Do you love to hit the slopes at the resort, but don’t know how to get a full day of skiing or riding in with your kids? I’m a kid and I’ve been skiing for almost a decade with my family. We’ve had some great days, some so-so days, and some days that are memorable for all the wrong reasons. So that you can learn from our experiences, here are seven tips that will ensure you and your kids get a great session of skiing and riding on your next trip to the resort.

Kids take over a ski area

7 Tips for Taking Kids to the Ski Resort

1. Start Early

Getting to the resort early is key to ensuring that your kids have a good day on the slopes. The snow is usually best first thing in the morning, guaranteeing that all the skiers and riders in your group (including the tentative ones) will get the best edge possible. Moreover, the early morning lift lines are usually the shortest. Doing a few quick runs will build everybody’s confidence and help you feel like you’re getting the most out of your lift ticket.

2. Go Easy

Speaking of confidence, it’s always a good idea to start the day on trails that everyone can do. This keeps things fun and allows you to gradually add difficulty over the course of the day. Jumping on difficult trails too early risks making everybody grumpy and is likely to destroy the psyche of the kids in your crew. Save the more challenging runs for when the rest of your family is taking a break and you can sneak in a run or two alone.

3. Be Flexible

If you want everyone to ski or ride, then be flexible. If your kid really wants to go over a jump, let them! Doing simple things like this will keep your kids stoked and motivate them to keep trying. Furthermore, maybe they’ll even inspire you to do something a little out of your comfort zone so that next time it can be both of you hitting that jump!

4. Take Breaks

No matter how good your kids are at skiing or snowboarding, they are not going to ski or ride nonstop. Kids get cold and hungry. Plan on taking regular breaks throughout the day so that everybody can stay warm and fueled for the runs ahead. Another benefit of taking a break—you and your kids can figure out a plan, ensuring that everybody is still having fun.

Kids having fun skiing

5. Pack Snacks

Snacks are the rocket fuel that propels your kids around the mountain. Whether on the chairlift or in the lodge, everybody loves high-octane snacks like candy bars, granola bars, and gummies. Pack enough snacks so that you aren’t stymied by the overpriced choices in the resort cafeteria. Wearing a small backpack while skiing keeps your snacks within arm’s reach so that it’s easy to eat wherever you are on the mountain.

6. Be Prepared

The night before you hit the slopes, make sure everybody’s stuff is accounted for. Then when you pack the car, double-check that your kids’ equipment and clothing made it into the car. Remember, it’s better to be organized than spend too many of your hard-earned dollars in the resort’s gear shop buying mittens because only one of the pair made it to the slopes.

7. Avoid the Crowds

Repetition is a sure way for your kids to get better on their skis or boards. Instead of spending all day waiting in lift lines (where most kids, if they’re like me, get antsy), find a lift with short lines that serves the terrain you’re looking for and run laps. A great example of this is Attitash’s Abenaki Quad—there’s never a line and the lift services a host of fun terrain.

In a similar vein, some resorts are better suited for newer skiers or riders. For instance, my brother and I spent our formative years skiing at Blue Hills Ski Resort in Greater Boston. There were many mornings where it felt like we had the hill to ourselves and when we got tired it was a quick drive home.

Tips for taking kids skiing

Flexible + Fun = A Great Day on the Slopes

Overall, getting on the slopes with kids really isn’t that hard. Just be prepared and stay flexible so that all your work ends with a fun day on the slopes!