Smart Style is a terrain park safety initiative developed by the National Ski Areas Association. As its name implies, there is a smart way to use terrain parks. There are a number of key safety tips that you should know before entering a terrain park. Some resorts feature more than one terrain park, and they can range in size from small, medium, and large. Visit ski area websites to learn more about their terrain and terrain parks. The best way to learn how to safely navigate the various features, be it boxes, rails, jumps, or halfpipes, is to take a lesson from a professional instructor. Here are the four points of Smart Style: (continue reading…)
By Jenn Rudolph, Colorado Ski Country USA Communications Director
It’s a tough transition. Another one of those things they don’t tell you about when you first have kids, like how hard breastfeeding is, or about that infant witching hour. Your ski friends who are parents know. They’ve been there, toughed it out and made it to the other side. But they don’t tell you the reality right away for fear of dampening your excitement that you’re going to be a parent. They listen to you gush on about how you’re going to get the kid skiing as soon as he can crawl and you’re sure he’ll be the next Shaun White or Lindsey Vonn. And they’ll stand there and smile knowing full well what it’s really like, that having kids will greatly impact your time on snow. (continue reading…)
Some of our readers may have seen the recent Denver Post series supposedly about ski safety and the industry here in Colorado. Below Colorado Ski Country USA responds to the articles.
One of the major reasons people live in and visit Colorado is the opportunity to participate in the many outdoor activities our great state offers. Skiing and snowboarding are our state’s signature sports. There are 520,000 Coloradans who are active participants in skiing and snowboarding at Colorado’s 25 ski areas. Skiers and snowboarders spend nearly $3 billion each year pursuing their favorite sport in our state, with 60-70 percent of each dollar spent going to support a business other than a ski area. Colorado ski areas provide world class recreation opportunities in conjunction with our partners at the United States Forest Service and introduce many to our nation’s spectacular public lands.
These recreation opportunities would not be possible without the Colorado Ski Safety Act. Originally enacted in 1979 (when the few insurers willing to insure ski areas determined they would leave the state because of excessive and costly litigation), the Ski Safety Act does three primary things: 1) it establishes responsibilities for ski areas; 2) it establishes responsibilities for skiers and 3) it spells out risks inherent in the sport of skiing. All three tenets of the Ski Safety Act are as relevant, reasonable and necessary today as they were when the Act was adopted 34 years ago. It has stood the test of time. Since 1979, 27 states have modeled similar legislation on Colorado’s law.
I’ve been out with the kids several times this year but for our first official family ski outing of the season, with the core four, we headed up to Loveland. It’s one of the areas we frequent for a few reasons: location, terrain and atmosphere.
When you become a parent you start to measure your life in two ways, BC and AC; before children, and after children. When I would ski BC, it was up early, on the slopes early, ski hard and fast, maybe have lunch, definitely apres, sometimes into the evening. In the present AC, it’s up early, on the slopes late, ski moderately, definitely have lunch, definitely apres, home early in the evening.
I like skiing in the AC because the fun and thrills that I found skiing BC are replaced with different ones AC. I see terrain in a different way, I spend more time in the trees on fun whoopie-doo trails, and I hear myself say things I never thought I would. For example, on a recent family ski outing I caught the following sentences coming out of my mouth. Most of these were delivered at top volume.
Heading out to rip some turns on a snowy day can be really fun, until I remember that I’m skiing with a six and nine-year-old who usually need help putting on their own mittens. Not that I don’t like skiing with my kids, but like everything with parenting, you have to give up a lot, and I’ve had to succumb to the fact that when I’m on the slopes with them, I probably won’t complete a run from top to bottom without stopping any less than a gazillion times. On a good day, I might be able to link three turns in a row on a blue. We’re all good on greens, but the kids need to progress and be challenged, so we stick to blues for now.
I recently took the kids to Loveland for their first ski day this season. We had a wonderful day skiing, being outside in the mountains, enjoying the mild temperatures (read: no whining because of being cold), spending time together and finding our ski legs after the long summer. The hard part was getting a decent photo.