10 December 2006

Sled Training, Day 2

Officially, today was only day 2 of my ski patrol sled handling training, but in reality, this was the 5th day I've been "in the handles" at least once. This, unfortunately, worked to my disadvantage, as did the student:trainer ratio, so I only got one run in the handles with an empty sled, and one run on the tail rope.

Also conspiring to keep my hands off the sled today was the weather and the fact that our trainers seemed more interested in 'area orientation' (read: ski every run at Timberline, including the little cutoffs from trail to trail) than getting us some sled time. It sounds like I'm complaining here, but it is important to get the lay of the land, and the snow was great. So, it wasn't a bad thing that we skied nearly every run on the hill. West Pitch was fun, even though it got a little scraped off. Can't wait to try a sled down that...

The weather wasn't miserable or anything, but the Magic Mile lift ended up closing due to wind, so the bottom of the area got a little congested, which makes sled training an annoyance to the public.

I managed to snap a few pictures today, but not as many as I'd hoped, and I didn't have the time to hand my camera off to someone to shoot me while I worked my magic with the sled.

I have to say I'm pretty comfortable with an empty sled, and by now I could probably load one on the chair and unload it off the chair in my sleep. I'm probably exaggerating, but I feel like I'm getting the hang of it, on the easy stuff anyway. Since I was in a group where nobody else had been in the handles before, we weren't taking the sled anywhere challenging. I tried to pass along some tricks I've learned so far without trying to sound like the class know-it-all. Best I can tell, I managed to do that.

Anyway, on to the photos.

My ugly mug, in my shiny new brain bucket and kinda evil-looking goggles. We have to put our names on our helmets so the trainers don't start making up names for us or resorting to "hey, you."

Sled prep. Kinda looks like the reflection in my goggle lenses from the previous shot, huh? Magical. Trainer Jerry sets up the carrying bracket as a backrest for his ride down.

Trainer Jerry taking a ride on the Laura & Michael Express. Looked to me like they did a good job for their first loaded sled run, and Jerry reported a relatively smooth ride.


brando said...

looks like a fun ride. I want to ride in the sled, but I don't want any ouchies.

Ghost Dog said...

Believe it or not, I haven't been a passenger yet. I suppose it'll happen one of these training days. You ever come out here to ski and I'll hook you up. With a ride, not the ouchies.

Damn it, that would be a better post title. "Training Day: Part [x]"

Just not clever enough, I guess.