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  1. #1
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    Just Another Sick August Trip Report

    Apologies in advance for the crappy pictures. Camcorders donít take good skills.

    Midlothian.

    The name itself conjures images of mist and mountains and quests that can never end. Magic and myth intertwined so that one cannot utter the word without awe. Ancient times and ancient lands still standing for those searching. Always just around the corner, always over the next horizon.

    Midlothian.

    Like most ideas of any value, it started with a mere flicker. A casual sentence, half-joking, just testing the waters. The Roos found the waters warm and a few emails and phone calls later a plan befitting this mountain was in place. We would meet somewhere sometime on Saturday.

    The excitement was electric. The insanity too much to ponder.

    I went to bed that night with a feeling I know all too well. Legs jittery, heartbeat quickening, mind racing. Everything focused on tomorrow.

    Midlothian.

    ***

    The elevation rose and precipitation started dotting my windshield. Grey skies opened up and released their burden on those below. A slight tightening on the steering wheel and I forged ahead, smiling at the refreshing this would give the surface.

    I arrived slightly early and took the opportunity to do some scoping while I waited. The clouds still rumbled overhead but the view in front of me was clear.

    Midlothian was going to be sick.


    Siiiick.

    I was grinning like a fool by the time the brilliant blue Audi pulled into the lot. The Roos unloaded and it was evident that they too were fully stoked for what lay ahead. But safety always comes first and with the weather still unstable we opted for a quick bite to eat to wait things out.

    Sure enough, the clouds broke and by the time the baked potatoes were devoured, blue skies and bright sun were out in force. A quick pit and beacon check told us it was game on so we headed off to score our tickets and rental gear.

    One hour tickets meant little time for fooling around. With knowing nods we headed for the chair that would take us to the top.


    The Roos pondering the insanity.

    Blizzard of Aahhs quotes swirled as we scoped lines and planned out moves. To our left, the narrowness of Couloir Poubelle combined with the kids riding the platter up the centre of it made it a dicey proposition. Instead we headed for the only alternative: a steep undulating pitch with large tufts of grass bursting through the openings of the toothbrush mat.


    The slopes, with Edinburgh and the Firth of Forth in the background.

    Roo led the charge, leaving only his laughter and a slight spray in his wake. With a grin that only skis on feet can bring, I dropped in next. The turns were disconcerting as carving was not really an option. With little to no edge hold, it was really a game of controlled skidding. Something which I did not have an immediate knack for.

    And neither did Mrs. Roo, judging by her slight collision with me. ďGo in front of me; I donít want you behind me,Ē was all I could say between giggles.

    And so it went, the terrain testing every nuance of our skiing technique. Face shots were had (when they turned on the water spray), the backcountry was explored (grass and dirt = good times), straight-lines were stalled (dry patches are awkward), and the park was attempted (old school spread-eagle for me, courageous shoulder slam for Mrs. Roo).

    The hour passed quickly, as they tend to do when youíre laughing and playing with gravity. We casually returned our grass covered skis and took a moment to quietly reflect on this crucial step in our skiing lives. Surely this meant something. Surely this could be seen as a special moment in out continuing progression, our everlasting pursuit.


    bad_roo kickiní some spray.


    Mrs. Roo before the slam.


    Bad_roo summed it up by breaking wind and with the disgusted laughs that followed, it all became so clear.

    Sick and ashamed and happy (and some reports demand to be put up right away),
    d.
    Last edited by gincognito; 08-15-2005 at 05:23 AM.
    "Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward."
    - Kurt Vonnegut

  2. #2
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    TFSB

    looks a little wind loaded though....were you guys beepin?

  3. #3
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    SICKBIRD. This puts iskibc's TRs to shame. You guys RIP!

  4. #4
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    Thumbs up Gnar Bar!

    I can't wait to see the video... EPIC!

    It's all about booting up for a day on the slopes. "The excitement was electric. The insanity too much to ponder."

  5. #5
    Mit is offline Con-Coccyxial Concussed
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    AWESOME ... I am soooo jealous!! This sounds like the best skiing you've done in months.

    Quote Originally Posted by gincognito
    The turns were disconcerting as carving was not really an option. With little to no edge hold, it was really a game of controlled skidding. Something which I did not have an immediate knack for.
    Gin you have so lost your roots man..I remember old days when you spent a half a season on skis with half the edge missing and saying.."I don't notice a difference."

  6. #6
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    That was freakin' hilarious. Those bristles looked at least boot deep!

    B)

  7. #7
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    I wanna see pics of the insanity in the park!!!

  8. #8
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    Thanks for such a vivid report. Even if I never make it there I will at least be satisfied with an understanding for the true nature of such an epic adventure. Virtual reality will suffice when there are no other options.

    Still, I hope I can live the adventure some day.

  9. #9
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    Did you replace the turf after digging your test pits?



    I wish I could write like you do. You have the talent.
    I want a 6" travel 20lb MTB. I found the 20lb MTB, but only good for riders under 87 pounds.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=GT40]Did you replace the turf after digging your test pits?

    LMAO.
    Suck It!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mit
    Gin you have so lost your roots man..I remember old days when you spent a half a season on skis with half the edge missing and saying.."I don't notice a difference."
    I feel shame. Clearly, I've become spoiled.

    Sick and ashamed and happy (and still maintain that we didn't need edges that winter),
    d.
    "Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward."
    - Kurt Vonnegut

  12. #12
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    This will be my maggette-calendar action shot.
    Monty Python's version of the cougar phenomenon:
    "This is a frightened city. Over these houses, over these streets hangs a pall of fear. Fear of a new kind of violence which is terrorizing the city. Yes, gangs of old ladies attacking defenseless, fit young men".

