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CLS take on the slopes

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

The 2018 Ski Trip Team recently travelled to New Hampshire, USA. A sociable early evening flight out of Heathrow transported the group of 40 over the pond to Boston, ahead of them a 3-hour transfer north into the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The boys coped admirably with the long journey and were rewarded with falling fresh powder to signal the group’s arrival at the Indian Head Resort.

After a few hours’ sleep, the boys kitted up and charged to breakfast. With cereal, fruit and yogurt overlooked in favour of blueberry pancakes, waffles, eggy bread, sausage and bacon all drowned in maple syrup, the boys were ready.

A short bus ride later came the challenge of Cannon Mountain, the home of Bode Miller, an Olympic and World Championship Gold Medallist and the most successful US Alpine ski racer of all time. Bode is infamous for his ‘seat of the pants, do or die’ skiing style alongside a wild and carefree approach to life: a perfect example for the boys not to follow on a school ski trip. Anyway, after a meticulous and somewhat tedious ski fit and essential distribution of helmets, the boys met their ski school instructors and departed for the ski lifts. Fifteen beginners, nine intermediate and twelve advanced skiers, aged between eleven and sixteen, took to the slopes to enjoy the fresh snow.

Unfortunately, the superb conditions that started the week were not set to stay – freezing rain swept in and the ice took over. Hard, challenging skiing tested everyone to the max; however, the boys were more than able to cope and quickly got used to the technical demands of East Coast Skiing. Despite numerous tumbles, mainly from the staff, the entire group returned from day one intact and in high spirits. Swimming, hot tub and games took care of the après ski alongside an evening meal of the local delicacies - chicken nuggets, pizza, fries and salad. This became the pattern for the week, with the only variables being the snow conditions, toppings on the pizza and the evening activities.The boys went ice skating, bowling, and snow tubing and enjoyed a night at the Cinema watching Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, all helping to strengthen friendships and group camaraderie.

A change of mountain midway through the week saw the group arrive at Loon Mountain. The change of slope freshened up the skiing challenge and helped to refocus the boys and staff. Loon was in superb condition and treated the now confident and capable boys to three amazing days on wide, long and perfectly groomed slopes. Every group ascending to the very top and taking on the variety of Black Diamond runs. By the end of the six days, everyone reported injury free and thrilled with their progress, if not a little exhausted. A touch of shopping in an outlet mall, just outside of Boston, provided an opportunity for some retail therapy before the night flight home.

This was a superb week and a fantastic experience for all involved.

Fifteen beginners, nine intermediate and twelve advanced skiers took to the slopes to enjoy the fresh snow.
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