An outing to Mt. Hood Meadows provides your family with great opportunities to spend time together, experiencing the outdoors. Families need time together away from the routine, so come see us.
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Here are some great tips and ideas that will help you prepare for an even better time at Meadows with your family.
Kids Who Tend to Excel & What Age to Start
- Skiing, snowboarding and cross-country require balance, fine motor control, a certain amount of strength, technical control, and a spirit for adventure.
- Most children are not ready to try skiing until age 3 or 4. Meadows offers private lessons for 3 year olds, and KidSki / KidsRide programs at age 4 to 12. Our Children’s Learning Center combines an introduction to the sport and snow play with responsive childcare and supervision.
- Your child needs sufficient motor skills and strength to control their turns and maintain balance. Make sure your child is physically strong enough to walk around in skis and boots and can last at least one hour outside in the snow and cold. Being ready to ski also depends on your child’s attention span, stamina, willingness to fall down in the snow and the desire to keep trying.
- Nordic, or cross-country skiing, can start between the ages of 4 and 7, although most kids do not start until around age 10.
- For younger kids, we have our certified Daycare Center operating from 9 AM - 4 PM.
What to Look for When Getting Started
- Mt. Hood Meadows Children's Learning Center is a PSIA (Professional Ski Instructors of America) affiliated ski school providing lessons for all ages and abilities, but especially geared towards teaching young first timers technique while having fun on the snow. Our program is, and always has been, kid-focused.
- We have a separate children’s and beginner area called the "Fun Zone" where the first time lesson takes place.
- The teaching area is filled with fun teaching aids to engage our young learners, ranging from cones to structures to ski around or through.
- It is recommended that your child wears a specially designed ski helmet to prevent or lessen head injuries from falls and collisions.
- Goggles help protect eyes and enhance visibility depending on the weather.
- Bindings are designed to release during a fall and should be set based on your child’s weight and ability. Have a ski shop check to ensure that your child’s ski bindings are properly adjusted.
- Teach your child to watch out for rocks and patches of ice, always stay on marked trails, and take easy trails at the end of the day when being tired leads to most injuries.
- Frostbite can be an issue when the temperature drops low and often it is much colder at the top of the mountain than at the base lifts. Dress your child warmly, in layers, and in clothing that allows them to move freely. Mittens keep fingers warmer than gloves, and waterproof ones are a necessity. Snow pants keep legs from getting wet and cold. A hat and/or helmet is essential as most body heat gets lost through one’s head.
- Have your child use sunscreen, as it’s easy to get sunburned from the sun reflecting off the snow.