Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Where To Ski in The Alps in June?


Although the choice of ski areas open in the Alps at the start of June is limited to just five areas – the Dachstein (which currently has a base of 270 cm), Kaprun and Hintertux glaciers in Austria, Zermatt in Switzerland and Passo Stelvio in Italy; that will all change in a few weeks’ time when 4 more areas are scheduled to open for summer skiing and snowboarding. These include French resorts Les 2 Alpes, Tignes and Val d’Isere. In Italy Cervinia re-open on June 25.

Austria

Dachstein. The Dachstein Glacier above Ramsau am Dachstein, is open 11 months of the year beginning at the end of May. The Dachstein Gletscherbahn brings you uphill to 2,700 metres above sea level. Flat, northward-facing slopes guarantee ideal snow conditions. It boasts 18 km (12 miles) of ski runs as well as the popular Horsefeathers Superpark, featuring boxes, jumps, rails, jibs and tubes.

Hintertux. The Hintertux Glacier is Austria’s only year round ski resort and one of the two remaining glaciers in the Alps to open 365 days a year. The Hintertux is During summer, 22km (14 miles) of runs are open and accessed by nine lifts, including the Glacier Bus 3 with 24-person cabins, capable of transporting 3,000 skiers per hour. The Hintertux offers a good range of runs for all levels, but is famous for its steep, challenging terrain. The Betterpark Hintertux with 5 lines (Pro Line, Medium Line, Easy Line, 2 Jib Lines) and a 100-m long super pipe was designed by park builder Wille Kaufmann according to the motto "Best air time for everyone", so that not only the pros, but also rookies will find obstacles suitable for their individual skill levels.

Kaprun. The Kitzsteinhorn Glacier ski lifts and slopes are open down to Alpincenter. Glacier skiing area opened until July 24. After a few runs, chill out at the Ice Arena with its snow beach, igloos, snow slides and ice bar. Non-skiers can take free guided panoramic hikes across the glacier between July and September.

France

Les 2 Alpes. Les 2 Alpes has one of the largest summer ski areas in Europe. The Mont-de-Lans Glacier will be open from June 18th to August 27th, 2016. A cable car (Jandri Express) transports skiers up to the glacier’s eight runs (2 red, 4 blue and 2 green) and a freestyle area in 24 minutes. Les 2 Alpes’ snowpark rivals that of Saas-Fee's glacier, with its snowskate zone, slopestyle (Big Air, tables, kickers and rails), cool zone, half-pipe (4.5m/15ft high, 120m/400ft long) and a smaller pipe suitable for beginners.

Tignes. This summer, the Grand Motte Glacier ski area will be open from June 25th to August 7th 2016. The 20 kms of pistes and 12 lifts are accessible via the Perce-Neige funicular which takes you up to the glacier in just 7 minutes.
At an altitude of 3,456 meters, the glacier was the meeting place of freestylers, pros and amateurs for summer snowboarding and skiing.The snowpark team shaped many runs for both beginners and experts (10 kickers and about 12 rails).
You also get free access to the Lagon swimming pool with your 2-to-10 day Tignes ski pass.

Val d'Isere. The Val d'Isere summer ski season is quite short. The Pissaillas glacier is open from june 11th to July 17th. The ski area is served by two ski lifts: Teleski des Montets and the Cascade Express chairlift.

Italy

Passo Stelvio. 20 km of slopes among Ortles-Cevedales and Cristallo mountains, at 3000 meters of height, on the glacier near the biggest Pass of Europe. The glacier is open from May 27th to November.

Cervinia. The access to the glacier from Cervinia will be open from June 25th to September 4th 2016.

Switzerland

Zermatt. Zermatt has a whopping 21 km of summer skiing on its Theodul Glacier accessed by the Klein Matterhorn cable car. Zermatt is Switzernd’s only year round ski resort and one of the two remaining glaciers in the Alps to open 365 days a year. The summer ski area is shared with Cervinia in Italy, so you can ski over the border for lunch. The 13 runs are divided into blues and reds. The Gravity Park features a half-pipe, kickers and rails and also offers one of the best views of the Matterhorn.

Saas-Fee in Switzerland is scheduled to open for summer skiing on July 16. Skiing in Saas-Fee in summer is an amazing experience and not just because of the pleasant temperatures and 20 km of diverse glacier pistes. You might also spot national and international sports teams training at the summer skiing area.



Winter Season 2015-2016 To Set a New Record in Austria With 68.53 Million Overnights


68.53 million overnights were registered in the winter season 2015/16 (November 2015 to April 2016), according to Statistics Austria's latest preliminary data. This is the highest result achieved since the first statistical records in 1875. Compared to the winter season 2015/16, the increase amounted to 4.0%. This result is due to increases in overnights spent by non-resident tourists (52.85 million, +4.3%) as well as resident tourists (15.68 million, +3.1%). The number of guests rose by 4.9% to 18.36 million.

For more detailed information, click here (German version).

Monday, May 30, 2016

Sean Pettit’s Keep Your Tips Up

In 2003, 11-year-old Sean Pettit burst onto the freeskiing scene. By the age of 18 Pettit was already considered to be one of the best skiers in the world. His ability to blend huge, jaw dropping lines with innovative new school style set Sean apart as the torch bearer for the future of big mountain skiing. After a full season on the sidelines recovering from an ankle injury in Winter 2013/2014, Sean was back on track and ready to rock with what is perhaps his most prolific season ever. Not only did Sean produce the award-winning Superproof film, The Masquerade and film a part for ESPN X Games "Real Ski” competition, he is the star of the latest Red Bull TV's original series "Keep Your Tips Up."
With appearances by Callum Pettit, Richard Permin, Mark Abma, Joe Schuster, and of course ‘Groovemeister’ (Sean’s wildly entertaining father), "Keep Your Tips Up" is a highly engaging, fun and honest depiction of Sean’s life as a skier at home and around the world. Filming for this Red Bull TV original series started in Winter 2014/2015 and took place in locations including Hokkaido, Japan; Courmayeur, Italy; Silverton, Colorado; Valdez, Alaska; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Whistler, BC. The show were aired every two weeks from October through January and were broadcasted on Red Bull TV.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Pats Peak Ski Area Wins NSAA Award for Best Use of Video Marketing

Pats Peak Ski Area, New Hampshire, is the winner of the National Ski Areas Association’s (NSAA) award for Best Use of Video Marketing. NSAA presents the awards annually to member resorts with successful marketing programs that ultimately help grow the sports of skiing and snowboarding.
The award, which was announced at the NSAA’s National Convention and Trade Show in Nashville, specifically honored Past Peak's "A day in The Life of Pats Peak" video campaign, which took place this past winter. A video from this video series were released every Tuesday to show stories of what happens in an average day at Pats Peak.



Located in in Henniker, New Hampshire, Pats Peak Ski Area is a small and independent alpine ski resort opened in 196. Pats Peak has a vertical drop of 770 feet (230 m), 28 well-groomed trails, 9 gladed areas, 3 terrain parks, 11 high capacity lifts, and a Skiable area of 103 acres (420,000 m2).
The ski resort has one of the highest capacity computer controlled snowmaking systems per acre in the Northeast. 100% snowmaking coverage guarantees great conditions all season long.


