Best Ski Trips for Familes
As they whizz fearlessly down the ski slopes with their flock of new friends, swaddled in ski suits and dwarfed by their helmets and goggles, children have the time of their lives on a ski holiday. But keeping them smiling throughout the week requires planning, skill and the support of a crack team of English-speaking instructors and carers. In resorts such as Vermont’s Smugglers’ Notch (smuggs.com), and Colorado’s Aspen-Snowmass and Beaver Creek, children get exactly that, with dedicated learning areas, interactive trails, winding treasure hunt runs through the woods, children’s race arenas and terrain parks for even the tiniest skiers and riders.
Many USA resorts limit children’s group classes to just five students, so forget those never-ending human crocodiles ubiquitous in the Alps. Several resorts, such as Crested Butte in Colorado (skicb.com), and Canyons and Park City in Utah, provide dedicated teen clinics. Some include specialist camps like Vail’s Teen Girls classes and Park City’s Freestyle Camp for 10- to 15-year-olds, which see budding freestylers benefit from hands-on coaching in the terrain park and digital media lab.
Keeping the kids happy off the snow is important too, which is where resorts such as Jay Peak come into their own, with its indoor water park complete with Flowrider, an indoor ice rink and state-of-the-art games arcade. Smugglers’ Notch keeps teenagers entertained at two supervised centres with live music and games while Killington keeps families together for dinners in a remote mountain yurt reached by a snowcat-drawn sleigh.