  13. #13
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    SCOTTISH BURL IS NOW KILLED!!!!!

  14. #14
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    Old traditions die hard in Scotland. When I asked the grizzled liftie what conditions were like up top, he warned me to keep out of the wind loaded lee slopes and ski safe with a buddy. I was bleeping and a quick probe revealed a healthy overnight coverage of about two inches of dendix. As long as we avoided the steeper pitches underneath the goat fence we should be OK.

    Should.

    You've all been there. Spend all day schralping the toothbrushes, getting your base temperatures hotter than the surface of Venus, impressing the local chicas with your mad poling downhill steeze and then temptation becomes too great. You just have to poach first lines. When Gincognito headed out across that face I knew it was a bad idea. "Il tombez, il tombez, he's fallen, he's fallen. Nnnghuugh! When the fracture came, it propagated quicker than the eye could register. A fifty yard sheet of matting slid, leaving a two inch crown. Gin tried to outrun this wall of polyurethane and aimed his skis at the Happy Eater Services on the A720 but it was no good. Within seconds he was engulfed.

    Mrs Roo and I watched him go. As soon as we were sure the hangfire danger was manageable, I started a probeline. Within a minute my probe struck Gin in the grundle and we cut him out using a Leatherman. Sick, ashamed and happy, he emerged from his bristly tomb. "It was too steep in there to be f**** around" the shaken Quebecois said afterwards. "No problem."

    But it was no problem compared to our next attempt at the couloir. Recovering from knee surgery and only two turns in, Mrs Roo started experiencing knee pain. With a maximum gradient of 20 degrees, her skiing became marginal. Then the unthinkable happened, her ski catching on a rabbit hole and running down to come to a rest on a shadowy area - a hidden soil pipe. Fortunately she was able to slide down the debris field and retrieve her ski without disappearing onto the shit pipe.

    But then skiing at Midlothian is a scary experience. It's scary being here, it's scary eating here and it's scary using the public conveniences. But after a while being scared becomes fun.
    Last edited by bad_roo; 08-15-2005 at 03:09 PM.

  15. #15
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    Apologies for the dreadful Stumpy quote mangling

  16. #16
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    Amazing trip report!

    Are the Beckton Alps still operating or has its vast expanse of skiable terrain been victim to the ravages of global warming?
    Quote Originally Posted by Downbound Train View Post
    And there will come a day when our ancestors look back...........

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by PNWbrit
    Amazing trip report!

    Are the Beckton Alps still operating or has its vast expanse of skiable terrain been victim to the ravages of global warming?

    Aaah.............Beckton Alps, where I took my first ever turns on skis with a bunch of drunken students. http://www.bhpp.co.uk/bhpbeckton.htm

    They are planning to build an indoor snow dome there but apparently the current gradient is too great for real snow so they are reducing it !!!!! I would hardly call it terrifying.

    Update: Apparently Newham Council were too inept to close the deal and the site remains derelict. Shame.
    Last edited by Mrs Roo; 08-15-2005 at 03:28 PM.
    Monty Python's version of the cougar phenomenon:
    "This is a frightened city. Over these houses, over these streets hangs a pall of fear. Fear of a new kind of violence which is terrorizing the city. Yes, gangs of old ladies attacking defenseless, fit young men".

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mit
    Gin you have so lost your roots man..I remember old days when you spent a half a season on skis with half the edge missing and saying.."I don't notice a difference."
    Why can I totally hear that coming from Gin?!?

    That was indeed a rad TR - way to be making the absolute most of your summer across the pond!

  19. #19
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    Clearly this man can muster appreciation for any and every slope. No wonder he lives on the east coast!

  20. #20
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    Damn, roo. I've read that three times now and it still makes me laugh. Or shudder from the memories. I owe you guys big time (though my grundle claims otherwise).

    Sick and ashamed and happy (and after the Celine Dion treatment I gave him, I figured he'd be happy to leave me there in a polyurethane grave),
    d.
    "Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward."
    - Kurt Vonnegut

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dromond
    Clearly this man can muster appreciation for any and every slope. No wonder he lives on the east coast!
    He was certainly King of the hill that day (once we had barged a handfull of Scottish school kids off the slope).
    Monty Python's version of the cougar phenomenon:
    "This is a frightened city. Over these houses, over these streets hangs a pall of fear. Fear of a new kind of violence which is terrorizing the city. Yes, gangs of old ladies attacking defenseless, fit young men".

  22. #22
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    We were the best skiers on the mountain.

    Sick and ashamed and happy (and "park" not included),
    d.
    "Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward."
    - Kurt Vonnegut

  23. #23
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    So, does it hurt like hell falling on that stuff? Is it padded?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tippster
    So, does it hurt like hell falling on that stuff? Is it padded?
    No, it fucking canes. (I fell on my face while learning to snowboard on it, good times). Also lots of people end up breaking thumbs when they fall, as it's in a weird hexagonal pattern.

    edg
    Do you realize that you've just posted an admission of ignorance so breathtaking that it disqualifies you from commenting on any political or economic threads from here on out?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tippster
    So, does it hurt like hell falling on that stuff? Is it padded?
    I really gave my shoulder a good wrench when I crashed in the park. Not forgiving at all. It scrapes your skin like astroturf if any is exposed.
    Monty Python's version of the cougar phenomenon:
    "This is a frightened city. Over these houses, over these streets hangs a pall of fear. Fear of a new kind of violence which is terrorizing the city. Yes, gangs of old ladies attacking defenseless, fit young men".

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