This weekend has seen us undertake a rather wintry set of activities. Saturday we were skiing and snowboarding at Xscape Castleford, and in the evening we were watching the Sheffield Steelers at the Hallam FM Arena.

I'll admit I was a little nervous about going to Xscape. Their guidelines for recreational use being controlling speed, linking turns and able to use a poma (button) lift meant I worried about being thrown off the slope for being crap. However that was not the case! Firstly, the poma lift, easy peasy, nice and slow and shouldn't be a problem for anyone. The slope is great; not too steep, not too flat, and then of course it is real snow! Excellent, because it means falling doesn't hurt (although I only fell once) and it makes turning a hell of a lot easier. Although it seemed busy from outside actually it wasn't too bad on the slope. I've gone away from Xscape only wanting to go back. Downsides - realising that Dawn is better than me at snowboarding (I need to up my confidence with turning at speed), and the price, 2 hours for Dawn and I was £62. Ouch. All that said if you've not yet caught the winter sports bug, then get down here, get on the snow and learn to ski or snowboard. You won't regret it, it is easier than learning on the artificial stuff, and once the snow mountain is built in Sheffield you won't have far to travel and you'll be able to have a great time.

Ice hockey on the other hand is also great fun. Its fast, on ice, and involves quite a lot of clattering into each other and occasionally a fight. Great! The only downside, the Steelers lost last night 3-1, bummer.