Skiing safety

Old Jan 16th, 2008, 09:40 AM
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Skiing safety

Hi all. I guess I need to vent. We are going skiing in Utah in a few weeks (Park City and Deer Valley) and I'm starting to get freaked out about the number of serious skiing accidents I've been hearing about.

I used to be worried about blowing out my knee - compared to what I've been hearing, that would a minor injury.

I am a cautious skier, and my husband is a very competent skier. My kids are not reckless, but they do like to ski through the woods and go off the ramps they make out of snow on the sides of the mountain. We all wear helmets.

Any other ways I can maximize our safety - other than just praying we stay out of the wrong places at the wrong time?
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 10:07 AM
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Don't wear earphones. I know you won't but I find it completely infuriating that people are skiing with earphones in. I'd love it if the ski patrol on the east coast would do SOMETHING besides enjoy their free lift ticket.

I think all you can really do is watch what other people are doing almost as closely as you watch what you're doing. Have a great trip!
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 10:12 AM
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One suggestion for your kids. When they ski through the woods ,they need to be very careful when entering the ski run. Kids tend not to look uphill for other skiers and that's a potentially dangerous situtation. They same can be said for jumping off snow ramps.

Having skied for many years, I have become worried over the increased possibility of an accident. Most accidents occur with skiers trying to ski beyond their abilities and usually too fast. Unfortunately many think that skiing fast makes them a good skier.And. there are many who do not know the 'rules' of the mountain ( skiers responsibilities). Know the rules and look out for other skiers.
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 10:40 AM
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Also be careful to not stop in the middle of the slope. Pull over to the side if you are waiting for someone!
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 10:51 AM
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I learned to ski back in the 1970's and my recollection is that there were many more serious injuries back then - when it seemed like half the people on the slopes had a wineskin under their jackets. Now its rare to see or hear of serois injuries. I think the equipment is better today and people are more cautious.

As to a safety tip, at the end of the day and you're tired instead of saying to your companions (or yourself) "just one more run" call it a day. That one last run is the one when you'll get hurt. I learned this the hard way.
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 11:03 AM
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Hi karens,

Also, put it all in perspective. The most dangerous thing we all do every day is drive our cars. Chances of getting hurt skiing are much less.

We have lots of snow. Right now it's colder than H***. It was -8 at my house this morning, but should return to January normal temps by the weekend when the next storm comes in.

Have fun!
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 11:09 AM
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thats a high avalanche area...i wouldn't ski out of bounds.
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 11:33 AM
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Definitely ski responsibly. As a kid, I skiied for 12 hours without falling, went home, fell down the stairs and broke my arm.

Just follow the signs and be wary of other skiiers / conditions. stay with marked trails for sure.
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 11:50 AM
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Also, don't stop just below the trail head where you can't be seen, espcially mid slope just below a cat track that people are jumping off of.

If your husband is a strong skier looking for a change of pace, they have this interconnect tour that they do out there where a guide takes you through 5 or 6 resorts in one day. Only thing of it's kind that I'm aware of, I regretfully missed it the last time I was in Utah. If that's up his alley, would be a blast and would make a great early Father's Day present!

http://www.skiutah.com/interconnect/
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 11:54 AM
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Quit when you're tired!

(And have a great trip!)
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 12:08 PM
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Well, there is no chance of me going off trail! My kids do like to detour through the woods on paths that have clearly been skied before. I remember one area even had a name at Deer Valley - there was a sign calling the area "Bucky's Backyard".

Hi Dayle - how's the snow this year? Last year was our first time to Utah to ski and everyone was saying how little snow you all received, but we thought conditions were GREAT.

But I do hope it's warmer than -8!!!
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 12:33 PM
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Hi Karen - I'll be there over President's Day weekend, so maybe I'll see you there! Let's hope it's warmer...
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 12:43 PM
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Karen,

I was in DV last week and the snow was awesome.

Luckily you are going at a good time when not a ton of people are there. If next week is Sundance, even less people will be on the slopes.

As people said, if you stop to rest...move over to the side of the trail. There were too many skiers stopping in the middle of the slope last week which makes it hard for the uphill skiers to predict where you are going. Also, the same goes with you ski pattern. Don't go wide then small then wide...the uphillers can't predict that either.

Basically just follow the skiers code. Otherwise, sking is sking and it has the same risk as any other adventure sport.

Have fun..DV was great last week!
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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 01:18 PM
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Karens,

The snow is great this year, as normal! Last year was actually the second smallest snowfall year in 30 years! The worst was 1977 which I remember all too well.

If you thought it was good last year - you're going to be amazed this year. You might want to take a powder lesson if you hit it right and don't already know how. It's the best, and there's no describing it.

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Old Jan 16th, 2008, 08:24 PM
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Loki,

I skied the Interconnect several years ago. It is extremely gruelling. It is an entire day of hiking, climbing, poling and sidestepping.

I think I actually skied downhill about three times during the day. The worst part is climbing up through the pass after lunch while wearing skis.

Something much more fun to do is to go to Cortina, Italy and ski the Sella Ronda. It is about a 20 mile circuit. The best part is that you are skiing downhill or riding lifts the entire way.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 07:08 AM
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I have skied since 1971 and lived in Colorado since 1972. Ski accidents are big news because they are so rare. How many times do you read a report of a auto accident in the paper? They are so common nobody reports them. Use the advice you already have read. Stop on the side of the trail. Keep your kids within sight. Pay attention to the signs so you can stay within your skill level.

I cannot speak about Utah ski areas but I know that Colorado areas are jammed on weekends. I suspect that is even more true of Utah areas since they are so close to Provo, Salt Lake city and Ogden. Ski on the weekday to avoid crowds. Do something else on weekends.

Have a great trip!

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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 09:23 AM
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You are right to be concerned, which will make you be cautious and aware of your fellow skiers. Accidents on the hill are all too common. Seems to me more common nowadays because the hills get so crowded.

My husband was literally flattened last year, at Breckenridge (not his favorite hill for the crowds and frequent accidents) by a young man who took a jump and skied full force into my husband's back and side.

My husband is an expert skier, was on the side of the trail, skiing at a good clip. He suffered five broken, splayed ribs (which means they were broken in back AND disconnected from the cartilage in front). He couldn't ski the rest of the season, obviously, couldn't even lay down to sleep for a couple of months.

It was really ugly and painful, and involved a lawsuit for all the medical bills. Of course, nothing replacd his ruined brand new skis, or his wasted season pass (this happened the first day he skied on his new skis and his season pass).

Be careful out there.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 09:57 AM
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Annewest - Utah ski areas are about the same as CO areas. NOT more crowded. You should come some time and experience it first hand.

MaureenB, did you know that sometimes ski resorts will carry over your season pass if you have a medical reason you can't ski that year - ESPECIALLY if the reason is you were hit by a reckless skier at their area!

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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 11:21 AM
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Thanks, Dayle, you're right. I'm still waiting to hear back from the ski area about that. We've purchased this season's pass already, but we've asked if they'll comp him next year's.

We were too busy with his recovery and subsequent issues last year to even get around to asking the ski area to give him a credit. Maybe I'll post a thread about it, when we get their answer, for others' info.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 11:23 AM
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Jeez. Mea Culpa. My husband was hurt at Copper, NOT Breckenridge. Sorry for the misstatement.
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