The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Every Damn Weekend, Ep. 7. Marbrè

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Climbing unstable rocks while Mont Blanc and Tacul watch every step you take.
Reaching the ridge and seeing the most beautiful slope.
Turn on your brain, take off the brakes and enjoy the widest turns we can draw!
This is Freeride on Mont Blanc!

 

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Taos Ski Valley Wins NSAA Award for Best Overall Marketing Campaign



Taos Ski Valley received the top honors in the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) recognition of the best 2015-2016 ski area marketing programs. Awards were given in six marketing categories as well as Best Overall Marketing Campaign, of which Taos Ski Valley was the winner. NSAA presents the awards annually to member resorts with successful marketing programs that ultimately help grow the sports of skiing and snowboarding.
Last winter season Taos Ski Valley executed a far-reaching marketing campaign that included content marketing, paid as well as earned media distribution, traditional and digital advertising and marketing through owned channels including social and CRM. The concept for the campaign, “Taos Secrets Revealed,” brings to life key brand characteristics and positioning, focusing on the spiritual mountain experience and the unique culture of Northern New Mexico. 
The ski valley’s results from the campaign have been incredibly successful, at the time of the nomination in March: 11 percent increase in skier visits over last year; 331 percent revenue return and 594 percent increased online ticket sales as a result of a tactical ad campaign; a prominent earned media placement on the front page of the New York Times travel section in addition to across-the-board increased earned media placements over last year; 36 percent increase in web traffic; more than 660,000 views of campaign videos on YouTube and Facebook and more. 
"We have a terrific story to tell here at Taos Ski Valley: one of untamed mystic, the genuine hospitality of our people and the quirky, funky vibe that can only be found here", said Taos Ski Valley CEO Gordon Briner. "I am extremely proud of how our marketing and PR teams communicated that powerful story last season and for the national recognition we received for their efforts from the NSAA".


Located in northern New Mexico, Taos Ski Valley is one of North America’s premier ski and snowboard destinations, with more than 305 inches of average annual snowfall and more than 110 trails. Taos has a relaxed, friendly atmosphere, spectacular scenery and amazing terrain, truly making it a world of its own.

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Every Damn Weekend, Ep. 6, Mont Colmet - North Couloir

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Mont Colmet, North face, left Couloir.
Gnarly, dry and steep line, with an awesome view on Mont Blanc and VDA!
The perfect objective for an (extra)ordinary saturday! :D

 

Friday, May 27, 2016

Peek'n Peak Wins NSAA Award for Best Social Media Campaign

Peek’n Peak Resort is the winner of the National Ski Areas Association’s (NSAA) award for Best Social Media Campaign.
The award, which was announced at the NSAA’s National Convention and Trade Show in Nashville last week, specifically honored Peek’n Peak’s Throwback Thursday (#TBT) lift ticket campaign, which took place this past winter and featured vintage "throwback" photos from The Peak’s social media followers and offered "throwback" lift ticket prices to a time gone by. The NSAA represents 313 Alpine resorts.
"We take a lot of pride in the memories made here at Peek’n Peak. It means something for us to honor those memories and throw it back to the good times while offering a significant discount to guests with our ‘Throwback Thursday’ promotion", said Nick Scott Sr., President of Scott Enterprises and owner of Peek’n Peak Resort. "This allows us to further interact with our guests and create some excitement over social media".
The weekly offers were posted on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter every Thursday. To incentivize people to share their own throwback pictures from their time at the resort, Peek’n Peak also offered "share to win" contests to win lift tickets for the best and oldest pictures.
These posts and the promotions were a huge success during the winter season and is now something Peek’n Peak guests look forward to each week during ski season.
Peek’n Peak offers special deals and discounts for golf, Mountain Adventures and overnight packages on social media throughout the year. Follow them on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for other great promotions.

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

NSAA Announces Top Ski Area Marketing Programs for 2015-16

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) has given seven ski areas top honors for their 2015-16 marketing programs. NSAA announced the winners at its National Convention and Tradeshow in Nashville, Tenn. The awards are sponsored by Ryan Solutions, a strategic marketing and database technology firm based in Ohio.

NSAA presents the awards to member resorts with successful marketing programs that ultimately help grow the sports of skiing and snowboarding. Here are the 2016 winners:

Best Use of Mobile Technology
Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway and Ski Area, New Hampshire

Best Social Media Campaign
Peek 'n Peak Resort, New York

Best Direct Marketing Program
Stowe Mountain Resort, Vermont

Best Use of Video Marketing
Pats Peak Ski Area, New Hampshire

Best Family Campaign
Ski Apache Resort, New Mexico

Best "Bring a Friend" Campaign
Sunlight Mountain Resort, Colorado

Best Overall Marketing Campaign
Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico

Judges for the awards were Mike Bisner, vice president of sales/East for AXESS NORTH AMERICA; Kristen Lummis, a snowsports and travel writer, and two-time winner of NASJA’s Harold S. Hirsch Award for her popular Brave Ski Mom blog; and Sarah Plaskitt, founder and CEO of scoutski.com, and former brand strategist for world leading brands.

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Wachusett Mountain Wins NSAA 2016 Conversion Cup Award


Wachusett Mountain Ski Area, Massachusetts, is the winner of the 2016 National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) Conversion Cup Challenge, sponsored by HEAD Wintersports. This annual award recognizes resorts across the country that have developed outstanding programs to convert new skiers and snowboarders into lifelong enthusiasts.
Wachusett was selected among a strong field of ski areas from across the U.S. The other two finalists were Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort, Wash., and Stevens Pass, Wash.
NSAA launched the initiative in 2010 as a way to pique competition among member ski areas and recognize those who make significant strides to boost conversion rates. The winner is chosen based upon proven results, creative ideas, consistent execution, and long-term commitment to the conversion effort. Several key metrics are used in the judging process, including beginner lesson volumes; quantifiable success of beginner lesson packages; season-to-date sales and repeat sales data collection; and marketing ingenuity and use of new media.
Wachusett won the honor based on creative ideas, a logical learning progression—beyond the initial package offer—measurable results, solid execution, and long-term commitment to the conversion effort. Wachusett has been converting new skiers/riders for decades, taking advantage of the large population centers of Boston, Providence, and Worcester that are in the ski area’s backyard. "We see it as our job to create future skiers and riders for the industry", said Carolyn Stimpson, Wachusett’s vice president of resort services.
Using customer data and analytics, Wachusett has designed various beginner programs that are targeted to specific audiences—augmented with follow-up emails—to help ensure they return. The two primary learn-to programs are the one-day Learn-To-Turn package (lesson, rental, and lift ticket for $99), and a three-day package (lesson, rental, and lift ticket for $199). Those who finish either program receive upgrade offers and coupons to continue their journey to becoming a lifelong skier or snowboarder. Messages with those deals are delivered via email 24 hours later or, for those who do not provide an email address, by direct mail. The number of upgrades from the one-day package to the three-day package is up 65 percent from last season, even in a year when skier visits were down on the East Coast.
Wachusett also has other promotions to bring more newcomers to snowsports: incentives for existing customers to bring a friend; for secondary school students; for those riding public transportation; and other programs to make it easier for people to learn.
The Conversion Cup Award, a large silver trophy based on a Stanley Cup prototype, is a traveling award. Wachusett claims ownership of the Cup for one year, until the next winner is announced at next year’s NSAA National Convention May 5–8, 2017, in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Facts & Figures: Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup 2015/16


