Wow! Winter Park!
Another year and another amazing ski trip! 29 Westbournian’s departed for Colorado, USA and a real family feel was evident from the start! From ten year olds to fifty something’s, there was an amazing atmosphere of fun, adventure, overcoming fears, cooperation, humour, and care for each other. This trip wasn’t just about the amazing skiing, superb venue and fantastic weather. They all helped but there was a real buzz every day as we shared our stories and memories of the day and the week. On the trip were pupils, old boys and girls of up to ten years after leaving Westbourne, parents and staff.
We began with spectacular views of Iceland and Greenland. The tectonic Iceland and glaciated Greenland kept Mr Davey happy and he was keen to share his geographical knowledge on the long flight.
On arrival in resort after a long day of travel it was clear than the fresh snow was going to be providing excellent conditions for everyone and top ups throughout the week brought more smiles. Pupils gained excellent instruction with their own dedicated groups and parents were welcomed into the adult ski school groups.
It wasn’t long before groups were into the forests of Winter Park and skiing in the trees in and out of Mary Jane mountain’s many bumps and chutes. Mr Hicks was keen to pass on his own knowledge and experience helping many to negotiate the tough runs. Miss Pursehouse added a calming assurance and lead for younger pupils to aspire to. Mrs Lillywhite, with us on her own holiday, helped out and added fun and enthusiasm on her first Westbourne trip.
A highlight but provider of much angst were the trips to the Cirque at the top of the resort. It was an incredibly steep bowl that all photos have failed to do justice to. The Cirque is one of the 7 territories of Winter Park!
Everyone’s skiing improved considerably throughout the week, Mr Davey even managed to bring a branch home that he….captured, when he got too close to one of the many trees.
Many thanks to all of those who contributed to making this such a special adventure at a special resort. But, especially to Miss Pursehouse and Mr Hicks for their vital contributions throughout the trip.
Memories to treasure for life.
What one of our Old Westbournians had to say
…” Where do I began after such an incredible trip to Winter Park?
Firstly, I would just like to say a huge thank you for allowing myself and other old Westbournians the pleasure of coming back to join Westbourne on this recent ski trip.
It felt like the good old times once again and even though it’s four years since I left Westbourne it just felt like yesterday… mixing with both teachers, pupils and parents on this incredible trip. It is this unique community atmosphere that I struggle to find any where else and the thing I miss the most since leaving Westbourne.
The trip itself was possibly even better than the 2013 trip to Winter Park – full of skiing from the first to the last lift with the teachers making sure we all managed to get on that last lift! We enjoyed many excursions – a favorite one of mine was tubing where Westbourne, as always, tried to beat records! We opted to break the tubing hill chain record by managing to put together a chain of 28 giggling pupils and adults. Let’s just say it got rather messy at the bottom!
The skiing itself was exceptional, be it on the fresh powder each day, to skiing through tight trees or wide blues and let’s not forget our incredible instructors.
Overall what stood out for me was the diversity of the group, from Year 6 students to those Year 11’s completing their GCSE and ultimately to myself and other leavers at degree level and beyond, all having attended Westbourne. All of us sharing common values/ground and creating such an enjoyable trip together. This made the days skiing and the evenings all the more memorable and interesting.
It is for this reason that I wanted to come back and join in one of Westbourne’s trips abroad, just as I was fortunate enough to do so whilst still a pupil. Westbourne creates an atmosphere like no other, one that evolves in everyday school life and continues when you leave the school, something many other schools could only hope for.
So, this leaves me to say, “when’s the next trip?”