An impressive number of students came in droves to the Richmond Park School ski trip this year, even as favourable metrological conditions were uncertain until the last few days before the trip. Eighty students, ten monitors and two teachers attended a compact five days of intensive skiing, a generous number of apres-ski events and welcomed moments of rest in-between.

Astún is situated in the northern province Aragon and hosts suitable runs for all ages and levels. The views are breath-taking when you are not concentrating on perfecting your carving techniques or trying to avoid more novice skiers who are just discovering the effects of gravity and the inevitable collisions that follow.

Fortunately, the our monitors were experts in diversifying the levels of ability and upgrades were frequent, as some students quickly enhanced their previous skills and built upon a newfound confidence. Eighty children, however, will bring challenges on any adventure, and this trip was no difference, with a particularly virulent stomach bug which affected a relatively high number of students for a day or two as well as a handful of expected injuries. However, many of these adversities were quickly overcome and supervised in a professional manner.

Après ski events included a memorable trek through the historically village of Canfranc which housed a series of hidden war bunkers and a highly impressive, converted railway station hotel which gave more than a passing resemblance to a scene from Harry Potter. Students also enjoyed balling, cultural tours around Jaca, and a wonderful “Spain’s got talent”, singing competition.

With the increasing threat of climate change and the corresponding uncertainty of snow condition, besides the variables of sickness and injuries, the ski trip still holds much enjoyment and personal development for all those that participate in this event. We hope this was equally a highly memorable, and enjoyable time for the students who came.