Top Ski Tips
Gliding down a mountain through virgin powder snow is an experience which no one can forget. When the sun glistens on surrounding snow covered peaks, all topped with a deep blue, clear sky, has got to be one of the most incredible view on earth. Now when you combine this view with your skiing down, it adds up as a memorable time.
Here are a few tips for skiers of all levels that help you enjoy the joy of skiing.
This helps you slide down from the top of the mountain to the bottom in the most direct route. Though most use this ride, it is best if you learn how to steer and stop whenever you want. This instills a sense of security and releases stress, if any, lurking inside you.
Snow is slippery and it takes time to understand balancing! You need a stance that is comfortable but stable on the move. Move around a bit in different stances and stick to the one you are comfortable at.
Hire a Guide
You are in a different territory and even the sport is alien and you need proper guidance to excel and enjoy. There are many guiding companies and independent guides in Gulmarg. Like most things in the world, you get what you pay for. A guide will be able to access your skiing ability and take you to terrain that is the most suitable for your level. Saving a few bucks will not make you wealthier but you may certainly lose the charm you came here to enjoy!
It is best to stay warm! Check the weather forecast every morning before you get dressed to make sure you keep warm and can see quite far ahead (no haze)!
Protect your skin from extreme cold
Snow reflects the harsh suns rays which otherwise is great for tanning but you don't feel its power so pack plenty of sun cream. Sun cream also coats your skin in a protective layer which stops wind and cold burn too…
Remember the Run/trail Colour Coding - All pistes are assigned a colour code reflecting their difficulty level! Green slopes are the easiest, then blue, red and blacks are the most difficult. Always Ski with care and without taking guidance from your coach, don't dive in the deep end first thing in the morning or late afternoon!
IMPORTANT NOTE: IN INDIA WE CAN RENT ALL ACCESSORIES OR GEARS AT THE SKI RESORTS. MANY OPTIONS AVAILABLE PRICE DEPENDS UPTO SEASONAL TOURIST RUSH AND ON YOUR BARGAIN SKILLS
Getting Your Gear
We recommend renting your skis and boots and try to borrow the rest from your friends and family. A lot of the gear is quite expensive and so it is worth trying the sport and making sure you enjoy it before splashing out on the latest stuff!
Aptly sized Skis
Most rental shops should give you skis that suit your ability, but their height is the main concern. Make sure they are at least 20-30cm shorter than your height - shorter skis are easier to turn! If you find the front of your skis keep crossing whilst you ski then don't be afraid to take them back to the rental shop and ask for some shorter ones! This is the reason, before you decide on renting out a particular gear, please move around a bit with them and practice.
Snugly Fit Boots
Most rental boots are notoriously uncomfortable so spend time finding a pair which is not only comfortable but fits snugly onto your feet. You should be able to move your toes but your heel should NOT come up in the boots once they are done up. Likewise, your foot should not slip around from side to side in the boot. Walking to and from the slopes and around the bars is often easier if you undo you boots, but make sure they are done up when you ski! Have them as tight as comfortable around your calf muscles but not tight across the top (dorsum) of your feet or they will restrict the blood flow to your toes and you will get cold feet!
As a general precaution, please do not tuck your trousers into your boots, pull them over the outside to keep the snow out.
Strapping wooden planks to your feet and slipping down a mountain may not sound like something worth forking out a few hundred rupees for but, once you get the hang of a few basics, it really is. It's a great sport, and a great view too, no matter what standard you are! Skiing is a massive confidence sport though, so take your time learning and don't rush straight up to the top of the mountain, because getting out of control and stacking it at high speed can put people off track and get hurt grievously.
Best Times to Skii
It is impossible to know months in advance, when your favorite resort will get 20 inches of snow to slip on. But based on past experience, we can derive some conclusions beforehand according to historical snowfall, elevation, latitude and slope aspects, when a particular resort skis its best.
The conditions at some resorts peak in mid January, while others peak in February, and others in March. The peak time for snow conditions Kashmir for instance, tends to be in late January continued in February, sometimes if snow falls was heavy skiing can be continued till early March.