Women learn the ‘butt christie’ | VailDaily.com

Women learn the ‘butt christie’

Compiled by Allen R. Smith

While teaching at Alta during the early 1960s, I spent the day with a lovely group of ladies from the Midwest.For the most part, the lesson went well until the end of the day when their energy levels began to wane. As the afternoon sun starting setting behind the mountain, the packed powder conditions rapidly changed to slick hardpack.Normally, I tried to have all of my students off the mountain no later than 4 p.m. But, because of their measured pace, we were only halfway down the hill at a half past five.To keep their minds off of the deteriorating situation, I tried to keep them moving by practicing stems turns, leapfrogging each other and anything else I could think of. By this time, it had gotten so late, that the ski patrol was skiing directly behind us on their afternoon sweep.Finally, I managed to get the group to the top of the last steep pitch, called Ninah Curve. The ladies looked down the hill, then over at me in absolute terror.After fielding numerous objections, I decided that the safest thing to do was to remove our skis and slide down Ninah on our rear ends. We took off our skis and poles and pitched them over the side.Ninah Curve was so steep and so hard that once the equipment started sliding, it made all the way to the bottom. At the end of the run, two ski patrolmen gathered up all of the skis and waited for us to join them.After going over a verbal description of how to slide on their derrieres, I demonstrated by taking a flying leap off the crest of the run and flopping down on my butt.One by one, I coaxed the women down. After the first one or two, the ladies were actually beginning to cheer each other on, trying to see who could make it down the furthest before coming to a stop.Once at the bottom, we claimed our equipment and skied the last easy section to the lodge. By the time we finally arrived at the lodge, it was well after 6 p.m. and the worried husbands were waiting with open arms and cocktails.One of them came up to me and asked, “How did the lesson go? What took you so long to get down?””Well, first we worked on some wedge turns. Then we practiced our beginning parallel turns. By the end of the lesson, everyone was doing so well, I decided to move on to ‘butt christies.'”- Bud Temple, Salt Lake CityVail, Colorado

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