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Why are there so many idiots on the slopes?/Pole-tapping

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
crosbie wrote:
Whereas skiers can pootle confident in the knowledge their poles will keep them progressing wherever necessary.
I cannot speak for all skiers, but I'm as keen as anyone else to safely maintain my momentum on flat tracks, regardless of the fact that I can skate or push my poles to keep going which my sideways travelling brethren are unable to do.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
crosbie wrote:
rob@rar wrote:
You've taken three paragraphs to explain the possible meaning of a pole tap. I think that illustrates the problem quite nicely. Why not omit the pole tap and just pass in a safe manner?


Well, I omit the pole tap because I have no poles.
Apologies, that comment was a general one, not directed at you personally.

crosbie wrote:
I'm just trying to suggest a reasonable basis for it.
I think the more reasonable and respectful basis is to not do it at all, just overtake in a safe manner.

crosbie wrote:
Perhaps, as a snowboarder, I have to be more careful to avoid startling the skier in front (or careful to cater for the consequences of startling them) than if I were a skier with poles I could tap?
Are snowboarders more scary than skiers when they overtake people? That's not a point I'd really considered.

crosbie wrote:
Maybe we agree it has marginal utility/benefit, but some skiers reckon it's helpful and makes them feel good to be helpful to the skier in front?
I have no doubt that it is pretty much always meant in a helpful manner. I just don't think it is that helpful, it can be very counter-productive, and generally I think it's a bit disrespectful despite the not doubt good intentions behind it.
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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?
Sorry but I'm going to have to disagree with some of my fellow snowheads interpretation on this one. Basically on narrow cat-tracks there is a scenario where there's no space and you won't pass but are likely to crash, either because you messed up behind or the skier in front is not with it. In that case keep quiet and hope for the best is not a good option. Of course in an ideal ski world this wouldn't happen but hey ho.
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Bodeswell wrote:
Sorry but I'm going to have to disagree with some of my fellow snowheads interpretation on this one. Basically on narrow cat-tracks there is a scenario where there's no space and you won't pass but are likely to crash, either because you messed up behind or the skier in front is not with it. In that case keep quiet and hope for the best is not a good option. Of course in an ideal ski world this wouldn't happen but hey ho.
Are suggesting that in the moments before you ski in to the back of someone you give an audible warning so they can brace for impact? Sure, if you've made a mistake and a collision is inevitable a warning of some kind is probably instinctive. I acknowledge that mistakes happen, and while we try to avoid them sometimes we get a bit tangled up no matter how much we try to avoid doing so. But that's a world of difference from pole tapping as a matter of routine because you want to overtake the person in front and you think this warning noise helps.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
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keep quiet and hold back
that's the best
Smile

or break 4 FIS rules in one manoeuvre, whilst doing a made up convention that different people interpret differently
disagree all you like, but I'm going to have to politely disagree too Wink

It's boarders that startle me most. But tbf, that extra loud heel side scrape on ice is probably them just slowing down, and not barging past, and often they're much much further behind than I imagined. It just sounds a lot closer.
Maybe they should all carry 2 selfie sticks to click when the FIS code gets updated with some convention Wink
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@rob@rar, I'm suggesting that pole tapping on a narrow cat track has its place and it should be drilled into nervous beginners that it is as much an aspect of skiing as ringing a cycle bell.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Bodeswell wrote:
@rob@rar, I'm suggesting that pole tapping on a narrow cat track has its place and it should be drilled into nervous beginners that it is as much an aspect of skiing as ringing a cycle bell.
And how do you suggest that beginners respond when they hear that sound?
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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!
I think I already answered that. Frankly, like I said earlier you either get it or you don't.
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sH gold thread drift Wink

the FIS code should be drilled in to beginners

I was shown a copy of it in the chalet the night before my first ever lesson.
I would wager that 80% of 2nd weekers have never seen or read it.
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Quote:
And how do you suggest that beginners respond when they hear that sound?


His expectation is for them to "hold their line". I presume this means go straight. Problem is for beginners going straight often means building up speed they may not be comfortable with. Also as a beginner boarder trying to keep a flat base without catching an edge is not so easy. Essentially "there's not enough space to overtake because you are doing controlled turns so I'm going to tap my poles in the hope you go straight and I can pass".
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or in fewer words: "impatient sod that wants the skier ahead to cede right of way" (apparently, afaict)

since this supposedly needs to be drilled into people, how many clicks for passing on the left, and how many for passing ont he right? and how many for "yes I have come right up you arse, but I wont crash into you unless you suddenly stop right in front of me" ?

