By Kristen Lummis, braveskimom.com
Whether you’re a family of hardcore skiers and riders, or your kids have been begging to learn, Colorado Ski Country USA (CSCUSA)’s 5th and 6th Grade Passport is the best deal going.
1. Amazing Value – Families are always looking for value. When it comes to skiing, more value equals more days on snow. We all want that!
Guess how much CSCUSA 5th grade passport costs? The answer $0. That’s ZERO; and that’s value.
Here’s how it works. Apply for your Colorado 5th grader online. Check your mail and within just a short time your child will have a pass good for three days of skiing or riding at each of 20 Colorado resorts. That’s 60 days of snow-filled fun for FREE!
The deal for 6th graders is different. Their Passport includes 4 days of skiing at each of 20 resorts for $99. That’s $1.24 per lift ticket if you use them all.
If your child skis 5 days, you’re looking at less than $20 per day. Ski or ride 10 days, and the lift ticket will set you back less than most 3D movies.
2. Start Off Strong – Maybe you’re not a skier or snowboarder yourself, but your child really wants to try one of these sports. Or maybe you’re been away from snowsports and now you want to get the entire family involved.
If your 5th grader has never skied or snowboarded, the 5th grade pass comes with a free beginner lesson and rental, the First Class Program for use during January.
Without a doubt, lessons are the best way to learn to ski or snowboard. And usually, one complete beginner lesson will take a novice from never-ever to advanced beginner. After one free lesson, your child should be ready to enthusiastically ski the rest of the season with friends and family!
3. Take A Friend – One of my favorite things about the CSCUSA passport is how easy it makes bringing friends along.
I’ll never forget taking a young friend to Snowmass. He had skied a lot, but never at a big mountain. Since he had a 5th grade passport, and we had room in our car, he joined us for a ski day. As we drove up to the mountain, his jaw dropped, only to be replaced with a broad perma-grin as he experienced his first gondola ride, his first high-speed quad and his ski run above timberline.
These are good memories and easy to make when the ticket is free.
4. Hit the Road – No matter where you live in Colorado, several resorts are probably within easy access. Yet, most of us have a home mountain where we buy a season pass or ski most of the time. While we make think about hitting the road and skiing somewhere new, it’s hard to pull the trigger and buy full-price lift tickets.
With a 5th or 6th grade pass, at least one family member is taken care of wherever you ski in Colorado ski country
Parents can buy a CSCUSA Gems Card for $20. This card will give you buy one/get one free adult lift tickets at each of eight smaller, ultra-family friendly Colorado resorts including Arapahoe Basin, Loveland, Powderhorn, Monarch and more.
Plus, keep your eyes open for exclusive discount coupons for the families of 5th or 6th grade passport holders!
And don’t forget: most ski resorts now offer reciprocal deals at sister resorts across the state. Your home mountain season pass may give you some steep discounts, or free days, at other Colorado destinations.
5. Family Time – This one is my favorite. For us, skiing time is bonding time. Chairlift rides are one of the best places we’ve found to laugh together, chat together and simply be together without the distractions of media, electronics and homework.
By getting a 5th or 6th grade pass for your child, you’re not only introducing them to, or encouraging them in, the amazing world of snowsports, but you’re investing in healthy wintertime activity and a lifetime family sport.
That’s the best deal!
Yesterday, we published a helpful little list of when all of our member resorts are planning to open for the 2013-14 ski season.
Winter Park Resort is planning to be open on Wednesday, November 13, and based on the images we’ve seen from the mountain it looks like Opening Day will be one to remember. After receiving five inches of natural snow last Thursday night, Winter Park’s snowmaking crew fired their guns for the first time this season. Here’s hoping for three weeks of cold temperatures and weather systems between now and then.
The snow is flying at resorts all across Ski Country! Arapahoe Basin and Loveland are open for the season, steadily expanding their open terrain with remarkably good early-season snow conditions. Wolf Creek opened last weekend and will open again this weekend (October 26 and 27), and in a few short weeks the number of resorts open for the season will quickly multiply.
Here’s a list of the remaining scheduled opening dates for Ski Country member resorts. For more information, visit coloradoski.com. (continue reading…)
Colorado’s 2013/14 ski season is underway today as Arapahoe Basin opened its chair lift to crowds of animated skiers and snowboarders. At 8:30a.m., with an 18-inch base and lifts running, Arapahoe Basin became the first resort in North America to open for the 2013/14 ski season. Arapahoe Basin’s opening, along with recently announced pass deals and new improvements at Colorado resorts, has skiers and riders eager for the season ahead. (continue reading…)
[Editor's note: We're thrilled to announce the newest member of the Ski Country blogging team. Little Lightning is participating in Colorado Ski Country USA's 5th Grade Passport Program, which offers fifth graders up to sixty free days of skiing, as well as a free lesson and rental equipment for fifth graders who are brand new to skiing and snowboarding. Tune in throughout the ski season to keep tabs on her adventures as she visits resorts all across Ski Country, takes her skiing ability to the next level, and enjoys Colorado's signature winter sport.]
Hi, I’m Little Lightning and I will be eleven years old in October. I started skiing when I was three and when I was four it became my passion. I like to ski everything from trees, moguls, powder, to terrain parks, especially when I am with my friends and family.
I’ve been so excited about the 5th grade passport program since I heard about it a couple years ago. In the past, I have skied at Snowmass, Copper Mountain, Arapahoe Basin, Powderhorn, and three ski areas in South Dakota. I’m looking forward to being a representative for the 5th grade passport program and I can’t wait to ski at places I haven’t been before, like Eldora, Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Loveland, Winter Park, Granby Ranch, Steamboat Springs, Ski Cooper, Monarch, Crested Butte, Telluride, Durango Mountain, and last but not least Wolf Creek.
I will do a report on every area I ski this winter and I will be letting everyone know where the good food is, the best skiing, and the shortest lift lines. Feel free to contact me at LLightning@Coloradoski.com with any questions or comments you might have.
Most of all I’m looking forward to making many new skiing and snowboarding friends. Think snow!
UPDATED: Loveland, Arapahoe Basin Rev Up the 2013/14 Colorado Ski Season with Fall’s First Snowmaking
Just when skiers and snowboarders throughout Colorado began firing their home furnaces for the first time since April, some folks in Ski Country had a better idea: At 6:00 pm on Friday evening, Loveland ski area fired its snowmaking guns for the first time this season, kicking off the annual race to Opening Day in Colorado. Just a few hours later and a few miles on the other side of the Continental Divide, Arapahoe Basin followed suit.
Moisture mixed with a jet stream plummeting south from Canada brought snow throughout the high country, and air temperatures are now low enough at Loveland and A-Basin for productive snowmaking. It’ll probably be a few more weeks before you’re allowed on the mountain, but this is your signal to sharpen your skis and boards, put down the twelve-ounce curls, and pick up your fitness regimen!