Monday, January 7, 2013

Snow Monkeys in the Austrain Alps

After 6 straight days of skiing, I am pooped.

That is tough work. I ski Dave-style because that is all I know after 10+ years of skiing in Utah with him and his Dad: you wake up at 8:00am so you can get the first lift at 9:00am. Then, you ski until at least 4:00pm. Is there any other way to ski, apparently not. Sometimes Dave and his Dad would even suggest (gasp) skipping lunch, which is generally unfathomable to me while skiing.

Overall we had a great trip! The conditions were variable most days; from full sun, to snow showers, to good visibility, to no visibility. We just went with it. Luckily, conditions seemed to change so quickly here. Zero visibility and snow scares all the wussies away, but wait 20 minutes and the sun peeks through and we had fresh powder all to ourselves.

It also helped that the resort was crawling with families and Brits who party HARD every night (the Brits that is, not the families so much). They were the first to call it a day and leave at the hint of bad weather. Perfect for us!

After all, I learned to ski in Utah where freezing blistery conditions are normal. At freaking Heavenly in Tahoe they close the lifts at the hint of flurries or 15mph gusts - sooooo annoying!

Deep in thought with my Weissbier.

We stayed at the Hotel Karl Schranz, which was right up our alley; great staff, great facilities, great food, and a mellow vibe. We met some cool peeps there from Holland (see photos below), and man the Dutch are linguists! Dear Mom - why couldn't you have been Dutch, or maybe Swiss. I'd be speaking like12 languages before the age of 2. Alas.

Venison, goulash, local trout, spaetzle - fuel for the hard days skiing.

The lovely Colette and Mark form Holland, I love these people.

Antonio the super bartender, we were besties.

So why did we choose St. Anton specifically, and why Austria?

Early Snow: Chamonix and Meribel (France) and Zermatt (Switzerland) were also on the list. However, the Interwebs told me that St. Anton was most likely to have decent snow in late December/early January.

Good Deal: I got a sweet package through Crystal Vacations that included flights, hotel, and meals. I would normally shy away from all-inclusives (bad food that you feel like you have to eat because you paid for it), but this one rocked.

German Practice: My German classes don't start up again until February, so this was a nice refresher.

Excellent Apres-ski Action (with NO DRIVING required): There are a million post-ski diversions. We spent a really fun/drunken post-ski afternoon with our favorite Dutch friends at the Mooserwirt. They played my favorite German songs there and EVERYONE was singing - including the always outstanding and classic Shatzi Shenk Mir Ein Foto and Fliegerlied. Everyone knows all the words and dances that go to the songs (except for me). I required some some song translation and dance move instruction. Thank you Colette! 

I always look cold, probably because I am......

Alas we left Austria just in time. Here is Dave at the gondola base in St. Anton in the RAIN the day we left for the airport. That's right, RAIN! Time to go back to London.

Po po Dave.

If you are bored at work today and want to see some further snow-packed action filmed with Dave's GoPro camera (douche), here you are. It includes a good wipe-out so I'll take back the douche thing I suppose. Sorry, I am still a bit torn on the whole GoPro camera thing.

Luckily my one major "yard sale" fall was not recorded. Let's just say I got off easy with a bloody lip and snow EVERYWHERE - caught in my goggles, in my hat, in my jacket. Not pretty.

And can I please plug my favorite snow forecast website ever, Check out the forecast for St. Anton at the link there. It is WARM in Europe this week. Way to warm for skiing. It is a great site for US resorts too.

I hear it is dumping in CA my friends! Get out and enjoy it, especially after the shitshow that was last winter in Tahoe. xoxo

1 comment:

Another Monkey said...

jealous. Jealous, jealous, jealous.

Wipeout was cool. Miss you monkeys.