From small local hills to mega resorts, we bring you the insiders guide, where SYNC Athletes share secrets to success and local knowledge about mountain and race trails they know best.
Tell us a little about yourself
Foreste (Fo) Peterson, 25, from Berkeley, California and grew up skiing at Squaw Valley. Former U.S. Ski Team member and Dartmouth Women’s Alpine Team captain. 2017 Dartmouth College Female Athlete of the Year. 2018 Dartmouth College graduate with degrees in Environmental Studies and Geography. Now skiing for new independent post-graduate women’s team called Team X Alpine (X for females’ two chromosomes)
Relationship to Dartmouth Skiway’s Worden’s GS hill
I would say I have a love-hate relationship with this hill. To be honest, it is one of my least favorite GS hills and I’ve never really enjoyed training on it while at Dartmouth – partly because the lift takes forever, partly because the snow is normally inconsistent, and partly because it is too flat for my taste. That being said, some of my favorite memories as a college skier have taken place on this hill. Having raced down it at the Dartmouth Carnival for the last four years with a “D” snowflake tattoo on my cheek, a Dartmouth Women’s Alpine hand-made bow in my hair that was dyed pink at the tips, my mom writing times on the scoreboard, and the rest of my family, teammates, and Dartmouth friends cheering me on from the bottom…this hill will always hold a special place in my heart.
What makes this run different or unique?
Worden’s is deceivingly difficult. It’s one of those hills that is so easy that it is hard to be fast on. It starts out on a flat for the first 3 or 4 gates, rolls over onto a 5-6 gate pitch, and then brings you into a compression that turns into what feels like a 40 second wind tunnel. This bottom 2/3 of the course is not steep, but not pancake flat either. There are rolls and a relentless side-hill that keeps you on your toes all the way to the finish line.
Key things to nail in order to do well?
Come off the pitch with elevation and carry your speed onto the flats! And then just keep looking for speed, working in and out of your tuck. Basically, if you don’t make any mistakes, you’ll be fast!
What type of skier wins here?
“No one from UNH” according to Coley Oliver – former UNH skier and now Team X Alpine coach. He said it, not me! In all seriousness though, I do think that any non-Dartmouth skier is at a greater disadvantage on this hill just because the more time you can get on it, the better you can figure out its quirks and dial it in. I remember I was initially really slow on it in training my freshman year, but progressively got faster and faster each run down it. So, I do think experience on this hill is definitely a plus, but it won’t guarantee a win. At the end of the day, the type of skier who wins on Worden’s is someone who is super clean, takes speed from a pitch to a flat really well, and is then able to maintain that speed all the way down.
If you're wearing this suit, you have an advantage...
What’s your favorite memory from this trail?
I have a lot of great memories racing on this hill, but my favorite was last year at my fourth and final Dartmouth Carnival. Leading up to it, I was feeling a bit of pressure because not only was it my last Dartmouth Carnival, but I had won the year before, so I obviously wanted to defend my victory on home turf! Plus, it’s always nice to perform when your family makes the trek out from California and your friends and classmates leave the Dartmouth bubble to come watch you. Despite the pressure, I remember making a conscious effort to enjoy myself to the fullest and entirely soak up all that I loved about being a Dartmouth Women’s Alpine skier the last 4 years. Whether it was dying our tips pink at the start of Dartmouth Carnival week, our top-secret pre-race bib draws, our obnoxiously loud pump up song as we rolled into the parking lot race-day morning, the revealing of our “Carni Crushes” on the scoreboard, or the feast of a spread our parents brought to fuel us between runs, there are so many aspects of this race that put a smile on my face when I think back on it. Overcoming Worden’s uniquely challenging features and skiing to a victory this last year was the icing on the cake.
Who doesn't love icing on the cake?
11 Non-skiing things to do at Dartmouth and surrounding area:
- Eat breakfast at Lou’s on Main St. in Hanover
- Skate around Lake Morey
- Jog through Pine Park
- Go to the rope swing at Mink Brook on the Connecticut River
- Have a picnic meal on the Green
- Explore Baker-Berry library
- Hike a segment of the Appalachian Trail
- Go to King Arthur Flour (KAF) in Norwich
- Pick blueberries at Cedar Circle Farm
- Get Morano Gelato on Main St. in Hanover
- Learn how to play Dartmouth pong (ha!)