Adirondack Forum  
Rules Membership Donations and Online Store Adkhighpeaks Foundation ADKhighpeaks Forums ADKhighpeaks Wiki Disclaimer

Go Back   Adirondack Forum > The Adirondack Forum > Skiing in the Adirondacks
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-26-2016, 05:35 PM   #1
Bob K
Member
 
Bob K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Saratoga County, NY
Posts: 496
Speed control needed on slippery snow 12/26/16

I skied the northern section of the headwaters of the East Sacandaga Creek today Monday 12/26/16. Snow cover was thin and all snow transformed (no longer powder), but no crust or ice in the woods.

With both slick snow and thin cover, numerous speed control techniques were helpful to avoid problems. Fortunately, skiing off the side of the trail into unbroken snow was reasonably effective where the trail was wide enough. Other methods used today included the pole drag, bush grab, accidental tree hug, step turn, rapid fire multi-step step turn, and the “oh $#!^, one legged, too late” step turn. Controlled falls also employed. Oh yea, and one stretch walking down (I am a senior skier & unashamed).

It was great to get out and saw no one once in the woods. My daughters did skate skiing at the Garnet Hill XC center and reported well groomed, though quick trails. A few trails were track set (more in the works I was told) but surely not good for classical and undoubtedly tough waxing (they saw some frustrated folks). Some expected new snow will help that. Ten degrees when I started at 9:30, and never shed a layer. Happy to have used toe & hand warmers.

The Siamese Ponds wilderness section from Garnet Hill (1950 ft elevation) up to Wm Blake pond, and then for .5 miles east of the pond had frequent obstacles (rocks & roots, and only a few bare spots). Pond skiing perfect. Once near the height of land, better snow cover (10”) and a nice ski to the Vly. Trail to Botheration pond broken out to the south.

Reportedly, the entire Botheration loop is skiable – though with numerous thin spots. A sign once in the wilderness indicates that 2 bridges are out, one over the E Br, about 1 mile SE of Old Farm Clearing, and another over the 13th Lake inlet stream (trail to Hour & Puffer W of main line & S of lake). The former reportedly has a useable ice bridge crossing a bit downstream. I recall from the past, that the latter crossing isn’t wide or problematic unless recent rain.

With the conditions, I would only recommend the steeper sections for committed skiers with experience. I had waxless touring 3-pin but wish I had taken my rock skis (also waxless). Metal edge touring would be perfect.

Looking forward to hearing from others!
Bob K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2016, 11:44 PM   #2
aft paddle
Member
 
aft paddle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Northern Greene County
Posts: 281
I involuntarily curl my toes very tightly...does absolutely nothing to control speed but acts as an early warning that I had better try something very soon.
aft paddle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 08:56 AM   #3
yardsale
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Burlington
Posts: 78
Turns = control of both direction and speed. Having skis with a minimum of 20mm sidecut, boots with laterally and tortionally stiff soles, and some variation of cable binding to transmit power to the skis is the first step. Becoming skilled in at least a tele turn and preferebly a parallell turn (in the back country, not just on piste) is the second. Beware the rationale that suggests learning to turn on straight, skinny skis, then getting a more turney set up. This is almost an impossible task.

Survival techniques if you don't have the above.

1. If you have skins, put them on when you head downhill to slow yourself down. You will need to to step turns for direction change.

2. Take 3' of para chord or similar line, starting at the bindings criss cross the line under the ski then over such that you have a diamond pattern of line on the bottom surface. Tie the lines off behind the binding heel plate. Turns your skis into snowshoes.

3. Take em off and walk down.

4. Apply too warm a wax or klister and tromp around in powder to build up snow on ski bottoms. Again turns skis into (heavy) snowshoes.

5 If below freezing, dump skis in water. Results = #4 above.

6. All these techniques enhanced with the aft paddle strategy
yardsale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 09:42 AM   #4
Schultzz
Low Impact Skidder
 
Schultzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 682
You didn't apply your ski brakes. I have Telemark skis with fish scales and steel edges on each side of the bindings with three pin shoes too. Believe me I know the feeling of being "out of control" and wondering where you are going to land. Still lots of fun though.
__________________
Never Argue With An Idiot. They Will Drag You Down To Their Level And Beat You With Experience.
Schultzz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 10:50 AM   #5
Zach
Last seen wandering vaguely
 
Zach's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Orwell NY
Posts: 720
I have done the spontaneous tree grab a few times when skiing off trail in the woods here, as well as something I call the downhill traverse fall, when I am skiing diagonally across a grade that is too steep to go straight down, and then do a panic fall in the downhill direction. This results in a situation where my head is pointing downhill and my skis are above me, which is a very secure position in which to remain stopped but hard to get out of if I want to get going again. I have not yet tried the 'wait for the snow to melt' approach to leaving this predicament, but it seemed like it would have been a good idea on some occasions.
Zach
Zach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 11:07 AM   #6
yardsale
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Burlington
Posts: 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zach View Post
I have done the spontaneous tree grab a few times when skiing off trail in the woods here, as well as something I call the downhill traverse fall, when I am skiing diagonally across a grade that is too steep to go straight down, and then do a panic fall in the downhill direction. This results in a situation where my head is pointing downhill and my skis are above me, which is a very secure position in which to remain stopped but hard to get out of if I want to get going again. I have not yet tried the 'wait for the snow to melt' approach to leaving this predicament, but it seemed like it would have been a good idea on some occasions.
Zach
These are all great ideas. (Good for business) Yardsale, OTR/L
yardsale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 04:14 PM   #7
Hard Scrabble
Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Schultzz View Post
You didn't apply your ski brakes. I have Telemark skis with fish scales and steel edges on each side of the bindings with three pin shoes too. Believe me I know the feeling of being "out of control" and wondering where you are going to land. Still lots of fun though.
"Fish Scales" give control when going uphill, not down.
The old "Sitz Mark" is a last resort.
Hard Scrabble is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 05:48 PM   #8
Zach
Last seen wandering vaguely
 
Zach's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Orwell NY
Posts: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by yardsale View Post
These are all great ideas. (Good for business) Yardsale, OTR/L
My skiing is unencumbered by the thought process, so it tends to proceed in irrational directions. I can ski much faster than I can think.
Zach
Zach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 06:13 PM   #9
yardsale
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Burlington
Posts: 78
In all seriousness and at the risk of thread drift, I find trudging uphill in a skin track to be a wonderful meditative (thought free) experience.
yardsale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 06:15 PM   #10
Justin
Moving along
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,745
I usually employ this technique to control my speed...

