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Old 03-21-2013, 09:11 PM   #21 (permalink)
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LOVE those SnowboardProfessor vids. Between the super velveeta cheese of those and the awesome technical SnowWolf, I learned a lot of the basics. Lessons filled in the rest. There's something to be said about throwing yourself into a run that makes you uncomfortable/scared. I progressed a lot when I tried following a skier buddy of mine down the blues (I had barely figured out greens) and then down blacks (I had barely figured out blues). But this was all well groomed runs. Anytime he went down something with moguls (that asshole!) I backed waaaaaaay off. I like to have fun, not crash and burn.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:11 PM   #22 (permalink)
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The snow professor videos seem pretty decent. I thought they were entertaining and easy to understand. In a related note, my boy basically did pivot turns exclusively up until the middle of this season, when he broke through and got the hang of linked dynamic skidded turns. Subsequently, he now generally kicks my ass on the mountain. Point being that the pivot turn is a nice tool when you're at the upper end of your "steep meter" but I feel like when you are progressing incrementally, you want to still work on the skidded turn as your primary speed control, instead of pivot turns.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:17 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I disagree that _every_ run teaches one something. In my experience if the steep is too steep, my legs and brain lock down and become incapable of doing anything but side slipping, tensing up all muscles, waste both physical and mental energy.

On top of it all, it is wasting the time I could have been spending on a green. Speaking personally, when I was stuck in a limbo where greens were too easy and yet blue were too hard, I would find the spots on the greens that had steeper slopes and spend a lot of time in those spots practicing my turns.

If that became comfortable, I would add some speed into those turns to mimic the feel of the steep. After 4-5 days of such practice, it clicked for me and blues became doable.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:35 PM   #24 (permalink)
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This is in my opinion bad advice for Whistler, where the blues are pretty tough compared to most places to begin with and the guy's not sure if he should retreat to greens. I could see this if he was at some smaller hill where the blacks might not be too hard but in general at Whistler they're pretty tough and he should get the hang of blues first.
Not just for Whistler... EVERYWHERE!

When I first started snowboarding two years ago I was taken back by some friends of friends who claimed they were able to "go down" blacks by their second day. It was complete and utter horseshit as I saw one of them heelslip half the run, then try sloppy rudder turns, followed by a nasty edge catch that bruised his tailbone. This was supposedly his fifth time out. Looked like a such a fucking douchebag.

I never touched a black run until the middle of my second year because I was determined to get the fundamentals of static and dynamic skidding/carving before venturing out into steeper terrain. This may have been my 20th or so time out but I was way more concerned about doing it right than obtaining stupid bragging rights about going down some black diamond run.

Needless to say, not only can I torch them down the mountain, but I'm in complete control. They always complain how there's too many fucking people on the mountain, and I always tell them how dodging people's part of the fun. They retort and say it's mostly my board (NS Raptor), and probably to some degree their right, but I don't say anything back and just smile ear to ear.

I will go as far as saying going down a black run doesn't help you achieve shit if you're not ready for it. If you got dynamic riding down on greens/blues, then yeah, going down a black run will definitely help you be more comfortable in less steep terrain. Otherwise it's pointless and just leads to unnecessary risks toward a bad injury.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:37 PM   #25 (permalink)
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If you can, pick up a copy of this guide: Ski and Snowboard Guide to Whistler Blackcomb: Intermediate Edition | Quickdraw Publications

Very informative narrative of pretty much all the runs in Whistler/Blackcomb. That way you won't end up staring down a minefield of moguls.

Discovered my favourite blue run (Ridgerunner) from it - it's an medium steep run with rollers and turns.. not at all boring! Thankfully always well groomed. A lot of the runs around that area are usually Blackcomb's runs of the day, so I'd recommend checking those out. They're usually the best conditions.

And I admit, after a run that kicked your ass making you feel like a total noob again, no shame in bombing down a green to gain some confidence again.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:06 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Mel M View Post
Not just for Whistler... EVERYWHERE!

When I first started snowboarding two years ago I was taken back by some friends of friends who claimed they were able to "go down" blacks by their second day. It was complete and utter horseshit as I saw one of them heelslip half the run, then try sloppy rudder turns, followed by a nasty edge catch that bruised his tailbone. This was supposedly his fifth time out. Looked like a such a fucking douchebag.

I never touched a black run until the middle of my second year because I was determined to get the fundamentals of static and dynamic skidding/carving before venturing out into steeper terrain. This may have been my 20th or so time out but I was way more concerned about doing it right than obtaining stupid bragging rights about going down some black diamond run.

Needless to say, not only can I torch them down the mountain, but I'm in complete control. They always complain how there's too many fucking people on the mountain, and I always tell them how dodging people's part of the fun. They retort and say it's mostly my board (NS Raptor), and probably to some degree their right, but I don't say anything back and just smile ear to ear.

