Training for the Anwerter!

Everyone’s well into the swing of things over in St.Anton on this years Peak Leaders course, the training began last Saturday and with all the amazing skiing talent ready to hit the slopes for training, the question was: how hard can it be?


Well…erm…quite hard! We were split into 3 groups by our experienced instructors (Gerhard, Fossi & Ollie) off we went into the Austrian wilderness. Everyone was struggling to understand the German being spoken, and after going right back to the basics, as well as feeling and looking like complete fools; we re-learnt the, now infamous “Alpines fahr-verhalten” [basic alpine stance]…it’s so infamous an adaptation of it is slowly sneaking onto après ski dancefloors across the town. As the week progressed the constant technique drilling eventually started to pay off and everyone’s skiing improved, we even got a chance to test some of this seasons skis for free!

Into December and day 4/5 of training were the most enjoyable…well much more for some than others! Much to the disgust of the 2 other groups still plugging away at the technique, and after a fresh dump, Instructor Ollie (snowboarder Sam was keen too tag along!) kitted out his group with avalanche equipment and transceivers (which were still happily flashing along at lunch along with the smug grins on faces) and hiked a short distance to some fresh tracks up Schindler Spitz on a perfect day….you get the picture…we still haven’t heard the end of it, with it normally being described as “the best day of their lives!” Day 5 and everyone had a crack on snowblades as part of the course; there were plenty of memorable face plants through the day as we came to terms with the fun short ski, although special mentions go to memorable stacks over the week frin Nick “180” ??? and Trev “pow maestro” ??? .

So having been told our skiing will be fine for the Anwerter training (the Austrian instructor exams) everyone’s started to worry about the German side of things as you are required to (try) and teach in German, handy phrasebooks have been provided by the ski school so everyone’s slowly becoming more confident!

Well the training ended yesterday, and with a day off today before the Anwerter starts tommorow morning at 8.30am (we’re not used to seeing this time of day), belated birthday celebrations were in order on the Wednesday night…no more needs to be said! Everyone’s chilled out today…with plenty of sore heads (one strapping young man sleept on the breakfast room floor), a few of us went up for a few runs and everyone started to gear up for the hectic 10 days of the Anwerter Exams!

Next time you hear from us, we’ll (fingers crossed) all have passed our instructor exams…and all be wearing the blue and yellow jacket….it’s all about the jacket!


P.S. Don’t forget to check out the Facebook Group, Peak Leaders St. Anton 2008, for more pics and vids!!!

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