Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fast Freda

Although almost seventy-five years old, Freda Nieters is still using her very special talents. Here she is coaching a first time skier on the slopes. She is patient, kind and considerate to her students, fills them with a "can do" attitude, and is a wonderful teacher.

Freda hopes to raise money for the SIDS Alliance, an organization dedicated to the research and cure of 
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The following was taken from Freda's web page.

Freda Langell Nieters is staging an event that will both remember her little grandson Zachary, lost to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) about a year ago, and aim to provide a means that others might avoid such a loss. Soon to be 75 years old, Freda has “unretired” to resume her alpine ski-teaching career, now at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, working part-time teaching children. She will use her teaching wages as seed money for a fund-raiser to support research by SIDS Alliance aimed to combat this all-too common condition  The fund-raiser will recognize her 75-year age as she skis down 75,000 vertical feet in one day! Keystone Resort is the locus and it and its parent Vail Resorts is giving their endorsement and support.
Skiing down 75,000 feet in a day is several times more than almost anyone of any age is capable of skiing in one day. Just how much skiing is that? Freda's course will be at Keystone, utilizing its River Run gondola to access her route. She will come down from the 11,640 foot Summit House atop Dercum Mountain to River Run base at 9,300 feet altitude, a difference of 2,340 vertical feet. Thus she will need to make some 32 trips down from the top to add up the 75,000 feet! This is over 14 vertical miles. Of course because she will ski a sloping descent, she will be skiing 3 or 4 times that many miles. And she will also need to take some 32 trips back up the gondola, at about 10 minutes each, consuming about 5 hours there alone. Yet no one who knows Freda doubts she will succeed in her quest, and least of all does Freda doubt she will. For when at age 70 Freda initially retired from teaching alpine skiing at Keystone Resort after 30 years, she did so with a burst of enthusiasm that culminated in her skiing 70,000 vertical feet in one ski day of 8 hours. That event raised $13,000 to fund ski equipment for local school children who would not otherwise have had the opportunity to ski even though they were growing up in ski country. Recently she said about her former 70,000-foot event, “Well, hey that wasn’t too hard to do—I wasn’t any more tired doing that than teaching beginners.” And she says this about her planned 75,000-foot event for SIDS, “God gave me strong legs, and I’ll use someone else’s brain for the research.”