For a lot of people, Christmas week isn’t complete without skiing. You’re off from work, the fam is together, and besides, you have all those vacation days you have to use up. Nonetheless, this isn’t the easiest time to be out on the mountain. There are loads of like-minded individuals who are going to be there. It may even be your first ski day of the season. And let’s not forget holiday pressure: You WILL have a good time! It’s Christmas! Be HAPPY! But if you’re determined to ski, there are a few things you can do to make it more fun:
Start early. I know it’s vacation, but really, the earlier in the day you start, the better the snow and the less crowded the mountain. So while a lot of people are still in bed nursing their hangovers, make an effort to be out when the lifts start spinning. Really, you get out of bed early for work and that’s a heck of a lot less fun. I know you can do it.
Go to a smaller resort. You don’t have to ski the mega resorts to have a good time. Smaller, more off the radar resorts can offer just as much fun, at prices that are a lot more family friendly.
Lock your skis. Don’t let the beautiful surroundings lull you into a false sense of security. Yes, there are some nasty characters around, and yes, they have their eye on your skis. Well, on anyone’s skis for that matter. I can’t fathom how these sleazebags get their jollies making off with someone else’s equipment — it’s sort of the anti-Santa Claus — but somehow they do. Ebay is full of them. So if you’re going into the lodge, lock up your equipment. You’ll save yourself a lot of pain, and maybe put the sleazies out of business.
Bring your lunch…Unless you have a hankering for a hamburger that tastes like cardboard and is made from God knows what, this is really the way to go. Food at ski resorts doesn’t just taste bad, it can cost a small fortune. So bring your own, save big bucks, and eat a lot healthier.
….But if you decide to dine on the mountain, eat when others don’t, either way before noon, or way after. Added bonus: you’ll see fewer people on the mountain when everyone else is chowing down.
Try the singles line. It’s a lot faster. Plus if you need a break from your friends and family, this is definitely the way to go. Besides, you never know who you’ll end up on the lift. Hey, it could be Mikaela Shiffrin under that face mask!
Put the number for ski patrol in your cell phone. This is a good idea, not just for holiday time. Hopefully, you’ll never need it, but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared.
Establish a meet up place in case you get separated. And a meeting time, too. Sure, you can always text one another. But texting’s not always convenient and if you’re like me, you’re not always aware when a text comes in.
Leave plenty of time. For EVERYTHING. It’s all going to take a lot longer, especially if you have kids. Recognize this. Embrace it. Live in the moment. And breathe. Just breathe.
Have fun. The seems so basic, but a lot of people forget to enjoy themselves, especially since skiing during the holidays can be full of frustrations — the lift lines, the crowds (I don’t need to go on). Realize there are lots of things you can’t control, and decide at the outset that you’re going to have a good day. Your attitude can make a big difference not just in your own enjoyment, but in the enjoyment of people around you. So suck it up, buttercup. Leave your complaints in the car.
Remember, ’tis the season. Peace, love, and good will to all. And happy holidays.