Wink

tbh, I'm more likely to make myself even bigger if someone more important comes up behind me.
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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.
Wow 7 pages and it's detereated into I'd rather not have someone let me know they are coming up and most likely about to pass, it's common skier edict, beats having you freak out and crash because you thought you were going fast. Yelling on your left or right was the protocol but nowadays that's the direction people turn their heads and ski towards. Should have popped the popcorn but I've only been doing this for 55 seasons, so carry on how intemiadate skiers should own a quiet Piste. LOL a pint and popcorn we're called for.
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Wow, now it appears a suggestion that a pole tap is a heinous contravention of FIS rules (?) and good manners. Wow, just wow. What pray-tell is wrong with warning somebody you are coming up from behind and will probably pass? If that’s so bad, then what do you do on a shared pedestrian/bike path? Ride past quietly and hope the pedestrian does not make an unexpected movement? Sit behind the pedestrian until they leave the path?
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
andy wrote:
sH gold thread drift Wink

the FIS code should be drilled in to beginners

I was shown a copy of it in the chalet the night before my first ever lesson.
I would wager that 80% of 2nd weekers have never seen or read it.


FIS should be mentioned to everybody, regardless as to how long they may or may not have been skiing/boarding. It's rather worrying how many times I teach people with many weeks skiing under their belt and they had never heard of them.

Saw a classic collision yesterday that I could see coming a mile off. Skier and boarder approaching a restaurant, skier travelling faster than the boarder so goes to pass some 20m or so away from the ski racks. Leaves less than 2m between him and the snowboarder's heel edge, slowing down as he does so. Unsurprisingly the snowboarder reaches the ski racks and stops by turning on to his heel edge, straight in to the skier who was still marginally up the slope from the boarder and had turned towards the boarder as he stopped...
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Sitter, that highlights a lack of situational awareness, the ability to take in what is happening around you, assess/anticipate what could happen next, and hence adjust your actions appropriately. Some people learn it with experience, others never do. That problem is not confined to skiing.

In skiing, instructors could help clients develop it by pointing out potentially risky situations, and getting them to think about their response.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
ulmerhutte wrote:
What pray-tell is wrong with warning somebody you are coming up from behind and will probably pass?
It should be unnecessary if you are skiing considerately; as a warning it's not especially informative; for some skiers it makes them more likely to feel pressured and stressed by the situation they are in.

Pray-tell, what's wrong with passing safely, respectfully waiting for a few extra seconds if you have to?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Seems as good a place as any to post this...

https://news.sky.com/story/gwyneth-paltrow-sued-by-man-injured-in-ski-collision-11621605

A potential $3Million ski accident!!

Suspect it will be settled out of court and we'll hear nothing more about it though Confused
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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?
£3 million!!!! Only in America can someone get that amount for a few broken ribs. I might start hanging around a few pistes in America.

Judge Judy would have told him to stop being a baby Very Happy
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Quote:

the lesson is if you hear a pole tap hold the line as there are a number of reasons why you could be at risk

@Bodeswell, What are these reasons? Because I honestly cannot think of any.

Piste bashers & skidoos have sirens and flashing lights. They don't need the help of a pole tap by someone else to alert you that they are there.
Ski Patrol taking someone off the hill on a stretcher don't use poles, they are holding the stretcher.
Police have whistles.

What else is there?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
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@pinhead, Where do you ski? Because pole tapping isn't common edict ime. It is used by a small minority.
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dode wrote:
@pinhead, Where do you ski? Because pole tapping isn't common edict ime. It is used by a small minority.


I've never actually seen this pole tapping thing. I'll probably notice it all the time now
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
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As I said in my first post, people will defend their belief on it to such an extent that it'll be easier to change their point of view on Brexit. From the last thread we had, people will properly dig in and defend their position.

It's not needed because when you pass me you're going to do so with enough space that if I do "suddenly swerve out" (in your view), it is me gradually moving over 1-2 skier widths to pass another skier safely (my view), and you will have already read the scene ahead, the traffic, the fact there's a ski school of 5 yr olds ahead etc., so will have anticipated me moving in to a space. Hence when you pass you will not need to use a method of alert.