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Skier Visits Up to 53.9 Million in 2015-16 Winter Season

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) announced that U.S. ski areas tallied an estimated 53.9 million skier and snowboarder visits during the 2015-16 season, up from last season’s 53.6 million total. The annual skier visit tally, an important industry metric, was released on Thursday at the NSAA Convention and Tradeshow in Nashville, Tenn.
The Rocky Mountain Region tallied a record-setting season for the region (CO, UT, WY, MT, NM, ID), with an 8 percent increase in skier visits this season over last season. Even more impressive was the amazing rebound on the West Coast. The Pacific Northwest Region (AK, WA, OR) saw a stunning increase of 142 percent in skier visits over the drought-plagued season last year, more than doubling from two million visits in 2014-15 to almost five million visits this season (the best season the region has had in 38 years of the Kottke survey). The Pacific Southwest region (CA, AZ, and NV) also witnessed a huge jump of 53 percent over last season. Despite a stronger economy and a record season in the West, weather challenges across the entire eastern half of the country resulted in declines from the 2014-15 season in the Northeast, Midwest, and Southeast.
"It’s especially encouraging to see how strongly California roared back from four straight bad seasons of drought, with the amazing recovery this season reflecting the pent-up demand from our guests", said Michael Berry, president of NSAA. "Our skiers and boarders came back this season with a vengeance, which reinforces the underlying passion and loyalty of our guests, and it bodes very well for our ski areas in the East, Midwest and Southeast for next year".
For additional historical perspective, 2015-16 skier visits nationally were up 6 percent from a recent low of 51 million visits in 2011-12, and down 11 percent from a record high of 60.5 million visits during the 2010-11 season. The 2015-16 season was down 4.6 percent from the 10-year industry average of 56.5 million.
NSAA will release a final Kottke End of Season Survey this summer.

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Ski Areas Honored with Annual Golden Eagle Environmental Awards

SKI Magazine has honored three ski areas—Soda Springs, California, Gore Mountain, New York, and Aspen Skiing Company, Colorado—with the 2016 Golden Eagle Awards for Environmental Excellence. Additionally, SKI named Kristyn Lingenfelter of Squaw Valley/Alpine Meadows in California as the "Hero of Sustainability" honoree for 2016.
The Golden Eagle Awards, overseen in a partnership between SKI and the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), are the ski industry’s most prestigious honor for recognizing resort environmental programs and projects.
"When SKI founded this program in 1993, our goal was to recognize resorts that were actively addressing environmental issues, hoping to encourage other resorts to do the same and also to help publicize templates for similar projects across the industry", said Allen Crolius, SKI’s publisher and vice president of Active Interest Media’s Mountain Group. "It’s gratifying to see how far the industry has come in 20 years, particularly with today’s vital focus on addressing climate change".
The resort awards are divided into three categories: small (fewer than 200,000 annual skier/boarder visits), medium (200,000 to 500,000 visits) and large (more than 500,000 visits). The Hero of Sustainability Award is designed to honor an individual making a difference in resort environmental performance.

Soda Springs in California won the Golden Eagle Award in the small ski area category. In November of 2015, Soda Springs launched the Soda Springs Recycled Water Initiative. The ski area will lead by example in being the first resort in California to make snow using recycled water. This innovation is the result of a shared vision and partnership with Donner Summit Public Utility District (DSPUD). The use of recycled water will preserve potable, surface, and groundwater supplies, and provide an alternate and sustainable source for snowmaking. Additionally, the snow that is made is effective water storage in the winter that is released back into the ground and surface water flows as the snow melts, benefitting the South Yuba River. Soda Springs invested significant capital to connect to the DSPUD facilities and install the new system, and 100 percent of energy used for the new snowmaking system is offset through the purchase of renewable energy credits. These investments will generate a great mountain product and enhance guest experiences while conserving the region’s valuable potable water supply. Click here for more information.

Gore Mountain in New York took the top environmental honors in the medium-sized ski area category for consistent leadership on environmental stewardship and enhancing the guest experience in creative ways that help both the planet and its business. Gore’s signature project was the signing of a 25-year solar energy contract for a 5.325 MW system that will offset 85 percent of Gore’s annual electrical budget. The first year’s savings for the project is estimated to be $213,043, and the cumulative savings is projected to be $9,985,787. Gore also continued its long-term investment in high-efficiency snowmaking, introduced service of locally produced foods, offset energy use through strategic trail modifications, added two “recycled” trails to the map, and made several other environmentally-friendly enhancements that guests can see, enjoy, and learn about every day. Gore Mountain has demonstrated that a growing resort (its acreage and uphill capacity have increased 131 percent and 142 percent respectively over the last 20 years) can be sustainable and profitable, and serves as an industry model for sustainable growth. For more information about Gore Mountain’s environmental initiatives, click here.

Aspen Skiing Co. in Colorado won the Golden Eagle Award in the large resort category for leveraging action on climate change with key audiences and in partnership with Protect Our Winters (POW), a nonprofit dedicated to engaging the outdoor sports community in the fight against climate change. This season, all 3,600 new Aspen/Snowmass uniforms featured the POW logo on the sleeve to spark conversation among guests and employees about climate change and how they can act in meaningful ways to solve the problem. Aspen trained every employee in climate science, communication, and the mission of POW prior to the season, and included effective collateral materials in support of the initiative on chairlifts and in hotels. Aspen’s partnership with POW has resulted in great success, including influencing governors in ski states to support the President’s Clean Power Plan, bringing EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to the X Games to elevate awareness of EPA’s role in climate among youth, and helping unite the snowsports industry on advocacy on climate solutions. For more information on the Aspen/POW partnership, visit www.protectourwinters.org and www.aspensnowmass.com.



Kristyn Lingenfelter is a Hero of Sustainability for her efforts in implementing Squaw Valley’s Drink Mountain Tap program, a resort-wide ban of bottled water sales at Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows. This initiative involved installing more than 20 water refill stations, offering guests a new, reusable BPA-free water bottle with beautiful mountain imagery on it sold at the same price point as bottled water ($3), and removing bottled water from Squaw|Alpine owned dining and retail outlets. The initiative inspires guests to rethink their daily habits by choosing reusable products over single-use items, while simultaneously reducing the total amount of plastic waste generated by the resort each year. From the last two season season averages of bottled water sold, Squaw|Alpine Meadows will remove 28,000 single-use plastic bottles from its waste stream annually. In 10 years, this will add up to more than 300,000 single-use plastic bottles and more than 8 metric tons of CO2 emissions saved from the production of 300K plastic bottles. In addition to this program, Lingenfelter was instrumental in strengthening the resort’s partnership with POW and raising awareness on the effects of climate change by developing the POW Climate Cabin and POW Special Feature Wall at the Patagonia store in the resort’s Village. For more information on Squaw|Alpine Meadows’ sustainability initiatives, visitwww.squawalpine.com and www.protectourwinters.org.

