Ski Okunakayama (or as I Say, “Not Appi”)

    Christina and I took the day off and went skiing again.  Christina is going to try to become a skiing instructor, and the instructor course starts soon, so she wanted to get in a day of good practice with her favorite student, me!

    Okunakayama was a little closer than Appi resort, and it had half as many runs.  Three of those runs had near-black-diamond equivalent slopes.  

    One new thing I learned on my own while Christina was chiding me for not facing down the mountain and putting too much weight on my uphill ski was that as humiliating as it is, I still have to do a warm-up run on a green slope.  Otherwise, something interesting will happen.  I might get onto a narrow path that’s too steep to snow-plow and I’ll have to face a choice of going too fast off a ledge or into a snow-bank/side of hill (I wisely chose the hillside, following the old maxim that if you must crash, make sure you hit the softest thing you can as slowly as you can).  In any case, I can’t quite just hop off the lift and ski a black slope.  Not yet, anyway. 

    Another thing I learned is that enough snowboarders sliding down the mountainside will uncover roots.  Don’t try to cross over the roots on your skis.  Roots bring pain. 

    Otherwise, the snow first thing in the morning was pretty good.  It kept snowing off and on all day, which led to the hiding of ruts, bumps, areas of powder, etc.  It was a little challenging for me, but I managed to get down two of the black slopes without falling (out of about twelve attempts).  There were two wild-card falls on blue slopes. 

    Overall it was a good day.  I can’t wait to get back to Kitzbuehl someday now that I really feel like I know what I’m doing. 

    Since when, though, did I consider skiing on a Saturday "Taking the day off?"


16 Jan 2007 Update:  It turns out there was an earthquake north of here on Saturday, it measured 8.2 on the Richter scale.  I’ve chosen to lay the blame for all my falls on the earthquake (except the root, that was the snowboarders’ fault). 

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