We all remember our first time. Skiing that is.
There's no other experience quite like it. You're wrapped up in puffy gear that you can barely walk in. There are these weird things attached to your feet and everyone else seems to be going way too fast and much too close to you. I love hearing stories of someones first time skiing, mainly because they are funny but also because they end with a sense of achievement. That feeling you get from stepping outside your comfort zone and learning something new. Below are stories from around the world of that very memorable first time including mine.
You'll be right
Written by Jen from The Snow Chasers
I remember it well. I won an all expenses trip for two to Queenstown, New Zealand. It included loads of activities including snowmobiling, helicopter rides, 4WD excursions, fancy dinners and of course skiing. Wicked.
Lucky for Mick, I decided to take him along. I had never seen snow in my entire life, and back then the idea of skiing had never even crossed my mind (I'm from Perth, there is no snow). I booked into one of the group lessons on offer, got kitted out and very awkwardly went off to my lesson. I really don't remember a lot of the lesson except that I was terrible.
At the end of the lesson, Mick decided it would be a good idea to take me on a chairlift because I hadn't been on one yet. He said, "you'll be right". I rode up and managed to get off the lift ok and shuffled over to the top of the run. Then, I pointed straight down the mountain and before I knew it, I was heading down the run. My legs wouldn't snow plough no matter how many times I yelled PIZZA! I didn't know how to turn yet so I just kept getting faster and faster. I realised then that the only way to stop was to bail out and lie down (the same technique I use when rollerblading). Unfortunately, it didn't go quite to plan and for the first time I understood what people meant when they talked about tomahawking and garage sale. I literally tumbled at speed down the mountain and when I finally stopped, I had lost most of my gear. I'm talking beanie, sunglasses, skis, poles AND gloves. I didn't go near skis for a very long time after that!
THE CASE OF THE HOT SKI INSTRUCTOR
Written by Juliette from Snorkles To Snow
I was 9 years old. Every winter my school in Christchurch, New Zealand, ran a ski day to Mt Hutt. This time was the first year my parents allowed me to go.
During my ski lesson I developed a bit of a crush on the male ski instructor. Full of fresh confidence as only young naive children could have, my friends and I decided to ski down steeper areas near the beginner slopes, which weren't really meant for skiing.
It would have been a great idea had I been able to stop properly. Instead, I skied down this little slope, and, failing to know how to stop or control my speed, ran over about 6 pairs of skis, and completely starfished onto the snow, stuck and unable to detach my skis or figure out how to get back up. The hot ski instructor came by asking if I was okay, before helping me to my feet. I heard him muttering “crazy chick” as he walked away. I felt so embarrassed! It took me 10 years before I returned to the ski field.
Always wear gloves!
Written by Jazmin from Travel to Blank
The first time I went skiing was in Whistler, Canada with a group of friends from Ecuador. We were studying abroad in Victoria. We all took lessons but to be honest I was the only one that was terrified. I was afraid of falling, but after practicing all day I finally felt confident and went down the slope several times.
The biggest memory I have from my experience is that I gave my gloves to one of my friends because they were cold and did not have any themselves. After that I fell terribly and could not stand up because it was too cold and I did not know how to raise myself without putting my hands on the snow. It was a good way to loosen up and stop being afraid of the snowy mountain. When I moved to Colorado for college I was more confident and went snowboarding and skiing every winter.
Never Too Old
Written by Chloe from Wanderlust Chloe
For me, learning to ski at the age of 30 was a really challenging task. When you're little you have very little fear. You fall over, you get back up. You fall over again and keep going! As an adult, it's as much of a mental challenge as a physical one.
I went to Tignes in France on my first ski trip in January and enjoyed a few hours of ski school, along with apres-ski, great food and good company. I can't say I left a competent skier but I was impressed with my progress over the two days. I never expected to be able to stand up, let alone go down ski slopes after a few hours tuition. I'm really glad I tried it, and while I may not be rushing back, I'm sure I'll give it another go at some point!
I hope you enjoyed these stories from around the globe about skiing for the first time. If you've been skiing before, then you'll totally relate but if you haven't, don't let these stories put you off. I promise you that everyone looks back at their stories fondly and is so pleased that they persevered.
Check out my post on Skiing And Snowboarding For The First Time - What Nobody Tells You for some extra tips!
Do you have a story about your first time that you'd like to share? Post them in the comments below, I'd love to hear them! (Make sure you click on 'subscribe via e-mail' to be notified when we write back).
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Jen spends most of her time following Mick around the mountain, often unintentionally off jumps and cliff drops. Currently on a mission to prove that you’re never too old to try freestyle. Aside from snowboarding, a little obsessed about tattoos, CrossFit, saving animals, learning to play the guitar and clean eating. Web designer and digital marketing nerd.