Saturday, January 14, 2017

Kids' First Ski Lessons

This winter, our kids have started expressing an interest in learning how to ski. Their school has a ski bus program, but we didn't get our proverbial ducks in a row in time to get our kids equipped in time, nor did we know if they would enjoy skiing, considering they had never gone before. We decided to punt on the ski bus for this year, but didn't want to squash their interest in skiing. So, we arranged for the kids to take a 1-day lesson at Snoqualmie, just to give it a try and get a feeling for how much they enjoyed this new sport.

Needless to say, they loved it!! Both kids' instructors were marvelous. They had the patience of Job and were great at teaching the kids in a way the kids were able to (a) understand and (b) enjoy. Kudos to the program for hiring such good personnel!

The only snag of the day was the gear pick up. We were instructed to arrive 30 minutes ahead of time to pick up gear. It was true mayhem in the gear shop. We got there 50 minutes ahead of time and the kids still got to their classes late ... and there were a bunch of people in line behind us at the gear shop. I'm not sure if they shop was understaffed, but whatever the cause, it was nuts.

We could not have asked for a more perfect day for going to the mountains. It was cold (15 degrees F, but felt like 4 degrees with windchill) with clear blue skies and no precipitation whatsoever. Correction, there were little "glittery" snowflakes, but I think that was just the wind kicking up the snow, not falling snow.

The kids started out learning how to put on their skis and then moved on to learning how to maneuver on a single ski. Eventually, they donned both skis and ventured onto some gentle slopes. Part of Annika's class (the part that was clicking with skiing, including Annika) moved up to the "Magic Carpet" (think moving sidewalk up a slope) to try longer runs.  Conor's class didn't make it to the Magic Carpet, but he did try it out after class was over.

Before we knew it, the 2.5 hours of lessons were up and the kids were itching to keep skiing. (Good sign!) We decided that lunch was a wise choice, so we ate lunch (with about a billion of our closest skiing friends) in one of the restaurants and then headed back out into the cold for some more snow fun.

The kids went on some hills they could climb up, as well as the slope associated with the Magic Carpet. After about another 30-45 minutes of skiing, they decided they were completely wiped out and ready to call it a day. I don't blame them!! They worked really hard all morning long.

On our way home, they declared that skiing is awesome and were already asking when they can go back. Looks like I might be spending more time up at the pass than I have in a long time! Totally worth it ... maybe next time, I'll actually get some reading done (or not ... let's see if the weather cooperates with photography). :)

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