I’m from Scandinavian heritage, so when my kids were able to walk they were wearing cross-country skis. However, despite a few yearly ski outings with their dad, our daughters (8 and 13 years old) still hadn’t had a formal ski lesson as of this past December.
During the holiday season, we decided to take their skills a little further by registering them in a multi-day ski camp at Hidden Valley Highland Ski Resort. We thought it would empower them to become more confident alpine skiers, and we figured the group lessons would help them to make new friends. As a bonus, it would give my husband and me some “couple” time on the hill.
The SnowPass program, coordinated by the Canadian Ski Council, gives all Canadian kids in grades 4 and 5 an opportunity to get three days on each participating slope, all for only $29.95. More than 150 ski areas across Canada are part of the SnowPass program. Hidden Valley is just one of many ski resorts across Canada that offer this program.
Hidden Valley Ski Resort is located in the beautiful Muskoka region. The ski resort has 15 groomed trails, three quad chairlifts, snowboarding and a terrain park. It is around 2.5 hours north of Toronto which makes it a perfect little getaway from the city for families that want a winter getaway with a camp/class component. We opted to stay at a nearby budget hotel for 3 days, but there are many options in the area at different price points.
March 11-13, 2019 (3-day camp)
Kids Ski 3-Day Camp
2 hr. lesson
9:45-12 pm or 12:30 pm-2:45
3 x 2 hr. Lesson only for children with valid pass – $110 HST
3 x 2 hr. Lesson & 3-Day Lift Ticket -$203 HST
3- Day equipment Rental -$103 HST
The camp started with testing the skill level of the kids. After finding out where all the kids were, the instructors split them into different groups depending on their level. Over the 3-days they worked to improve their turns, better control their speed and how to stop quickly with hockey style stops.
End Goal – Great results!
Because of this camp, my kids definitely became more confident as alpine skiers. This increased confidence came from the new skills they had learned. For example, their turns greatly improved, and that gave them better speed control and the ability to stop quickly. Their love of downhill skiing certainly grew from the experience.
We skied together as a family following their lessons. From what I witnessed in their skill development, I’m now confident to send them unsupervised on the slopes for the day, and I know they will have no problems skiing on school trips. This camp is great for beginners and intermediate skiers, and it’s also perfect for families that may not be weekend warriors but want their kids to develop their skills and occasionally ski as a family.
Some important tips:
It is important to prepare for the trip and make sure your kids are dressed for the weather and have the right equipment.
If you are renting, make sure you arrive early enough so you have enough time to get your kids fitted properly. Also, make sure your kids are well fed before they hit the slope. We skied as a family after the lessons and that allowed us to take advantage of the affordable lift ticket rates that came with the ski camp at the resort.