Your A-Z of ski terms & jargon

How well do you know your ski lingo? Here’s an A-Z ski & board glossary of terms you might hear on the Sainte Foy slopes!

A

Aerials: Freestyle ski jumping involving flipping in the air.
Alpine Skiing: Downhill as opposed to Nordic skiing or Telemark skiing.
Apres-Ski: Time spent in the bar after a day of skiing.

B

Bombing or Bomber: Travelling downhill at an uncontrolled speed.
Brain bucket: Another term for Helmet. Highly recommended!
Binding: The thing that connects your boot to your ski or snowboard. The bindings on skis are designed to release the boot in the case of a fall. Snowboard bindings don’t auto release.
Black Run: Advanced level ski slope for good skiers and snowboarders.
Blue Run: A gentle slope suitable for beginner skiers and snowboarders.
Bowl: A large mountain basin, normally free of trees and tailor-made for great swooping turns or steep, speedy dives.

C

Champagne Powder: Light and fluffy snow. Our favourite!
Chatter: The vibration of skis produced by traveling at high speeds.
Chowder: Chopped-up powder.
Corduroy: Freshly groomed machine-packed snow with a ribbed texture that resembles corduroy.
Chair Lift: An aerial ski lift that you sit on and rest your skis or snowboard on a bar.
Crevasse: A deep and sometimes hidden crack in a glacier.
Couloir: A narrow chute with rock walls on both sides.
Crust: Frozen surface covering loose snow.

D

Disco Sticks: Short slalom and twin-tip skis, capable of very short radius turns.
Deeps: Deep powder conditions that require a powder cord or leash on your skis.
Downhill Edge: The edge of the ski that is on the downhill side as you are traversing the mountain.
Dump: Large amount of snowfall.

E

Edge: Used for control whilst turning, this is the metal strip on the edge of the ski or snowboard.
Eat Wood: When a skier hits a tree. Whoops!

F

Face-Plant: Falling on your face. Happens to the best of us!
Face Shots: Skiing fast in deep powder, that the snow sprays you in the face.
Fakie: Skiing or snowboarding backwards.
Fatty: A very wide ski designed for powder conditions.
Freestyle: A style of skiing or snowboarding that focuses on jumps, tricks and aerials.
Freshies: Fresh, untracked snow.
French Fries: Skiing with skis parallel to one another

G

Garlands: Series of turns linked by sideslips, progressing in one direction.
Goods: Untracked powder, usually in the trees.
Glades: Skiable terrain among the trees.
Grooming: Where large piste basher machines flatten and smooth the snow on the slopes. Usually done throughout the night in most ski resorts.

H

Hard Pack: Snow that has been compressed down as far as it will go, making it hard packed.
Heli-skiing: Getting a lift from a helicopter to off-piste areas that are otherwise inaccessible, in order to ski on fresh powder snow.
Huck: Launching off a jump.

I

In-bounds: Ski terrain inside the boundaries of a ski resort.
Indy Grab: The most basic snowboarding grab, this is where you grab the toe edge of the snowboard with your rear hand whilst in the air.
Inside Edge: The ski that is on the inside of a turn.

J

Jib/Jibber or Jibbing: Riding a ski across non-snow surfaces such as rails, boxes and any other objects.

K

Kicker: A cheese-wedge shaped jump, often built for performing small tricks.
Kodak Courage: Skiing inspired by ski magazine photographers. Whilst you’re here, don’t forget you can share your ski & board pics on Instagram using the hashtag #PNsnowpics

L

Lift Pass: A lift pass is a ticket that allows you to use the ski lifts.
Lift-Lickers: Kids who can’t resist freezing their tongues to the chairlift. Don’t try this at home folks!
Liftie: Chairlift operator.

M

Mid-Fat: A wider shaped ski, designed for both on- and off-piste skiing.
Magic Carpet: A conveyor-belt like surface lift. We have 2 magic carpets in Sainte Foy, which are free to use!
Milk Run: First ski of the day.
Moguls: Bumps carved into the snow generally created by the turns of skiers or carved out for perfectly shaped mogul field
Monoski: A type of ski with both boots attached to a single ski.
Mute Grab: Grabbing the toe edge of your snowboard between the bindings with your front hand.

N

Noodle: A ski that lacks rigidity, making it unstable at speed.

O

Off-Piste: A snowy area away from the marked ski slopes. Popular with freestyles and people that enjoy powder snow.
Out-of-bounds: Ski terrain located outside the boundaries of a ski resort.
Outside Ski: The ski on the outside of a turn.

P

Packed Powder: The perfect ski conditions where new snow has been groomed or ridden over to pack it down.
Piste: The French word for “ski slope”.
Piste Basher: A tracked vehicle used for grooming ski slopes to even out the snow and prepare the slopes for skiers.
Poodle Turns: Demo turns made by ski instructors.
Pow Pow: Freshly fallen snow.
Powder: Fresh snow that hasn’t been packed down. Found off-piste or just after a heavy snowfall.
Powder Hound: A skier obsessed with finding fresh powder stashes.
Pizza: Skiing technique where skis are tilted together like a slice of pizza to snowplow down a slope.

Q

Quad: Chair lift carrying four people.

R

Red Run: Intermediate level slope.
Ripper: An accomplished and impressive skier.
Royal: Carved turn made only on the inside ski.
Runout: A wide flat area at the end of run that allows racers to slow down and also the flat run used to link tougher trails back to a ski lift.

S

Salopettes/Ski Pants: Warm, waterproof trousers designed for snow sports.
Schussing: Skiing straight downhill without turning.
Snowplough: A beginner’s technique where the skis are held in a ‘V’ formation with the tips almost touching. It allows for slowing down and turning.
Six-pack: A chair lift carrying six people.

T

Tail: The back end of a ski.
Tips: The front end of the skis.
Traverse: Skiing across a slope in a zigzag pattern rather than straight down.
Tree Well: A dangerous hollow space formed around the base of trees after heavy snowfalls.

U

Unweighting: Any movement that reduces the downward pressure on a ski.
Uphill Edge: The edge of the ski that is on the uphill side when traversing the slope.
Uphill Ski: The ski that is on the uphill side as your traverse the slope.

V

Vertical Drop:  The distance between the base of a mountain and its tallest point.

W

Wax: Used on the underside of skis and snowboards to help them glide smoothly over the snow.
White Out: When visibility drops to almost nothing, caused by heavy snowfall, fog, or a combination of the two.

Y

Yard Sale: Losing articles of gear and clothing while tumbling downhill.

Z

Zipper Line: The fastest route down a mogul field.

We’d love to hear any other ski or snowboarding terms you’ve heard up on the slopes…

By |2018-11-22T15:17:39+00:00November 2nd, 2018|