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How not to Snowboard at Marmot Basin Ski Area

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Broken Collarbone on Marmot Basin Ski Area

The excitement of my first powder day of the season was unlike any other feeling. The cold wind bit through my beanie and big fat flakes fell softly from above to settle upon the growing piles of champagne snow.

I was in heaven.

1 week ago we had been on the beach in New Zealand. Now after a few flights we were enjoying our first day of the ski season snowboarding at Marmot Basin Ski Area high in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

Marmot Basin Ski Area Sign

Snowboard at Marmot Basin Ski Area

How not to Snowboard at Marmot Basin Ski Area

I had been dreaming of my first ski season for years and had visions of ripping apart the ski runs every day while watching my progress skyrocket.

And with that first day my dream had begun….

The more runs we did the more confident I became. Cole tried to warn me to take it slowly because on the first day of the season it’s not such a good thing to push it to the limits. If you know me then you will know that I am a pretty competitive person so I kept on pushing…

One minute I was going over smooth rollers, quietly pretty impressed with myself. The next, I was sitting in a ragged pile of soft snow with a thumping headache and stars in my eyes.

The nose of my board had caught in a lump of snow catapulting me in to the ground before I could react. I landed heavily on my head and shoulder before coming to a rest in a wrecked heap of gloves, limbs, goggles and beany.

Once I had established that I could move all my limbs by wriggling my fingers and toes I went on to see if any parts of me were badly damaged.

One flex of my right shoulder and I knew immediately that there was something seriously wrong with my collarbone. Now I do not profess to be an expert in the medical arena, but after four broken arms through my childhood I am fairly certain I know a broken bone when I feel it. And this was most certainly broken.

The initial shock of the crash subsided and the pain took over by coursing through my body. Tears sprung to my eyes but were quickly forgotten as I realised I was alone. Cole had been ahead and had not seen me fall.

Fortunately everyone looks after everyone on the ski field and the next person along waved down a ski patroller on one of their many spot checks. Just my luck he was a rookie and it was his first day on the job (to his credit he was amazingly calm). I asked him if he could check the break and in his concentration he must not have heard my next question:

“Is the bone coming out of the skin?”

To which he responded “ooooh yea” which immediately set of a rush of panic.

It took a few minutes to calm me down and establish that it was not in fact out of the skin and he was actually just exclaiming it was broken.

Ski Patrollers Marmot Basin

Ski Patrol strapping Adela to the backboard

Cole turned up worried out of his skin after I had not shown up at the bottom of the run. He had raced to the top and flown down the hill checking the run we had been on before spotting the sharp contrast of the red and black of the ski patroller huddled over a patient through the falling snow.

He knew straight away it would be me.

It must have been a slow day because within 15 minutes I was quickly surrounded by no less than 5 ski patrollers bringing oxygen, 2 backboards, 2 sleds and a neck brace.

One piece of advice I would give to any unfortunate soul who ends up in this situation… DO NOT tell ski patrol you hit your head unless you think you have done some serious damage.

Instead of being taken down on the ski-doo I was strapped in to the patrollers toboggan and rushed to an ambulance. At least they got their priorities right because the ambulance staff wouldn’t load me until Cole had handed over his Credit Card to pay the upfront $300 ambulance ride to hospital.

In the end it was not only my pride that was hurt (great first impression with my new colleagues) but it also severely hurt my bank account – actually make that Coles bank account. The Ambulance, X-ray and Doctor fees ran in over $5,000.

Hospital Broken Collarbone Marmot Basin Ski Area

Resting in the hospital after snowboard at Marmot Basin

In addition I missed the first half of my dream season, spent a lot of time watching crappy girly movies while everyone was out boarding and landed myself with a huge bump in my collarbone.

Suppose it could have been worse and I could have ended up in hospital for a month at the end of the ski season with a $30,000 bill like Cole…

But that’s a completely different adventure for another time.

Do you have a horror story or accident from any of your snowboarding or skiing trips?

