As part of its winter at Westminster program, Westminster College held a skiing/snowboarding jargon contest in January and February, inviting its skier-students, as well as the general public, to submit skiing and snowboarding words that aren't in the dictionary to a Web site called

When the smoke had cleared, some 70 words and phrases had been submitted, topped by the winning entry, "Chowda," sent in by Alan Miller, who won a couple of ski passes, although no dictionary, for his effort.

Chowda — to fall on one's face, causing one to "chow on some powda."

As a public service in the land of the Greatest Snow on Earth, here is a sampling from the rest of the Westminster words (you can see them all at, along with others submitted by people on the staff at Ski Utah and other local ski/board enthusiasts, most of whom were just fine with remaining anonymous:

You won't find these words in the dictionary, but you will on the hill.

Beater: bad skier.

Biff: to crash.

Blower: really light powder.

Bomb hole: huge crash site.

Case it: to crash hard.

Dank: cool, awesome.

Face shots: powder shots.

Fakie: riding backward.

Flailer: someone who constantly crashes.

Free refills: skiing/riding the same run over and over because it's snowing so hard your tracks keep filling in.

Freshies: fresh snow.

Gaper: bad skier.

Gaper gap: patch of exposed forehead between hat/helmet and goggles; derivation of Gaper.

Gaperiffic: lots of Gapers in one place.

Goggle gap: same as Gaper gap.

Garage sale: a bad wreck with poles, goggles, skies and gloves flying in every direction (same as yard sale).

Gnarly: cool, awesome and scary.

Gnar gnar: beyond cool, awesome and scary.

Sicky gnar gnar: super beyond cool, awesome and scary.

Huck: getting air.

In the back seat: a novice skier who's leaning back.

Junk show: person walking through parking lot dragging their coat, losing their gloves, skis going one way, poles another.

Mank: heavy, sun-baked snow.

Noodler: old-school skier who skis straight up and down.

Nuking: snowing hard.

Pow: powder.

Rack it: to hit something hard with your body.

Schralp/schralping: getting after it; skiing/boarding hard.

Schralp the gnar: to shred the pow pow.

Septic: sick powder day.

Shred: to carve with style.

Sick: cool, awesome.

Sketch: iffy, risky.

Smoove: smooth wind-buff pow.

Snowflake: One who shirks all responsibility to ski or ride on a powder day.

"Sorry, dude": how a snowboarder says hello.

Sup: how a snowboarder really says hello.

Still spill: to make it to the bottom of the run successfully and then fall over for no explicable reason.

Switch: skiing backward.

Texas stretch pants: blue jeans.

The kind: really, really good; almost perfect.

Touron: mix between tourist and moron.

Two foot flu: condition that strikes employee/student after it has snowed 2 feet.

Yard sale: see garage sale.

Knowing the words, though, doesn't cut it unless you know how to string them together. For a good example in walking the walk and talking the talk, I spoke to Katalyn Dalton, a 15-year-old ninth-grader at Treasure Mountain International School in Park City, who explained why she was wearing a neck brace:

"I was skiing in the terrain park, and I hit the down box. It's like a box that's like going downward, slanted downward, and then I did a 270. It's like, say you're skiing straight and it's like pretty much three-fourths of a turn, and one I like didn't land. I landed straight, and you're supposed to land slanted or you'll like fall, and I hit the box and cased it, like really hard. And I laid there for a little bit and got back up and started skiing again, and then I hit this box that's called a C box that's in a shape of a C, and it's slanted and everything. And I was skiing switch, and I also did a 270 onto that one, but when I got to the center of it, my skis slipped and I racked it. I like hit my rib cage, and I got knocked out, and I woke up a little later and the ski patrol was there, and they were being like, 'Well,' and I was like, 'No worries, I'm fine.' But like, they wouldn't let me leave."

Lee Benson's column runs Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Please send e-mail to [email protected] and faxes to 801-237-2527.