During the Easter break Park Mains took away 12 pupils on the trip of a lifetime Skiing and Snowboarding in the Aosta valley, Italy. We all had a fantastic week. Plans are underway for another Skiing and Snowboarding trip next Easter (2019). This trip is open to all S1 and S2 pupils only. The letter below is going out as of Monday 14/05/18. Should your child be interested, please see the letter for additional information and contact Mr. Long, through the school office, with any questions.
Snow Letter 2019
Day 1 – Saturday 7th April – Travel Day
It’s Saturday. It’s 10am. Pupils are excited for an 8 day ski holiday with their friends. Parents are excited for an 8 day holiday away from their kids. After saying their final goodbyes, we buckled in and set off for what was going to be a mammoth 24 hour journey from Erskine to Courmayeur. With spirits high, the first half of the drive flew in and before we knew it we had arrived in Dover for our 8pm ferry. On the ferry we were treated to a complimentary buffet which was well needed after a day of travelling.
Day 2 – Sunday 8th April – Travel Day 2 & Arriving In Italy
Soon, we arrived in Calais and we embarked on the French leg of our journey. We all managed a few hours’ kip through the night and when we woke up it was time for breakfast at a service station. With a croissant in hand and the sun rising over the French countryside, it was a picturesque start to our 2nd day. As we continued our drive, the landscape began to change dramatically as snow-capped mountains appeared in the distance as we approached the Alps.
Upon arriving in Courmayeur, we met our Interski coordinator, Izzy, who would look after us all week. We dropped our bags off in the hotel and headed to the ski/snowboard hire and collected all of our gear for the week.
Day 3 – Monday 9th April – First Day on the Slopes & Ten-Pin Bowling
Monday began with a bright and early wakeup call from Mr Long as he ran along the corridor chapping doors and playing music to get pupils up and excited. After a big breakfast, we were bussed to La Thuile and pupils were introduced to their instructors and groups for the week.
The visibility on the mountain was poor, but with plenty of snow fall over the recent weeks the quality of the slopes was fantastic. We shredded the slopes from 9:30am until 2:30pm and met up with the rest of the group at the bottom of the slope. Everyone was smiling; there was a mutual feeling of excitement throughout the group and we couldn’t wait to get back on the slope tomorrow. But first, we had the first activity of our Après schedule – Ten-Pin Bowling! There were some impressive strikes and some not-so-impressive gutter balls, but we all had a blast.
Day 4 – Tuesday 10th April – Second Day on the Slopes & Pizza Night
Arriving at the resort, morale was high and pupils couldn’t wait to get going. Unfortunately, it was raining quite heavily, but that didn’t stop Mr Long dancing to songs on his phone much to the amusement/embarrassment of the pupils. The weather dried up as the day progressed and the second day on the mountain was just as enjoyable as the first.
Tuesday’s Après activities involved visiting the local town of Aosta. We walked along the cobblestone streets and arrived at a quaint restaurant where we were served authentic Italian pizza – yum!
Day 5 – Wednesday 11th April – Third Day on the Slopes & Ice Skating
As pupils got more runs under their belt, both their confidence and ability grew and their instructors took them on newer and more challenging slopes. Visibility was still poor but it was getting progressively clearer as the week went on.
After having dinner at the hotel, we headed to Aosta again – this time for ice skating. As if Jack Findlay wasn’t showing off enough with his impressive skiing, he brought his own ice skating boots!
Falling on the ice became known as “doing a John Davies”. He proudly claims he fell a total of 21 times! It certainly didn’t dent his enthusiasm.
Day 6 – Thursday 12th April – Fourth Day on the Slopes & Ice Cream
Thursday was the first clear day on the mountain, and what a day it was! This was the first time we could appreciate the awe-inspiring mountains that surrounded us in the valley (and actually see where we were going).
After a fantastic day on the slopes, we headed back to the hotel to get changed before walking into the local town of Courmayeur. We hit up a busy ice cream shop where we ended up getting a 2nd serving – oops! Who doesn’t love ice cream though?
Day 7 – Friday 12th April – Fifth Day on the Slopes & Quiz Night
Friday saw the clouds parting and blue skies over the mountain range. This meant two things: incredible visibility, and loads of sunburnt faces!!
After skiing, we met at a restaurant on the mountain and pupils were presented with awards from their instructors; recognising their achievements over the week. Instructors shared their favourite memory of pupil, many of which included spectacularly wiping out into the snow face first.
As this was our last night in Courmayeur, we rounded off the day with a presentation from our coordinator Izzy, before taking part in a team quiz organised by Mr Smith… Even the coach drivers got involved! It’s fair to say things got heated but Mr Long’s knowledge of garibaldi biscuits helped his team win the prize.
Day 8 – Saturday 13th April – Last Day on the Slopes & Home Time
Before heading back to Erskine, we managed to fit in almost a full day on the slopes. The sun was shining and we all made the most of our final runs on the stunning mountains. Mr Long and Mr Smith bumped into the snowboarding pupils and tagged along with them for the afternoon, which resorted in many snowballs being thrown and pushing each other over. As 2pm arrived, we returned our equipment and waved goodbye to La Thuile.
We returned to the hotel for a few hours to pack away our equipment and charge our phones and tablets, before setting off for the return journey back home. The atmosphere on the bus was fantastic, with a noticeable difference in how the pupils interacted compared to the outwards journey. It was clear all the pupils had bonded as they shared this amazing experience together.