SAAS FEE 2018 – WEEK 5

Last week the snow storm hit Saas Fee and covered the quaint village in a blanket of snow making the whole resort look like a real winter wonderland … and in October!

The ecstatic arrival of the massive dump of snow, unfortunately made it difficult for the lift company to open the glacier due to avalanche risk. So, on the closed days, the coaches kicked in their back up plan for skiing, with the group building their own beginners ski slope at the sports centre in the fresh powder. It was time for the team to put their teaching skills into practice and build on their knowledge from their Level 1 exam.

An amazing new facility the resort has this season for all the national teams is an indoor ski slope which is effectively a revolving carpet. It is an excellent training ground for the team to perfect their technique on the huge revolving ramp guided by Florian, the resident instructor. Jas, Eleanor and Gina got so good that they were even slaloming between cones. Through the sessions there were many comedy moments of people losing their balance and falling, this was probably one of the most entertaining …

Saas Fee is a world class ski resort, and is probably the best glacier in Europe, so it is prepared for down days. The gymnasium at the town hall is ideal for dryland training and it is well equipped for different exercises and games. After various circuits involving sprints, jumps, balancing drills, rope climbing and bodyweight exercises everyone was exhausted! Well nearly, some still had the energy to try out some team handstands. What a great picture! And it only took 12 attempts…

On Wednesday Halloween came at the perfect time for a bit of midweek fancy dress. All the Peak Leaders dressed up in home-made costumers and went out for some trick or treating! Due to the impressive and inventive costumes, it had to be made into a competition, judged impartially by Jutta in the Park Hotel. Competition was fierce and the team pulled out all the stops, using face paints and making props, but in the end Jas and Eleanor triumphed and won the coveted title!

On a week which we did have some closed days on the glacier, the amazing coaches, Jake & Emma, improvised to make great use of time for teaching sessions and some training towards their BASI level 2. Another highlight of the week was the avalanche safety session, where everyone learnt how to use a transceiver and assess the risk of avalanches. And of course a favourite pass time is taking mascot Indie for a walk through snowy Saas Fee while she chases snowballs!

It’s definitely getting colder now and ‘winter is coming’ … so the Peak Leaders need to train hard and focus on the final two weeks of skiing before their final exam. The reward of an epic season awaits! #startyourjourney