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Breaking my leg skiing

Below is something I wrote in January 2012 just after breaking my leg skiing. It captures some of the thoughts and feelings I had at the time. be-warned there’s some bad language in there.

Here I am sitting on my sofa, unable to climb, unable to walk even without the aid of crutches. How’d I end up here…what was I thinking?

So it all really started a couple weeks ago. I was so excited about an up coming ski trip. We’d organised to go to La Plagne, with 100’s of kilometres of pistes and plenty of good off piste this was to be a trip that got me back up to speed after a year without gliding down the white stuff. It was the kick start to 2012. I’d had a great 2011, qualifying as a mountain leader, climbing Cenotaph Corner (E1 Llanberis pass) and Coronation Street (E1 Cheddar Gorge), attempted a full traverse of the Cullin in a day as a group of 5 and almost made it. The plan would be to build on this and make a return to the alps climb to get a big tick and some broad experience travelling in alpine terrain. First a cheeky little ski holiday would get me in the mood and allow me to have some fun while improving my technique. Colleen could make it and hopefully enjoy her first experience of the alps. It couldn’t be better. I’d saved up for a few months and got my own kit for off piste / touring and we set off.

Skiing 2009
Skiing near Chamonix 2009

First day – started with a little helping Colleen to find her feet and getting my own, you can loose a lot in a year without skiing. It soon came back though, the skis feeling good, my technique feeling comfortable to get me down with ease on blue and red runs. In fact the only slow thing was the burn in my thighs. The usual evening banter with my friends, life is good.

Second day – up early, the others are keen. The weather looks great. In the morning Darrell and I race off to the lifts, we’re aiming for the glacier to get some big long runs in before our first lesson in the afternoon. We make it to each of the sequence of lifts you need to get there just at the right time and get on a brilliant red run, freshly groomed and with a lovely winding line. Darrell loves the speed and races off down it, me hot in pursuit. Everything is clicking and I’m flowing down, legs are feeling a little tired but they can cope.

We do the run a second time, more people are about but never the less we miss the crowds at the choke points and enjoy that feeling of travelling in the mountains. If you’ve never skied or boarded I doubt you’ve felt the liberty that comes with being able to move so fast and so competently around in the hills. If you have then you’ll know what’s being referred to.

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