I became a passionate skier when I moved to Jackson Hole right after college (a long time ago). I planned to stay for one winter and then start my “real” life. Two different stints in WY and a total of six years, I finally left the mountain daily lifestyle behind. In that time I must have skied at least 100 days a season in bounds and out. As the years went on the special skiing place in my heart started to shrink.
Life started and the choices we made did not include skiing. Until now…..My boss, Gordon Wright, once told me “Once your kids are capable of getting themselves in and out of the car, you are free.” The 7 and 4 year old can do it, check!
It was time to introduce them to skiing! Finally, after years of skiing a day here or there or being pregnant and not skiing at all, we were going for a weekend to Tahoe. I had to leave all of my ski snobbery in regards to gear and skills behind. After all, I have worked in the industry for years and always had the best and latest equipment (free) and looked great in next years apparel.
Kids pajamas are perfect for long underwear and those not attractive $15 bibs at Target will totally keep them dry. The prices for lift tickets, rentals and lessons at Tahoe Donner are awesome, a mountain I would never have been caught dead on in the past.
Skiing can be frustrating for a little kid. The boots are uncomfortable, they don’t really get the binding system and have you seen them carry their skis? Then my crazy anxieties set in. What if they don’t like it? My daughter does not like any sports or frankly participating in anything that requires physical activity. And my son, he will love it. He will just point them and go….where is the nearest children’s hospital? I had to learn to throw these anxieties out with the ski snobbery.
My husband and I decided to bring our tele mark equipment, it is challenging for us and we could practice our form on the “easy” mountain while the kids took lessons. It was embarrassing, our skis are long and narrow and old. After two kids, the boots are too tight and the collapsible poles from the late 90’s have cobwebs on them. Mike said, “If they worked then, they will work just fine now.”
We had three gorgeous bluebird days. The groomers were, well, groomed and had nice coverage. The mountain was small but it felt great to be outside, in the mountains and skiing with my husband. Our knees creaked and our thighs shook with every bend but the form came back to us quickly. Like riding a bike? But the big surprise of the three days was the success and smiles from our daughter. She was skiing and not complaining about it. She was meticulous about her turns, listened to her instructor and wanted to go out for more. It was so exciting to see her enjoy being outside and on skis.
I can’t wait to go again. And the Target bibs should last another day.
PS. My son, he only made two days of lessons. He ate everything in sight and on the third day boycotted the skis with a loud public display of screaming and crying. Next time!
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