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PSA For Spring Skiing Attire

#1
Last Saturday it was around 75 degrees for a high, but it started out at 50 degrees. Needless to say many skiers who were out at first chair had a warmer top layer that they then tied around their waist as it very quickly warmed up. I was one of those skiers, and didn't really think much of it since I've done it plenty of times before on hot days. However, I wanted to put a public service announcement out as a reminder that there is very much a reason why you don't want to ski with anything dangling around your waist. Or at least to be extremely careful about it if you're going to like take it off on the lift.

I skied a few runs this way no problem, and then got a great first hand demonstration of why this was really stupid. I went to get off of a lift and realized in a heart dropping moment that I was still attached to the chair. This was a fixed grip triple and by the time I had processed that my jacket was caught I was being knocked down by the chair, swung around the top hitting the stop bar, and dragged under the chair until it finally came to a stop right before I would have ended up dangling into a net or worse on the way back down. Mind you, there was no snow left under the lift heading back down the mountain, so I came to a stop on rocks and dirt under me.

This all happened REALLY quickly, but lifts definitely don't stop as suddenly as you might think or like them to when this sort of thing happens. I was screaming like I was on a rollercoaster, and all I could hear around me was everyone else yelling for the liftie to stop the lift. Once I did come to a stop the liftie came over to help me detangle myself, I was still very much attached to the lift by my jacket. What happened is that my cellphone was in my jacket pocket and it had gotten lodged between the seat and arm of the lift. That side of my jacket was ripped to shreds from stretching, but didn't let go. Shockingly my phone is fine and it just cracked one corner of my screen protector. Once I was free from the chair I stood up and realized I only had one ski on as the other had flown off when I was swung around I guess. There were then 3 patrollers there asking if I was okay. I popped off my second ski so I could walk down and realized that yes I felt totally fine. We did end up noticing some scratches on my right arm and shoulder blade areas and rope burn on my wrist (apparently I got tangled in a rope as well as I hit the stop bar).. that's what I get for wearing a tank top to ski on the day I get dragged over rocks.. My right ski boot side was caked with dirt so that's what took the brunt of my weight dragging I guess. Very glad it wasn't my leg.

So I had to give my information to patrol for the incident, and they poured some water on my wounds to clean them out and make sure there was nothing deeper that would need stitches or further attention. Luckily my scratches were pretty superficial and though they started stinging then, it could have been MUCH worse.

Anyway, sorry for the novel! Just wanted to give a reminder to everyone still spring skiing to be mindful of what you're wearing when riding the lift. Patrol made sure to say "THIS is why there are signs to not ride the lift with anything hanging off of you".. and yep I'm very much aware of that and at fault for what happened. I have no excuse except that it's easy to get lulled into a false sense of security when everyone around you is doing the same thing, and I really never thought any harm would come of it. I know I definitely learned my lesson and will ensure that in the future I drop off layers somewhere on the mountain versus ever tying anything around my waist again. Patrol even said you can always leave jackets and packs around their shacks in these situations if you have nowhere else to leave it and you're going to lap a certain lift for awhile etc.
 
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#3
WOW. First, I am happy to hear you are OK. I can't imagine how scary those few moments must have been for you. Better your jacket got damaged instead of you. Second, hindsight is 20/20. You didn't think you were putting yourself in danger when you got on the lift so try not to beat yourself up about it. Lesson learned.

I actually did something I regretted last month up at Stowe. It was a warm day and my hands were hot so I decided not to wear anything on my hands since I never fall:becky:. Well, guess what, I fell while demoing a very nicely tuned (read: sharp) skis and somehow I sliced my finger and was bleeding all over the place. Funny, when I was on the snow gathering myself, I looked down and saw maroon dots in the snow and was wondering what it was before I realized it was me. Duh! Now I will never ski without something on my hands. So glad I had a first aid kit in my car.
 
