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Ski Club of Great Britain, SCGB. Are you still a member? Why / Why not?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
A wonder how many of the great snowheads members are still members of SCGB? With their announcement that they will no longer offer leading saying it is 'illegal' (volunteer leading is not illegal btw) will there be further defections?
Are we bothered? - perhaps this loss of leading will impact on what we can do in Snowheads groups in the future?
Thanks for all comments!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Joined SCGB for the leading, have stayed for the annual insurance, specificaly: off piste unguided and £6k cancellation re embursement.
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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?
Still? Never was Laughing

Not sure what it's got to offer these days, and from posts on here it looks like not much....
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Joined last year for the cheap off-piste guiding. Live in France so it was always "instructor led guiding" from a local ski school rather than free leading. Got a couple of days of free leading in Verbier as well.

Will probably stay a member this year for when I visit resorts other than home to get some cheap off piste guiding.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Marketing spam for SCGB?
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
The probs of the Tea Club's rep service centred around the (sometimes deliberate?) greyness of the line between peers skiing together and people leading for reward/profit.

If the club advertises reps leading as a benefit of paying for membership, they are in effect selling that service, even if just as part of a collection of benefits. It's complicated even further if the reps (as they did) have a responsibility to sell memberships.
OK, there are steps of bureaucracy in between but if a rep sells a membership to someone who wants to be led around the following day - it's hard to argue that they are not, in effect simply selling that service. The authorities (particularly in France) eventually came to the conclusion that the bureaucracy of membership was simply an obfuscation of that illegal transaction.


The snowHeads bashes
which I assume you're referring to rather than informal groups forming within the forum community
work quite differently from that. Any leading advertised or offered on a bash has always been by fully qualified, licensed professionals, whether instructors or high mountain guides. Meanwhile snowHeads with greater local knowledge, inevitably end up leading around those with less experience of the area. There is nothing dubious about that. If however, I were to discount places on bashes for 'sHambassadors' as snowHeads I knew to be knowledgeable and advertise the benefit of their leading groups to encourage noobies to sign up, that would be assigning them an official capacity that they are not qualified to adopt.

Another example.
If I post up details of a bash and say, "Off piste guided days will be available but I know the area pretty well so if anyone fancies a bit of informal off piste, catch me in the boot room" that would be wrong as I am in effect encouraging people to sign up to the bash part of the function of which is me being available to lead them off-piste. Essentially, selling a service I'm not qualified to offer professionally.
OTOH, if I'm in the bootroom and some snowHead plonks his airbag down next to me and after a chat we decide to ski off piste together for the day, it doesn't matter that he may be motivated by the judgement that he might benefit from my apparent local knowledge. Neither does it matter if we stop for lunch and he offers to get it. It is all entirely fine as an informal peer interaction.
If however, as part of that conversation I (or anyone else) said, "Yeah, I know this place back to front: buy me lunch and I'll show you around" that would make it illegal again (if somewhat hard to police).


To be clear, I'm not making a moral judgement on the right or wrongs of what the Tea Club were doing: just trying to help clarify where the line is wrt legitimate leading of groups and why IMHO nothing that happens on snowHeads bashes is on the wrong side of it.
My personal opinion is that something needed to be done but the various parties have been so busy fighting for their own short-sighted agendas that a good middle line has been completely missed.
IMV Some of the reps being used to lead on-piste by tour-ops were dangerously short of the experience, training or maturity required to do so safely. The SCGB reps OTOH were at the other end of that spectrum, having been given at least some basic training in how to look after people on the mountain. However while a highly qualified instructor should be required for off-piste guiding, it hardly needs a BASI4 to show people a 'nice easy red' or decide when and where is best to stop for coffee. If these people aren't looking for instruction, it's just a complete waste of their training.
I think that someone with a BASI2 level qualification has the technical skill to judge people's capabilities adequately enough for safe on-piste non-instructional leading. They also have first aid etc. There should then be a one or two day course run on-site to add a 'local knowledge' certificate and hey presto you have a plethora of well trained, low cost mountain leaders, safely improving the overall experience for many many guests.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@PowderAdict, God I hope not! The last thread is 132 pages and still twitching!

