Welcoming New Instructors to the team!  David Healey 

Check out who they are and what their favourite things to do are. Keep your eyes out as we introduce you over the next several weeks. Today we welcome David Healey…

I became an instructor because I love refining my technique, sharing my skiing discoveries, and bringing that delight to others.  I love the club because of the atmosphere.  It’s so good skiing with an unpretentious group, and I really appreciated the punctuality and experience in running group trips.

My most memorable ski memory was the first time moving up from beginner boots to advanced boots and feeling the tightness of control – it felt like it was the payoff of all the early lessons and practice.   Also the relief when taking them off after the first session.

What to expect during a Drive Up daytrip

Our HPSC instructors are excited to finally be able to run lessons for our members! As you prepare for  your day, here are some things to be aware of that may impact your experience.

Facilities:

Your car is your “home base”. You’ll be at your car to put your boots on, eat lunch, and warm up.

Indoor dining is unavailable. Some resorts (e.g. Blue) have some outdoor dining set up. Bring a lunch if you don’t have plans.

Washrooms are available. Indoor warming up spaces are not.

Tickets:

Members must book their lift tickets themselves separate from the drive-up registration. To ski at the private clubs, as long as you’ve sign up for the event, the club will make sure your name’s on the guest list.

The Mount St Louis check-in process may be time consuming. Give yourself an extra 20+ minutes to go through the lineups before your lesson start time.

Lift lines and chairlifts:

At the public resorts, chairlifts are generally being filled to the maximum, loading singles to fill them up.

Be forewarned that some members of the general public do not consistently wear their masks in lift lines or on chairs, and physical distancing doesn’t always happen in lift lines – and that some members have observed the resorts are not always enforcing mask-wearing.

Lessons:

HPSC Members are to wear masks in lesson groups. Instructors will run a COVID screener at the lesson start.

We will aim to keep some space between participants, but we’re also in a constantly changing environment. If you feel it’s getting crowded, pull back and give yourself space.

While we’re on the hill, if you have any safety concerns, please let the instructor know and they will accommodate as best as they can.

While we can manage our own participants, we’re still skiing with the general public who follow varying levels of safety.

General etiquette:

If you are sick, please stay home!

Please keep your mask on in the lift line, chairlift, and in lessons.

Check the resort for specific information on their policies and practices.

We’re asking everyone to be patient and kind.

Have a great day trip! We are looking forward to skiing and riding with you.

President’s Message – Happy Holidays!!

Home Smith Park, December 25, 2020 Photo by JK Graham

December 22, 2021

HPSC Friends,

I would like to wish all of you the very best of the holidays! 

As you know we have been planning very hard, as best we can, for what we had hoped to be a close facsimile of a normal season.  But the one thing we have all learned over the last two years is the need to stay flexible.  During the last three weeks we have gone from being fairly optimistic of starting the season, weather dependent, on time, to having to make the following announcement. 

As we have stated repeatedly, the safety of our members is our top priority.  Therefore, due to the rapid increase of COVID cases due to the Omicron variant we have made the decision to pause the beginning of the season.  And to start, unfortunately, we will not be able to run any buses.

Downhill daytrips will begin on Saturday January 15th and continue as scheduled as drive-up only events.  This means that we will offer lessons by our Snow School.  To participate you will need to register via HPSC for lessons, but you will need to purchase your lift ticket directly from the resort. For the Wednesday trips we are still discussing with the clubs how tickets will be handled.   

Due to the changing situation, registration for each week’s trip will also open one week prior to the first trip and continue on a weekly basis.  Registration will close for the weekend and Monday trips as usual on Thursday at 6pm.  Due to new requirements at the private clubs, we have had to move up the registration deadline as well to Thursday at 6pm. So all downhill trips will now close at the same time.  Registration for the first week will open on January 8th.

On the cross-country side, all trips at this point are postponed until at least January 22nd, and will only run if we are able to run bus trips. 