Established in 1993, the Golden Eagle Awards for Environmental Excellence recognize the environmental achievements of ski areas. The awards are sponsored by SKI Magazine. Judges for this year’s awards include: Andy Hawk and Greg Ditrinco, SKI Magazine; Tiffany Beal, International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA); Judy Dorsey, Brendle Group; Don Dressler, US Forest Service; Kevin Kassekert, Tesla Motors, Inc.; Chris Steinkamp, POW; and Matthew Banks, World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Every Damn Weekend, Ep. 5. Cresta di Corleans

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Descent of the North Couloir from Cresta di Corleans

Saturday, May 21, 2016

NSAA Announces 2016 Safety Award Winners

The National Ski Areas Association announced the six winners of the annual Safety Awards during the NSAA National Convention and Tradeshow, being held this week in Nashville, Tenn.
The awards, sponsored by Safehold Special Risk, recognize exceptional resort initiatives to educate guests and employees about skiing and snowboarding responsibly.

Here are the winners of the NSAA 2016 National Safety Awards:

Best Overall Safety Program
(350,000 or more visits)
Mammoth Mountain, California.

Best Overall Safety Program

(Up to 350,000 visits)
Ski Apache Resort, New Mexico

Best Employee Safety Program
Aspen Snowmass, Colorado.

Best Guest Safety Program

Boreal Mountain Resort, California

Best Kids on Lifts Safety Campaign
Copper Mountain Resort, Colorado

Safety Champion
Linda Bowling,
Sun Valley Resort, Idaho

Every Damn Weekend, Ep.4. Crevacol

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Riding the storm

Friday, May 20, 2016

Looking for Inspiration: Theatre Rigiblick Plays the News


On 2013 the 28th London International Awards (LIA) judging was held at the Wynn/Encore Hotel in Las Vegas, convening over a ten-day period. The juries, led by their respective Jury Presidents, viewed and scored every entry within their medium ensuring that all the work was judged equally. They concluded with final discussions to determine Grand LIAs, Statue Winners and Finalists.

Draftfcb Lowe Zurich, Wallisellen won two Bronze Statues:
  • Bronze – Radio - Campaign for Theatre Rigiblick – Plays the News Campaign titled "Traffic Report" and "Weather"
  • Bronze - Radio - Innovative Use of Radio for Theatre Rigiblick titled "Theatre Rigiblick Plays the News".
The Project: "Theatre Rigiblick Plays the News"
The Goal: To raise awareness for the Theatre Rigiblick.

Theatre Rigiblick sponsored the daily weather and traffic news on Radio 1, a popular radio station in Zurich. The news were performed by the theatre`s own stage actors.
Click here to listen to the ad.

"As I've often said, the element of surprise is like rocket fuel in advertising and marketing. Having actors perform the traffic & weather reports was just that - and amazing to think Radio 1 in Zürich would even allow it.
But dare to push and the world will always yield.
Over 100,000 listeners were tuned in to those broadcasts every day, so the theatre got massive exposure for very little expenditure.
A completely unexpected use of radio.

And more than anything, it demonstrated – firsthand – that Theatre Rigiblick was one of the boldest and most creative theatres in Switzerland". O'Reilly, T. (2016) Under the Influence. Radio Still Makes Waves. CBC, Accessed May 19, 2016.
Relevant and valuable content is key to attract, acquire and engage a target audience. In this case content provides the theatre a great opportunity to create brand awareness through actors braoadcasting the news.
"We've all heard businesses sponsoring the weather and traffic reports on radio for years. But then Theatre Rigiblick turned that age-old sponsorship on its ear"O'Reilly, T. (2016)
LIA (formerly known as London International Advertising Awards) is a worldwide Award annually created to award creativity and power of ideas in all forms of Advertising, Digital, Branded Content, Branded Entertainment, Design, Production and Music and Sound.

Theatre Rigiblick or Theatersaal Rigiblick is a theatre in the German-speaking city of Zürich, Switzerland. Built in 1901 as the restaurant Rigiblick, the theatre houses interesting and eclectic productions ranging from musicals to dance to Shakespeare.

Thanks to Terry O'Reilly. Under the Influence is a truly source of weekly inspiration ;-)

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Xavier De Le Rue's DIY Tour Ep.3: Conquering the Chevalier Couloir

Follow the adventures of Xavier De Le Rue, one of the world's most respected freeride snowboarders.
After several large-scale video expeditions, where we saw him getting seasick crossing the Drake Passage, riding icebergs and using paramotors to drop in on Alaskan peaks, De Le Rue's new project goes back to the roots of the sport, and to beautiful simplicity.
DIY is about leaving it all behind. The months of planning and the large teams were not invited this winter. Instead, De Le Rue has gone back to ski bumming style, travelling in a camper van with two additional elements: the Hexo+ [a flying film camera] and his wife.
No production schedules, no crazy heli trips, just a man with a van who's on a mission to score some perfect snow!

In Episode 3, Xavier spends some quality time adventuring around Chamonix with his wife Beanie, then they head up to the high mountain to conquer the Chevalier Couloir.

 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Xavier De Le Rue's DIY Tour Ep.2 : Insane Steep Line in Chamonix

Follow the adventures of Xavier De Le Rue, one of the world's most respected freeride snowboarders.
After several large-scale video expeditions, where we saw him getting seasick crossing the Drake Passage, riding icebergs and using paramotors to drop in on Alaskan peaks, De Le Rue's new project goes back to the roots of the sport, and to beautiful simplicity.
DIY is about leaving it all behind. The months of planning and the large teams were not invited this winter. Instead, De Le Rue has gone back to ski bumming style, travelling in a camper van with two additional elements: the Hexo+ [a flying film camera] and his wife.
No production schedules, no crazy heli trips, just a man with a van who's on a mission to score some perfect snow!

In Episode 2, Xavier tackles the Mallory Couloir in the North Face of the Aiguille du Midi - a rocky pinnacle rising 3,842m from the town of Chamonix into the thin air of Europe's higest mountain, the Mont Blanc.

Looking for Inspiration: In Love with Switzerland

"Sight-feeling is the new Sightseeing. Experience Switzerland in all its glory. Fall in love with beautiful mountain sceneries, urban & pulsing cities and great lakes. Find your very own special moment in one of Switzerland’s many outstanding and unforgettable locations" (MySwitzerland.com)

A call to a Blissful Deep Relaxation.This videos is designed to help you relax deeply.
The message:Switzerland can help you achieve de-stress, relax and feel thoroughly renewed!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Xavier De Le Rue's DIY Tour Ep.1: Splitboarding in Val Thorens

Follow the adventures of Xavier De Le Rue, one of the world's most respected freeride snowboarders.
After several large-scale video expeditions, where we saw him getting seasick crossing the Drake Passage, riding icebergs and using paramotors to drop in on Alaskan peaks, De Le Rue's new project goes back to the roots of the sport, and to beautiful simplicity.
DIY is about leaving it all behind. The months of planning and the large teams were not invited this winter. Instead, De Le Rue has gone back to ski bumming style, travelling in a camper van with two additional elements: the Hexo+ [a flying film camera] and his wife.
No production schedules, no crazy heli trips, just a man with a van who's on a mission to score some perfect snow!