As said before, as a snowboarder the club offer nothing of substance for me, and show no interest in trying to appeal to me. Yes, the offer discounts on stuff, but paying to belong to an organisation for discounts on a limited range of overpriced services makes no sense.
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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!
Never been a member though have been to a couple of SCGB arranged lectures and me and my bro once had a few beers with a lonely rep on his social evening.

As @dadmin sez the (un)structure of sHs means no one is really in the same position of "leading" though clearly some people will know their way around particular places better than others.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Brilliant response from Mr Admin ... thank you.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
A quick scan of the SCGB accounts shows it has become a posh travel agency for old people over 40 who live in London.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
For once @Whitegold, you're probably not far off the mark.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I started skiing in 1984 and for more than 20 years I was a SCGB member. At the time I often visited a variety of different ski resorts, and as I was travelling on my own I found the ski rep service quite useful for getting to know the ski area and for meeting others to ski with. However, I let my membership lapse after that as a) I joined the DHO in Wengen and now always have a ski trip there each year, b) snowHeads was created and thanks to that I also go on snowHeads bashes and c) I now also go on ski trips with friends I've met through snowHeads snowHead
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
My enjoyment off-piste was fostered over many years of SCGB membership - and I am grateful to the members and reps I skied with. There was an element of risk - but the again, as admin can testify, skiing with a guide does not mean that there won't be what looked like a serious error of judgement. In this litigations world, I think that things had to change. Moreover, the Club holidays had a very structured nature which didn't always suit me, and indeed, I grew too old to be allowed on sone holidays.

As this was all coming to a head I discovered the glorious anarchy of snow heads bashes. Want a class? Sure. There are some top instructors. Ski with your mates - some of them made last night in the bar - why not? Hey achilles, glad we spotted you, care to join our off-piste group, X was feeling a bit queasy and had to drop out? Sure - funny old thing I have my savvy kit with me! And the evenings. Ah, the evenings. Knocking up a chilli con carne? Best allow for half a dozen more, you never know who will pop their heads around the door. Run out of beer? Let's pop round next door. Yet, you know what? If you want a quiet night you can have that too.

These days I have cut my skiing to one week a year and stay on piste at Les Deux Alpes. Love the place and the people - even leave my skis there now. But writing this has almost made me hanker a bit for another EOSB ....

Oh the Tea Club? Fond memories, but maybe it has had its day. Slick looking website though. On the other hand, snowheads wouldn't be snowheads if this site weren't held together with duct tape.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Still not found better insurance anywhere else, but hey isn't it the time of year to start a new insurance thread?

No other reason what so ever to be a member for me.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@achilles, you could of course do another EOSB. I'll even cook you a chilli.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
admin wrote:

If the club advertises reps leading as a benefit of paying for membership, they are in effect selling that service, even if just as part of a collection of benefits.


Poor example. That's what every European ski club does: DSV, CAF, FFME, FFS What the Euro clubs (which do on piste training, off piste leading and ski touring leading) do not do is have someone put up in a hotel all season with food and drinks paid and, as you alluded to, sales targets. Putting reps in jackets was a bad idea too, although the FFS instructors also where uniforms.

The reps training was to a really good level from what I can understand. That some reps overreached themselves is something that other organisations have suffered from. I don't think the Ski club has a worse record than, say the CAF (French Alpine Club) although everyone has had to up their game in the last few years, safety wise.

Regarding France, the Inside Out non Basi 4 instructors are really skirting on the edge of legality (I'm basing this on what has been described here by an Inside Out instructor) and would no doubt suffer a similar fate to the ski club if they came too much into the French radar.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
joined in 05 ? wanted an instruction holiday, so did the reps course. Was fantastic value for a two week break, regardless of wether you wanted to rep or not /passed or not.
There were people from all walks of life on that course. Not one up there own back bottom, not one Posh ( whatever that means nowadays), all with that common bond and all there to enjoy ...
Am i still a member .. yes. Do I rep ? .. no, Do i use the Freshtracks programme ? .. no
why ? ... i have a lot of friends made through the club. And yes we can all just call up and go on our own, but there is the social side we keep going, the ILG thats in place ( and the price for membership and that provision alone is enough) ... There are discounts, insurances blah blah blah ....
Much the same as I am a member of Snowheads ... that common bond and the opportunity to holiday or socialise or get informed ..
What does it really matter ?
Skiing is just about the smile it puts on your face ....
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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?
davidof wrote:
.....Regarding France, the Inside Out non Basi 4 instructors are really skirting on the edge of legality (I'm basing this on what has been described here by an Inside Out instructor) and would no doubt suffer a similar fate to the ski club if they came too much into the French radar.

