Flying High and Seeing the PeaksFebruary 22nd, 2010 by Dave N
Monday brought our one day of having to catch a bus to Whistler Village just to get a bus out to the Whistler Olympic Park Area. We had tickets to see the Team Ski Jumping competition. It was very smooth getting to the venue, with a free (just show your ticket) ride into town and back south of town. The buses were clean and comfortable, and they came all the way from South Carolina!
The walk up from the venue was manageable, but long and steep in spots. We split up trying to find a good spot to watch from and Jill located a great spot near the exit point for the jumpers. The venue was set up so that any place you stood had great views of the hills. The jumpers walked right in front of us on their way back to the top of the hill.
The event we saw had not only the aspects of jumping, but a huge sense of nationalism. We were between cheering sections of Japanese, Germans and a small contingent of Finns. The United States, and Canada, just did not have a competitive team in this event. However, everyone cheered the better jumps, no matter which team the jumper represented. The scope of the hill was massive. The top rested on a knoll and snaked up the side of a large slope. The bottom of the hills were carved by blasting rock and left a elogated trench shape lasting some 150 meters which ended into the flat where the spectators stood around the run out of the hill.
In the end, the Austrian team was too strong for the rest of the field. The Germans took the silver and the Norwegian jumpers the bronze. The celebration and ‘flower ceremony’ that followed was very enjoyable.
We bussed back to the village and took advantage of the beautiful day to ride the Peak-to-Peak gondola. Our family doesn’t ski as much as we used to, and we missed the alpine views. Sometimes even a photo doesn’t describe the beauty but it is all I can offer.
Tomorrow brings Giant Slalom and in the evening Womens Bobsled. It will be a long day but we are looking forward to it!