Our plan is to continuously monitor the situation and to start running buses when it is feasible, so please read all communications carefully from the club to stay informed. 

Further, due to the revised regulations announced last week regarding the need for a PCR test for any trip outside of the country, even for less than 72 hours, the Long Trips Committee has made the decision to cancel our yearly trip to Holiday Valley for this season.

Never a dull moment!

Happy Holidays! Enjoy the season and please stay safe.  And if you are able to, get your booster shot when you can. 

Cheers!

Justin Graham

President, High Park Ski Club

Welcome New Instructors to the Downhill Snow School

This season we have 4 new instructors join our roster! Check out who they are and what their favourite things to do are. Keep your eyes out as we introduce you over the next several weeks. Today we welcome Kerry Kupecz! Find out more about Kerry, read on…

I’ve been a member of High Park for longer than I can remember, and I’ve always been interested in the Ski School and what they do, so I decided to join and find out for myself. I’m looking forward to meeting new members and helping new skiers learn to love skiing as much as we all do! Over the years I’ve been on many trips with the club, and one of my favorite memories is doing the Vallee Blanche on a trip to Chamonix and skiing through a glacier. I’m excited to get back out on the snow and see all my friends from the club again.

Kerry Kupecz

So you are vaccinated . . . now what?

As announced earlier in the summer, the HPSC Board made the decision that to protect the health of other club members and volunteers, in order to participate in most in-person club events this season you will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID.  

The first step will be to attest to your vaccination status on your member profile page, at the same time you acknowledge the Code of Conduct, Waiver, and Rowan’s law declaration after September 1st when membership renewal occurs.  Any falsification of vaccination status will be considered as a breach of the HPSC Code of Conduct and will be subject to disciplinary review

However, without confirmation of vaccination status the Long Trips Committee will not be able to arrange roommates or run close to full buses, that allow us to control the costs of trips. Or allow other portfolios to ensure only those fully vaccinated are participating in events. 

Therefore, as a second step at some point during the fall, we are asking that members provide our membership team with proof of your vaccination status (i.e. 2nd shot vaccination certificate or federal vaccination passport announced last week) by emailing it to vac@hpsc.ca.  Only those on the membership team will have access to these emails and once they confirm your status by reviewing your document, all of your documents and emails will be deletedThe club will not be storing your private vaccination record.

PLEASE HOLD OFF SENDING YOUR DOCUMENTATION UNTIL AFTER SEPTEMBER 1 WHEN RENEWALS OPEN. 

For those concerned about privacy, on the vaccination certificate, we only need to see the following information: Name; Date of 2nd vaccination; Agent (COVID-19); Dose – 2 of 2.  All of the rest of the information can be blacked out. 

If you feel uncomfortable in emailing your documentation, we will also be arranging for numerous in-person events (i.e. after each week’s SkiFit; other nights during the week at locations around the city) when you can show the membership team your proof, and they will note your status.  If you cannot meet in person and are concerned about emailing your documents, we can arrange for a personal Zoom call where you can show your document.  We will NOT be recording or taking screen shots.

Please note that to register for charter or long trips at our signup nights in September and October you will need to have at least attested on your member profile that you are fully vaccinated. As with all members you will also need to provide your vaccination document at some point prior during the fall. If you are not fully vaccinated by trip signup night, you will not be able to register for trips until you are (if spots are still available).  If you have not had your second shot yet and want to sign up for charter or long trips, please arrange for your second shot so as soon as possible. At that point you can update your member profile page and send in/arrange to show us your vaccination proof document.

As mentioned earlier, you do not have to send in your vaccination proof right away.  If you feel more comfortable doing so when the Federal vaccination passport becomes available that is fine.  We just need to review your document prior to your first in-person event (please allow at least 5 days for our team to review and confirm your status – we are all volunteers so it might take time to get to).  If you are signing up for a long or charter trip it should be before full payment.

