Go Deep: Four Steps to Sweet Powder Skiing-Stage 2

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Intermediate Powder Skier

The Situation>

You're a good skier on blue and black groomers, and you have modest success in variable snow off the groomers. But you have a hard time when the snow gets deep and the terrain steep. When you ski powder higher than your boots, you can't get your skis up in the transition and, therefore, you don't link your turns smoothly and efficiently.

The Solution>

Get your skis to porpoise in and out of the snow. Try skiing a little faster, make slightly longer turns and, most importantly, add slight up-and-down body movements to your turns.

Finish your turns with a relatively low stance (A). As soon as you feel your skis "bottom out," extend your legs to start an "up" movement with your body (B). As you feel your body move up (before your legs straighten out), unweight your inside foot (left foot, C) and move it closer to your outside foot (D). This move triggers your skis to tip into the new turn. Continue to tip your foot and let the turn come around, staying relatively tall as your skis enter the fall line. At this point, come down on your skis (E) to tighten the turn and drive your skis powerfully-yet easily-into the snow to carve your turn. Then stay poised as you finish the turn and set up for another one (F).

Find terrain you're comfortable with, make a slightly longer turn and ski faster than usual. This will help you get your skis to surface in the transition of the turn and provide a more direct link between your turns.

DECEMBER 2004