> various gross tales of injuries involving ski poles

Reminds me of an experience I had a few years ago at Whiteface...

I was cruising down to the liftline for lift #2, carrying some speed to
cross a flat area over to the end of the line. Suddenly, some nitwit
woman with strapless poles (you know, the kind with the plastic grips
you slide your hands into) decides to adjust her goggles without
bothering to remove her poles from her hands.  She raises her hands,
which also raises both poles into a face-level jousting position,
pointing uphill towards all of us oncoming skiers. All of the sudden,
the end of a pole is whistling by my right eye, inches away.  I was
already by her before I realized what happened - and what could have
happened.  It gave me a good scare.

Thankfully, they no longer sell poles with those "safety" grips. (I
guess they were considered safer the same way ski brakes were considered
safer than retaining straps.)

Isn't it ironic that sometimes things done in the name of "safety," such
as those pole grips or even grooming, wind up making things more
dangerous?  Personally, I feel safer in the moguls or woods at Mad River
than I do on the crowded groomed trails of, say, Mt Snow or Stratton. No
fool is going to try to play football while he's skiing bumps or

  Dave, already sick of the latest media frenzy

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