AFAIK, InsideOut partner with Marmalade when in France (3V) and as they're working under their name there's no issue.
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spyderjon wrote:
davidof wrote:
.....Regarding France, the Inside Out non Basi 4 instructors are really skirting on the edge of legality (I'm basing this on what has been described here by an Inside Out instructor) and would no doubt suffer a similar fate to the ski club if they came too much into the French radar.

AFAIK, InsideOut partner with Marmalade when in France (3V) and as they're working under their name there's no issue.


That's good. As I said I was going on a post by one of their instructors. I fully support the way they operate and also supported the ski club's leading and don't agree with the French legal campaigns at least as far as the ski club is concerned (TOs clearly stray over the line). As Admin says, you don't need to be Basi 4 to lead a few people around the slopes in safety.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
spyderjon wrote:
davidof wrote:
.....Regarding France, the Inside Out non Basi 4 instructors are really skirting on the edge of legality (I'm basing this on what has been described here by an Inside Out instructor) and would no doubt suffer a similar fate to the ski club if they came too much into the French radar.

AFAIK, InsideOut partner with Marmalade when in France (3V) and as they're working under their name there's no issue.

I don't think that what you are describing will help the legality, unless InsideOut lessons in France are all taught by Marmalade ISTDs with the InsideOut guys just shadowing.
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Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
@achilles, you could of course do another EOSB. I'll even cook you a chilli.


Who knows? And by the way my Chilli is not all that bad.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
achilles wrote:
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
@achilles, you could of course do another EOSB. I'll even cook you a chilli.


Who knows? And by the way my Chilli is not all that bad.


More chilly-waving by the lads rolling eyes
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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!
Joined for the insurance that was included, now that it's separate I can either buy the separate policy, or get one elsewhere. Not likely to use the holiday stuff so not a member anymore.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
AL9000 wrote:
achilles wrote:
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
@achilles, you could of course do another EOSB. I'll even cook you a chilli.


Who knows? And by the way my Chilli is not all that bad.


More chilly-waving by the lads rolling eyes


Exactly Laughing

PS thanks for describing me as a lad. I can live in delusion Madeye-Smiley
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Richard_Sideways wrote:
@PowderAdict, God I hope not! The last thread is 132 pages and still twitching!

As said before, as a snowboarder the club offer nothing of substance for me, and show no interest in trying to appeal to me. Yes, the offer discounts on stuff, but paying to belong to an organisation for discounts on a limited range of overpriced services makes no sense.

Very strange 2nd post, if not from SCGB, hence the comment.

As many others mention, SCGB is/was one of the best insurance policies, but last year after having their insurance for several years, they appeared to decide I was buying life insurance, rather than travel insurance, and wanted test results for something I was cured of 35 years ago.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Found snowheads before Ski Club and have never felt that SCGB offers enough benefit to suit me signing up.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
achilles wrote:
AL9000 wrote:
achilles wrote:
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
@achilles, you could of course do another EOSB. I'll even cook you a chilli.


Who knows? And by the way my Chilli is not all that bad.


More chilly-waving by the lads rolling eyes


Exactly Laughing

PS thanks for describing me as a lad. I can live in delusion Madeye-Smiley


There's a gag about Telegraph readers in there, but I won't stoop so low (for once) NehNeh
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@AL9000, wink
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Quote:

But writing this has almost made me hanker a bit for another EOSB...


Pffft...a slush-fest.

Still space on the BB though, for some hardcore bimbling snowHead
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@pisteoff, well meaning relatives bought me SCGB membership as a Christmas gift about a decade ago.

Why not now? Nobody bought it for me since.

