All pistes are colour coded so you know what to expect from a run before you head down it! In Europe there are four ratings as follows . . .
Green - Often referred to as nursery slopes - Especially for beginners
Blue - Easy slopes, almost always groomed
Red - Intermediate slopes, steeper or narrower than blues, usually groomed
Black - Expert slopes, may or may not be groomed, a wide classification
The FIS (Fédération Internationale de Ski) is the main international organisation of snow sports. They arrange the major events worldwide, ensuring fair and safe competition. They also have a set of rules for all skiers and snowboarders. When you go on the mountain you must stick to the 10 FIS rules for both your safety and the safety of those around you. They are . . .
1. Respect for others
A skier or snowboarder must behave in such a way that he does not endanger or prejudice others.
2. Control of speed and skiing or snowboarding
A skier or snowboarder must move in control. He must adapt his speed and manner of skiing or snowboarding to his personal ability and to the prevailing conditions of terrain, snow and weather as well as to the density of traffic.
3. Choice of route
A skier or snowboarder coming from behind must choose his route in such a way that he does not endanger skiers or snowboarders ahead.
A skier or snowboarder may overtake another skier or snowboarder above or below and to the right or to the left provided that he leaves enough space for the overtaken skier or snowboarder to make any voluntary or involuntary movement.
5. Entering, starting and moving upwards
A skier or snowboarder entering a marked run, starting again after stopping or moving upwards on the slopes must look up and down the slopes that he can do so without endangering himself or others.
6. Stopping on the piste
Unless absolutely necessary, a skier or snowboarder must avoid stopping on the piste in narrow places or where visibility is restricted. After a fall in such a place, a skier or snowboarder must move clear of the piste as soon as possible.
7. Climbing and descending on foot
A skier or snowboarder either climbing or descending on foot must keep to the side of the piste.
8. Respect for signs and markings
A skier or snowboarder must respect all signs and markings.
At accidents, every skier or snowboarder is duty bound to assist.
Every skier or snowboarder and witness, whether a responsible party or not, must exchange names and addresses following an accident.