Last spring the kids and I took advantage of our local ski hill and bought season passes so we could ski then, and also this winter! During all the time we spent on the mountain last year, a friend of mine started asking around regarding the people wearing the blue jackets that said “Ski Host” on them. We found out that it was a volunteer program on the mountain, and in return, each Ski Host receives a FREE season pass for the year they are volunteering.
A Ski Host is simply someone who is present on the mountain, gives tours on the mountain for the appropriate level of skier wanting a tour, answers questions, helps people find the easiest way down the mountain if necessary, and helps Ski Patrol in the event of an accident by clearing the area, keeping witnesses nearby and escorting them down to the office so they can provide information on what happened. We are kind of a “jack of all trades” on the mountain and just assist wherever we can.
Last year, there were 18 people that applied for 6 Ski Host positions, and I made the cut!! I was really happy and have had a great time being a Host this year. At the beginning of the season, I submitted a schedule of days I could NOT work, and have been scheduled to work just 16 days to fill my requirement. Of course, we can come up any other time and ski if we want to just for fun, which we have done several times.
Last Monday I worked, and though the day looked kind of miserable at first, it turned out to be one of the best days ever!! The powder was deep and a little heavy, but there were a couple runs where you felt like you were floating on clouds with nobody around! I felt like I was in a Warren Miller Ski Movie, cutting fresh tracks in the powder, snow flying up behind me on each turn, and the beauty of deep powder is that when you fall, it doesn’t hurt at all!
It was quite a foggy day on Monday, but it wasn’t too cold, and we could see far enough ahead we didn’t have to slow down too much.
I spent the day giving 2 different tours. The first was with an older man and woman who wanted an Intermediate/Advanced tour, and an Advanced/Expert tour. I called my fellow Host to assist me by taking the man through the steep trees and deep powder, while I took the woman down an easier run. The four of us had a great time, and skied together all morning.
This is what you look like when you don’t want any wind hitting your face, or when it’s snowing while you’re skiing and you want to keep the snow off your face!
Our ski hill is very family oriented, and has something for everyone! We have great tree skiing, some moguls, an incredible terrain park for the snowboarders, and many what I call “cruise control” runs, where you can just ski down the hill with no effort and enjoy the fresh air, wind blowing on your face, and nicely groomed runs!
Last Monday was very foggy though, so visibility wasn’t the best, but it didn’t stop us from having fun. I spent the 2nd half of the day skiing with a 26 year old guy that was interested in the Ski Host program. We did the trees, we did the black diamond runs, and the double black diamond runs, and since our level was pretty much exactly the same, we had a great time on the mountain!
I told Daryl that as long as we’re living up here, I plan to be a Ski Host each winter. The wonderful thing is that with each season, I’ll earn an additional Season Pass, so after doing this for 5 years, our entire family will be able to ski for FREE!! It doesn’t get much better than that!