Screw shoes for hiking and running on snow or ice
Posted by sibylle in ice, Germany, Switzerland, Europe, Colorado, Idaho, Canada and PNW (Thursday February 24, 2011 at 11:14 am)

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My running shoes with screws added for traction

Two years ago, my son made me  “screw shoes” for Christmas (when he asked what I wanted, I said that I wanted  “screw shoes”). I hike in these even in snow, by using gaiters over the show and a vapor barrier inside the shoe. This can be a fancy vapor barrier liner sock, as made by several suppliers, or as simple as a plastic bag. I use grocery bags over my socks, which keeps my feet dry and warm down to zero degrees.

You can also turn hiking boots into screw shoes, and simply remove the screws in spring. I like running on snowy trails, so I use running shoes.

I’ve had the above pair of screw shoes for two years now, and they’ve held up well. Use a relatively new running shoe, with a thick sole, and make sure the screws are short (about 3/8 inch), so as to not feel them

Other outdoor hikers prefer the Yaktrax,  or the Kahtoola MICROspikes work with a heavier hiking boot, but I like traveling light and fast.

Matt Carpenter, 17-time winner of Pikes Peak ascents and marathons,  describes how to make a screw shoe on his website.

Skiing using a carved turn
Posted by sibylle in skiing, Colorado (Monday February 21, 2011 at 8:59 pm)

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Tristan Hechtel carving turns in Vail’s China Bowl

I often teach carving turns in my ski lessons. In this post,  I want to summarize some basic steps to making a carved turn.

1. The skis should be about hip width apart.

2. Keep the hands forward.
3. Roll the skis onto their inside (uphill) edge by tilting both knees (legs) and hip slightly uphill  (angulation).

4. After the modern shaped ski is tilted on edge and weighted, once it’s moving downhill the ski automatically turns.

I found a video on UTube of a carving lesson by an Austrian skier, Klaus Mair. I’m posting this link until I get a video camera and can shoot my own!

Note in the photo of Tristan:

His hands are forward.

His skis are more than hip width apart. When skiing very fast, or on steeper terrain, the skis move further apart.

His lower legs are parallel, resulting in the same edge angle for both skis.

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Tristan carving turns at Vail

When I saw the Austrian ski video for the first time today, I was happy that he said the same thing I’ve been telling my students:  One must start with the correct stance (body position), keep the upper body quiet, and have a slightly countered stance.

I hope this helps you understand what I’ve been saying while on the slopes!

Tina Maze, Slovenia, wins gold in GS at Worlds
Posted by sibylle in skiing, women, Germany, Europe (Thursday February 17, 2011 at 8:51 pm)

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Tina Maze in the Giant slalom, Alpine World Championships
Photo - Agence Zoom
Maze is the first person from Slovenia to win a gold medal in alpine skiing at a World Championships or Olympics. Federica Brignone of Italy, and 0.48 in front of Tessa Worley of France placed second and third, respectively. Julia Mancuso, at  16th, was the top American finisher in the World Alpine championships in Garmisch, Germany.

Lindsey Vonn, still suffering  from a concussion she sustained several days ago, withdrew from her remaining events at the world championships.

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Tessa Worley, France, in GS

Photo , Agence Zoom

Worley was considered a favorite to win the giant slalom, but in a race where hundredths, or tenths of seconds separate first and second place, changing  snow conditions during the course of a race can have a huge effect.
For the ski students and aspiring racers, note the high edge angle of Maze’s and Worley’s skis. Maze is still above the gate in this photo, and if you think of a turn a part of a circle, she’s between the 12 o’clock and three o’clock position.  This means that she has moved onto her new edges before crossing the fall line.

In lessons, we talk about getting onto the new ski edge — here you see world champion  examples of getting onto that edge.

The men’s GS and slalom will be among the next events.

Goergl wins Downhill at Ski World Championships
Posted by sibylle in skiing, women, Germany, Europe (Tuesday February 15, 2011 at 11:07 am)

Austria’s Elisabeth Goergl won her second gold medal in the Alpine Ski World Championships.

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Goergl’s winning run in the Downhill

AP photo

Goergl defeated favorites Lindsey Vonn and Maria Riesch to become the first woman besides Riesch and Vonn to win  a  top-level downhill in two years. Vonn, despite suffering from a concussion after a February 2 crash, won the silver and Riesch placed third to win the bronze.

Julia Mancuso, who won silver in the Super-G, placed sixth in the downhill and Laurenne Ross was 10th, giving the U.S. three top-10 finishers in the world championships.

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Austria’s Goergl wins women’s Super-G
Posted by sibylle in skiing, women, Germany, Europe (Sunday February 13, 2011 at 11:02 am)

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Goergl’s winning run in the Super-G in Garmisch
AP Photo

Elisabeth Goergl won the Super-G,  first race of the 2011 World Championships, in Garmisch, Germany with Julia Mancuso (USA) in second place, and Maria Riesch (Germany) in third.

Most expected that  Riesch or three-time  World Cup champion Vonn would win, but Lindsey Vonn suffered a concussion  on Feb. 2 when she crashed training GS in Hintereit, Austria. She posted a video of her crash in which you can see that she hit her head so hard that it bounced.  After this crash, she skipped the Slalom and GS in Zwiesel on February fourth and fifth.

Vonn raced the Super-G, despite not recovering fully from her concussion, to place seventh.
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Vonn racing in the Downhill, Garmisch

AP photo

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