All I've deduced when I hear such a noise is that Mr. Important Audi man is coming through with the "Oi! get out my way lights" on, and since I only drive a Seat (albeit with probably the same Audi engine as floor pan), I am at least one level of importance lower in the social worthiness hierarchy, so yes sir, I shall bow down and let you past. Twisted Evil

Don't do it.... because you will never have commenced such a manoeuvre where it would be necessary to do it Smile snowHead

If I am at risk when pole tapped, then YOU have put me at risk.
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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 you are on a snowboard throw in a perfectly legit loud edge scrape to determine if the skier in front is a nervous wreck or made of more stoical stuff wink
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Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
If you are on a snowboard throw in a perfectly legit loud edge scrape to determine if the skier in front is a nervous wreck or made of more stoical stuff wink


Very Happy
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pole tapping is the equivalent of a car horn or a bicycle bell. it doesn't mean "get out of my way", it means "I am here, I have seen you and am making you aware of my presence". nothing more, nothing less

maggi wrote:
All this comparison with pedestrians and cyclists is utter rubbish! Pedestrians are expert walkers. They've been doing it for many years and are not wobbly or nervous. Upon hearing a bell, they can turn round, look behind and move in a controlled manner without falling over. :


when's the last time you rode a bike for any length of time? Many pedestrians have headphones / hearing aids / a severe disassociation from reality (delete or add others as applicable) and even when I ring a bell or call out "hello" or "ting-ting", will fail to hear anything then suddenly leap several feet in a random direction when they become aware of a bike. Pedestrians are NOT expert walkers, the're just people. People (and yes, that includes me) are sometimes idiots, and I adjust my behaviour to allow for the fact that I don't know what they're going to do.
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@nbt, having cycled in the West End, you do have to cater for tourists suddenly deciding to pop off the pavement and out into the road ahead of you (if they can't hear an engine, there's nothing behind them). You do not ring the bell at all (for it would have to be rung continuously). A bell is more suitable for a quiet lane, where the person ahead may appreciate the 'ting'.

As for pole-tapping, it already seems that there are enough folk who think it means "I AM overtaking, so keep TF to one side or you will be collided with!" as opposed to "Although, given the tranquility, you may assume you are likely the only skier on this track, another skier is coming up behind you, but of course I will only overtake if safe to do so - I am not in a hurry, but my cruising speed is slightly faster than yours".

Perhaps singing is a better option? "
Brown girl in the ring... tra la la la la!"
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@crosbie, 20 years since I lived in That London, I served my time and got parole and you ain't never getting me back inside, copper...

The "timber" bell is quite popular amongst my MTB buddies.


http://youtube.com/v/Av18OTkM9dg
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I think comparisons with cycling or driving are not suitable comparisons for skiing along cat tracks. Much better to deal with the specifics of skiing, no need to draw analogies with situations which are different enough to make comparisons inappropriate. Nor is the discussion about over-taking on cat tracks so complicated that the use of an analogy is necessary to simplify it.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
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@rob@rar, you're right, they're not analogous situations. However, there is commonality in that the use of bell-ringing/pole-tapping can be misused/misunderstood in both situations (by both parties):

1) "No worries, but someone is behind you, and would avoid startling you" -> "Oh, someone is letting me know they are approaching from behind - how considerate"

2) "Being superior, faster and more entitled, I am about to overtake, so please keep in or you may come a cropper!" -> "Oh, does some conceited tosser want to overtake me? Fat chance matey!"
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
nbt wrote:
@crosbie, 20 years since I lived in That London, I served my time and got parole and you ain't never getting me back inside, copper...

The "timber" bell is quite popular amongst my MTB buddies.


http://youtube.com/v/Av18OTkM9dg


Excellent, I suggest all snowboarders are fitted with one forthwith....
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Stayed last week in a mixed Group Chalet where one of the guests told me that he was a good skier and could get down anything ... with one week's skiing under his belt; after my initial incredulation I reflected that I thought much the same after learning to slide slip.

30 or so weeks on I now realise how little I knew back then, and therefore I can assume nothing of the skier in front or behind or to the side.

I also respect how much there is still to learn.
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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?
t4tomo wrote:
Excellent, I suggest all snowboarders are fitted with one forthwith....


Hmmm. Shocked

As someone else observed, any time a snowboarder wants to alert the person in front to their presence, they just do a brief broadside edge scrape.

