MY FIRST SKI
14.02.2008 - 14.02.2008 1 °C
We drove to an area called Spitzingsee in the Bavarian Alps!
Hardly containing my excitement, we booted up and hit the slopes!
My first tentative movements were like the scene from Bambi on the ice.
But I had been waiting so long for this that rather than get the feel of moving around I decided to head up the slope and plunge into it.
Starting on the kiddies slope....
I was on the ground often and watched as the children would glide gracefully past me. After a couple of rounds of sliding (not skiing) down the hill, I decided to think about what I was doing.
I watched other people as they came down the large slope, analyzing their moves, experimenting, coming to an understanding of the physics behind it. Trying to see if techniques from waterskiing were applicable.
"Ok, I tilt the skis like this to slow down, bend my knees etc. I get it!"
Then, a lift pass and up the mountainside to the real slopes.
The ride was slow and scenic and much longer/higher than I had thought.
We went as high as we could go then down we went.
The slope seemed to go on for ever and once I got off the red (intermediate level) piste and on to a blue (beginner level) one it was all smooth sailing. I enjoyed the beautiful alpine scenery as I zig zaged gracefully down the slope, the warm sunshine counteracting the cool, fresh air.
I got comfortable with it all very quick and before I knew it was taking photos and videos of my decent, going over (little) jumps and getting a bit too cocky with my speed. I did some very audacious (most likly amusing to other skiers) stacks which where mostly harmless. I got away with only some minor bruises and not the cliche broken arm or leg (thankyou guardian angels).
When we ran low on energy and needed a break, of course there was a beer garden cum restaurant waiting in a valley at the end of a number of pistes.
Then, refreshed, but not drunk (I wisely limited myself to one beer) we hit the slopes again. I must confess that I loved being able to say, in context, "Lets hit the slopes!".
The sun slowly dipped lower casting the slopes in shadow although it was still quite early in the afternoon. Unfortunately, most of the blue pistes were on the north side of the mountain and without the sun they became quite hard to navigate.
What I mean is, as the ground is a blanket of white, the only way to make out the shape of the ground is the shadows behind the dips and bumps. When the entire landscape is in shadow I couldnt tell when the ground rose in a gentle hill or gave way to a steep decent.
So we made our way down the long cross country style trail to the foot of the mountain. It was amazing to ski this track that weaved through the snow covered pines, the afternoon sun making jakobs ladders through the tree canopy. However everyone else took off at their own speed and I meandered along and eventually took the wrong way and ended up in the wrong valley. I was so far off course that I had to take a bus back to where the car was waiting for me! oops. oh well...
What a great day!
Another first and another experience to check off my list.