Thursday, April 5, 2012

Breckenridge Ski and Ride School and Epic Pass

Breckenridge Peak 8 Ski and Ride School

While in Breckenridge, four of us took advantage of ski and snowboard lessons at the Ski + Ride School. Even though Tazer and Gaigai have now been skiing for 2 years, the annual Spring Break trip is the one time of year they're on the slopes (though we hope to remedy that this coming winter). Munchkin is going on his second year and I, of course, am a total novice at snowboarding.

The kids all made good progress, with the two older ones moving up through the levels and mostly skiing on their own for much of the week. Munchkin spent three days and went up on the lift on Thursday! Laima skied with the kids off and on for much of the week and spent Friday morning with Munchkin cruising the greens. (She was a lot happier this year, as she purchased a pair of Surefoot boots, custom-molded to her feet - since she was so happy with them, I'm planning on getting a pair myself next year when I add skiing back into my repertoire. Check out her review over at Women's Endurance Gear).

My snowboarding adventure was much different than I expected. While I imagined myself popping to my feet, carving some simple turns one day and then heading to the 22-foot halfpipe to join Shaun White for some above-the-lip tricks, things turned out quite a bit differently. First off, Shaun boards at Northstar, though he may drop by Breck from time to time. Second, I pretty much sucked. It took me most of the morning just to be able to get to my feet. Once there, however, my surfing and skateboarding background came in handy, as I at least understood the basics of turning and weight distribution. It didn't stop me from meeting the snow face-first many, many times. Third, snowboarding is brutally hard. It takes ab strength that I apparently don't really have to get up, and then the ride is an endless repetition of squats. This is one tough sport. I'm really glad I took lessons, because I cannot even imagine the carnage if I had hopped on  a lift without instruction - thanks for saving me from myself, Barry! At the end of the day though, snowboarding gives the same sort of peaceful flow that surfing and skateboarding do. Even though I plan on going back to skiing next year, I know I'll spend at least one day at snowboard school, just to get that feeling again.

epicMIX measures your vertical for you

To get up and down the mountain, Vail Resorts (of which Breckenridge is one) uses Epic passes in lieu of paper tickets whenever possible - it's a nice environmental nod (less paper), and made it simple to change the days we wanted to use the passes electronically. EpicMix is a program that works in conjunction with your Epic pass, measuring your vertical feet skied or snowboarded, the lifts you used, where you were, and what resorts you visited. In our family's case, we had 5 Epic passes, resulting in a total of 133,315 vertical feet skied/snowboarded, using 144 total lifts. This doesn't include any time spent on the bunny hill, as the measurement only takes place when scanned in the lift line. By adding our kids to our personal dashboards, Laima and I were able to click on their profile to see all their photos, stats and accomplishments. Onslope photographers scan one's RF-enabled season pass, Epic Day lift ticket, or PEAKS card and the photo is taken and automatically delivered to your EpicMix account. Very cool.

(Disclaimer: I was given a 3 day media lift pass for free, courtesy of Vail Resorts. I did not pay for the pass, receive payment for this review, or agree to give a positive review. Aside from information gleaned from the company website, the opinions are my own.)

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1 comment:

  1. We want more underwear pics, plus those socks with the colorful and complicated patterns that no one sees because of the boots.


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