October 27, 2009: Discovering a New Toeside

Arapahoe Basin, Colorado – Today was surprisingly warm, in the twenties, with a foot to a foot and a half of snow expected to fall this afternoon and throughout the night, making for a powder day tomorrow and a horrendous drive to the mountain. But it’ll be worth it.

The warmer temperatures made for softer snow conditions, perfect for carving. My boots still felt a little off (roomy) but I’m attributing it to them packing out a little bit to the contours of my feet. I still cranked the buckles down to the point where it’s almost impossible to close them so I just have to learn to ride them that way. They are still 100 times better than my older liners.

Today I focused on getting forward (as usual) and finding my lost toeside. I used to rely on my toeside turn as my speed generator, but for the past six days that I’ve been on snow I haven’t been able to find it. So I dedicated the whole of the morning to finding it. And I found it. But I found a new one and not the old one that I lost. But a new and improved one.

Coming out of my heelside, I patiently and slowly tipped the board over to get it on edge and pushed against my back foot to get my body forward and keep pressure on the board to hold the carve. The unusual thing was that I was extended from the board at the top of the turn, something that Coach Mark had us work on before but something that I’m not usually comfortable with, being so far from the board. But it worked. Occasionally I would put my inside hand in the snow out of bad habit but would immediately bring it up to level my shoulders. I felt the board cut into the snow and carve cleanly at the top and generate speed through it without losing control. It was amazing! And the weird thing is that it felt like I was in slow motion, and I could feel every little bit of the turn.

So overall it was a great day. I got my speed up and discovered a new toeside. The next two days will be freestyle days in soft boots due to the heavy snow but it’ll be a nice break for my feet and legs.

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