What's trending on snow?
Retailers are seeing notable surges in both action camera sales and backcountry equipment from splitboards to alpine boots used to allow skiers to schuss up a trail and then ski down.
According to figures supplied by Snowsports Industries America, action camera sales are soaring, up 49 percent to $43 million in sales.
"The new status symbol is experience," says the organization's research director Kelly Davis.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 November 2013 02:17
New lifts, trails and base lodges are the sexy side of a new ski season. Valley skiers and riders will find new places to strut their stuff on snow, but a lot of the capital improvement around here are on the infrastructure side. You know, kind of like taking care of your car's engine to make sure the ride is sweet.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 November 2013 05:28
A couple of familiar faces grace a slick video geared to get skiers and riders wearing brain buckets.
North Conway native Danny Toumarkine leads the narrative in a new 26-minute safety message released by a Truckee, California-based nonprofit organization.
High Fives Foundation has unveiled a five-part safety series called B.A.S.I.C.S., an acronym for Being Aware Safe In Critical Situations, and the video entitled "#HelmetsAreCool."
The video takes the traumatic real life experiences of several snow sports athletes to deliver the message that helmets are cool.The video showcases Toumarkine as he travels to Chester, Vt. to meet Michael Schwarz, a snowboarder who also suffered a life-changing crash.
Last Updated on Thursday, 14 November 2013 05:39
Tiger Shaw's ready to defend the mountain top, and bring others to its lofty summit.
With so many of the world's best skiers and snowboarders coming from the United States — and from around here — Shaw's new job is to keep Americans on top of the world.
"Is it tougher to stay there then to get there?," he said by phone from his Hanover home the day before moving to Park City, Utah. "Over time, yeah. It takes innovation, hard work and exceptional performances to stay the best in the world."
The two-time Olympian and former Dartmouth College (1985 grad with an engineering degree) skier is poised to take over the reigns of the organization governing the nation's competitive skiing and snowboarding teams.
Last Updated on Thursday, 14 November 2013 04:03
CONWAY — I really thought the Kennett High field hockey team would be practicing today.
The Eagles were the hottest team in the state for the final three weeks of the regular season. Playing sensational field hockey with every girl embracing the challenge of being the best teammate they could possibly be, KHS rattled off eight straight wins to close the season. The Eagles allowed just two goals during that run while posting six shutouts. Their defense was stronger than Fort Knox.
The Eagles earned a first round bye after beating St. Thomas 2-0 in their regular season finale to clinch the fourth seed. The win knocked the Saints to fifth place — meaning there was a possibility these programs could cross paths again in the post-season.
St. Thomas beat Kingswood 4-2 in the first round setting the stage for a showdown in Redstone with KHS on Sunday. It turned out to be the longest field hockey game in years and probably the most thrilling game anyone has ever seen.
It was a classic.
St. Thomas scored on the eighth penalty corner in the 10th overtime to edge Kennett 2-1 in a game that featured everything from great saves to all-out effort to goals called back and crazy weather — we hit all four seasons in a two and a half hour span with rain, wind, sleet and a little sunshine. In the end, both teams received standing ovations from the fans for a contest so well played and one that left players, parents and fans exhausted.
After the second 15 minute sudden death overtime, one St. Thomas parent had a suggestion for deciding this thriller. "I really think we ought to go to rock, paper and scissors right now," the parent said. Little did he know there was still another 45 minutes of nail-biting time left.
"It was a great high school field hockey game," CJ Lang, Eagles' head coach, said. "I really couldn't ask for much more out of my team as a coach, the girls gave everything they had and then some."
By virtue of a bye, Kennett had two weeks without any game-like situations and it took the hometown team a little while to get going Sunday, but Coach Lang said that didn't change the outcome of the game.
"The two weeks (in between games) I felt our ball handling looked really good," she said. "We were able to work on that and get everyone healthy. I thought we prepared very well. ...On the other side, it's also hard to replicate game momentum. I do think maybe it played a small affect, but it didn't impact the outcome of the game."
Kennett had the better scoring chances in the first half, spending much more time in the St. Thomas defensive third of the field, continually pressuring a resilient Saints defense.