#7
Geeze, @MissySki ! I’m glad you’re okay. What a vivid reminder! On the bright side, you probably need a new jacket, now.
Haha after I realized I was okay I was actually most upset about my jacket. It was definitely not salvageable, huge holes and stretcher out on one side. The worst part is it was a Helly Hansen jacket I got from my company as a holiday gift with our logo on the arm etc. I LOVE this jacket as it's great for skinning/cross country/spring skiing.

As soon as I got home and on my intranet Sunday I went to check if there were any remaining in the company store that I could purchase. Luckily there were still some in my size AND 50% off. I ordered it then and it came in yesterday already. Kind of dumb to be so worried about a jacket after that I guess, but it was so versatile for outdoor stuff this season and I was so bummed about it.
 

vickie

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#8
Wow. What an ugly event. Glad you are ok.

I have seen so many packs on people's backs at Loveland this season. I assume it's due to not being able to leave anything at a lodge ... and maybe having kids they have to be prepared for.
 
#10
Wow. What an ugly event. Glad you are ok.

I have seen so many packs on people's backs at Loveland this season. I assume it's due to not being able to leave anything at a lodge ... and maybe having kids they have to be prepared for.
I usually ski with a pack out West, and never take it off when I get on the lift.. :doh:. Needless to say that will change going forward.
 
#11
WOW. First, I am happy to hear you are OK. I can't imagine how scary those few moments must have been for you. Better your jacket got damaged instead of you. Second, hindsight is 20/20. You didn't think you were putting yourself in danger when you got on the lift so try not to beat yourself up about it. Lesson learned.

I actually did something I regretted last month up at Stowe. It was a warm day and my hands were hot so I decided not to wear anything on my hands since I never fall:becky:. Well, guess what, I fell while demoing a very nicely tuned (read: sharp) skis and somehow I sliced my finger and was bleeding all over the place. Funny, when I was on the snow gathering myself, I looked down and saw maroon dots in the snow and was wondering what it was before I realized it was me. Duh! Now I will never ski without something on my hands. So glad I had a first aid kit in my car.

Thanks, I appreciate that! I was REALLY embarrassed after it happened, and felt so stupid that it was all my own fault. :bag:

Ouch those sound like really sharp skis! I've never skied without gloves, noted not to try that in the future either.
 

Abbi

Angel Diva
#12
@MissySki - that is terrifying! I’m glad you made it out of that with just a ripped jacket and a couple of scratches.

Chaval gloves come with a long loop. I had been leaving mine out and hanging until a ski instructor friend nagged me into taking them off. They never stayed stuck inside the glove. Now I know the sort of situation he was warning me to avoid!
 

brooksnow

Certified Ski Diva
#16
Very scary, @MissySki.

To add to the coat tied around the waist and the gloves warnings, don't use your ski poles as you get off the lift. I've seen it and been involved many times, as they stand up off the lift someone plants their poles between or under my skis leading to an off balance unload or a crash. Worse is when they've wrapped their pole straps around their wrists so letting go doesn't separate us. Poles can also get caught on the lift itself, and people are attached to the lift if they're attached to their poles. I teach to hold poles up in one hand mid-shaft when getting on and off the lift.
 
#17
Yeah, I was appreciative of the Spruce liftie after that. He doesn't always seem super attentive in general, and I had also hit the stop bar so who knows what stopped it in the end. I'm just happy it stopped before I went over the other side though.
I really miss crazy wave man!
 

Iwannaski

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#19
@brooksnow .... YES. I was debating sharing my PSA experience and your post made me decide to do it. Normally, straps off, poles in inside hand, in front of me.

One time this year, was with daughter and wanted to make sure the hand near her was free, so I put them in the outside hand, and tucked them back. (You can probably see where this is going)

Basket caught on seat so I didn’t slide away from lift as fast as normal. I didn’t really process what was happening so my arm was still on the poles and the seat was going to clock me, but I yanked and they came off, thankfully.

The straps were not on, so I could have let them go for a ride, but honestly, it didn’t even occur to me. Since then, poles in one hand in front/midshaft.

I always tell my kids that accidents happen not because you don’t know, but often because you got complacent.
 

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