Ten things you didn't know about snow

If you're reading this then chances are you are obsessed by snow. You are not alone: about 800,000 Australians ski and snowboard in Australia each year; 90,000 of us head to New Zealand and another 100,000 are estimated to also head elsewhere overseas each northern season.

While Australian skiers and snowboarders may be able to quote the price of a beer in Whistler, Niseko and Vail, and moan about the prices back home, not many may know that there are three ski resorts in the USA that don't allow snowboarding (Alta, Deer Valley and Mad River Glen), or that Beaver Creek in Vail, Colorado bakes 400,000 free chocolate chip cookies a year for hungry skiers departing the slopes at 4pm, or that the first Winter Olympics were held in St Moritz, Switzerland in 1928.

But wait, there's more. Try some of these facts on your snow-loving mates next time you're boasting at the end of a ski day.

1. The world record for a season's snowfall is held by Mt Baker in Washington in the 1998/1999 snow season. Almost 29 metres (2896cms) of snow fell in one winter.

2. Norwegian Anders Backe holds the Guinness World Record as the fastest "backwards" skier in the world, clocking up 79.97 miles per hour (about 129 kilometres per hour) skiing "switch" on twin tips earlier this year.

3. Australia's Michael Milton is officially the fastest disabled man on skis in the world. He recorded 213.65 kilometres per hour in 2006.

4. The fastest skier on the planet, Simone Origone from Italy, is almost 40 kilometres per hour faster than Milton, with a world record speed of 251.4 kilometres per hour, also recorded in 2006.

5. American Kit DesLauriers is the first woman to ski-descend Everest. She is also the first American to do so. But that's not all - she is the first person to ski the "Seven Summits" (the highest peaks on each continent).

6. Frenchman Marco Siffredi is the first snowboarder to descend Everest on a board, a feat he accomplished in two-and-a-half hours.


7. The average snowflake is made up of a 180 billion molecules of water.

8. The highest mountain hotel in the world is the Hotel Everest View in Namche, Nepal at 3962 metres altitude.

9. The most expensive ski chalet in the world (that we know of) is Chalet Le Blanchot in Courchevel 1850. For a mere $250,500 a week, expect five floors accessed by an internal lift, six bedrooms, two kitchens, an indoor swimming pool, hammam (Turkish bath), massage room, home cinema, concierge and staff.

10. Back in 2008, the most expensive cocktail at a ski resort could be found at the Coco Club in Verbier, Switzerland. The £5000 ($7800) alcohol concoction came in an ice sculpture and included life membership to the Coco Club.

Share your interesting, absurd, useless, or useful facts and trivia about skiing, snowboarding and snow with us by posting a comment on the blog below.


Pro photo of the year Andrew Fawcett 'Dan Currie near Charlotte's Pass'
Pro photos of the year: Andrew Fawcett's 'Dan Currie near Charlotte's Pass'.

Peer professionals voted photo of the season: Andrew "Freddy" Fawcett for his take on Charlotte's Pass backcountry. Andrew received five of the six "first place" votes up for grabs from our esteemed panel of nominated photographers and guest judge, pro photographer Dan Himbrechts.

Pro photo of the year: Chris Hocking's 'Sunset at Bogong'.jpg
Pro photos of the year: Chris Hocking's 'Sunset at Bogong'.

Public-voted photo of the season: Chris Hocking for his Mt Bogong sunset. Chris receives a Vail Resorts Epic Season Pass thanks to Travelplan Ski Holidays for the most votes, Steve Cuff receives a Burton F Stop 28L backpack for second in the popular vote and Darren Teasdale receives a Douchebag ski/snowboard bag for placing third.

Congratulations also go to voter "Ipp" for winning a Vail Resorts Epic Season pass from Travelplan Ski Holidays.

That's all for the 2012 southern winter ski season from Snow It All. May you have peace, love and powder in the northern winter. I look forward to sharing the snow-love with you again next year.

Join our snow circus and "like" our Snow It All Facebook Page, follow us on Twitter @misssnowitall and on Instagram @misssnowitall and read us daily on our wordpress blog.