Why I Ski or Ride | Chapter 4: It's All About The Turn

Why I Ski or Ride | Chapter 4: It's All About The Turn

A series of stories from skiers and riders, and why they love what they do.

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Chapter 4: It's All About the Turn

Why I ski? 

My dad got me started at 7 or 8 years old. Cubco bindings, leather boots and always cold – hated it. Straight down the hill at Pine Knob, hike back to the tow rope – over and over. At lunch, I asked my dad why were doing this. Then, everything changed when I learned to turn. “Aha!!!  What, we have to leave? When are we coming back?”

Whether carving at speed, buttering moguls, floating powder or gently cruising a green run, it’s all about the turn – working with the forces of the universe. 

To perform a turn well, one must go against reasoning collected from other activities. For example, “lean downhill” must be bad advice, right? No, trust the forces. Done poorly, focus lost, day dreaming…the universe reminds one to pay attention, sometimes with a smack.  A reminder that reality is real? Stay in the moment, trust the forces and one will be rewarded. The more one improves, the greater the reward, the further one can go. Push past the brain’s misconceptions – the “Aha!” moment is there, waiting for you.

Throw in family, friends, the hill in the backyard, the “mountains” of SE Michigan, the unexpected “thank you” from a teenager, and fresh eggs home raised from a local (both in Steamboat), breakfast from “Dan, the Omelet Man” (Boyne Highlands), racing rain slicked runs with the Ski Patrollers, powder in the backcountry, a bucket list heli-ski day, spring ‘leaf’ slush on the last day of the season (Cold Springs, Boyne Mountain in mid-April), meeting people from around the world, a great fitting boot, having a reason to get and stay in shape, the Irish coffee that taught me to snowboard (that’s another story!) – it’s all good. Any day, on any slope, is a good day.

And, I’m warm, even at -24C!  Today’s gear is so, so much better!

In the end, people that don’t learn the turn, that don’t have their own “Aha!!!” moment,  leave skiing, never understanding why we do this. 

It’s all about the turn. 

- Dale Stockman


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