, Courchevel & Meribel.
He is available on limited dates, so you’ll need to get in quick if you want to book.
I am pretty flexible with my lessons and will adjust them to suit whatever the client needs or wants from the day, ” Graham says.
“I might be known for racing and skiing fast, but I get just as much pleasure out of seeing the improvements I can help others make to their skiing.”
Two-time Olympian Graham started skiing in Cairngorm when he was five, along with his brother and fellow racer Martin.
His speciality was the downhill.
His best World Cup performance was 12th at the infamous Hahnenkamm race in Kitzbühel in 1994.
Maison Sport provides an online service to help you book the best independent instructor for your needs.
TUESDAY 17TH DECEMBER
SANTAS ON THE SLOPES
100s of Father Christmases were out on the slopes of Mountain High Resort in southern California at the weekend.
They were taking part in celebrating Santa Sunday, an annual event that merges holiday cheer and climate activism.
Skiers and snowboarders donned the red suit with donations going to the non-profit environmental organisation, Protect Our Winters.
MONDAY 16TH DECEMBER
SNOWFEET – WELL, WOULD YOU?
Two new models are out after what the manufacturers claim to be a successful first winter last year.
In fact they’ve gone on to call them ‘an international sensation’ and all sort of other claims…
They are a combination of ski and skate and simply attach to you boot.
We can’t work out whether they look like fun or that there are better things to attach to attack to your feet – skis or a snowboard maybe….
SATURDAY 14TH DECEMBER
ALPINISM GETS UNESCO RECOGNITION
It has been awarded the UNESCO intangible cultural heritage status, which celebrates well-known traditions, art forms and practices.
Scaling high mountains peaks is now on the list.
A joint application by mountaineering and guide communities in France, Italy and Switzerland was approved this week.
“It requires physical, technical and intellectual abilities, and is characterised by a shared culture familiar with high-mountain environments, the history of climbing and associated values,” said UNESCO.
“Alpinism also involves knowledge of the natural environment and a strong team spirit. Most community members belong to alpine clubs, which act as a driving force for alpinist culture.”
FRIDAY 13TH DECEMBER
RUSSIA & CHINA SET TO BE CONNECTED BY CABLE CAR
The proposed lift will carry people across the Amur River and connect the cities of Heihe in China and Blagoveshchensk in Russia.
There will be two lines and four cabins – each with a capacity of 60 passengers.
“Cable car systems provide a new form of public transport that is sustainable, extremely fast, reliable and efficient,” said the manufacturer in a statement.
“Although primarily a pragmatic solution, cable cars are also a very congenial way to travel as they enable us to see and experience our cities in a whole new way.”
WEDNESDAY 11TH DECEMBER
INFAMOUS BLACK RUN RENAMED
Now this is something that doesn’t happen very often.
A famous – some might say infamous – black run in Tignes in the French Alps has been given a new name.
Trolles is – or was – the black piste that comes down into the heart of Tignes 2100 (which also recently changed its name from Tignes le Lac).
The final pitch is steep and often very icy.
So much so that many skiers and snowboarders choose to take the long route home, or the lift, at the end of a ski day.
Well, Trolles has now become Johan Clarey.
If you follow World Cup alpine racing closely you will know that Johan Clarey has been doing rather well.
He came second in the men’s downhill at Beaver Creek in the US at the weekend.
Johan Clarey’s home resort is Tignes where his family run a ski shop and a café that is a favourite of PlanetSKI.
The 38-year-old was already a local hero but now everyone who comes to Tignes this winter and heads down the black run will know his name.
Sunday’s World Cup success was Clarey’s 6th podium.
We wonder what they’ll do in Tignes if he actually wins a race.
Of course, he’s not the first ski star to have a piste named after him and he probably won’t be the last.
But it’s something pretty special.
Congratulations Johan Clarey.
MONDAY 9TH DECEMBER
IT’S BEGINNING TO FEEL A LOT LIKE XMAS
The 20th annual Santa gathering has taken place at Sunday River in Maine USA.
240 Santas turned out and raised $6,200 for the River Fund charity.
“Santa Sunday not only spreads holiday cheer to those on the slopes, but also helps to support the youth in our community,” said Sunday River spokesperson, Karolyn Castaldo.
“With our contribution, and through their many fundraising efforts, the River Fund helps kids in our area to achieve success and growth through education and recreation.”
Christmas is coming Folks!
And while we’re on the subject of Xmas:
SATURDAY 7TH DECEMBER
There’s a new member of the Loveland Ski Patrol.
He’s 5-months old, furry and called Bandit.
The border collie joins the US resort’s other rescue dog, Zuma.
FRIDAY 6TH DECEMBER
Watch out folks its Krampusnacht.
If you’re in Austria keep a look out for the Krampus monsters and demons that roam the streets on 5th December, gobbling up naughty children on the eve of St Nicholas’s birthday.
Some of them visited the Innsbruck Christmas Market last night for a trial run.
And, what a noise they made as they trailed through the busy market.
WEDNESDAY 4TH DECEMBER
DESIGN REVEALED FOR WORLD’S FIRST WINTER OLYMPIC MUSEUM
It has been commissioned for the Beijing 2022 Games and will be at the foot of the mountains in Chongli.
Chongli, to the north east of the Chinese capital, will host many of the skiing and snowboarding events.
Following an open public bidding process, maison h was selected for a competition with two other teams to design both the building and the town centre redevelopment.
maison h says it not an architecture office but a creative team that ‘make places’.
The building will be more than a museum.
It’s reported that it will also include an Olympic academy with libraries and research facilities, a youth Olympic training centre and a cable car station.
TUESDAY 3RD DECEMBER
SUMMER IN OZ, APPARENTLY
That means it’s the start of summer in Australia.
It’s just a shame they’ve packed their skis and snowboards away at Mt Hotham ski resort in the Victorian Alps.
Because this happened yesterday…
And here’s what Perisher in New South Wales looked like on Sunday…..
OH DEAR… SPELLCHECK NEEDED!
Congratulations to Inghams for winning this gong at the 2019 World Travel Awards:
Or should that be ‘accommodation’?
CHINESE LEARN TO SKI JUMP
Ahead of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics teenage hopefuls have been in Scandinavia learning the sport.
How will they compare against experienced national team ski jumpers and another group of novices who have been training in Finland?
Could they perform under the pressure of a first major competition?
And would officials from China be satisfied with the progress the athletes and their coaches are making on the path to the Beijing 2022 Games?
The Olympic Channel has been following their progress.
WHAT IS GOING ON HERE?
A piste basher with a snow cannon aboard is squirting snow at a large purple balloon in the French resort of Val Thorens.