It beats hanging around on street corners
Posted by John Barr 20th March 2012
On a Saturday morning in Reading - where I used to live before emigrating to Austria - you’d find “the youth” hanging around the Oracle shopping centre or on street corners in the centre of town.
In Waidring, just down the road from where I live now, they go to the fun park at the Steinplatte ski area. A few are on boards, most are on twin tipped skis, and all sport brightly coloured, ill fitting clothes. I counted over 25 jumps, rails and other obstacles to ski over, along or into.
I tried to look inconspicuous and merge into the background so I could take some pictures of freestyle skiers helicoptering to their doom. After ten minutes or so I was politely asked to move on – the suggestion was that it was dangerous to stand where I was. I think the truth is that there was an age limit, and I had exceeded it.
On the subject of freestyle skiing, when I was in Salt Lake City last year I went to the ski museum at Olympic Park where they have a training area for freestyle skiers. I was amazed to discover that they learn their trade by skiing down a steep slope, flying off a jump – and land in a swimming pool! It gives the term “water skiing” a new meaning.
About the author
John Barr: My first skiing experience was in Glenshee, which I enjoyed so much that I quit for 15 years - until friends dragged me to Meribel. Skiing on the continent was somewhat different to Scotland, and I’ve been catching up ever since. I moved to St Johann in Tirol in 2009 - with Kitzbühel, the SkiWelt, and several smaller resorts just a short drive away. I’m a computer technology analyst by day, which I can luckily do anywhere as long as I’m on-line
- The very last day of the season (probably) - 14th April 2013
- Easter snow in Austria - 27th March 2013
- Taking DIY a bit far - 15th March 2013
- A visit to the circus - 11th February 2013
- How hard is the Hahnenkamm race, really? - 26th January 2013
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