Episode 1 follows Xavier and his wife Beanie as they prep the truck for the start of their adventure. First stop: Val Thorens, France.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Looking for Inspiration: 5 Crazy Ways Social Media Is Changing Your Brain Right Now

Our hyper-connected lives have been changed for the digital age... and your brain may never be the same!



Written and created by Mitchell Moffit (twitter @mitchellmoffit) and Gregory Brown (twitter @whalewatchmeplz).

Further Reading:

Abnormal White Matter Integrity in Adolescents with Internet Addiction Disorder: A Tract-Based Spatial Statistics Study
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3...

Phantom vibrations among undergraduates: Prevalence and associated psychological characteristics
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/...

Cognitive control in media multitaskers
http://www.pnas.org/content/106/37/15...

Amygdala Volume and Social Network Size in Humans
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/artic...

What is the role of dopamine in reward: hedonic impact, reward
learning, or incentive salience?
http://www.lsa.umich.edu/psych/resear...

Take also a look at  this video. Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication -- and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.



Sherry Turkle is the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society at MIT, and the founder (2001) and current director of the MIT Initiative on Technology and Self.
Her newest book is the New York Times bestseller, Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age (Penguin Press, October 2015), which investigates how a flight from conversation undermines our relationships, creativity, and productivity.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Every Damn Weekend, Ep.3. After the storm the Powder

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

After the first big storm that hit the Alps.... Powder hunting begins!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Every Damn Weekend, Ep.2. Tour Ronde - East Ridge

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Dry Skiing on Tour Ronde East Ridge!

Friday, May 13, 2016

NSAA Announces 2016 Sustainable Slopes Grant Winners

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) today named two member ski areas as the recipients of its annual Sustainable Slopes Grant Program: Crystal Mountain, Michigan, and Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico.

Crystal Mountain received a cash grant for an LED lighting project in its day visitor lot that is used year-round by guests and employees. The use of LED lighting results in a significant reduction in carbon emissions and also lowers energy and maintenance costs. Crystal Mountain estimates that the LED fixtures will save 7,000 kWh annually—a reduction of approximately 4.9 tons of CO2. Crystal Mountain is a participant in the ski industry’s Climate Challenge (see www.nsaa.org/environment/climate-change/), and this project will help the ski area meet its goal of reducing MTCO2e emissions for the next several years.
"Energy resiliency initiatives have been a particular focus of Crystal Mountain as they represent an opportunity to mitigate impact both environmentally and fiscally, and this grant undoubtedly will help us move toward our goal of greater energy efficiency and resiliency", said Brian Lawson, director of public relations for Crystal Mountain.
Crystal Mountain’s $5,000 grant was made possible by a generous donation from CLIF® Bar, based in California. CLIF Bar has contributed to the Sustainable Slopes grant program for seven years running. “As a company focused on maintaining climate-neutral business operations, we are pleased to support ski area projects making a positive impact on climate,” said Bryan Cole, senior sports marketing manager at CLIF Bar & Company.

Massachusetts-based HKD Snowmakers awarded a high-efficiency snowmaking grant to Taos Ski Valley, also a participant in the Climate Challenge.The ski area will receive five high-efficiency snowmaking guns from HKD Snowmakers, a total value of $23,000. Taos has made great strides in improving the efficiency of its snowmaking system over the past five years, including purchasing low-energy HKD snow guns and upgrading to premium-efficiency, variable-frequency electric motors and drives.
"The HKD Low-Energy guns will improve our efficiency even more, enable us to move more water more consistently, and help us avoid use of high-energy guns when it is cold", said Jordan Osterman, sustainability specialist with Taos Ski Valley.
"We at HKD are thrilled to support Taos in participating in the Climate Challenge and meeting their goal through the use of our energy-efficient Impulse snowmaking equipment", said Charles Santry, president of HKD Snowmakers.
New this year, all participants in the ski industry’s Climate Challenge program will receive the benefits of an in-kind climate adaptation consulting services grant. Brendle Group, a Colorado-based sustainability engineering firm, will provide the services with a value of $5,000 to help the ski area assess and respond to potential vulnerabilities and risks due to a changing climate by providing education and tools through the Climate Challenge program.
"The Climate Challengers are deserving of this award for their willingness to lead by example in addressing and preparing for climate change", said Brendle Group’s president, Judy Dorsey.

Sustainable Slopes Grant Program
Launched in 2009, the grant program provides cash and in-kind funding to support sustainability projects at NSAA member ski areas.
Since its inception in 2009, the Sustainable Slopes Grant Program has awarded $118,500 in cash grants and $321,000 in in-kind grants, for a total of $439,000 in support of resort sustainability projects.

The National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, is the trade association for ski area owners and operators. Formed in 1962, NSAA today represents 332 alpine resorts that account for more than 90 percent of the skier/snowboarder visits nationwide. Additionally, it has more than 400 supplier members who provide equipment, goods, and services to the mountain resort industry.

Every Damn Weekend, Ep.1.The (un)secret spot

A web series about steep skiing and Freeride.
A dreamtime adventure among the best spots in the Alps!
Featuring: Luca Zanette, Federico Chiappino, Luca Zattoni, Francesco Salamone

Gain altitude, set a base camp, open a bottle of whiskey in front of the fireplace. Wake up early in the morning, scope your line and sign it!

 

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Looking for Inspiration: Ken Robinson. Creativity & Divergent Thinking


I love to go outside the ski businees box looking for inspiration. Honestly, I think the lack of disruption is, in some cases, one of the main problems right now in the ski industry and tourism marketing. We limit ourselves to follow the main current and we are really afraid about be wrong and try new things.

And we must do it because we are "in a place where we have no idea what's going to happen, in terms of the future. No idea how this may play out (...) Nobody has a clue (...) what the world will look like in five years' time. So the unpredictability, I think, is extraordinary".
"If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original. (We) have become frightened of being wrong. And we run our companies like this. And the result is that we are educating people out of their creative capacities".
"Picasso once said this, he said that all children are born artists. The problem is to remain an artist as we grow up. I believe this passionately, that we don't grow into creativity, we grow out of it".
"Creativity -- which I define as the process of having original ideas that have value -- more often than not comes about through the interaction of different disciplinary ways of seeing things".

