Traversing P.E. Requirements

 Photo provided by Mikayla Craft

Photo provided by Mikayla Craft

One student's experience on the CCGA Ski Trip to Boone, NC

By Adam Jackson | Contributor

Standing at the top of the slope, a feeling of anxiety washed over me. "It's now or never" I told myself. Pushing off with my ski poles and steadily gaining speed, the scenery around me becomes a blur. Whoosh! I narrowly missed colliding with an onsite photographer who sells souvenir pictures. I tell myself that if I survive this I will definitely buy that picture. 

Having never skied-- or even seen more than a flurry of snow, for that matter-- I originally considered skipping the trip to Boone, Nc. However, my advisor insightfully suggested that going on the ski adventure would satisfy my degree’s two credit requirement for physical education and spare me from taking two separate one-credit classes. Shortcuts in college can be convincing. I began to prepare for the trip. 

After two brief orientation meetings on campus, the ski-course group, including myself, was off to Boone. Students paired off in groups of three or four to both car pool and reduce the cost of the room. We were individually given the option to either ski or snowboard.  My group, collectively, choose to ski.

Other than a tricky freeway-loop that’s vague signage kept us circling five times, the drive to our destination was an uneventful but safe one.  After arriving on the mountain, my group decided to collect our equipment and get lunch before checking in to the hotel.  We stopped at the two-story Wendy's, a local oddity of small-town fame in downtown Blowing Rock, just a few minutes from our hotel. Later, after settling into our hotel room, we checked out the heated pool.  While we quickly discovered that the pool was more tepid than hot, it still made for a great way to work aching muscles after a long day on the slopes.

The following morning, formal ski and snowboarding instruction began. For skiers, instructors divided up students based on difficulty and somehow I ended up in one of the more advanced groups. Our instructor was Andre, an 83-year-old thickly-accented Frenchman, who never allowed for a dull moment on the slopes. The first day of training covered only the basics and many of us were already starting to feel the fatigue. That evening, I was also feeling frustrated by a lack of improvement in my ability. Others I talked to shared the same feeling. An often repeated adage on the slopes is, “It all comes together on the second day.” For the majority of us, that seemed to be the case. 

Many CCGA students I spoke with believed they had improved.  Snowboarder Jedidiah Lindborg, a mathematician and senior at CCGA, felt confident enough on the second day to tackle a few of the black diamond slopes, which are some of the toughest in Boone. 

Fellow boarder and math major, Garrison Penzo, a Sophomore at the college, had to undergo an coincidental, emergency appendectomy while on the trip. He still says his most memorable part was traversing the mountain. 

"Only two days before the trip I had never touched snow,” said Penzo. “ And there I was, carving down the black diamond like I owned it." 

Getting to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life on campus and go on the CCGA ski trip to Boone, Nc made for an excellent way earn two college credits. It was a true college experience; new friends were made as well as fond memories that will last a lifetime. 

As for the photographer I nearly knocked down on my first trip down the mountain, he’s fine. And as for the picture, I totally bought it.

For more information about the CCGA Ski Trip or other ways you can fill your physical education requirements, see your assigned CCGA advisor.