Taking your family out for an awesome skiing and snowboarding holiday experience? It’s one of the best Christmas vacations that you will find. However, you’ll need to be prepared, especially if it’s your first time. Hitting the slopes is a lot of fun, but it can be dangerous if you don’t take the necessary precautions. Here are some tips you should remember for planning your family’s Christmas ski vacation…
Choose Your Locale
If you don’t have much experience with skiing or snowboarding, pay special attention to where you book your vacation. Some resorts are made specifically to accommodate more advanced skiers, so look for a place with a good bunny hill and more easy and intermediate courses than advanced ones. They can also vary wildly in price, so you’ll need to make sure that it fits your budget. Also, check out the resort to make sure that it’s a friendly environment for all members of your party. The real crown jewel is if you can plan to rent ski-in/ski-out property to stay in by the property.
Schedule a Lesson
Even if you’ve been skiing or snowboarding before, don’t take the lift to the top of the mountain without taking a lesson first. Find a resort that offers lessons and schedule one for yourself and any others in your party who need it. Many offer them free as a part of your vacation package; others will ask for a small fee, but it’s well worth it. You’ll be a lot safer and have a lot more fun if you go take this important step.
Be In Shape
Skiing and snowboarding aren’t actually all downhill. On occasion, you’ll have to push yourself along with your poles or arms. You’ll also need some core strength to stay balanced and make turns. Make sure that your body is fit enough to do so before you hit the slopes.
Be Prepared for the Real Thing
Many people find it helpful to brush up on the technique of the sport before they try it themselves. You could look into booking a private lesson at an indoor slope or watch training videos for advice before your trip so that you’re as prepared for the real thing as possible.
Experts recommend that you don’t borrow your gear, as it is fitted specifically to the owner and might not fit you properly. Renting is a good option, but for the best experience possible, you’ll want to buy your own gear. You’ll need your skis and poles or snowboard, the boots that attach to that gear, a good pair of high socks, snow pants, a ski jacket, goggles, and a hat. Those are the basics, and you won’t regret purchasing them.
Pack a Bag
Bring a small rucksack that you can take with you on the trail. As the day goes on, you might find yourself getting warmer or colder, and you should have the means to add or shed layers wherever you are. You’ll also want to have an emergency kit and some water and snacks in there as well.
Check the Weather
The heavier the snowfall, the better the skiing or snowboarding, but that doesn’t mean you want to be on the slopes during a heavy blizzard. Know what the weather is forecasted to be before you schedule your trip to minimize the chance of you getting stuck in unpleasant and dangerous conditions on the slope. Another important thing to remember about the weather is that it will affect your drive up to the resort. Winter driving can be incredibly dangerous, so make sure that you have a car that is winter-ready.
Hydrate and Snack
Carry plenty of water and snacks with you in your pack and use them! Though it seems like you will mostly be gliding down the slopes, skiing and snowboarding is hard work, and you keep your body hydrated and fed to keep going. You’ll also want to have this in case of an emergency.
Just because it’s cold does not mean that you are safe from the sun. On the contrary, the effects of the sun are actually worse when you ski than it is when you go to the beach. The sun reflects off the snow and hits your skin with doubled force. Protect any exposed skin by slathering it in a high SPF sunscreen several times a day.
Exercise Caution on the Slopes
Accidents happen to the best of skiers and snowboarders, but a lot of them can be prevented if you’re cautious. Read all the signs on each hill you encounter to make sure the terrain is at your level. Don’t go on a slope that you aren’t ready for. Be prepared in case of accidents. Above all, listen to the advice of your instructor, and if you have a question, ask. This is your best bet for a fun-filled and accident-free holiday on the slopes!