I will go as far as saying going down a black run doesn't help you achieve shit if you're not ready for it. If you got dynamic riding down on greens/blues, then yeah, going down a black run will definitely help you be more comfortable in less steep terrain. Otherwise it's pointless and just leads to unnecessary risks toward a bad injury.
I tend to agree, Mel M. I really don't feel I learned anything side slipping down that black run today. I just wanted to get off the damn thing. It was a pretty miserable experience. Unfortunately, it was a looong run and super steep. I should never have listened to the skier who said the Dave Murray black run was easier than the Upper Fraser blue run. Both are hard but the black one was waaaay steeper - at times it felt nearly vertical! I did a few turns on it but knew that if I fell I could have hurt myself. In addition, I feel so worked physically and mentally. I think pushing the envelope is fine but that run was out of my league. I had no business being on it.

I'll likely contact the teacher I took lessons from in December for some more instruction. In addition, I'll stick to the greens and try some easier blue runs. But I'm staying far away from the black runs at Whistler. They are dangerous for a beginner like me.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:09 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by litebrite View Post
If you can, pick up a copy of this guide: Ski and Snowboard Guide to Whistler Blackcomb: Intermediate Edition | Quickdraw Publications

Very informative narrative of pretty much all the runs in Whistler/Blackcomb. That way you won't end up staring down a minefield of moguls.

Discovered my favourite blue run (Ridgerunner) from it - it's an medium steep run with rollers and turns.. not at all boring! Thankfully always well groomed. A lot of the runs around that area are usually Blackcomb's runs of the day, so I'd recommend checking those out. They're usually the best conditions.

And I admit, after a run that kicked your ass making you feel like a total noob again, no shame in bombing down a green to gain some confidence again.
Thanks, Litebrite! I'll check out the book. And I'm definitely going to try Ridgerunner. Is it on Blackcomb?
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:10 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by litebrite View Post
If you can, pick up a copy of this guide: Ski and Snowboard Guide to Whistler Blackcomb: Intermediate Edition | Quickdraw Publications

Very informative narrative of pretty much all the runs in Whistler/Blackcomb. That way you won't end up staring down a minefield of moguls.

Discovered my favourite blue run (Ridgerunner) from it - it's an medium steep run with rollers and turns.. not at all boring! Thankfully always well groomed. A lot of the runs around that area are usually Blackcomb's runs of the day, so I'd recommend checking those out. They're usually the best conditions.

And I admit, after a run that kicked your ass making you feel like a total noob again, no shame in bombing down a green to gain some confidence again.
+1 on this, it's a great book, really helpful to find your way around whistler as an intermediate.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:14 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freetheanimals View Post
Thanks, Litebrite! I'll check out the book. And I'm definitely going to try Ridgerunner. Is it on Blackcomb?
Ridgerunner is on blackcomb, commonly cited as one of the best blues in north america. The one downside is that there's a bit of a long flat green at the bottom to get back to the chair. Start with Zig Zag from the glacier lodge, which is similar but finishes near the chair. Then do Rock and Roll, and Twist and Shout and Ridgerunner in whatever order you want, these start from the top of crystal chair. These are all blues and they are great runs for boarding.

I just got back Sunday from a week at whistler, dying to go back already.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:43 PM   #30 (permalink)
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I tend to agree, Mel M. I really don't feel I learned anything side slipping down that black run today. I just wanted to get off the damn thing. It was a pretty miserable experience. Unfortunately, it was a looong run and super steep. I should never have listened to the skier who said the Dave Murray black run was easier than the Upper Fraser blue run. Both are hard but the black one was waaaay steeper - at times it felt nearly vertical! I did a few turns on it but knew that if I fell I could have hurt myself. In addition, I feel so worked physically and mentally. I think pushing the envelope is fine but that run was out of my league. I had no business being on it.

I'll likely contact the teacher I took lessons from in December for some more instruction. In addition, I'll stick to the greens and try some easier blue runs. But I'm staying far away from the black runs at Whistler. They are dangerous for a beginner like me.
I'm definitely not against pushing the envelope, but to me the only real difference between blues and blacks is acceleration. If the blue run is long enough, you can reach breakneck speeds of 60+ mph, particularly in well groomed tracks. So when people mention that speed makes things easier when you snowboard, that's true, but you can achieve those speeds on longer blue runs. Since you go to Whistler, that's gotta have some of the longest runs in the continent. The steepness of blacks definitely make very short radius dynamic turns a lot more fun, since you shoot out of a turn on very steep terrain, but for practicing, it's completely unnecessary and I believe can hinder your improvement just by shaking your confidence.

As mentioned from instructors I had and probably from a few people on this forum, it's beneficial for a beginner to dial in slower, large radius, static turns. The more advanced you get, your movements get more dynamic, your turn radius gets shorter, and your turn initiation/completion becomes much faster.

Honestly, I'm still practicing getting down smoothly down very steep terrain, but I still dial in the techniques down blue runs.
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