Great times in Vail and BC with Alex

Were you skiing when you were 5? Alex was. I still remember doing “froggie hops” with him on the Breckenridge “Vitoban” Poma. Well, not today!

Were you skiing when you were 5? Alex was. I still remember doing “froggie hops” with him on the Breckenridge “Vitoban” Poma. Well, not today! This was the first time we skied together at Vail. A quick calculation gave us about 30,000 vertical feet today. Including a few of those feet off the ground.
Alex has grown. I used to have to lift he and his sister up on every chair. Then he was able to hop up to most ever chair. Now, no problem. Bring it on.
Vail was very good today. 6″ of fresh Powder at the top. Perfect sunshine with temps from 15*-30*. We skied from Vista Bahn to Mountain Top, then off the back. Powder run, after powder run, bump run after bump run. Some highlights came in Outer Mongolia Bowl, Yonder Trees, Highline, Roger’s Run, Look Ma, Prima-Pronto-Log Chute, and of course Iron Mask in Blue Sky Basin.

The folk at Vail treated us well. The crowds were minimal. Lines were all less than 3 minutes, even out of the SS line.

Alex worked on keeping both hands and arms moving down the hill (not letting the uphill hand dropping behind his body). Carving both skis, with a more active use of the inside ski. Specifically, increasing the amount of dorsiflexion of the ankle, and more flex in the knee and hip socket. This gave a more Long Leg (outside leg), and Short Leg (inside leg), look to his skiing. It also allowed him to have a more symmetrical appearance between the legs. We worked on this on the many catwalks around Vail. Never a vertical foot wasted.
He did launch this cornice on Iron Mask in Blue Sky Basin.
Friday Report at Beaver Creek
What a day. Alex and I started our journey from the Beaver Creek Chateau. Great people there, and EXCELLENT COOKIES… WOW.
There was an temperature inversion from Avon to the top of Beaver Creek. 6* in the town of Avon 28* at the top of BC. However, we warmed up quickly. The goals of the day were set on the first chairlift, Strawberry Park. Alex asked for bumps, and glades. And oh baby, can BC deliver on both of those accounts.
After Larkspur Bowl we headed for Goshawk. This is without a doubt our favorite bump run in Colorado. Neither of us were in shape to ski it top to bottom. We then ventured to the Rose Bowl for a little cruising fun.
Some of the runs we wanted to check off the list were the Stoney Creek Chutes. They are opening on Saturday bummer. Although, the Royal Elk glades were calling our name. Double Black, “Expert Only”, “Caution”, etc.. I have always believed as we improve in our skiing, we turn these signs from warnings to invitations.
We were playing with a few things today. The biggest concept was taking the foot off the brake, let our turn shape and amount of skid/carve be our gearing/speed control/direction, and then put our foot on the gas. As you may see on a few of the pictures and videos in the photo album, we made the change. We looked at a few pictures on my camera, Alex saw the changes, and adapted immediately. From then on, we skied. “Ski Good or Eat Wood”, was our motto. We found if you didn’t, it tasted kinda “treezy”
We skied all sides of Grouse Mountain… Well. Then on the way home we found a powder field that was nice. Unfortunately, I led us in the wrong direction. After some minor recon and hiking work we found our way home. Man, those cookies tasted good!
Thank you to the family, and especially to Alex for a awesome couple of days. I look forward to hearing and seeing Izzy’s Adventures with Snowboard, a great friend of mine Gregg Davis (former AASI National Team Member).
To your sliding success,
Jon Lawson
p.s. 6 kids for Xmas week. That will be a fun house next week 😉 Parents, enjoy the snowshoe breaks.

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