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19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. Sebastian @ Off-The-Path.com

    November 21, 2011 at 8:59 PM

    Oh my god! that must have been awful! I had some bad accidents but luckily nothing serious happened!!! Hope you are feeling better now!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:33 PM

      Much better now thanks Sebastian, just a tiny bump on the bone to remind me to take it a bit easier next time haha. Cheers Adela

  2. Angela

    November 21, 2011 at 9:06 PM

    Omg I’m so sorry, it looks terrible… I don’t go skiing because I don’t think I’ll ever be able.. Get lots of rest!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:33 PM

      Thanks for the sympathy Angela. Got lots of rest but was running out of movies to watch after 3 months! You have to try skiing sometime, we still plan to do another season.

  3. bronwen burmester

    November 21, 2011 at 11:36 PM

    Poor you Adela! Yes I know another ski story in the family…Moss ended up slicing just below his knee with the edge of the ski, right down to bone and blubs of red and yellow insides were spilling onto the white icy snow. He ended up getting towed behind snow mobile with numerous internal and external stiches and having to miss out on the World Swim Champs that year!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:31 PM

      Thanks Bron! That is gross about Moss slicing his knee, Cole never told me that story. Hope to skype soon. Love Adela

  4. Neil

    November 22, 2011 at 11:48 AM

    WOW! $5k is a huge amount, but what did Cole do to rack up $30k??

    I cant imagine getting hurt on the slopes, you almost feel invincible when flying down them. Sounds like the medical crew were pretty decent though, not sure i’d have got the same treatment in Bansko (Bulgaria).

    Did you get back on the slopes again that season?

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:30 PM

      Haha I thought I was invincible but that quickly changed! Managed to get back up the mountain for the last 2 months so that was ok, but lost half the season. Hopefully get back there sometime.
      What was Bansko like? We are thinking about heading there at the end of February.
      And Cole knuckled a jump (3 times) and ended up with internal bleeding that he ignored for a few weeks despite my pestering to go to the hospital. Ended up stuck there for a month!

      • Neil

        November 23, 2011 at 8:55 AM

        Psh internal bleeding, whimp! 🙂

        Bankso was pretty cool, cheap more than anything. The town still had a lot of building work going on when I was there so didnt always look the prettiest, the old town was nice though. Up the mountain there were lots of beginner slopes and it can get pretty crowded, you get what you pay for I guess. Still worth a look for a week away I think.

        • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

          November 23, 2011 at 9:39 PM

          Yea I am a bit of a whimp haha. The only problem was it got infected otherwise I would have been sweet. Just thought I had strained a muscle originally. Better right a post up about it soon!
          We might head there but might try to head somewhere in Austria or one of the “bigger” mountain areas to get some decent snow and terrain. Cheers mate for the info anyway.

  5. cheryl

    November 22, 2011 at 2:17 PM

    Sorry to hear that happened! Hope you heal fast and get on those skis/boards again soon.

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:28 PM

      Thanks for the kind words Cheryl. It was a shock when it first happened but luckily it healed properly so was back on my board after a few months. Looking forward to this season already!

  6. Christy @ Technosyncratic

    November 22, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    This sounds AWFUL. I’m a total klutz, which is why I stay away from snow-covered mountains. 🙂

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 22, 2011 at 9:26 PM

      Haha thanks Christy. I should learn my lesson as I am a total klutz as well and these situations tend to follow me around! Cheers Adela

  7. LAbackpackerChick

    November 23, 2011 at 6:10 PM

    Oh no this story made me want to cry…hope you’re okay.

    Do you have travel insurance to cover? Ouch to you and Cole’s wallet.

    Poor thing 🙁

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      November 23, 2011 at 9:37 PM

      Recovered ok thanks! Just a bump left now to remind me. Luckily our travel insurance covered it but was all on Cole’s credit card until they paid it off. Cheers Adela

  8. Stephanie - The Travel Chica

    November 25, 2011 at 1:54 AM

    Oh no! I was with a friend who broke his arm while we were snowboarding. To this day, he still tells people I pushed him.

