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Gunfighters Winter Sports Day
BOISE, Idaho –Bogus Basin Recreation Area patrons perform a “helicopter” while tubing during the Gunfighter’s 2011 Winter Sports Day Feb. 25. Tubing was one of several activities members of the 366th Fighter Wing took advantage of during the day. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Renishia Richardson)
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Gunfighters hit the slopes for annual Winter Sports Day

Posted 3/7/2011   Updated 3/7/2011 Email story   Print story


by Senior Airman Alyssa C. Wallace
366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

3/7/2011 - MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho -- On any given day, Gunfighters can be found soaring high above the Sawtooth Mountains. Feb. 25 proved to be no different, as hundreds of members of the 366th Fighter Wing scaled 7,000 feet up the mountains to Bogus Basin Recreation Area for the base's 2011 Winter Sports Day.

Continuing a 20-year tradition, Gunfighters were permitted a day outside their duty station for a day of discounted skiing. This leisure day came just a week after the wing passed its Unit Compliance Inspection.

"The base holds these events as an opportunity to get as many of on-base skiers to go out for one single day," said Mike Hurt, outdoor recreation director. "Everybody enjoys not only having the day off, but having such discounted tickets at the mountain."

Senior Airman Kirk Peiffer, firefighter with the 366th Civil Engineer Squadron, has been an avid snowboarder for 11 years, and said he enjoys the "escape from the everyday life."

"It was absolutely amazing for the commanders to come together and give us a break after the UCI to unwind and enjoy time with family and friends," Airman Peiffer said.

The Airman, who is a Pennsylvania native, says the mountain terrain here is phenomenal compared to what he grew up with. He says he would definitely participate in another Winter Sports Day, and encourages his fellow Airmen to go, as well.

"It allows you to get away, and you get to be with coworkers in different aspect," he said. "It's good for morale - you really don't have to worry about rank position. You could be out there, skiing with a commander, having a great time. It's a good break, fun and cheap - it's a win-win situation."

Thos who missed out on the Winter Sports Day still have the opportunity to go skiing as the season is not yet over. Mr. Hurt says the outdoor adventure program still has discounted equipment and tickets available for Gunfighters.

To obtain equipment or tickets, call OAP at 828-6288 or visit

Remember these winter sports safety tips:

Skiing and snowboarding are popular, physically challenging sports that require physical endurance. Many participants can sustain sprains and muscle injuries due to fatigue, so being prepared can decrease chances of injury.

Snowboarding has become increasingly popular. Most snowboard injuries result from lack of experience and jumping with the most common snowboarding injury being wrist injuries and fractures.

Protective gear: Wear helmets, gloves, goggles, sunscreen and protective clothing. When snowboarding, consider wrist guards and knee pads.

Fatigue: Eat high-energy snacks, take breaks when needed and get at least seven hours of sleep the night before.

Preseason exercise: Keep in shape throughout the year to avoid overexertion and make sure to do some stretching prior to hitting the slopes.

Beginners: Take lessons and stay on the beginner's slopes.

Falling: Keep arms forward, skis together and hands over skis. Don't use your hands to break your fall and wait until you stop sliding to get up. If you feel out of control, fall to your rear or side.

Equipment: Inspect your equipment and ensure it is in good condition.

Jumping: Avoid jumping until you are more experienced.

Ski Trails: Getting lost in the Idaho winter conditions can be fatal. Ski resorts provide trail maps if you are new to the area. Be sure to get a map and never ski outside of the posted trails.

Ski Area Codes: All local ski resorts have rules for the slopes. You should know those rules and be courteous to all users.

(Editor's note: Tips provided by the 366th Fighter Wing safety office)

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