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Stowe Ski & Snowsports School

Stowe Ski & Snowsports School

Turning Points
By Stu Campbell
posted: 12/31/1999

Stowe Ski & Snowsports School
Stowe, Vt.

WHY IT'S GREAT By now Stowe Mountain Resort is completely Americanized, but there are vestiges of a marvelous Austrian ski teaching tradition here. Stowe founder C.V. Starr went to Austria in the Thirties and recruited national champion Sepp Ruschp to head his Stowe school. In turn, the charismatic Ruschp handpicked and brought over Austria's finest teachers. They set an incredibly high standard for American instructors who later trained on Mt. Mansfield and Spruce Peak. Mt. Mansfield is seriously steep and often afflicted by blue ice and biting cold. It's said that if you learn at Stowe, you can ski well anywhere. Ruschp's son, Peter, directed the ski school for many years, and has been succeeded by Dave Merriam, who also coaches the PSIA Demo Team.

SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY "Student outcomes, not the teacher or information, must be at the forefront. Instructors are encouraged to achieve customized results more through creativity and spontaneity on the hill, less on set progressions that take a student from point A to B."

DISTINGUISHING QUALITIES Stowe's ski school has a 60-year heritage of excellence and professionalism. Mt. Mansfield and Spruce Peak offer diverse learning environments with something for everybody. Simple as it may sound, dedicated, lifelong instructors love to ski and share what they know.

LEADER Dave Merriam, Director

WHAT'S TAUGHT American Teaching System (ATS)

A GOOD DEAL Stowe offers a 90-minute semi-private lesson for up to three students looking for individual attention and personalized feedback. Groups are formed using quick personal interviews to match students with similar skill levels, learning styles and motivation. Cost: $35.

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