How to Prepare for Powder

The snow has started falling and we’re gearing up for lots of powder days during the 2016-2017 ski season here at Deer Valley Resort. Ski School Training Manager, Derek Althof, would like to offer a few tips on how to ski powder better during your next ski vacation.


There are two types of skiers when it comes to powder and cruddy conditions: those who love it and those who find it too challenging. If you’re the latter, hopefully these quick tips will turn you into a lover!

In powder, the first thing you can do to make your life easier is narrow your stance. By sliding with your skis closer together, they will slice on a path through the deep stuff. This reduces the chances of one ski getting caught, spinning you around and taking you down. Additionally, surf the snow with a fatter ski with low edge angle. This will allow you to float more and reduce friction and the grabby sensation that is sometimes associated with it. Last but not least, slow down the rate at which you turn your skis.  Deep snow will cause a fair bit of drag, so you can achieve the same amount of speed control from a longer round turn.


When that powder gets skied up and turns to crud, stop trying to float and instead start carving through it. The flatter your skis are, the more you will get pushed around as you encounter variations in terrain and snow consistency.  Momentum is key here, so carving through crud will help you blast through soft mounds of snow, smoothing out the conditions and making them much more manageable and FUN! Remember, when the going gets tough, the tough get going! So get going!


Deer Valley Resort’s Ski School offers a diverse selection of specialty ski programs and lessons, whether you’re a child or an adult, a top-level skier or an eager beginner, or someone returning to the sport. Our Ski School is dedicated to improving your skills, confidence, knowledge and overall enjoyment of the sport. To make your ski school reservation, please call our Skier Services Reservations department at 888-754-8477 or 435-645-6648 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., daily.

Read more tips from Derek:
Come prepared
Tune ups
Early season conditions
Skills not hills
Use the whole ski
Always be moving
Find your rhythm
WeeTrust your outside ski
Like riding a bike
Carving and Steeps
Edge from your feet up
Enough is enough


Derek Althof has 16 years experience in the ski industry and is Deer Valley’s ski school training manager and an alpine examiner and clinic leader for the Professional Ski Instructors of America’s Central and Intermountain Divisions. Derek learned to ski at age 4 and has had a passion for good skiing ever since.

We hope you enjoy our weekly skiing tips. Please remember that they can help but will not eliminate risks, as skiing is a dynamic sport. These tips are meant to help you build skills  for a more enjoyable skiing experience.

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