Winter holidays are the busiest time of the Levi Ski Resort when many skiers of different levels make their turns on the wonderful slopes of Levi. We interviewed Heikki Saarensalmi, Safety Manager of the Levi Ski Resort, about slope safety and what things skiers should consider, whether they're on the slopes for the first time or experienced skiers.
Everyone who goes to the slopes should review the rules of the slopes, so that a fun and comfortable day on the slopes is guaranteed for all skiers.
- We have noticed that there are many people on the slopes who have not skied for a long time. The slope rules have either been forgotten or the rules have been different back in the day, says Safety Manager Heikki Saarensalmi.
A helmet, goggles, and gloves are a few important things that you should take with you as safety equipment and to stay warm. But common sense is the most important thing to take with you when skiing or snowboarding.
ON THE WRONG SLOPE BSED ON YOUR SKILL LEVELL - USE THE LEVI RESORT APP
Know where you are going. Levi Resort App offers a virtual tour of the ski resort, where you can familiarize yourself with the slopes in advance, what color slopes are there, and where you should go based on your skill level. In this way, you won't get lost on slopes or parks that are too difficult for you.
- We see that skiers are on the wrong slope in relation to their own skill level and then they have to walk down. This is not easy on a steep slope wearing skis or carrying ski equipment. If necessary, Ski Patrols or other staff can bring customers down by sled. However, these situations create dangerous situations on the slopes. Situations could be avoided by first familiarizing yourself with the virtual slope map and then calculating slopes that suit you, says Saarensalmi.
SUDDEN LINE CHANGES AND STOPS - ALSO NOTE THOSE COMING BEHIND
Every skier must behave on the slopes in a way that never puts others at risk. Sudden line changes and stops create dangerous situations, especially when speeds are high.
- If the person in front cuts across the slope at high speed in front of the person coming behind, a dangerous situation quickly arises and in the worst case an accident, even though the person coming behind has a duty to avoid. For this reason, always remember to consider other skiers, i.e. look around, follow others, look, and plan where you stop or turn, advises Saarensalmi.
STOPPING ON THE SLOPE - BE VISIBLE TO OTHERS
If for one reason or another, you want to sit or stop on the slope, this is completely allowed. But remember that other skiers should see you well enough to avoid bumping into you. Stopping just behind the hill is a really bad option because the skier coming behind won't see you until you're right in front. And if you're stopping in the park, don't sit down on the landings, because it will be extremely difficult for the next skier to avoid bumping into you.
- Sit or stop on the edge of the slope, which is an open and visible place for those coming behind, not for example at the beginning of a steep part, just behind the hill. When riding in a snow park, if necessary, you should sit or stand on the side of the park, away from the features and landings, says Saarensalmi.
KEEP DISTANCES IN THE PARK
There are four different parks in Levi where you can try your skills. However, the most important skill is keeping a safe distance from other skiers. In the park, you should not ride in a bunch or too close to the person in front. This creates dangerous situations because you don't have time to react to the movements of the other skier or to a possible fall.
- Especially in Junior Park, we see how people ski too close to each other. You have to leave a gap for the next skier and you can say to the person behind you to remember to keep a good distance from me, says Saarensalmi.
SURPRISE JUMP - RETURN TO THE SLOPE FROM THE OUTSIDE OF THE SLOPE
Other skiers like to ski next to the slope or outside the groomed area. Dangerous situations arise when you ski outside the slope and come back to the slope without looking up to see if there are others coming down the slope.
- We often talk to the children's parents about this issue. On the popular South Slopes, the children ski next to the slope and when they come back to the slope at high speed without looking up or paying attention to the other skiers - crashes may occur. If you ski from the outside of the slope, the responsibility for a safe return to the slope rests entirely on your shoulders. In other words, stop at the edge of the slope or slow down to a minimum and look for a safe moment to come back to the slope, advises Saarensalmi.
A VISIT TO SANTA'S CABIN - NOT A SLED RUN
You can visit the popular Santa's cabin by skiing, snowshoeing, or walking. The route to Santa's Cabin without skis/snowboard runs from below the top station of the Gondola2000 lift, along the old slope base. Then return come back up the same route.
- Sledding is allowed only in designated places. Santa's Cabin is not that kind of place. Ski Patrol often comes to remind the visitors of Santa's Cabin about this when we see that the sleds are with them. You do not walk on the slopes or descend with a sled, reminds Saarensalmi.
YOU SHOULD NOT GO ON THE SLOPES UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL
Skiing drunk is "so last season" and the worst sin you can commit. You not only put yourself in great danger but also other people moving on the slope. Simply: Skiing on the slopes while intoxicated is prohibited.
After you have taken the above things into account, go enjoy the fresh air of the fell and have a good time!