Marion Sanglard won the trip to the Girlie Camp in Les Deux Alpes and wrote a little diary for us. Check out her experiences and you'll want to book yourself into a camp this winter as well!
Saturday February 4 - Arrival Day A beautiful morning. I woke up after a short night, I couldn’t sleep because I was looking forward to go riding two months after the last French resorts had actually already closed. I quickly packed my luggage and jumped into my car. I didn’t really know what to expect from the camp and was a bit nervous as I thought I would be too old and my level would not be good enough but the will to ride was stronger than my hesitations. After an hour of driving I arrived in our residence Le Surf des Neiges in Les 2 Alpes. Lovisa Myhrman and Peter Strom were there, welcoming the campers. I was relieved to see that I was not the oldest one and that the other girls were all between 17 and 27. But, most importantly, they are all very friendly and motivated for the whole week! The camper crew was quite international too, two Danish girls, one Norwegian, two French, two Swiss, three 3 Italian, two German, one Swedish and two Spanish girls. Lolo from Girlie Camp and Roxy rider Suray Fernandez gave us a little introduction on what to expect from the week and some info on the organisation of the week. After that we went to the closest bar for a couple of beers where we began to get to know each other and realized that regardless of nationalities, or age, we were all there for the same reason: snowboarding.
Sunday February 5 - First day on the slopes 7.30 am. Alarm clock, breakfast, getting dressed. Everybody was ready at 8 am. It was a warm and beautiful day and after 20 minutes in the gondola we had a wonderful view of the glacier. After some warm up exercises, we split up in two groups according to our riding level. I went to the Beginners group coached by Suray Fernandez. The other group was for more expert snowboarders, and their coach was Lolo. But no matter what level, there was a place for every girl.
During the morning session, Suray gave advise about positioning and technique. We soon felt more comfortable and self-confident and so Suray started to give tips on ollies and how to ride switch. We also took some time to watch the pro-riders (skiers and snowboarders) who were there for the Kumi-Yama event. It was beautiful and amazing at the same time.
At 1 pm, the slopes closed and we had to go back to Les 2 Alpes. Some girls went to the swimming-pool while others went shopping. The evening was dedicated to “board care" workshop, where we learned how to sharpen edges, wax the base, and how to take care of our boards day after day. At night, we went out at the Kumi-Yama party at the “Les Bleuets" bar and then the most motivated went on to the “Avalanche" night-club for some more partying. What a crazy night…!
Monday February 6 - Day Two 8 am. Once again, we all met outside the residence, on a warm and sunny day. Again we were sub-divided into 2 small groups and we spent the morning mainly working on our techniques and ollies. Suray was following each of us so as to give us advice. For the last hour of the day, we went to the snowpark, and tried some kickers and boxes. We quickly found our balance on the box and it was a really fun session.
In the afternoon, we played golf. Honestly, we all had a very particular style, but we did enjoy it anyway.
Tuesday February 7 - Day Three After a good night, we were ready for a new day of ride. It was a free-coaching day, which allowed each one of us to go to the park and to practice, reminding the advice our coach gave us during the first days. Then we found a nice and not-too-hard box which allowed us to get more confident and to get some speed. The box-session went very fast and at 1pm, we had to go back to Les 2 Alpes. In the afternoon, we all gathered around a trampoline, so as to feel our position in the air, try new tricks and spend a good time all together.
Wednesday February 8 - Day four For the first time weather conditions weren’t great, it was cold and misty. It had snowed during the night and the rocks around the glacier were all white… magic! But after a while, the sun came back - and the heat too!! - and we gathered for a special activity: big Air Bag jumping!!! The first jump was really impressing, and we were all a bit scared. But once we tried it, we all agreed that it was amazing, it felt like flying! Perfect to try new tricks – grabs, frontflips, backflips, rotations, etc. At 1 o’clock we were exhausted but really happy of our snowboarding day. In the afternoon, we went to the skate park and Suray showed us some basic tricks. After the skateboarding session, we went to the archery so as to test our self-control and ability. At 9 pm, we had a video session of the Big Air Bag. Lolo made comments on our position in the air and on our progress. We all listened carefully and tried to keep it in our mind for the following days!
Thursday February 9 - Day five Another huge and good riding day!!! We did some video coaching once again, and thanks to our coaches, we all felt really comfortable on the slopes. So we decided to spend our day in the park, on boxes and kickers, trying to get more speed and more air. Suray and Lolo always had positive comments and they really pushed us to get more confident and to try new things. The atmosphere between the girls of the group was great, everyone encouraged each other and congratulated when one of us tried something new or did a great jump. The atmosphere was very friendly and motivating, whatever our level was. At night, we went out in a bar where we met some American and Japanese pro-skiers and pro-snowboarders and their photographer. We spent a good time, chatting, joking and dancing. Some of us didn't even remember what time they got back to the hotel...
Friday February 10 Last day on the slopes… Once again the weather conditions were fantastic, blue skies and warm weather. After breakfast, we went up to the slopes as fast as we could. The two groups gathered in the Snowpark for a box and kickers session. We even went in the half-pipe! This was probably the best day of the week. The atmosphere was still incredible, and we applied all we had learned during the whole week, making the most of each instant. We spent our last night all together in a typical French restaurant, eating raclette.
It was a great experience. Whatever your level or your age may be, if you want to improve your snowboarding level in a fun and motivating group, with girls who share the same passion for snowboarding, I really recommend you to go to a Girlie Camp. At the end of the week, you will be surprised of your improvement and you will gain self-confidence. I would like to say thanks to Lolo, Suray, Marika and Peter for this amazing week and for their good mood, and their useful advices. They made my passion for mountain and riding get bigger and bigger. This was a wonderful experience and the Girlie Camp offered us a unique opportunity. I am waiting for the next winter and I am really looking forward to riding again.