Even as I type, a fresh wave of powder is blanketing the Wasatch Range. It feels slightly surreal after weeks of sunshine and slush in the high country. But this is the name of the game when spring-time approaches in Utah. Lots of bluebird and sunshiny days, with surprise storms showing up to remind us winter isn't done yet!
Spring skiing is one of our family’s favorite times of the year! After months of fighting cold weather, perfecting our layering, and learning to ski in blizzard conditions, we finally get to ski in warmer weather, where the only worry is sunburn.
Here are our tips for making the most of spring skiing:
1. Sleep in. Seriously. With above freezing temperatures during the day, often times the snow freezes into a solid sheet of ice overnight. A quick glance to see how cold it was overnight should help you determine whether to hit the slopes early or give the sun a chance to warm them before you head out the door.
2. Look for south facing terrain early in the day. If things are still a bit stiff, hunt for south facing terrain. Simply put, just look for the runs baking in the sun, they will likely be soft. A few of our favorites? Willow or Dwayne’s off the Becker lift and the fun glades of Roy’s and Mount Ogden Bowl Road between the Porcupine and John Paul lifts.
3. Sunscreen up and reduce those layers! While we aren’t too worried about layering up to stay warm, we still need to remember a few things: like sunscreen and eye protection. It is tempting, in the heat of the day, to forego the helmet and goggles, but sunburning your eyes is a serious danger and helmets are still a good idea. Instead, lighten up those layers lower down. I spend many spring days skiing in a cotton hoodie! And why not?!
4. Have fun with those new skills you honed all season! When I was younger and skiing competitively, spring was the time of year to just play in the mountains. After a season of training and competing, the months of March and April were usually free of commitments. This freedom to explore, push our skills and play in terrain parks is something I still tend towards as a family.
Maybe it is time for your kid’s first trip up the tram or your own first challenge of skiing Lone Tree Chute and its vertigo inducing neighbors? Maybe your kids want to perfect their jumping skills in the terrain park or ski in the trees all day long. Spring is the time for it!
5. Introduce newbies to the sport! Lastly, spring is the perfect time to introduce your non-riding friends to the sport! Warm temperatures and beautiful views will help to make your days full of laughter and fun.
See you on the slopes friends!
Alyssa Erickson I am a wife, mom, rock climber, skier, coffee lover and all around adventure lover with a passion for writing. I have my B.A. in English Literature from the University of Colorado and am the founder of KidProject.org. I live and play near the Wasatch Range, partnering with my husband and teaching my kids to make the most of life and the One who gave it to us.