By Ali Sheehy (Fifth Year)
On March 12th 2022, 17 ASM students and 4 teachers travelled out of Dublin airport for our school’s ski trip. We left at 7am from the school and wouldn’t be in Austria until 11pm that night, however the long journey ahead didn’t stop us from having a laugh and being in high spirits. We even managed to sing Olivia Rodrigo’s entire discography (which the teachers definitely didn’t hate us for).
Finally, after about 15 hours of travelling which included a four hour bus drive from Verona in Italy, we finally arrived in the Tyrolean Zugspitz Area of Erwhald in Austria. We were staying in the Sonnenburg Hotel and we were surrounded by the Alps. The views were incredible, even from our bedroom windows. We had an entire floor of the hotel to ourselves and we were literally right next to the slopes
The day after we arrived we were straight into our six days of lessons. Our instructors, Mirthe and Robert, showed us the basics of skiing, such as getting up from falling, parallel turns and, of course, the beloved snowplough. None of us had actually been skiing before, but by the end of the week we had been down a few red slopes (the second most difficult). This was not without our fair share of falls mind you!
We spent the first three days in the place beside our hotel learning the basics. Then we went by bus to the Erwhald Almbahm slopes for the last three days. We were in the heart of the mountains, surrounded by trees and slopes and all sorts. Some days on the ski lifts we’d literally pass through the clouds as we rode up to almost 1,700 metres! The Almbahm slopes had tunnels, loops and even ramps that you could speed up and jump off. Despite all that we were probably more excited to go up the T-Bar to the top of the mountain and pass all the skiers as they made their way down.
Even after skiing the day didn’t stop. We’d be straight into swimming at the leisure centre, going down the slide, or having snowball fights as we sledded down the hills. Walking through the village at night to get food or ice cream is just as peaceful as it sounds. The mountains are just as cool looking, whether they’re in broad daylight or under the stars.
On the last day we even had a race down the mountain and received medals for all the work we’d done. Even though we were all sad to go we were probably the most tired we’d ever been – at least I was anyway. How we all managed to sing our hearts out at karaoke that night was beyond me!
Overall, it was an unbelievable experience! From the nice food to the views on the slopes, there was something there for everyone to enjoy. I’m glad it’s now something I can tick off the bucket list and I would recommend anybody that has the opportunity to go takes it, because it is definitely an experience you’ll never forget. You’ll make loads of memories out of it and probably an embarrassing video of you falling flat on your face too. And don’t worry about not being able to ski, I got a certificate for most falls out of everyone and I still loved every minute of it!