  9. Annie@GreenTravelReviews

    November 7, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    Ouch! I’m Norwegian, but I was in no way born with skis on my feet… I love anything that’s fast and energetic, except skis, and I must admit, this doesn’t make me want to try more 😉

    Glad you’re ok!

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Adventure Travel

Is It Time to Find a New You at a Thailand Retreat?

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If you feel like you a lacking a little direction, or that you have become lost in the hustle and bustle of your faced paced life, do not despair. There is hope. Spend too much time buried by work and inevitably the world will grind you down, but it needn’t. You can do something about it. The answer is a lot simpler than you may think (and more affordable, too).

You have to act though. Indifference or accepting that nothing will change will result in exactly that, nothing changing. What you need to do is interrupt your life and take a step back. Now this doesn’t mean falling off the radar, or a sudden change in your career. You just need to invest a little of your own time in yourself and book yourself into a personal development course at a Thailand retreat.

 

Isn’t That Strange?

No, it isn’t. Again, you are not changing the world in which you live, rather you are looking to change how you live in the world. A getaway at a retreat can help you do this. So, lose the negativity and cynicism and think about the possibilities for a moment. If you feel strange about going alone, why not round up your best buddies and go together? (Click here for more guy adventure tips)

 

A Little Self-Therapy

 

If you work hard, and feel constantly exhausted, at some point things are going to get even worse – be that your physical or mental health. By looking after both your body and mind and learning healthy practices at a retreat, you’ll fortify both your mind and body ready for the rigours of daily life once you return to it. The techniques, practices and understandings that you will gain by attending a Thailand retreat will help you to not only cope, but to thrive. It is like learning a shortcut to happiness that many simply do not know about. Brilliant right?!

Burnout is a real problem in society, and prevention is a much better solution than trying to find a cure. It is likely that you will have to keep working in your employment and that life will throw all manner of things at you as you battle onward, but learning to cope whilst smiling, with a stronger fortitude and greater will to succeed is a more certain way of becoming a success before you become a casualty.

Through mindfulness practice, physical activity such as yoga and stretching, and incorporating meditation, you are adapting a holistic approach to your own health, happiness and self-development. This can help you become mentally stronger, physical fitter, more at ease with yourself and life, and aware of the world in which you live. You can actually learn to live rather than exist. Wouldn’t that be wonderful?

Life begins at the very edge of your comfort zone, on the outskirts of familiarity and away from your normal habits and routine. Rather than shun it, or even fear it, you can learn to embrace, experience and even enjoy it too. This isn’t changing what you do, but how you do it. It isn’t changing who you are, it is letting you become the true you, unleashing your full potential.

A Thailand retreat based around health and self-development puts your wellbeing at the very heart of the programme. This isn’t self-indulgent but rather self-fulfilment; letting your life exist beyond the limits of your expectations. It is time for you to look after yourself that little bit better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Adventure Travel

Preparing A Holiday With An Anxious Relative

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As much as you love going on holiday and planning a trip to a region of the world that you don’t know, it can be a little frustrating to travel with relatives or friends who are naturally nervous about discovering new things. You know the kind: They won’t try exotic food in a restaurant, in case it wouldn’t agree with their stomach. They look at your travel pictures with envy but always find an excuse not to join you on your next adventure. And more importantly, they try to avoid travelling abroad if they can at all help it. Be kind before you launch into criticism. They can’t help feeling anxious about everything. And maybe, if you want to help them relax a little, it’s your responsibility to make travelling as easy and enjoyable as possible. However, you’re in luck, because we can help you with that. All it takes is a little bit of planning and thinking ahead to get them sorted.