Fifteen minutes into the contest Kennett's Amanda Nusbaum beat four Saints with brilliant stick-handling to get inside the St. Thomas circle and her shot went just wide. Moments later teammate Vonde Saunders came close with shots off corners.
The Saints had some strong moments on counter attacks, but were unable to get past Leah Kelemen, who was rock solid, and when they did Lara Murnik, was there to show why she's the top goalie in Division II.
"Lara had an amazing game," Lang said. "She deserves a shout out. She had more saves than we could have counted. I'd say she was easily in the teens. She's had an incredible season. I'm going to miss her leadership — she's an all-around great kid."
The Saints thought they'd taken the lead with 2:46 left in the first half when they found the back of the net, but the referees ruled the goal off because the shot came from outside the circle.
The game was scoreless at halftime.
It was end-to-end action in the second half with Murnik making a tremendous kick save with 27:27 to play in regulation time, but Kennett marched right down the field and Maggie LaRoche came oh-so close with a fine effort herself that drew a point-blank save.
Two minutes later Katie McPherson just missed the target with a rocket off a corner.
St. Thomas finally broke the ice with 18:55 to play in the second half when Riley Kane tucked the ball home after a scramble in front of the KHS net.
The Eagles immediately called a timeout and Lang's Gang never got rattled. they stuck to their game plan and pushed forward, carrying the play and were rewarded for their efforts with 8:04 to play.
Brooke Lemerise got behind her defender on the right wing and rocketed a pass across the face of the goal that Meghan Hayman got to and knocked home for the equalizer.
The game remained scoreless through regulation play and then two sudden victory seven on seven 15 minute overtime periods. With fewer players on the field the game became even more wide open and that meant even more running for the girls.
With 11:40 left in the first sudden victory overtime, Lemerise drew a spectacular save from the Saints goalie, who got a leg to the shot that seemed destined for the back of the cage.
The Saints had two great back-to-back chances with 9:39 left off a corner when Murnik denied two shots from point-blank range in rapid succession.
Just 29 seconds later Kennett nearly won it again. Nusbaum beat three defenders and fed LaRoche who uncorked a shot that fans had no idea how the goalie saved it.
Then it was on to a second 15 minute sudden victory period. Again, the action was nonstop and by now many, many fingernails had been devoured.
With 7:12 to play Saunders rifled a shot into the back of the net, but the apparent game-winner was ruled too high by the referee.
"On a corner the initial shot needs to be 18 inches or below," Lang explained. "It was a great shot by Vonde but much too high."
The Saints nearly sealed the win in the closing seconds, but Murnik rose to the occasion again with a pair of incredible saves to keep the contest deadlocked at 1-1.
The horn sounded and most had no idea what happens next. The referees had to go to the rule book to see what happens next, because games don't go this long. It was onto penalty corners. St. Thomas had to go first with Kennett to follow.
In the first round, Kennett quickly cleared the ball setting stage for the Eagles to clinch instant victory. Arielle Seavey got the corner to McPherson and her shot was just inches wide.
The corner overtimes were a lot like watching fireworks as there was a continual stream of oohs and aahs from the fans on every effort.
In the fifth round, the Saints found the back of the net, but that led to a four minute conversation by the referees who ruled the shot was too high and therefore no goal. Saints fans complained while Eagle backers cheered with relief.
Saint Thomas took the lead for good on the eighth round of corners when Jensen Palmer found pay-dirt with a well-placed shot.
Kennett still had a chance to equalize with its corner, but the St. Thomas defense smothered a KHS shot, ending an incredible contest.
"When it comes down to corners all it takes is one tip and they got it and we didn't," Lang said. "I know the girls left it all on the field, I'm so proud of them. They gave me everything they had and as a coach I can't ask for anymore than that."
The Saints advance now to the Final Four in Exeter on Thursday at 7 p.m. where they'll meet top seeded Windham, who topped No. 8 ranked Plymouth 2-0 Sunday afternoon.
Kennett loses the following seniors to graduation in Marissa Harmon, Lara Murnik, Maggie LaRoche, Emily Richard, Kasey Conifey, Tory Eaton along with co-captains Rachel Samia and Vonde Saunders.
"It's a pretty special group," Lang said. "They'll be hard to replace."
Last Updated on Monday, 28 October 2013 05:03