"Reform is no use anymore, because that's simply improving a broken model. What we need is not evolution, but a revolution in education (in everything I must say). This has to be transformed into something else".
"Innovation is hard, because it means doing something that people don't find very easy, for the most part. It means challenging what we take for granted, things that we think are obvious. The great problem for reform or transformation is the tyranny of common sense. Things that people think, "It can't be done differently, that's how it's done".
"The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion." I love that. Not rise to it, rise with it. "As our case is new, so we must think anew and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country", Abraham Lincoln, 1862.
"Disenthrall." You know what it means? That there are ideas that all of us are enthralled to, which we simply take for granted as the natural order of things, the way things are. And many of our ideas have been formed, not to meet the circumstances of this century, but to cope with the circumstances of previous centuries. (...) Now, doing this is easier said than done".
"The other big issue is conformity. We have built our education systems on the model of fast food. This is something Jamie Oliver talked about the other day. There are two models of quality assurance in catering. One is fast food, where everything is standardized. The other is like Zagat and Michelin restaurants, where everything is not standardized, they're customized to local circumstances".
"So I think we have to change metaphors. We have to go from what is essentially an industrial model of education, a manufacturing model, which is based on linearity and conformity and batching people. We have to move to a model that is based more on principles of agriculture. We have to recognize that human flourishing is not a mechanical process; it's an organic process. And you cannot predict the outcome of human development. All you can do, like a farmer, is create the conditions under which they will begin to flourish".
Sir Ken Robinson challenges the way we're educating our children. He champions a radical rethink of our school systems, to cultivate creativity and acknowledge multiple types of intelligence.
"We are educating people out of their creativity", Robinson says.
A visionary cultural leader, Sir Ken led the British government's 1998 advisory committee on creative and cultural education, a massive inquiry into the significance of creativity in the educational system and the economy, and was knighted in 2003 for his achievements. His 2009 book, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything, is a New York Times bestseller and has been translated into 21 languages. A 10th anniversary edition of his classic work on creativity and innovation, Out of Our Minds: Learning to be Creative, was published in 2011. His 2013 book, Finding Your Element: How to Discover Your Talents and Passions and Transform Your Life, is a practical guide that answers questions about finding your personal Element. In his latest book, Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution That’s Transforming Education, he argues for an end to our outmoded industrial educational system and proposes a highly personalized, organic approach that draws on today’s unprecedented technological and professional resources to engage all students.

We must fuel creativity in our business with divergent thinking. The word divergent is partly defined as "tending to be different or develop in different directions". Divergent thinking refers to the way the mind generates ideas beyond proscribed expectations and strict rote thinking -what is usually referred to "thinking outside the box," and is often associated with creativity (Rote thinking is rule-bound and linear; actions take place in a very systematic manner).
Divergent thinking it's not the same thing as creativity but it's an essential capacity for creativity. It's the ability to see lots of possible answers to a question, multiple answers not one.

This RSA Animate was adapted from a talk given at the RSA by Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned education and creativity expert and recipient of the RSA's Benjamin Franklin award.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Looking for Inspiration: Tanner Hall Ski Diaries

I am always looking in internet to see new work, upcoming trends or design inspiration. Now, I am in the middle of a new project for the upcoming winter season and I try to collect benchmarks from all over the world to get inspired.


Nowadays, all blogs are expected to add audio, photo, or video to their posts. People are far more likely to engage with and share your stories and posts if they contain images, audio or video presentations.
Aside from enjoying increased engagement and shares, there are three very powerful reasons you should be including multimedia in everything you produce online:
  • Multimedia Increases Time on Site
  • Multimedia Optimizes On-Page SEO
  • Multimedia Yields Better Branding
An online diary is a great way to express yourself and share your thoughts with twin souls and Tanner's Ski Diaries is a good example I found on the web. I think it looks very stylish and modern. One of the coolest thing of Tanner's video is the graphics. The things you say (and how you say) at the start of your video are really important to engage your viewers and grab their attention. You should introduce yourself and be clear what are you going to talk about.
But above all things you must remember that as an editor you are a storyteller ;-)

In the first one Tanner Hall reflects on the turbulent journey of his 2013-2014 winter through the hallowed backcountry of British Columbia, an adventure made even more impressive by the fact that every run was earned by foot power.
Shot 100% on the HERO3+® camera from http://GoPro.com.



In this one Tanner Hall looks back on the 2014-2015 season as we follow him through the battles of being in the Alaska Backcountry. From avalanches, spine lines, massive cliff drops, and rag dolls; see what skiers and snowboarders alike go through being is some of the gnarliest terrain in the world.
Shot 100% on the HERO4® camera from http://GoPro.com.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Whistler Blackcomb Announces Renaissance Strategic Plan


Whistler Blackcomb announced details of its plans for Whistler Blackcomb Renaissance the largest and most exciting investment in the Company’s history. Renaissance will see over $345 million invested in three phases in new weather-independent experiences, on-mountain improvements and real estate developments with the objective of accelerating the Company’s vision of becoming the number one mountain resort in the world to play, to work and to invest. These investments will further solidify and enhance the Company’s reputation as one of the world’s greatest four-season mountain resorts and will build on its year-round appeal to all guests, particularly families.
Renaissance includes three phases of investment that will add new, year-round attractions and activities, see major on-mountain winter and summer improvements, and revitalize Blackcomb’s upper and lower base areas.
"Whistler Blackcomb Renaissance is the most progressive investment in our history and will leverage our tremendous success building our non-ski business. Renaissance will further diversify our revenue and enhance the activities available for our guests while elevating Whistler Blackcomb’s core skiing, mountain biking and sightseeing experiences and continuing our evolution as one of the industry’s leading four-season mountain resorts", says Dave Brownlie, the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer. "This is a very exciting growth initiative that, we expect, will increase year-round visitation to Whistler, insulate our resort from variable weather conditions, and strengthen Whistler’s position as one of the premier mountain resort destinations in the world".

The Company expects the three phases of Renaissance will include:

Phase One: An estimated $90 - $100 million investment in new mountain adventure experiences designed to redefine how guests play at Whistler Blackcomb. The Company expects phase one to bring the following new attractions and amenities to Whistler:
  • The Watershed, a year-round, indoor adventure center focusing on water-based play located at Blackcomb’s upper base. The Company envisions the Watershed as a 163,000 square foot facility featuring activities like waterslides, the latest deep water surf simulator technology, cliff jumping and rock climbing experiences, a wave pool, hot and cold pools, bowling, food & beverage facilities and retail amenities, as well as other weather-independent activities;
  • A new high-speed lift to replace the Magic Chair and connect Blackcomb’s upper and lower bases;
  • A year-round mountain coaster, a tree-top ropes course, and ATV and snowmobile activities for kids;
  • New snow school learning zones, a night skiing zone, and enhanced snowmaking on Blackcomb Mountain; and
  • Major improvements to Whistler Blackcomb’s existing sightseeing, hiking and mountain biking experiences, with the addition of a suspension bridge and viewing platforms at the peak of Whistler Mountain, and an expansion of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park into the Creekside zone, including 50 kilometers of new downhill mountain biking trails. 
The Company anticipates Renaissance phase one will position Whistler Blackcomb to welcome new ski and non-ski visitors and generate meaningful incremental revenue and free cash flow once construction is complete. 

Phase Two: An estimated $105 - $115 million investment in a new day lodge and snow school facility within the Watershed indoor adventure center on Blackcomb Mountain, a two-storey parking complex at Blackcomb’s upper Base II area, and other infrastructure projects to lay the foundation for Renaissance phase three. The Company’s current plans for phase two also include the development and sale of approximately 60 high-end, ski-in ski-out townhomes near the Watershed, totaling approximately 160,000 net saleable square feet.

Phase Three:
An estimated $140 - $150 million investment in a major revitalization of Blackcomb’s base area in the Upper Village, which the Company currently expects to include an upgraded day lodge and skiers’ plaza, a new snow school facility and a luxury real estate development project. Phase three is designed to transform Blackcomb’s base area into a vibrant, upscale village community. The Company anticipates Renaissance phase three will also include major on-mountain improvements such as lift improvements and the development of an indoor action sports training facility designed to expand the Company’s youth development programs in skiing, snowboarding and mountain biking.



