Ski Better with Chris Lennon from Spring 2012 issue
photos: Gillian Morgan snow: Blackcomb
Here’s a great way to bring exuberance and playfulness to your skiing. These three short photo sequences are from a single run last season. None of these tactics were needed, but they were rather fun and made a run through fairly mellow trees a little bit more exciting.
1. Near the outset of the run I encountered a small tree with a windblown ramp of snow on the uphill side…
2. …which seemed like a perfect opportunity to plant my pole just in front of the obstacle and pop into the air for a moment.
3. Around the next bend I encountered a small tree trunk…
4. …which was a great obstacle to use a gate to arc a turn around.
5. Farther down the run I encountered a wind-loaded roll of snow…
6. …which gave me a perfect excuse to crank a turn much harder than needed and give a brief sensation of skiing knee-deep pow on a day that really offered little more than a fresh dusting.
Knee the Steeps
This may seem obvious but it’s an important thing to remember when getting comfortable on steeper terrain. As the terrain gets steeper, maintaining a balanced and powerful stance requires that your inside ski be much higher on the slope than your downhill ski. As a result, your inside knee will be considerably more flexed than your downhill leg.
Don’t be afraid to use the edge on that inside ski, either. Unlike snowboarders, skiers have two legs that can work independently of each other, so no sense in wasting that advantage by using only one edge at a time.