Get informed at first

If your friend or relative doesn’t travel often, the best thing you want to do is to convince them to come on a trip with you that is poorly planned. First things first: It’s about defining when it the best time to visit your destination of choice. You wouldn’t want to accidentally pick the monsoon season when going to a tropical country, for instance. That’s exactly what this handy website is about : It helps you to find out when is the best time to visit where with monthly weather overview based on observations from the previous years. In short, if you’re travelling with someone who hates being cold, you can direct them towards countries that are warm in winter, for example. As silly as it might sound, knowing what kind of weather to expect can be a great help for a nervous adventurer: Knowing what to pack is already a step out of the unknown zone.

Get the health check

You can’t easily decide to travel to any country without planning. For health reasons, there is a number of regions in the world that require vaccinations to keep you safe. You’d better keep yourself informed of the health requirements in advance, as some vaccinations need to be started up to 2 months before your departure. The typical countries where you’d be expecting additional health vaccines tend to be around the south and south-east Asia. Hepatitis A and B is a common risk in Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, China, and even the Fiji. In India, you need to be aware of risks of rabies and Japanese encephalitis in addition to more common vaccinations. You also need to ensure that you and your relative are up to date with routine immunisations such as tetanus and diphtheria. The bottom line is that even though there are little risks for cautious travellers, you don’t want to take any chance.

Do you need authorisation?

If your friend or relative has only travelled to safe and known areas, such as Europe for instance, they may not be aware that certain countries require visitors from abroad to apply for a visa, aka an official authorization to entry the country. If you intend to visit Belarus, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine, you will need to apply for a visa, which can take several weeks and require an official letter of recommendation from your destination hotel. Visiting South Africa, North America also require a visa, as well as some areas of Asia. Additionally, you need to ensure that you have free pages for control stamps in your passport. It might sound stressful at first, but it’s something that you can easily clarify in advance so that you don’t need to worry about it during your trip.

Protect your holiday

The main reason a lot of people feel anxious about travelling abroad is that they worry that anything might happen to them while they’re outside of the country. The fear of not knowing how to sort out common health and finances issues forces a lot of people to stay at home while they should be thinking about travel insurance instead. If your friend or relative is worried about falling ill on holiday or about losing valuable items abroad, you should take a look at standard travel policies to ensure that you can find an appropriate answer to their worries. From overseas travel insurance to snow sports insurance, you can find a lot of options to cover for most accidental situations smoothly and easily. More often than not, you can get an expert insurer to define the best-suited policy for your holiday. This will save you a lot of time searching as an insurer will be able to rely on the data of previous travellers to advise you.

Know how to spend the time

But I can’t travel to India: It’s a long flight, and I’ll get bored!

If that’s the kind of comments you get, you can reassure your friend or relative immediately: There are plenty of solutions that stop you from getting bored during your long journeys. Reading always is a good idea, especially if you’ve got a Kindle so that you can fill it with several books to keep yourself occupied while travelling. Some people might prefer audiobooks, however, if you’ve got a long flight, you’re likely to want to use earplugs and rest your senses. There are also plenty of online games that you can play with a smartphone, so it’s impossible to get bored!

Not one for tech gadgets? A simple crossword or sudoku book can do the trick and keep you busy until you’ve reached your destination. If you’re sitting aside, nothing is stopping you from playing a card game or a small board game. In short, getting bored is not a fatality!

Get a guidebook

How do you know about the best places and monuments to see when you’re visiting a new place? It’s obvious: You get a guidebook like every other traveller. Guidebooks might sound old-fashioned, but they are filled with useful information about an area, from where to stay to what to see. More importantly, you get a detailed breakdown of prices, which makes it a lot easier to plan your trip. As a traveller puts it, in a guidebook you find information that you didn’t know you needed, which helps you to prepare the best you can for your holiday. Besides, you can be sure that gathering knowledge about your destination will be handy to reassure your nervous co-traveller. Knowledge remains, after all, the best weapon against the unknown.

Pick your book

Do you need to know the language?

