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Wow Mika!!!

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
A 7yo kid bootpacked up and then skied down the Bec des Rosses dogleg couloir with minimal assistance from his dad. This is the Verbier Xtreme face that gets the pros nervous...

http://www.ridevalais.ch/mika-au-bec-des-rosses/

I skied it with his dad today. It is seriously steep!!
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Hmmmm
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
TheGeneralist wrote:
Hmmmm


I was sceptical too - the Bec is a whole new level of exposure and a beast of a bootpack up. But this kid is something else - determination like you can’t imagine and just an unbelievable skier! And his dad was a patroller so knows what he’s doing, albeit you can’t control everything on this terrain.
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I don't really understand why? Huge level of risk for what? Parental bragging rights?

Apologies if it is covered in the article, my French isn't that good.
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I'm impressed he did the climb up! He looks like a great little skier in the vid, and I'm all for skiing with the kids off piste, but this seems to be a bit uncessesary.
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I wish somebody had taken me up there at 7.

No problem with the skiing ability - he skied that better than many who've posted vids skiing this face on the interweb.

My concern is if something happened and Dad went down, would Mika have the strength, skills & wherewithal to perform a rescue?

Or would he watch his father (and I suspect superhero) pass before his eyes?
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Can't see a video on my phone.

That is one of my concerns too.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
If something happens to his father. I'm not that concerned that I can't see the video Laughing
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This seems bonkers to me. Shocked
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@Mike Pow, suspect you’re right with the Superhero view.

Reading the story (google translate is your friend), it was the kid who wanted to go up. He pleaded. The dad didn’t expect to get to the top but the kid kept on going so he roped him up and they got to the top. He planned to come down the ridge but the kid wanted to go down the face...

I don’t say it’s right. I would not even consider taking my boy up there. It’s right on the limit of what I can ski myself. I sideslipped the first pitch too scared to put in a turn...

But i’m not judging. They had skied a lot of gradually more steep off piste terrain, incorporated boot packing, the dad has been up there 15 times this season and knows the mountain probably better than anyone, the snow conditions were good, there was a lot of traffic on the route if he needed assistance.

I think this kid is amazing. I’m following his progress for sure!

https://www.instagram.com/mikaribordy
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@BobinCH, thank you for giving this its own thread. Raises fascinating issues (I too was worried about the kid coping with something happening to his dad) as well as being utterly inspirational. What a kid!
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Mike Pow wrote:
I wish somebody had taken me up there at 7.

No problem with the skiing ability - he skied that better than many who've posted vids skiing this face on the interweb.

My concern is if something happened and Dad went down, would Mika have the strength, skills & wherewithal to perform a rescue?

Or would he watch his father (and I suspect superhero) pass before his eyes?


Have to echo this really.

My wee one (who 5) is a cracking little skier. He loves skiing trees/the side of piste and wants to venture further. I simply won't let him or take him.

No matter the quality of their skiing, they simply won't be able to dig someone out or have the calmness to deal with an emergency.

If I could take a child as a 3 or group I would feel better about it, but absolutely not as a 2 no matter their ability
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Kid survives the experience and dad gets a cool facebook post. Well done dad, you're a real hero.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Agree that 2 adults definitely safer in case of a problem.

But the risk on the Bec is not avalanches (at least not on that avi 2 day) but falling, especially at the top when it’s been tracked which creates a smooth surface on which you won’t stop. You can see from the pic that he roped him down the first pitch. If you fall there, forget rescue, the heli will pick up the pieces at the bottom!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
jellylegs wrote:
Kid survives the experience and dad gets a cool facebook post. Well done dad, you're a real hero.


Did you read the story?
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Nothing says pushy parent like setting up an Instagram account for a 7YO...

The kid clearly is good and I'm sure his dad knows what he is doing but this doesn't sit right with me. I've seen too many sporting child prodigies give up "what they were born to do" because they end up hating it by their teens.
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Hmmm, very tough decision as a parent.

I don't think that the fact that Mika wants to ski it should enter the decision-making. He can't truly understand or assess the risks - not now, not for a while.

