Languages of Backcountry Skiing

Post by blogger | October 16, 2009      

(Note from Lou: The WildSnow editors came up with this, so don’t blame me. Amazing what you can find out there on the web, isn’t it?)

Plain English
“The skiing today was nice, with ankle deep powder on a moderate slope in a pretty aspen forest.”
“The aspen forest scintillated with that special glow the early season delivers like the jingling sled of Santa has just pulled up outside your front door. You could blow the fluff off your hand like fairy dust, only this stuff was even more fun than pixie drugs. As I dropped every turn, feather crystals brushed my face like a caress of the gods, and I knew — this is my destiny!”
“The skiing today was very nice, with ankle deep powder on a moderate slope in a pretty aspen forest.”

“This was the gnar beyond gnar!!! The mags nailed it. Vibes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PSA for the PM gear is pure STOKE NSFW!”

“The slope was steeper than I expected, around 80 degrees. I turned on my helmet cam and jumped in. The snow ranged from bulletproof ice, to boilerplate windpack, to breakable windslab, to head deep powder, and it was a good early season test of the skills. Stay hydrated and support my website by getting some Nuun hydration
tablets from Now on SALE w/ FREE shipping!”
“There are now no knights who sleep in the fields, exposed to the rigor of the heavens in full armor from head to foot. There is no one who snatches a nap, as they say, resting on his lance and with his feet on the stirrups as knights-errant did of old. There is no one now to sally forth from this wood and enter that mountain…”
“Polly made the most of her maternity leave, but we saw a helicopter so I forgot about the powder (and the bun in the oven) and started shouting, then I took a little white pill and all was bitchin. Due to my jump turns, I couldn’t tell how deep the snow was, but that was bitchin because now I enjoy all aspects of backcountry skiing.”
While snow and skiing can result in terminology created everyday on the ever changing front of social play – what makes virality happen remains a bit of a dark science. There are emerging agencies that can help with virility, but nothing works as well as great unadulterated snow that is compelling, crowd sourced and a somewhat “sticky” viral loop.”
“OT- Should I get an MRI? Side effects?”

Colorado Avalanche Information Center
80% chance of 0-18 inches at, above and below tree line. Keep it smart out there, the snow and trees may look pretty, but they can kill you!

Dave Downing, filling in for Lou while he’s on Denali:
“Do these pinstripes match my outfit?”

(To be fair, the Editors would like to share these are paraphrases, otherwise known as intentional misquotes.)


Please Enjoy A Few Suggested WildSnow Posts


22 Responses to “Languages of Backcountry Skiing”

  1. rasi October 16th, 2009 9:50 am


  2. Jack October 16th, 2009 10:18 am

    With sinsusoidal synergy in the ephemeral environ with STOKE, in dawn patrol beheadlamped, we floated and hucked the 2Q4S with faceted TG at depth feeling the freedom of the hills with federal regulations, and I had the best line.

  3. Randonnee October 16th, 2009 11:01 am

    “saw a snowmobile so I forgot about the powder (and the bun in the oven) and started shouting” :biggrin:

  4. Jason Hummel October 16th, 2009 12:26 pm

    Classic. That’s some funny stuff!

    Ski Mountaineers-Errant. Classic story. One of my favs of Sky’s. You guys dug for that one.

  5. Kate Howe October 16th, 2009 12:31 pm

    HA HA Dave. Yes, and the sunglasses make the flats look like steeps! I suppose mine would be “Skinning up the never ending track to god only knows where cause no one told me how far we are going, I can’t help but wonder what my place is in it all?” Sheesh. Obviously, I need to get out in the GNAR more! 🙂 Movin’ to CO in TWO WEEKS! YEAH!

  6. Penn October 16th, 2009 12:46 pm

    Well done LOU! of course the nature of marketing core products and the concentric circles they generate never intersects with deep pow!

  7. Mark October 16th, 2009 1:41 pm

    Great stuff. How about this: Turns All Year: Skied our 459th consecutive month today. My sixth toes are beginning to grow a seventh!!

  8. Lou October 16th, 2009 2:09 pm

    I can’t believe the editorial committee forgot Turns All Year! Sorry ’bout that. Any other ones you guys care to come up with, fire away!

  9. Sky October 16th, 2009 2:38 pm

    Funny post, Lou. I must make it clear, to avoid appearing a plagiarist, that the quote is an excerpt from Don Quixote. Although surely the well-read followers of WildSnow already knew that?

  10. Thomas October 16th, 2009 2:38 pm

    Awesome stuff guys! About the most funny bit I’ve read in a while about the various tribes of the skiing community. Gotta love the bit about TetonAT … classic material for sure.

  11. Lee Lau October 16th, 2009 2:45 pm

    haha. But epicski should be:

    “I carved the grommers today keeping in mind the dichotomy between the Harold Harb and ESA methods but employing 10degrees of dorsial flexion and pressuring the sixth toe”

    and ttips should be:

    “That was so soulful. How come no telechicas came flocking to watch?”

  12. Thomas October 16th, 2009 2:53 pm

    Another addition to TGR:

    Dead Dog Couloir – possibly FIRST descent??? (4-10-2009)

    “Nathan took a 50-100 foot slide down the runnel and I thought he was going to die as I yelled get out, get out! Unfortunately, the battery died on his camera so he got no shots of me coming out the bottom, but I ripped the hell out of it that’s for sure!”

  13. Stano October 16th, 2009 4:04 pm

    Well, one of the best advice you can get or being yelled at you while skiing is “Be careful!”

    I am sure that unless they told you, you were planning to kill yourself right that moment :biggrin:

  14. Susan Wirth-White October 16th, 2009 6:14 pm

    I love reading this. Having not skiied in years, I sit here green with envy but laughing at all the blogs from eloquent to poetry to down and get dirty. I love it!

  15. randosteve October 16th, 2009 6:35 pm

    Pretty funny…but you’ll be hearing from my lawyer. Stuff’s copyrighted man!!!!


  16. Ski Holidays Canada October 16th, 2009 8:58 pm

    Too funny Lou. I must admit, I prefer the plain English – I am an English man after all!

  17. Shawn Wolfenbarger October 16th, 2009 9:58 pm

    Yes Lou & Co.-I like this new content. What doth bring forth this wage upon fellow plankers? Right up there with Mclean’s feisty savvy.

  18. Bar Barrique October 16th, 2009 10:09 pm

    Personally I would be happy if it would just snow. We are all waiting (impatiently).

  19. Hans October 17th, 2009 8:48 pm

    If he could afford an attorney, or bother to get off the couch, you would be facing some serious legal action from the Jaded Local. I recommend carefully backing away from a satirical viewpoint—skiing is a very important and serious business, and, like crack, that first hit of snark can hook you for life, with often disastrous results.

  20. Nick October 19th, 2009 10:05 am

    Wow! This is sooo funny! Very true, but very funny. I can not believe how many variations there always seems to be when talking about the same snow conditions. Ski talk/jargon/lingo should be considered an art in many cases. Especially when talking about ski equipment. Great Blog, keep it up! :biggrin:

  21. Jason October 20th, 2009 9:53 am

    You forgot – “It was EPICCCCCCCCCC!”


  22. Feldy October 26th, 2009 9:08 pm

    @Lee Lau

    Your teletips comment is pretty funny, but the one above was a lol for me.

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