Ski Independence Blog

Archive for February, 2010

Regards from snowy Steamboat

Jenny O Farrell February 26th, 2010

Today’s 5am Steamboat snow report indicated a small but welcome 5cm/2″ at mid-mountain and 10cm/4″ at the summit.  However, when I was shoveling my driveway at 7am and fighting a losing battle against Mother Nature, trying to clear my way out before she erased my hard work, I knew that a lot had happened since the snow stake was checked pre-dawn.  And I was right!

Finding myself in a generous and selfless frame of mind and with meetings on my midday schedule, I decided to check out Steamboat snow conditions on the first gondola so that I could provide detailed information to my esteemed friends and colleagues.  I rode up the gondola with some nice folks from Fort Collins, CO who were up for a long weekend, and together we planned a ski itinerary for them.  Good thing, too.  It is definitely a day to have local knowledge or a local buddy, as visibility is as limited as the snow is fabulous.  We’re talking superlatives here, folks!

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Warren Smith Powder Camps in Japan

The Team February 25th, 2010

Over the past week Warren Smith has been holding his Powder Ski Camp in Japan in the resorts of Niseko Furano.

The powder skiing in Japan is unlike anywhere else, with waist deep powder being commonplace. The Powder Ski Camp consisted of 9 days skiing split between Niseko & Furano and is designed to build and develop skill and confidence, to enable people to ski all terrains with a specific emphasis on powder skiing.

Here are the video blogs which show the amazing powder & skiing that can be found in Japan:


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Video Snow Report from Chamonix – 25 Feb

The Team February 25th, 2010

Conditions in the Alps have clearly started to turn to spring skiing with milder temperatures and plenty of blue skies .

However that does not mean a lack of snow,  10 – 15 cm of fresh snow fell yesterday in the Chamonix area, providing some excellent skiing & snowboarding. It is important that care is taken when venturing off piste as due to the mixture of winter & spring snow packs there is an increased risk of avalanches.

Here is Seb Montaz’s latest video snow report from Chamonix, with some fantastic footage from a recent ski touring trip. Read the rest of this entry »

Excellent conditions in Whistler

The Team February 18th, 2010

Current snowfall is continuing to add to Whistler’s epic season, with nearly 1m falling in the past 7 days and whilst these conditions aren’t ideal for the Olympians, they make for an ideal day on the mountain.

Excellent conditions in Whistler

Excellent conditions in Whistler

Hazel, one of Ski Independence’s resort reps (pictured right), told us yesterday “There is a real buzz around town, its so busy with people from all over the world, but the hill is really quiet and the snow in the alpine is amazing, which is great for all us skiers & boarders who love powder, with fresh tracks still to be found late afternoon.”

Both the men’s & women’s downhill races were nail biting, with a great 13th place finish from Team GB’s Chemmy Alcott. Chemmy was full of praise for the course. “It’s the perfect women’s downhill, the best I’ve ever skied,” she said. “And today Mother Nature did us a favour as well with the conditions. It’s bumpy, it’s icy and it’s great fun. You look at this and you think to yourself: ‘This is what we do this sport for.’ I think I could have gone quicker but I made a few silly mistakes. But it’s the Chemmy way.” Good luck to Chemmy for the super-combined today, which is one of her best events.

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Not quite the Whistler Dave Murray downhill course

The Team February 16th, 2010

Hillend may not be on the same level as the Dave Murray Olympic downhill course of Whistler, but it is Europe’s longest and most challenging artificial ski slope. Located on the outskirts of Edinburgh, Hillend is home to just as many memories as the Olympic downhill course so when the Scotsman newspaper announced last week that Hillend is facing possible closure within weeks under a major cost-cutting drive by its local authority owners, we and some previous GB Olympic stars were immediately reminiscing on past times.  Read the rest of this entry »

XXI Winter Olympics begin

The Team February 11th, 2010

With heavy snow forecast in Whistler for the next 5 days, it looks like the XXI Winter Olympics are going to get off to a great start.

Team GB are counting down the hours until the Games begin and with US alpine skier Lindsey Vonn’s participation in jeopardy due to a standing injury, a GB medal in alpine skiing is looking ever more promising for Chemmy Alcott. The 27-year-old is due to compete in slalom, giant slalom, super G and super combined and will also be involved in the downhill event, hurtling down Whistler’s Franz’s course at speeds of around 100 kilometres per hour. Read the rest of this entry »

Five resorts in nine days

The Team February 1st, 2010

A week has already passed since I got back from Canada where I was helping to host a holiday for readers of Daily Mail Ski & Snowboard magazine with Annika Leis from Ski Independence.

Over the course of nine days our 32 strong group visited five of Canada’s lesser known resorts, in British Columbia. We got to enjoy steep, challenging chutes in Fernie, lots of fresh powder in Kimberley, North America’s longest vertical descent at Revelstoke, powered down perfectly prepared groomers in Panorama and rounded the trip off with challenging off piste skiing in Kicking Horse. It was a great success but don’t just take my word for it. Here’s a collection of quotes I gathered from the crew.

Powering through powder in Fernie

Powering through powder in Fernie

“Fernie, Kicking Horse and Revelstoke are awesome resorts with extremely exciting terrain. The use of local guides meant we quickly learnt the layout of the ski areas. And the accommodation and hospitality we experienced was fantastic.” Graham McNally.

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