I sympathise with pushing the limits for oneself and I realise the limits of Mika's dad are way beyond my own. I do wonder however if it's fair or reasonable to extend that far the limits for a kid that age, and to have no backup if something were to happen to his dad. (I've read the story).

Personally, and having seen a friend and very good skier fall a long way down an icy face and injure himself badly, I'm more spooked by steep stuff than by avalanches . I certainly wouldn't ski with my son "if you fall you die" terrain - it's rare that I ski it, these days....

But I wouldn't want to preach. I have taken my son on some offpiste stuff before, not always with a guide. I assessed the avy risk, I thought it was low...but maybe we were just lucky?
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Not sure I feel to comfortable about this one, he obviously skis great and is fearless (but then many 7 year olds are) but just because a child asks for something it doesn't mean you give it to them. Many (while mine at least) would happily eat chocolate and ice cream all day, parents need sometimes to reign in kids expectations/ desires.

leggyblonde wrote:
...I've seen too many sporting child prodigies give up "what they were born to do" because they end up hating it by their teens.

I hope he gets a chance to decide as a more mature person if he wishes to extreme ski at this rate he'll have little challenges left on skis by adulthood.
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For context - this appears to highlight the dog leg couloir...

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@horizon, very fair post.
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Going to play devils advocate a little on this.

Ignoring the age of you Mika. Had they been to 20/30/40 skiers of similar ability and one had fallen, in reality what would the other skier actually be able to do other than call mountain rescue?

Also conversely to the argument that young Mika wasn't mature enough, what about the reverse situation? Eg Mika fell and was obviously very likely seriously injured or even worse, would his dad have made potentially rash decisions in order to get to or assist his son because of the emotional side and also his decision to allow his son to do it?

My view is it was probably over stepping the 'risk vs reward' argument, but most of us have done that at some stage I would have guess in some form or another.

Outside of the for/against arguments and ongoing discussions in the words of the young folks 'props to Mika'.
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Fair play kid
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Seems to be an enormous risk to take with a seven year old - no matter how good his skills are, anyone can make a mistake, and the consequences would be pretty dire. There are some pretty amazing young rock climbers out there, but I don't think anyone would let them free-climb at a young age, to draw a parallel.

Out of interest, are there laws around 'reckless endangerment' in Switzerland ? I know the Swiss are quite libertarian when it comes to risky pursuits, but, wouldn't imagine that would apply to minors.
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I watched the video and my impression was the kid skied like most 7 year olds you see on piste - i.e. not technically very good, but usually get away with murder through a combination of fearlessness and low center of gravity.
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leggyblonde wrote:
Nothing says pushy parent like setting up an Instagram account for a 7YO...
Says it all really. But what do I know? I think it is a grrrreat idea to let 7 year olds change your mind by begging really hard, sure works well in other areas of parenting Shocked
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kerb wrote:
I watched the video and my impression was the kid skied like most 7 year olds you see on piste - i.e. not technically very good, but usually get away with murder through a combination of fearlessness and low center of gravity.


That’s steep terrain, deep snow being skied down the fall line with control and balance. 1% of adults could ski that. He’s exceptional for his age.

Good discussion on acceptable risks. His tolerance is clearly much higher than mine and most of yours. It is probably irresponsible given the risks but it is also amazing.

Interestingly he didn’t actually post this on Mika’s Instagram page but on the ridevalais.ch website for what it’s worth. Don’t know why.

He started ridevalais to support local free riders with funding and sponsorship. He’s got the 14yo Swiss Freeride champion a young gun on the FWQ circuit just short of the FWT and another couple of top young free riders. So Mika is surrounded by exceptionally talented ski company and I strongly suspect he absolutely loves skiing with these guys and his dad, rather than feeling forced.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
This is from his Instagram page!

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Quote:
some pretty amazing young rock climbers out there, but I don't think anyone would let them free-climb at a young age


On the contrary, I've rarely seen young climbers doing anything other than free climb. Aid climbing would bore them to death I imagine.
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Unbelievable skills! If that's what he can do now, what will he be like at 20? Sure to be the next Candide Thovex or more.

The first photo in this thread looks terrifying but he's standing there like it's the queue in Sainsbury's.
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