Hills can cause problems when you're on cross-country skis.
The only part of your boot that attaches to the ski is the toe. You have a little loop thing on the tip of your boot that clicks into a clasp on the ski binding. And that clasp won't let go of the loop thing until you press a button on the ski bindings with your pole and it opens, which releases your boot. So if you fall, you have these 4+ foot long skinny things stuck to your feet which can seriously hamper abilities to get your feet under you to stand up. Generally -without skis- when you try to get up from the ground, you get onto your knees and push up. You can't do that with these long things stuck on your feet!
Going up hills can be tricky too. Skis are designed to glide over snow and we live on a world where gravity is the law. When you're trying to walk up a hill, inevitably your skis will start sliding and gravity pulls you back down to the bottom. A skilled skier will point his toes and skis outward and waddle up the hill like a duck. Olympic skilled skiers can run up a hill like this. We are NOT Olympic skilled skiers. The best way for us to get up a hill is to turn sideways and step up the hill. It can be slow going, but it's more effective than taking two glides up and sliding 5 back.
I'm not the most limber person in the world (I never have been). I try to avoid going down hills at all cost. I get so embarrassed when I fall and someone has to come help me stand up. I don't know why it affects me that way, but it does! To avoid going down long hills, I have been known to take the skis off and walk down the hill. Yes, I've taken a step and sunk up to my hips in deep snow, but I'd rather do that than fall face first in a drift! I'm willing to ski down long hills if the trail has been groomed and there are definite tracks for me to place my skis in. I still scream the entire way down though.
There were daring people in our group that thought it would be fun to go down one of the bigger hills we encountered on our Saturday trip. Okay, the only two people that didn't go down the hill were me and Little Miss Dolittle. We're wimps. Or we're the smartest two people in the group... I guess it depends on how you look at it!
Inigo is the downhill champ. He has a sense of balance that won't quit and the energy to match it. This video shows him going down the hill 3 times. He went down this particular hill a total of 5 or 6 times. And remember, there's nothing to pull him back UP. It's side stepping, slipping and maintaining that balance all the way to the top.
Stinky went down twice. You'll see his first attempt and I'm pretty sure you'll laugh. His second trip down was successful. (I made that annoying scream as he started down the hill to try to see if I could throw him off balance. You know, when someone is bowling and you pinch their bum just as their about to throw the ball? Kind of like that. However, it wasn't me that made him fall. He got out of the ski tracks. Whatever the reason he went down, it's a classic video!!)
I'm so proud of Shack for going down. She stood at the top for quite a while working up her courage and her determination. You'll thank me for cutting that part of the video out... I got quite annoying in it trying to be her cheerleader. As it is you can hear me giving her all sorts of advice.... It's advice easily given from someone who is to scared to do it herself!!
(we used real names in the video... which breaks all my rules on this blog... *oh well.*)
SHACK!! YOU'RE NOT A LOSER!!
This was my first attempt at putting a bunch of separate videos into one longer one. I'm excited to try to figure out video editing!