Hintertux Glacier resort located 55 miles from Innsbruck, Austria hosted the Freeheeler European Opening Festival presented by the Freeheeler Magazine this past weekend November 23-25, 2018. The festival celebrated the telemark skiing community with a variety of packages available for purchase that included workshops, telemark gear demos, parties and fellowship at the resort and in the neighboring town of Lanersbach.
Telemark workshops were offered for enthusiastic telemark skiers both young and old. Classes ranged from beginner to advanced in basic skills, freestyle, kid’s specific skills and the traditional single pole known as a lurk.
Telemark gear demos were set up at Hintertux Glacier ski area for telemark skiers to try out the latest gear from a wide variety of industry companies. Demos allowed for festival goers to try a wide variety of tele gear including: boots, bindings, and ski combinations throughout the entire weekend.
Festival packages included a variety of coupons for drinks, food and the opportunities for fellowship amongst kindred telemark spirits. A meet & greet party on Friday night kicked things off at the Pinzger bar in Lanersbach followed by a celebration at the Tux Tourist Center in Lanersbach. It included presentations from legendary telemark figures and athletes like Bob Mazarei, John Falkiner and J.T. Robinson. A telemark movie premiere of the latest from Mountain Grown Media entitled, “A Telemark Tale” was also screened.
“The telemark community is among the most tight-knit, genuine and authentic groups of people I have ever been blessed to be a part of,” said American ski guide and one of Saturday night’s presenters, J.T. Robinson. “I have been a telemark skier for nearly twenty years. This community of generous and caring people from all over Europe has welcomed me into their lives this weekend with open arms and hearts as if I were one of their own family. It was a true honor to be a part of the festival weekend at Hintertux.” Organizer, and owner of the Freeheeler Magazine, Richard Schürf said, “I was incredibly pleased with the efforts of everyone involved from the sponsors to the demos. Also a big thank you to the Freeheeler crew, the instructors and everyone at Hintertux and the tourism office. The feedback from the people at the festival was fantastic, and I am already looking forward to next year!”
Event sponsors and demonstrator companies included: Freeheeler Magazine, Hintertuxer Gletscher, Tux.at, Rab, Lowe Alpine, Sport Conrad, Kliene Tenne, Tux 1280, Telemark Only, 7tm, Meidjo, Blizzard, Lusti Ski, Sporten Skis, Scott, Scarpa, Crispi, Kruetzspitze, 22 Designs, Rottefella, and the Telemark Kids Project.