Renaissance investment is subject to satisfaction of a number of conditions, including municipal and provincial government approvals, as well as the successful renegotiation and extension of Whistler Blackcomb's Master Development Agreements and Master Plans, the completion of consultations with the Squamish and Lilâwat First Nations and finalization of a proposed business partnership with those First Nations. Whistler Blackcomb estimates the construction period for phases one and two will be approximately four to five years with the Watershed being open two years following receipt of all approvals.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Japan To Open Slopes to Foreign Ski Instructors


The government plans to ease visa requirements for foreign ski instructors to help attract leisure skiers from abroad amid the sport’s declining popularity in Japan, a government source said Saturday.
Assuming the introduction of instructors with foreign language skills would help revitalize the domestic ski industry, the Justice Ministry eyes amending the relevant ordinance as early as this summer, according to the source.
The ministry also aims to bring an end to the trend of foreigners illegally working as ski instructors after entering Japan as tourists, the source said.
The ordinance attached to the current immigration law stipulates a required minimum of three years experience in instruction or competing in major international events like the Olympics or world championships as a baseline to acquire resident status as a sports instructor.
The ministry also plans to allow instructors holding the highest-level qualification issued by the Switzerland-based International Ski Instructors Association as eligible for resident status, the source said.
The ISIA was formed in 1971 and there are currently 39 member nations representing the very best in ski instruction around the world. ISIA said about 10,700 people have the organization’s top accreditation worldwide.A panel of experts for the Japan Tourism Agency on the promotion of winter resorts said in an interim report last June that it would be vital to secure instructors who can speak foreign languages, while pointing to the visa requirements as an issue.
The agency sent questionnaires to 129 ski schools across Japan and found 25 of the 57 school respondents said they hope to hire foreign instructors. The number of foreign ski instructors they wish to hire totaled some 80.

Japan is world renowned for the best powder skiing in the world and most of the Japan ski resorts get dumped with an average of 10 to 18 metres of snow per season.
Niseko ski resort in Hokkaido is the most famous Japan resort. Niseko is situated at the base of a dormant volcano -- Mount Yotei. Because of its northern location, Niseko is fed more by weather fronts that come from Siberia and is internationally renowned for its consistently good falls of the lightest powder snow and its long ski season which runs from late November until early May.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Saas-Fee. A Model for Tourism Sustainability

Skiing is about connecting with Mother Nature, unfortunately however ski resorts can have a negative impact on the environment. In recent years more ski resorts have begun to understand the importance of being eco friendly and protecting the environment where they can.
Consistently ranked as one of the top eco friendly ski resorts in the world, Saas Fee is a typical picturesque resort with plenty of alpine charm.


Saas-Fee is the main village in the Saastal, one of the most scenically beautiful and diverse valleys in the Valais and in the Alps. This car-free village lies on a high plateau 1800 metres above sea level, nestling amongst the icy dome of the Allalinhorn and the rocky group of the Mischabel chain. Their typical old Valais wooden houses create the perfect setting for winter holidays, deserving of its name “Pearl of the Alps”. Saas-Fee has some of the most restrictive building and zoning regulations in Switzerland. All buildings must have a gabled roof and at least one third of the facade of the building must be built of wood. The typical Valais style of Chalet can be maintained with these measures.

The foundation for creating a resort conscious of the environment and of quality was laid in 1951, when the community made the decision to keep the village car-free. The absence of cars in Saas-Fee contributes considerably to the relaxed holiday atmosphere and romantic character of the village where there is no stress from traffic. Guests benefit from the peace and quiet, the good quality of the air and the freedom of movement in the streets.
In 1998, car-free resorts in Switzerland which care about a high quality of service and the environment joined forces to form the Society of Car-free Swiss Resorts. The
Gemeinschaft Autofreier Schweizer Tourismusorte (GAST in short) is a network of nine car-free Swiss touristy communities (Bettmeralp,Braunwald, Riederalp, Rigi, Saas-Fee, Stoos, Wengen-Mürren andZermatt) that promotes car-free recreation and holiday experiences in alpine resorts. The resorts commit themselves to nine decided quality criteria, which are checked regularly.
The Gemeinschaft Autofreier Schweizer Tourismusorte has made car-free vacations their credo. In their cities’ images, there was no more room for petrol engines.
Saas-Fee committed itself to the Alliance in the Alps project as a pilot community in 1996. The Alliance in the Alps community network initiated in collaboration with CIPRA (Commission Internationale pour la Protection des Alpes) is an association comprising over 250 communities located throughout the Alpine region, from France to Slovenia. The member communities have come together in support of the goals of the Alpine Convention for sustainable development in the Alps. To this end they work in close contact with the resident populations to improve the ecological, social and economic situation in their communities.


Saas-Fee was awarded the status of Energy Town in June 2002. The label represents the introduction of actual quality control concerning communal energy policies and is awarded to towns and communities which -in proportion to the possibilities at their disposal- go to exceptional lengths to implement energy and traffic policies in their community.
Saas-Fee was the first resort in Switzerland to introduce fees for refuse bags in 1994. By means of this fee, residents are called upon to sort refuse exactly and to produce less refuse in general. Household refuse may only be disposed of in the official bags which carry a fee.

Friday, May 6, 2016

FIS Social Media Guidelines


The general framework for how businesses should set up social media policies is still under consideration. It is smart for companies to set up their social media policies like guidelines reminding to use common sense when they use it.
During the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, a group of athletes - among them a Greek triple jumper and a Swiss soccer player - were cut from their respective teams for sending offensive messages over Twitter.
Top European athletes have understood the potential benefits of promoting theirselves on social media websites. One of the best tactics an association can undertake is encouraging members to use Social Media in a positive manner. 

On July 2014, the FIS PR and Mass Media Committee published a Social Media Guidelines document to serve as a do’s and don’ts guide for athletes, coaches and officials to use as they participate in the realm of Social Media.
Social Media has become a key tool of communicating the goals and aims of those involved in professional sports. The personal element of social media is both its attraction and its principal danger. Providing details of activities and expressing opinions face-to-face to close friends restricts the size of the audience, but going through social media makes ideas and opinions available to the entire world. Furthermore, once information or an opinion is published, it is there forever.
FIS and many National Ski Associations have prepared guidelines regarding the use of Social Media to try to assist using the available tools effectively and to avoif pitfalls. The influence of national culture and legislation will result in many differences from country-to-country but a certain number of basic do’s and don’ts are applicable for all those wishing to use Social Media.

