When the sun is expected to melt a layer of snow on the slopes, knowing how to ski on ice is a useful skill to have. Of course not every skier encounters ice by accident; some extreme skiers welcome it as a way to get their daily adrenaline rush. Skiing on ice is difficult, requires more strength and balance than snow and can brutalize your ankles. But you don't have to be into extreme sports to master ice skiing; the proper equipment and technique is all you need.
- Sharpen your skis. It doesn't matter if the ice you are gliding on rests only at the bottom of the slopes, or covers an entire trail, if you even think you're going to encounter snow then you should sharpen your skis. Ensuring the edges are as sharp as possible is the only way to conquer ice while skiing. After you've determined the exact angle of your skis, place them on a flat, steady surface. Using a file with a guide that has been set to the angle of your skis, move the file in one direction along the edge until satisfied with the sharpness. If burrs appear on the edge use a polishing stone to remove them. Repeat on the other ski. You can also have an expert at a ski shop file your edges if you want to front the cash.
- Maintain the right stance. Since skidding does most skiers in when it comes to ice, learning the proper stance is a must. Your shin should touch the tongue of your boot which applies enough pressure for the precise movements necessary to ski on ice. While turning isn't recommended, if you must do it then lean, at the beginning of the turn, on the weight bearing side. This technique will give you more control over the ski, but it is risky because the heavy lean will worsen a skid if you lose control. The safer bet is to evenly distribute your weight to both skis and make gentle movements while turning. But if you were into the safe bet, I wager you wouldn't be skiing on ice in the first place.