Wednesday, November 14, 2007

First Turns of the Year

I’ve just returned from my annual pilgrimage to Breckenridge for the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA) Fall Training Event. Kudos to Breckenridge for defying the big, fat high-pressure system that has been sitting over the greater American West. One run was open with surprisingly great snow. There was no shortage of sliders, either. Sure – terrifying at times, but reassuring nonetheless – that the ski/board/tele bum mentality is not only alive, but kicking. Damn the crowds and the limited terrain, we all just wanted to be out there – goofy grins and all.

PSIA put on a great event this year. Fall Training is for the upper level Education Staff and the Trainer Accredited members. I had the honor of skiing with someone I’d never met, Charlie Stocker from Vail. He rips - downright inspiring. The entire PSIA organization is really indicative of the greater outdoor industry - a group of talented people whose dedication to the sport they love drives their pursuit of excellence. It wouldn’t work without the detail-oriented folks, the visionaries, and the beer. (The latter may be debatable in some circles.)

(Note: Due to the compromising nature of the photos taken in Breck, I must overtly steal from the internet. Special thanks to the fabulous Wayne Wong.)

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