Wednesday, February 04, 2009

We killed Barbie!!

For those who have never seen South Park, this reference is probably lost.

OK, maybe we didn't kill Barbie, but we came close.

Barbie Reid, our friend and neighbor from Raleigh came out to visit. Barbie's husband Mark was off on business and couldn't join us this year.

The main focus of the trip was improved skiing. Julie and Barbie signed up for a 3-day women's ski clinic at Deer Valley. Julie did this clinic two years ago and had great success with it. We had fantastic weather and both ladies were extremely happy with what they learned.

This shot was from the day before the clinic. Being a guy, I wasn't allowed to go along for a photo shoot during the class sessions. Barbie started somewhere between beginner and intermediate. She was cruising down blue slopes, but with form that would make it hard to get much further.

At the end of three days, she had made some big improvements and was starting to carve her turns. For non-skiers, this is a big deal. Many skiers skid their turns and it is hard to improve.

Julie's an excellent skier but has lacked the confidence to tackle some of the hardest slopes. I'm the opposite, lots of confidence and less kills. I think they call that "male".

Her group in the clinic did Deer Valley's Daly Chutes, a double black diamond. Her confidence has grown in leaps and bounds. She went bounding down through some moguls fields, one of which laid me flat on by back two days later.

Now I am going to have to try and catch up!

Then we killed Barbie, or maimed her at least. Late on her last day of skiing, she took a fall skiing off the Empire lift. She gave her knee a bad twist and couldn't stand on it.

This earned her a toboggan ride down the mountain, provided by Deer Valley's ski patrol, followed by a trip to the doctor. In the doctor's office, there were several skiers with leg injuries and one with a possible concussion.

A big thanks to the Deer Valley Ski Patrol. They were quick to the fall, very nice, got her off the mountain quickly, and even dropped her rental skis and boots off for her. They made a ski injury a lot more tolerable.

So far, it looks like a sprain rather than a tear, which is great news. You have to wait a week or so for the swelling to go down before they can really tell the extent. She's in a brace and hopping around in crutches.

Living in Park City, you get this reminder all the time. That legal crap on the back of the ski ticket says something about "Skiing is dangerous and you may suffer great bodily harm". All it takes is one bad turn, one surprise under the snow, or a meeting with a reckless skier (or more likely, a snowboarder). Be limber. Be strong. Be balanced. Most of all, be lucky.

Heal quickly Barbie!
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