Justin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 06:25 PM   #11
Nehasane
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 48
a sitzmark is always a better option than the faceplant
Nehasane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2016, 06:41 PM   #12
Justin
Moving along
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehasane View Post
a sitzmark is always a better option than the faceplant
Yes...that too!

Justin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 12:32 AM   #13
Schultzz
Low Impact Skidder
 
Schultzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 682
"Fish Scales" give control when going uphill, not down.
The old "Sitz Mark" is a last resort.

Gee, Jim you are so knowledgeable. I would not have figured that out unless you told me.
I have stayed at that resort before. Tell you what. You get your downhill skiis and I'll bring my Telemark and we'll see who gets to the bottom of the hill first. Of course the moguls are a must. Let's see how much you really know.
__________________
Never Argue With An Idiot. They Will Drag You Down To Their Level And Beat You With Experience.
Schultzz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 11:27 AM   #14
stripperguy
Hangin' by a thread
 
stripperguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Schenectady, NY
Posts: 3,454
Bob,
Your equipment makes a world of difference...
On my AT gear, I can ski any terrain, any condition (yes, even everyone's favorite, breakable crust)
On my XC stuff, I'm pretty cautious, just don't have the same control.
Lack of edges and lack of boot/ski stifffness is the biggest thing. I usually resort to a wide traverse, even if it means threading between the trees, better than being trapped in a packed gully with little room for speed control.
yardsales suggestion of paracord X's under foot can save the day, I've even used my goggle pouch in desperate situations!

And for entertainment's sake, here is a screen grab of my amazing technique. This was an Sheep Hill in MA, a broad open slope that had a little over 3 feet of almost fresh. Almost fresh, I say, because halfway down was some windpacked stuff, that I failed to adjust for, not once, but twice!!

__________________
Stripperguy's Photos (sort of)
stripperguy is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 12:30 PM   #15
yardsale
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Burlington
Posts: 78
Great photo SG. You know the saying" you only need to look good for 100th of a second. Guess yours was 100th second earlier!!
yardsale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 01:31 PM   #16
stripperguy
Hangin' by a thread
 
stripperguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Schenectady, NY
Posts: 3,454
Quote:
Originally Posted by yardsale View Post
Great photo SG. You know the saying" you only need to look good for 100th of a second. Guess yours was 100th second earlier!!
Everything was cool, until I hit that windpacked...couldn't see any difference, only noticed when it was far too late. Did a really nice front layout. Second lap, don't you know I did it again, only this time my buddy had his video rolling to immortalize me!!
__________________
Stripperguy's Photos (sort of)
stripperguy is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 02:41 PM   #17
montcalm
Mobster
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 754
A strong telemark technique with soft boots is crucial for advanced XC. The best (and simplest) technique you can learn is the straight run and turn-out. Good technique for deep snow. If you faceplant while telemarking, then you are doing it wrong. More rear weight needed. If you sitzmark, you are in the back seat and not centered. High fore-aft stability with low lateral stability means you fall to your side when done properly (if there is proper falling). Turning in a tele is controlled sideways falling much like riding a bike.

A strong stem can get you out of a jam too, but more likely to put you on your face. Again, stem to hockey stop can save you. Good technique for icier or harder snows. Low fore-aft stability with soft boots and free heels means proper technique is catchy and likely to put you in the backseat or faceplant you. High lateral stability means you are more likely to fall forward or back as well. If you faceplant or sitzmark, then you need to visit the freeheel technique above.

If it's really bad, sideslip and sidestep down. Or walk. Learn kick turns, for up AND down.

Step turns are panic maneuvers in the BC. Very unstable; save as a last ditch effort. Use just before falling, and sparingly
montcalm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 05:44 PM   #18
Hard Scrabble
Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Schultzz View Post
"Fish Scales" give control when going uphill, not down.
The old "Sitz Mark" is a last resort.

Gee, Jim you are so knowledgeable. I would not have figured that out unless you told me.
I have stayed at that resort before. Tell you what. You get your downhill skiis and I'll bring my Telemark and we'll see who gets to the bottom of the hill first. Of course the moguls are a must. Let's see how much you really know.
I have never cross country skied at a resort.
I prefer remote trails.
I have skied Whiteface back when the lift ticket cost six dollars.
Why are you so arguementive???
Jim
Hard Scrabble is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 05:46 PM   #19
yardsale
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Burlington
Posts: 78
Come on fellas, we're heading into a powder day here.
yardsale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2016, 11:25 PM   #20
montcalm
Mobster
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 754
Perfect timing for a ski-off!

I'd always put my money on smooth bases vs scales on the way down all else being equal.
montcalm is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:52 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

DISCLAIMER: Use of these forums, and information found herein, is at your own risk. Use of this site by members and non-members alike is only granted by the adkhighpeak.com administration provided the terms and conditions found in the FULL DISCLAIMER have been read. Continued use of this site implies that you have read, understood and agree to the terms and conditions of this site. Any questions can be directed to the Administrator of this site.