We live in what some call an attention economy. Those who attract attention – regardless of how they go about it – appear to be the victors in our narcissistic new world. The companies making skis and related gear are no exception. One of their primary ways of competing for attention is producing short videos of pro skiers using their gear in wild and wooly terrain.

Videos of people doing amazing things on skis are similar to porn: there are just so many tricks in the bag, and it’s not long before they get boring. That said, ski manufacturer lemmings invest in making videos that, in one way or another, try to outclass their competition.

The New Age of Reason is a new addition, from a company named WNDR (Wonder Alpine). It combines a soundtrack of barely audible British voices making quasi-intellectual statements, while pro skiers make deep powder turns and jump cliffs in some easy-to-watch and quickly forgettable scenes. Unlike most other short promotional videos which depend on big-name super skiers and/or pulsing rap music to appeal to their intended audience(s), this one relies on pretense. That said, WNDR appears to be a company with good policies and good products.

Will its video approach help the the company break through the rest of the promotional ski video clutter? Maybe for a few minutes while the ski marketing echo chamber resonates with email congratulations.

A few years ago, at the Winter Outdoor Retailer Show, I attended a presentation that discussed a variety of advertising and promotional investments. The activities were listed in order of their perceived effectiveness in contributing to product sales. As I recall, in-store salespeople and word-of-mouth were most effective. Way down on the list…I mean toward the very bottom…were promotional videos. They cost a lot to produce. They reach a relatively small audience. They make their sponsors feel good about their investments. But do they move the needle when it comes to sales? You know the answer.

As I finished drafting this, yet another video landed in my inbox. At 21 minutes, it’s a bit on the long side. But if you want to see what has become possible on skis in entirely impossible terrain, “Good Luck” will get you up to speed with a smile. Click here to screen.

Ski Journalist Dies Following Collision with Snowboarder

Ron LeMaster, 72, was killed earlier this week after colliding with a snowboarder on Eldora Mountain (CO). LeMaster, a ski writer and photographer, was a certified PSIA instructor. No charges were filed against the boarder. The tragedy is a reminder for older skiers/boarders to exercise extreme caution on the hill. R.I.P.

Realskiers.com: Ski Industry Is in Trouble

Jackson Hogen publishes realskiers.com, a long-established website featuring in-depth reviews of each year’s new skis and a host of observations about the sport. The self-proclaimed Pontiff of Powder periodically sends out thought pieces under the heading, “Revelations.” A few weeks back, he took a dystopic and disturbingly realistic view of the future of skiing. It’s titled, “Will the Next Generation of Skiers be the Last?”, covering, among other big issues, cost, accessibility, competing interests and climate change. To read the short essay, click here. SeniorsSkiing.com subscribers are eligible for a 50% discount off the annual realskiers.com rate of $19.95. Use Code SS21 at checkout.

Klaus Obermeyer is 102!

Klaus created the ski apparel line bearing his name. He is credited with making the first down-filled parka. When I interviewed him a few years ago, he said that he found it easier to ski than to walk.

Winter Park to Donate Uphill Ski Pass Revenue to Charities

Source: Winter Park Resort

The area will donate proceeds from sales of its uphill ski passes to local charities. The passes cost $25 each. It’s good policy, given that paying to climb on the slopes is a relatively new development that has been met with some criticism.

Aspen Bumps Minimum Wage

Aspen Skiing Co. will increase starting wages to $17 per hour, a significant bump from Colorado’s current $12.32 minimum. The company also increased employee housing to 1,000 beds.

High Tech Bandage Changes Color

DrySee is a long-lasting bandage that changes color when it needs to be changed. Cost depends on bandage size. Manufacturer of this interesting new product is offering SeniorsSkiing.com readers 20% off when they enter “Facebook 20” at checkout. Visit www.drysee.com to learn more.

Last Minute Gift for Senior Skiers

The Bootster ski boot shoehorn is ideal gift for older skiers

Get them The Bootster. It’s a clever, fit in your pocket ski boot shoehorn that is solidly made and will last many, many seasons. Handmade by company founder, Jim Cobb. At $25, it’s one of the best bargains around. Click on the adjacent ad and read the rave reviews.

Dep’t of Wretched Excess

The world’s most expensive “hotel” room costs $175,000 per night. Lover’s Deep is a luxuriously tricked-out submarine in St Lucia. Amenities include captain, cook and helicopter.

Diamonds Are Forever Martini

The world’s most expensive cocktail is now available at Tokyo’s Ritz Carlton hotel. The Diamonds Are Forever Martini costs $22,880 and is garnished with a one-carat diamond. Kampai!

New 10th Mountain Division Documentary

https://youtu.be/x6BpDQ85ZN8

“Mission to Mt. Mangart” is a new documentary exploring the famed 10th Mountain Division, whose members relied on skis. Click on the trailer (above) to see the slalom they organized in June, 1945.

Update: Jackson Hole’s Skiing Wunderkind

I wrote about Kai Jones when he was 12. Kai, now 14, is the Jackson Hole ski wunderkind whose skiing is a joy to behold. This short video was shot last season, when he was a high school freshman.

3 Comments

  1. I agree with Klaus…been sayin’ it for years now…skiing is easier than walking! Shred on Klaus!

  2. Hi Jon;

    Hope you and Pam are well! The Cove abides, haven’t yet met the new owners. Still waiting for snow here in Utah, low 50’s in the city today. Have a great holiday season, and a good winter. Scott. And thanks for SeniorSkiing.

  3. The New Age of Reason video should be renamed the New Age of Boring. Great skiing, lame soundtrack. I muted the sound and dialed up some cool reggae tunes on Youtube. Much better.

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