Learning to ski has been something I have been afraid to commit to since my first experience 10 plus years ago when my friend encouraged (ok.. maybe pushed) me downhill on the slippy slopes in New England. It wasn’t a pleasant experience that has scared into my mind since.
So when we first planned our family ski trip to Keystone Resort this winter, the first thing I checked was the ski school program. I don’t want Miss J and Mr. Z to have the same experience. Fortunately, we have picked one of most family friendly ski resort in the Colorado mountains.
The Keystone Resort Ski & Ride school has a great system and programs that make this nervous parent feel at ease.
Easy & Efficient Ski Rental
We took a bit longer to get our ski rental gear ready with our bulky ski-ready jacket and pant. But the process in itself was easy and quite efficient even during the busy winter season in Keystone Resort. After register our family members to their system, a knowledgeable attendant quickly measured our feet size and found our ski boot. Then we went to the next station to get our ski binding. Then off to the cashier to pay for the rental.
There are several lessons for you to choose from. Group lessons, private lessons or family private lessons are all excellent option for beginner or even more experienced skiers. On the first lesson, we took family private lesson with the most AMAZING and patient instructor ever, Mrs. Kim Hesh Olson. So if you plan to book private lesson, make sure to ask for her!
After we were all set, Mrs. Kim took us up the gondola ride to the mid station to start our lesson. We started slowly by learning how to put our ski on, glide on one foot and move around.
With high altitude (it’s called a mile high city for a reason, we were at least 8,000 feet above sea level), we took it easy on the first day. There were several breaks for us and the kids. The learning area at mid station is also used by Ski & Ride School children lessons where we saw kids as young as 3 years old enjoying their lesson.
By mid day, the high altitude had hit Miss J hard so I took her down and rested while Mr. Rojo and Mr. Z continued their lesson. By the end of our first private lesson day, Mr. Rojo and Mr. Z had already learned how to turn and went down green slopes a few times!!
If you have never ski before, I would highly recommend taking private ski lesson. The cost might seem high from the price tag but you can have up to 6 people in your private group. So if you have a group of friends who have similar skill, private lesson will be the way to go.
Children’s Ski & Ride School
The process of checking in our kids to their lesson couldn’t be easier. We arrived at the Ski & Ride school at the River Run village about 20 minutes before the class. After confirming our registration and our information (including our phone number so they can contact us in case of emergency), the kids were tagged with their class information and personal information.
The school will take care of fitting and getting kids’ ski gear ready. We didn’t have to worry about getting their gear since we already had our ski rental from yesterday. Even if you didn’t have your rental from previous day, the school will take care of providing proper gear for them in the school. You don’t have to do anything except dropping them off with proper outfit and on time.
Kids were assessed and put into group of similar age and skill level. Since Miss J missed half her private lesson the previous day, she started in Beginner group while Mr. Z moved to Green group. The instructor also paid close attention to kids’ skill level so that they can adjust the group accordingly.
The ski & ride school has several separate learning area. They went up to the Summit station on top of Dercum Mountain in another learning area. So we were able to see them in their classes a few time. It’s amazed me to see Miss J who was still fighting her high altitude sickness participated and enjoyed her lesson with her new friends. Mr. Z had a blast learning more advance skill and racking up his points on EpicMix on his several runs that day.
The school also provided end of day lesson review and recommendation. As we picked them up at the end of their lesson, the instructor gave us detail information on how they did on their lesson including runs & terrain and what they can work on.
It’s true that kids are fast learners. So I know it’s a great idea to put them in ski school instead of continuing with private lesson with us because by day 2 our skill level within our family has already varied. The least athletic one in the family, I still need a lot of coaching and hand holding while Mr. Z is more comfortable with Green slopes. The boy has no fear and already start talking about Black diamond.. Ha.. He will have to find someone else to take him down that path!
If you are thinking or planning a ski trip for your family, I would highly recommend checking out Keystone Ski & Ride School for your kids (or even yourself). There are various type of lessons and discount for different packages.
Thank you Keystone Ski resort for providing our family with complimentary accommodation, ski lessons and lift tickets during our stay.