Skip to main content

Clever skiing expert navigates a chute by ‘walking’ down

Palisades Tahoe Tram and Terrain
Palisades Tahoe

Chutes provide a hair-raising challenge to expert skiers and snowboarders. These narrow swaths of snow require focus and skill, with even the most advanced athletes pushed to the limit. With rock walls on both sides and a dramatic pitch, a chute is reminiscent of a harrowing rollercoaster ride. It’s also a thrill. 

Recently, Italian outdoor adventurer Matthias Weger took a novel approach when skiing a chute. By using an ingenious yet lighthearted method, the skier negotiated a pitch even the finest skier would struggle with. Here’s how it played out.

Why Matthias Weger’s chute descent is so interesting

Typically, chute skiing uses hop turns to scrub speed and maintain control. Or, in some cases, dropping in and straightlining provides a high-speed thrill. But recently, Matthias Weger encountered a chute where neither was possible.

In video footage, with rock walls crowding both sides, Weger is squeezed like a sardine with nowhere to go. On a dramatic pitch with a 3-4 ft. wide strip, the skier is forced to resort to an unorthodox technique: walking.

Laying with his back against the snow, he “steps” down the chute like a staircase. Digging in the tail of one ski, lifting the other out, and then stepping down, Weger slowly but surely makes progress. As he stated in his Instagram post, “Weird problems – strange solutions.”

The Fingers on KT-22 at Palisades Tahoe
Palisades Tahoe

Should you try Matthias Weger’s “walking” technique?

When encountering a challenging situation, Matthias Weger found an innovative solution. While it wasn’t pretty, it worked. Though chute skiing is an art in and of itself, it typically doesn’t account for chutes this narrow. So, if you’re in a similar conundrum, the “step down” method may be just the ticket. It’s all about reaching the bottom safely. 

Another technique is to “self-arrest” with an ice axe. By holding an ice axe(s) on the descent, skiers and riders can dig in if they lose control. These tools can also serve as a balance point for the gnarliest lines. 

How to Self Arrest | Episode 5 | MSC Alpine Snow Skills Series

But more than anything, the big-mountain experience helps you ride chutes with the flow. It’s that gradual building of skill, step by step, that reassures you with each subsequent drop-in. When the pitch looks impossible, you can draw on previous runs, knowing you have the chops to make it down. 

Matthias Weger’s recent “walk” down a narrow chute was both unique and playful. Though it won’t win any style contests, the method got Weger to safety, which, in the end, is what really matters. For skiers in a similar situation, the “walking” technique is good to know and could mean the difference between calling for help or reaching the bottom. Either way, chute skiing is an art learned over time, and playing on big mountains is the best way to improve.

Mark Reif
Mark Reif is a writer from Stowe, Vermont. During the winter, he works as a snowboard coach and rides more than 100 days. The…
Forget rice: This is how to actually fix a wet iPhone, according to Apple
Have a wet iPhone? This is how you fix it
Various iPhones on a table.

The world is full of precarious situations for our unsuspecting smartphones, particularly when it comes to water exposure. Whether it's a sudden downpour during a hike, an accidental drop into a sink, or a plunge into a lake, our iPhones are constantly at risk of water damage. While most models are water-resistant, none of them are completely waterproof.

Understanding this vulnerability, Apple has put forward a series of recommendations to mitigate the damage when your device encounters mishaps like these. Apple's guidelines are crucial for iPhone users, providing a lifeline for your device in what can often be a moment of panic and uncertainty.

Read more
This van life camper van sleeps 8, goes everywhere, and you can rent it for less than a hotel would cost
Explore the best of the U.S. in these custom-built, four-wheel-drive, go-anywhere rigs
Moterra Campervan rental parked in a Utah National Park campsite.

The quintessential image of modern van life is one of unbridled freedom, of taking to the open road, of living on your terms and going whichever the wind takes you. While that can be pretty accurate, actually living the van life can also be expensive. There’s buying the van, the time and investment required for building it out, and, of course, the looming cost of repairs, which can seriously add up. But what if you could have all the fun of van living without the expense and hassle of actually owning a campervan? That’s where comes in.

Here’s the low-down on Moterra Campervans
Moterra Campervans is a rental agency offering short-term campervan rentals in the United States. These aren’t your old-school Westfalias (no disrespect intended) but high-end, late-model, four-wheel-drive, van life-worthy rigs ready to take you just about anywhere. Picture your next vacation: Trading in your typical hotel room and boring rental sedan for a go-anywhere van life rig purpose-built for exploration.

Read more
Travel tips: 5 easy ways to pack more efficiently for your skiing or snowboarding trip
Skier in Japan powder

Traveling is one of the best parts of being a skier or snowboarder. Across the globe, there's an abundance of ski resorts and mountain ranges, each offering a unique experience on the snow. Getting there can be a challenge, especially in places that are very far off the beaten path. From travel logistics to gear choices, it’s essential to optimize your plans and equipment so you can enjoy the mountains to the fullest. If not, your trip can be a series of hangups.

For a seamless getaway, we’ve compiled five travel tips to help you pack for your skiing or snowboarding getaway. Let’s dive in.

Read more