Most travellers would tell you that speaking English is enough to get by in any destination of the world. However; you need to be aware of one important fact: Just because English is the proxy language by definition, it doesn’t mean that everyone will understand you. A lot of people don’t speak English at all, and therefore you’ll need to be able to ask for directions or a cup of coffee in the local lingo. Why does it matter? You don’t need to be fluent to ask for things you need abroad, but you can be sure that locals are more likely to help and understand if you say it in their language. More often than not, you can get by with a simple phrasebook, from ordering food in a restaurant to finding the way to the art museum.

Prepare a visit plan

What if your friend would agree to go on a holiday but doesn’t know where to? You could inspire them with a list of the most wonderful sites to visit in the world. Stonehenge in England is a great destination for history lovers to enjoy the mysteries of the past. You can even organise walking among the famous stones on specific days! If you want to take their breath away with a fascinating historical site, try to Pyramids of Giza in Egypt. If you want to seduce a nature-lover, take them to the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia, which is the world’s largest mirror. Or you could visit the Great Blue Hole in Belize, which is 407 feet deep and can be easily seen from above – no need to dive, thankfully!

Decide on a budget in advance

Let’s be honest: Most people avoid travelling because they’re afraid of spending too much on the go. In reality, it all comes down to clever planning: If you know in advance where you’re going to stay and what’s around to see and visit, you can plan your budget accordingly. Of course, there will always be the unexpected expenses in the form of a cocktail night at the local bar, or a really cute jumper that you simply couldn’t live further without. But for all these, you can rely on a budget app such as Trail Wallet to keep track of your expenses throughout the day. In a few clicks, you can get an overview of how much you can afford and how much you’ve already paid.

In conclusion, the secret to turning a travel-anxious friend into a travel-happy holidaymaker is to share your planning secrets with them. Yes, travelling takes a lot of preps. But it means they can enjoy their trip with their mind at peace!

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Adventure Travel

Top 5 Things to See in Dubai on Your Next Holiday

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Dubai has quickly become a top destination for travelers from around the world.  It offers an impressive mixture of the best of modern architecture, stunning scenery and is a shopper’s paradise.  So, what are the top things to see during your holiday to Dubai?

Burj Khalifa

You can’t miss the Burj Khalifa when you visit Dubai – at 828 meters high, it is the world’s tallest tower and dominates the city’s skyline.  But the building is far more than admiring.  There is an observation deck on level 124 that is a must-see part of visiting the city while At The Top Sky Lounge is on level 148.  If you want a meal amid the clouds, At.mosphere on level 122 offers quality meals.

Palm Jumeirah

Another impressive man-made wonder of Dubai, Palm Jumeirah is a palm shaped man-made island and one of the largest artificial islands in the world.  It is home to a host of high quality hotels including the Waldorf Astoria and the Atlantis, The Palm.  It also has its own monorail that runs along the ‘trunk’ of the tree to connect it with the mainland.

The Dubai Mall

As well as enjoying the glamour of Dubai on your next holiday, you can also enjoy some of the highest quality shopping.  The Dubai Mall is more than just a shopping mall – there are 1200 shops, 150 restaurants, an indoor theme park, a waterfall, ice rink and even an aquarium and underwater zoo.  It takes shopping to a whole new level!

The Dubai Fountain

Standing outside the Burj Khalifa, the Dubai Fountain is equally impressive and stands at the entrance to the Dubai Mall.  It is the world’s largest choregraphed fountain system reached 150 meters high with colorful, illuminated jet sprays that are timed to various musical pieces.  There are two shows a day on afternoons and evenings so plenty of chances to watch it in action.

Dubai Creek

Dubai is the epitome of a modern city but that’s not to say there isn’t history amid the stunning skyscrapers.  Dubai Creek is the heart of the old city, where the original Bani Yas tribe settled.  Here they started the pearl diving and fishing trades and the area slowly built into a trade center.  Now you can visit the gold, textile and spice souks as well as take a ride in a traditional abra boat.  It is also great value at just AED1 for a ticket.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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