As it usually gives folk the willies ("Heck! A fricking boarder is about to bowl me over from behind!") I always try to avoid doing it.
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crosbie wrote:
@rob@rar, you're right, they're not analogous situations. However, there is commonality in that the use of bell-ringing/pole-tapping can be misused/misunderstood in both situations (by both parties):

1) "No worries, but someone is behind you, and would avoid startling you" -> "Oh, someone is letting me know they are approaching from behind - how considerate"

2) "Being superior, faster and more entitled, I am about to overtake, so please keep in or you may come a cropper!" -> "Oh, does some conceited tosser want to overtake me? Fat chance matey!"
Exactly right, and I would add

3) "Oh my God, what's that noise coming from behind me? What should I do, am I getting in the way, should I get out of the way, am I about to get crashed in to? I don't like this" etc, etc.
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@Bodeswell,

In my experience a small minority of skiers pole tap. This means you argument that it is "generally accepted" is, er, wrong.

I agree entirely with Rob on this. It is AT BEST pointless.
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rob@rar wrote:
Exactly right, and I would add

3) "Oh my God, what's that noise coming from behind me? What should I do, am I getting in the way, should I get out of the way, am I about to get crashed in to? I don't like this" etc, etc.


And the equivalent pole-tapper intention would be "Hehe. I love tapping my poles to unnerve and freak-out the nuisance slow coaches ahead. They need to improve their technique or stay off these tracks." Twisted Evil
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Quote:

Pole tapping is generally considered a safe way of letting the skier in front know you're overtaking. And on a narrow track it is often essential.

Sorry but you have absolutely no entitlement to overtake on a narrow track. If the downhill skier is choosing to occupy the whole track by snowploughing then it is essential for you to be patient and simply slow down.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
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crosbie wrote:
rob@rar wrote:
Exactly right, and I would add

3) "Oh my God, what's that noise coming from behind me? What should I do, am I getting in the way, should I get out of the way, am I about to get crashed in to? I don't like this" etc, etc.


And the equivalent pole-tapper intention would be "Hehe. I love tapping my poles to unnerve and freak-out the nuisance slow coaches ahead. They need to improve their technique or stay off these tracks." Twisted Evil
For the majority of skiers who do it I have no doubt it is well-intentioned. But as jedster said, pointless or worse.
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Quote:

Wow, now it appears a suggestion that a pole tap is a heinous contravention of FIS rules (?) and good manners. Wow, just wow. What pray-tell is wrong with warning somebody you are coming up from behind and will probably pass? If that’s so bad, then what do you do on a shared pedestrian/bike path? Ride past quietly and hope the pedestrian does not make an unexpected movement? Sit behind the pedestrian until they leave the path?


I don't think we should assume that the analogy is valid - skiing often involves weaving across the trail which is quite different from cycling and walking.

That said, when I'm cycling on shared paths and I am in any doubt about the safety of passing a pedestrian then I slow to walking pace until I can find a safe gap. If one does not appear reasonably soon then I will give a cheery "excuse me" followed by a "thanks" when they step aside. In my experience ringing a bell is often taken as a rather aggressive way of instructing a pedestrian to cede their right of way. Better to ask politely.
Ringing the bell provokes a similar reaction to a car hooting a horn behind you - and for a good reason, it is the same thing.
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rob@rar wrote:
ecureuil wrote:
On the contrary, I quite welcome someone coming up behind giving a few pole taps, particularly on a busy track where it isn't easy to look around and there is plenty of noise. It lets me know they are there, and that they might be coming past; much rather that than giving me an unexpected shock when they come past only a metre away...
Sure, so you like to be provided with some information in order to determine how you ski when a faster skier comes up behind you. But I'd argue that the skier coming up behind you doesn't know that, and it could easily be a skier who would be freaked out by this unusual and unexpceted sound coming from behind them which clearly indicates they are about to be crashed in too. While you might like to modify your behaviour to make it easier for the skier behind to pass, I'm not sure that's quite in keeping with the FIS code which says that the skier behind has the responsibility to pass safely, not the skier in front.

I'm not advocating pole tapping to be best practice; if I'm the behind skier I almost never do it, and am far more likely to hang back and wait for a risk-free place to pass. But if some idiot coming up behind is going to pass anyway, whether safe of not, I would far rather know they are there. If I can then easily modify my behaviour to reduce the risk of an accident I will, even though it is not my responsbility to do so and an accident would be 100% their fault, because I would rather not risk serious injury in a collision.
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