Valuable Tips Regarding The Use Of Social Media (By FIS)

DO
  • Promote the FIS disciplines 
  • Show your personality - imagine you are chatting to an audience and make it fun, informal and interesting 
  • Remember everyone can see you before you write, so think before you post 
  • Be informative as you are selling the sport, so share good news and hot topics 
  • Encourage interaction and answer questions that have been posed, promote dialogue, share content, use @ mentions and #tags 
  • Include links to ski related websites and personalities in your posts 
  • Engage with the community and share experiences 
  • Be careful and respectful toward others 
  • Post regularly and consistently to keep your audience engaged and coming back for more 
  • Make sure that any links you give will send users to appropriate and suitable content 
  • Be honest, tell the truth and correct any mistakes you make as quickly as possible
  • Post photos and updates about attending events and remind users to watch the LIVE broadcasts where available 
AVOID TO
  • Comment on any legal matter 
  • Share confidential information 
  • Use inappropriate language 
  • Comment on any activity outside your area of competence 
  • Comment on the performance or decisions of athletes or officials 
  • Talk negatively and gossip about companies, brands, sports, competitions or athletes 
  • Post in the heat of the moment, while under the influence or in any highly emotional situation 
  • React if you see or receive negative messages, but seek advice from a communication’s professional 
  • Use jargon all words that are difficult to understand 
  • Forget about spelling, grammar and language 
  • Link or use any unsuitable content 
  • Publish any of your own photos without obtaining the permission of the people in the photo 
  • If using other people’s photos do not publish without the photographer’s permission. Remember that when in public you are also open to being photographed and images of you may appear online. Act accordingly.
If at any time there is a doubt then refrain from commenting or posting information.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

EpicTV: Backcountry Basics Step 5: Get Out of Harm's Way

BCA guide ambassador Lel Tone and BCA/TGR athlete Colter Hinchliffe talk about the essential avalanche and backcountry safety steps every skier, snowboarder and snowmobiler must take to limit your group’s exposure to dangerous terrain. These include discussing the consequences of traveling on a slope before committing, avoiding terrain traps, placing only one person on a suspect slope at a time, and how and when to help someone when they're in hazardous terrain. Filmed with support from AIARE and The Avalanche Project.


Backcountry Access (BCA) is North America’s leading manufacturer of snow safety equipment, including Tracker transceivers, Float airbags, shovels, probes, and BC Link radios. BCA’s mission is to save lives, not just sell products. BCA has always considered education to be just as important as the gear it makes. That’s why BCA supports avalanche education programs and forecast centers--and why the company backs up all its products with consumer education and knowledgeable customer service.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

EpicTV: Backcountry Access - Backcountry Basics Step 4: Get the Picture

Get the goods without getting buried. BCA guide ambassador Lel Tone and BCA/TGR athlete Colter Hinchliffe talk about your daily routine: getting the big picture about the mountain and terrain and how to look for where the risk areas for snow instability and avalanches may lie for the day. They review info sources like locations of recent avalanche activity, terrain photos, maps and reports from others to anticipate dangerous terrain and where to get the best snow. Filmed with support from AIARE and The Avalanche Project.



Backcountry Access (BCA) is North America’s leading manufacturer of snow safety equipment, including Tracker transceivers, Float airbags, shovels, probes, and BC Link radios. BCA’s mission is to save lives, not just sell products. BCA has always considered education to be just as important as the gear it makes. That’s why BCA supports avalanche education programs and forecast centers--and why the company backs up all its products with consumer education and knowledgeable customer service.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

EpicTV: Backcountry Access - Backcountry Basics Step 3: Get the Forecast

BCA guide ambassador Lel Tone talks to you about how to get the weather and avalanche forecast from your local avalanche forecast center, how to interpret the avalanche danger scale and "avalanche problem" of the day, and how to plan your day accordingly. Filmed with support from AIARE and The Avalanche Project. Get the goods without getting buried!



Backcountry Access (BCA) is North America’s leading manufacturer of snow safety equipment, including Tracker transceivers, Float airbags, shovels, probes, and BC Link radios. BCA’s mission is to save lives, not just sell products. BCA has always considered education to be just as important as the gear it makes. That’s why BCA supports avalanche education programs and forecast centers--and why the company backs up all its products with consumer education and knowledgeable customer service.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Ischgl Closes Winter Season with Muse and 14,000 Fans


"Time is running out" – the song by British rock band Muse set the tone in Ischgl at the weekend. 14,000 fans celebrated the finale to a successful winter season before the Alpine backdrop of the Silvretta.
When fresh snow, the spring sun and live rock sounds echo through the Silvretta Arena, that's when the world-famous Top of the Mountain Concert takes place in Ischgl. On 30 April, the British band Muse laid on festival vibes at 2,300 metres above sea level. 14,000 winter sports enthusiasts came to the Ischgl season finale to celebrate the end of the winter season with the Grammy-winners. The trio is regarded as one of the best rock bands in the world and promptly provided proof of this on the legendary Idalp-stage: In the centre of the ski area, the three musicians put on a superb one-and-a-half-hour show with rock anthems including "Uprising", "Psycho" and "Madness" or classics like "Plug In Baby" and "Feeling Good". Dressed in retro ski suits the three rock stars obviously enjoyed the gig and perfectly matched the alpine setting during their breathtaking live show at 2,300 metres above sea level.
Muse follows in the footsteps of a galaxy of superstars who have entertained skiers and boarders in the Austrian resort's traditional Top of the Mountain gig. Long time ago, Ischgl decided to put its entire advertising and marketing budget into staging two massive concerts a year to open and close the winter season. Elton John was the first star to feature in the Tirolean resort's now famous season closing concerts, back in 1995. Since then the resort has hosted Rod Stewart, Bob Dylan, Sting, Tina Turner, Diana Ross, Bon Jovi, Enrique Iglesias, Atomic Kitten, Peter Gabriel, The Corrs, Alanis Morissette, Lionel Richie, Pink, the Scissor Sisters, the Pussycat Dolls, Rihanna, Elton John again, Gabriella Cilmi, Leona Lewis, Kylie Minogue, Katy Perry, Alicia Keys, Gossip, The Killers,Roxette, Mariah Carey, The Scorpions, Deep Purple, Nickelback, Robbie Williams, James Blunt, Thirty Seconds to Mars and The Beach Boys.


Ischgl revealed the band for the opening of the new winter season to winter sports fans already at the season finale. One of the most successful German bands is coming to the "Adventureland" of Ischgl: On 26 November 2016, the band PUR will kick off the 2016/17 skiing season at the legendary Top of the Mountain Concert. Singer Hartmut Engler and his six bandmates are known for their spectacular live shows and promise a season opening with PURe vibes with hits including "Abenteuerland", "Ich lieb’ dich" , "Lena" or "Hör gut zu".
Ischgl (1377m) is a truly Ski Paradise in Tirol (Austria) with 238 km of prepared pistes, 43 lifts and lots of interesting new features in the ski resort. The modern lifts managed by the Silvretta Seilbahn AG Company offer a high level of comfort and countless extras, such as heated seats in the Fimbabahn cable car built for the 2007/08 season. A variety of slopes and ski routes offer a opportunity for everyone, from beginners to experts looking for challenging pistes. Eleven is the name of the longest piste with approximately 11 kilometres from the top of the ski resort in Greitspitz (2,872 metres) to Ischgl village (1,400 metres).
From Ischgl you can access to the Silvretta Arena Ski Paradise, thanks to an alliance between two Companies (Silvretta Seilbahn AG and Bergbahnen Sammaun AG) and two ski resorts (Ischgl-Sammaun) from two different countries (Switzerland-Austria).