For charter trips, you will likely be required to provide the newly announced federal vaccination passport to our tour company partners. As well, last week the Federal government also announced that proof of vaccination will be required for travel, including domestically, by plane, train, etc. And it makes sense to assume that long distance bus trips should also be included. 

If you CANNOT be vaccinated due to a medical condition, and can provide a doctors note to our membership team simply stating this (without any medical diagnosis information) you will be able to have limited participation in club events this year, (i.e. drive up for a day trip and participate in lessons).  However, as announced earlier you will not be able to register for any long or charter trips, or to go on the bus for daytrips.

We acknowledge that members have the free choice to not be vaccinated; however, we as the directors of the club have the duty to protect the health and safety of our club members and volunteers to the best of our ability.  Until the pandemic is declared over in Canada, the best option for protection and moving to a more ‘normal’ environment is vaccination.  If you are dissatisfied with this policy, we are truly sorry.  We can, upon request, if you choose, to defer your membership for another year or refund your membership fee (however, your club seniority would be maintained), and we will welcome you back once pandemic measure are lifted.     

Justin Graham

President, High Park Ski Club

Could You Be Our Next Downhill Instructor?

Snow school is a crucial part of the HPSC experience, with lessons and instructors consistently cited as the most common reason members love our club. If you have passed your level 1 CASI or CSIA instructor certification and have completed HPSC instructor training, or if you already have your level 2, you are eligible to apply to become an instructor and become part of our team!

As a club instructor, you receive ongoing development through afternoon sessions and our instructor development program. You’ll make a new group of friends, plus you get bus transportation to the hill and defray some of the costs involved in skiing or riding. You also get to wear our prestigious and trendy uniform! But even more importantly, you get to help a ton of your fellow High Parkers to improve their skiing or riding and give back to your community.

If you are interested in applying to the Snow School for either Downhill or Snowboarding and you meet the prerequisites above, please e-mail David Manning, director of downhill skiing and snowboarding at downhillsnowschool@hpsc.ca to express your interest. Applications will be accepted until September 3, 2021.

If you don’t yet have your level 1 or 2 but you’re excited at the idea of becoming an instructor, you might be a candidate for our Instructor Training program. More details on Instructor Training to come in future SnoBiz issues.

It has been a great season so far . . . But it isn’t over yet!! Still 3 weeks left in our 70th downhill season!

It has been a great season so far . . . but it isn’t over yet!! 

However, day trips will only run if members sign up.  While buses in January and February were guaranteed to run, in March we need to ensure that trips are economically feasible.  They will be cancelled if there are not enough members registered.  And remember that if the bus doesn’t run, we do not provide lessons for drive up registrants. 

Some highlights in March: 

  • Our only trip to Beaver Valley Ski Club – home of Avalanche, Ontario’s steepest groomed run, on Wednesday March 18th
  • Our one and only ‘Sleep in Saturday’ on March 21st to Caledon Ski Club.  Pick up times are 45 minutes later than the usual Saturday times so you can sleep in.  We will be departing from 400/7 at 8:45. If you usually ski on the weekend, and don’t get a chance to go to the private clubs, this is your opportunity!  
  • There will also be a Skiis and Biikes demo tent at Caledon that day (please see the separate article).
  • Due to the popularity of this year’s Sundays at Blue trips, the board has approved adding in two more Sunday trips (March 15th and 29th) that were not on the original schedule. Way to go to the Sunday@Blue Crew for coming out regularly and making this possible.
  • Due to popular demand, the Davenport and Yonge pickup location has been added to all weekend daytrips in March.   

Come enjoy some spring skiing and before saying goodbye to our 70th HPSC season!

Race Line

Welcome to another season of racing at High Park Ski Club. The club races are open to all club members (skiers and snowboarders) and are a fun way to challenge yourself and your friends. Racers participate in different categories based on skill level so everyone has a chance to win.

Continue reading “Race Line”