Wish someone would buy me a Super SnowHead membership gift voucher for next Christmas.
snowHead

Exits through gift shop
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I joined about 6 years ago just to get a Neilson summer holiday discount (the saving was bigger than the cost of membership so no brainer). It was either SCGB or the RYA and snow is more appealing than water. Laughing

Stayed a member for the annual travel insurance (we now have full family membership) but still save way more than that on a couple of Crystal ski holidays (5% discount) and a Neilson or Mark Warner summer one plus odd bits from Ellis Brigham , Snow and Rock etc.

I have never used the ski leading and the Freshtracks holidays look too expensive.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I joined a few years ago to get a discount on a Mark Warner holiday and some gear from Snow and Rock but never renewed.

MW no longer have any hotels in Val d'Isere so I don't know if I'll use them again.
ski holidays     
 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?
Still a member because I like Fresh tracks holidays. Good to see that Achilles still enjoys LDA, where I first skied with him.
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You need to Login to know who's really who.
@Davina Goldballs, you really are a twat aren't you.
Edit - the post behind this has been removed, but I still think he is Very Happy Very Happy


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Sun 10-11-19 16:15; edited 1 time in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
admin wrote:
The probs of the Tea Club's rep service centred around ...

I think they failed to adapt their business to changing times.
  • If you want to be "led" around the pistes in North America then that's a free service provided by the resort.... the old "ski club" business model is not relevant there at all. I'm not sure what percentage of people go there, but for those of us who do this sort of "service" is no longer of interest.
  • In Europe the obvious liability/ legal issues required a significant change in approach.
Switching to what this site does would have been perhaps a good strategic move, but the demographic and general attitude of "senior" SCGB people seems hardly "progressive". They wanted things to stay the same, not to change with the times.

Overall if I was paying for someone to "guide" me, then I'd expect them to be a Guide,
so if anything it's the old model which seems strange to me, but those were different times.

Does anyone have a little chart showing membership numbers in the scgb over time, for the entire length of the club's existence?
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You'll need to Register first of course.
philwig wrote:
If you want to be "led" around the pistes in North America then that's a free service provided by the resort....


Indeed, in many North American ski areas the locals will get a free ski pass for the day (or possibly longer) if they volunteer to be a "Ski Host" to show visitors around the slopes (aka "Meet the Mountain"), seems a great idea to me. Very Happy
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Alastair Pink wrote:
Indeed, in many North American ski areas the locals will get a free ski pass for the day (or possibly longer) if they volunteer to be a "Ski Host" to show visitors around the slopes (aka "Meet the Mountain"), seems a great idea to me. Very Happy


Yep, when I went to Killington in 2003 we had a free guide for a day/half day? - they didn't have to do that many days to get a free season pass. She was glad to show us around as we were reasonable skiers and she usually got beginners Very Happy Very Happy
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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!
@martinm, your last but one post doesn't seem to have any context in this thread. Has another post been deleted? (I've not quoted your post to make it easier to edit or remove if appropriate. )
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
A tricky question really.

Wife and I joined after bumping into a rep / leader in Meribel in about 1994/5 we had a great time skiing with him and other groups for a few years. I then did a number of Freshtracks holidays- long weekends and weeks instruction, with guides- / instructors and these were very good indeed.

Have done one days instructor led guiding in Argentiere which was excellent and amazing value for money. There was just me, my son and 1 other all day skiing off the front and back of the Grands Montets.

But.....things seem to have changed a lot, although so have our family ski trips as these have more recently been are oriented around les Houches and I have to say I've found the general offer of the SCGB magazine and website to be very off putting. I can't quite put my finger on exactly why

I like: Freshtracks holidays, Instructor Led Off Piste , discounts (although I usually get stuff on line / discounted so arrely am eligible for a SCGB discount)

I don't like: the magazine, the change to the reps / leaders or the idea that now I'm subsidising someone going on holiday for a week or month who just has to turn up in a bar a few times. Th efact that it migt as well be called the SKi Club of Richmond (not the one in Yorkshire).

Insurance; we use MPI / Carte Neige
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
sugarmoma666 wrote:
@martinm, your last but one post doesn't seem to have any context in this thread. Has another post been deleted? (I've not quoted your post to make it easier to edit or remove if appropriate. )


It's always in context for any thread the great "journalist" might be reading shirley?
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