January is Learn to Ski and Ride month in Colorado Ski Country. I can't remember the last time I took a ski lesson, but watching my kids progress through lessons, I wonder if I had as much fun learning how to ski as they are. You know the old saying "kids have it sooooo easy these days", well that rings true with ski and ride lessons as well. From the equipment to resort infrastructure and programs to hot chocolate and cookies at the end of the day, it's no wonder my kids love learning to ski.
To mark the month, Colorado Ski Country resorts around the state are offering lessons taught by industry professionals at reduced prices and are hosting special programs for skiers and riders wanting to improve their skills, whether beginner or advanced. Additionally, CSCUSA is giving away hundreds of dollars worth of prizes in honor of January Learn to Ski and Ride Month.
Ski areas are announcing January learn-to-ski deals that cater to both children and adults. Echo Mountain, for instance, is offering a discount on its Mountaineers lessons and park instruction in its Progression Sessions throughout January, as well as a special lesson offer just for CSCUSA 5th and 6th grade passholders. Monarch Mountain is also offering a major discount on two packages that include lift tickets, lessons, and rentals.
My kids (3 and 6yrs) recently both took lessons at Winter Park. Their excitement started building when we road the free Village Cabriolet from the free parking lot to the base area. It was further built up when we snagged one of the free wagons to help with the schlep. Excitement build up continued during the process of check-in and drop off, so that when it came time to say good-bye, I swear I heard the 3yr old say "don't let the door hit you on the way out."
The Winter Park ski school staff had things so well organized from color coded classes to cubbies for gear and racks for little skis with each child's name on a piece of tape. Instructors with attitudes full of patience and pockets full of Nilla Wafers led the kids through fun drills and exercises, the kids had little idea they were learning important skills and safety for the slopes.
End of the day pick up was a little dramatic because the kids didn't want to leave, until we told them we would take one more run and they could show us their 'new moves'. If we keep this lesson thing up, by the end of the month well be looking for sponsors for the 2014 Games although you probably have to be able to go to the bathroom by yourself to be on the ski team.
CSCUSA is celebrating Learn to Ski and Ride Month by sending a pair of lucky learners off with the complete learn-to-ski-and-ride package, including Columbia outerwear for two, beginner lessons, lift tickets, and equipment rentals. Anyone, from a first-time downhiller to a seasoned ski veteran, is welcomed to enter the Learn to Ski and Ride Sweepstakes at www.ColoradoSki.com. Skiers and riders also have the chance to win a free Chipotle burrito every day in January by submitting a photo to CSCUSA of themselves or their friends and family learning to ski or snowboard at a CSCUSA member resort.