8 Tips For First Time Skiers

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If it hadn’t been for my boyfriend who has skied for 30 plus years, I probably would’ve never braved the slopes. Because of his encouragement and my being a fairly adventurous person, I was game for trying something new.

We chose to ski in Telluride, a charming, historic town nestled in a valley and surrounded by the San Juan Mountains which are located in the Colorado Rockies. To describe the town as picturesque would be a huge understatement.

As a ski newbie you have little perspective on what to expect or how to properly prepare, thus I have compiled a list of tips to make your first time easier, and above all, fun!

Tip #1

The most important tip -don’t let your boyfriend (or anyone close to you, for that matter) teach you to ski. When you embark on this new adventure you will find skiing is not an inexpensive sport; however don’t let this tempt you to skimp on getting proper lessons. If you choose to take the cheap route, not only might you get injured. You may return home boyfriend-less.

Tip #2

You need to face the fact you will not be able to ski after one introductory lesson. I highly recommend you commit to at least three days. Believe me. There’s more to skiing than remaining upright. Controlling your speed and learning to stop are two essentials before striking out on your own.

Tip #3

Wear a ski helmet. Don’t just wear a helmet. Buy one. Renting one will cost just as much as purchasing your own. Plus you’ll avoid getting the cooties from previous users.

Tip #4

Don’t overpack. There’s no reason to bring two pairs of fashion boots to walk around a small town in the evenings. In fact, you will put yourself at risk of landing on your back when your boots inevitably lose traction on slick, icy sidewalks.

Tip #5

Don’t assume just because the weather is frigid outside that you won’t need comfortable short-sleeve attire. Being from Florida, I feared the kind of cold that seeps into your bones and keeps you from ever feeling comfortable.

I found the opposite. I made the mistake of packing only sweaters and sweatshirts, so actually felt too warm much of the time. Most establishments are kept quite warm. There is little chance you will actually feel uncomfortably cold.

Tip #6

If your hands are prone to getting cold it is best to use ski mittens rather than gloves.  There are disposable hand warmers you can buy on the Internet but I found them unnecessary.

Tip #7

Sunscreen is not optional. Just because it’s cold, and even if it’s overcast, does not mean you won’t be susceptible to sunburn.  In fact, the white snow reflects the sun’s rays,  making it potentially more damaging to your skin than sunshine in my own state. It’s also wise to bring along a combo lip balm sunscreen.

Tip #8

Possibly the most important in my opinion, a neck pouch is an invaluable accessory.  While your ski jacket and pants will have more than enough pockets, using a neck pouch conveniently keeps your personal articles in one place- lip balm, cash, hotel key etc.

Finally, as a first time snow skier you may find that lugging around all of the equipment and clothing is a cumbersome task. Remembering the gloves, helmet, pants, goggles, and a myriad of other things can seem overwhelming at first.  But after a couple days, it will become second nature and it won’t take you quite so long to prepare for an exciting day on the slopes.

Happy and safe skiing!


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