Top Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Day on the Mountain

Winter is here and it’s time to start planning that big New Zealand ski adventure you’ve been dreaming of! And whether you’re an expert on the mountain or a first-time skier or snowboarder, there are some simple things you can do to stay comfortable and ready to go. From how to protect your skin from harsh alpine conditions, to staying energised, here’s a few tips to keep in mind that will help make sure every day on the slopes is an enjoyable one.

Pack strategically

Heading off for a ski holiday? You won’t need to pack your favourite shorts. New Zealand’s winter is crisp and cold, so to make the most of your luggage allowance, pack your best winter warmers and plenty of clothing that you can wear in layers. Thermal t-shirts and long johns will be go-to items, so if you don’t already have them, it’s worth picking some up either before you head off or when you arrive. A warm hat and sunglasses are also essential, as even in winter, the sun can be incredibly bright—especially on the mountain.

Get the right equipment

Ill-fitting or unsuitable equipment can sap the fun out of a day on the mountain, so whether you plan to buy or rent your ski gear, ensure you get gear that fits properly. Equipment hire essentials are skis and poles (or snowboard), ski pants, jacket, boots, gloves, and a helmet. Pay particular attention to the fit of your boots—make sure they aren’t too tight or pinching your feet when you walk around. An uncomfortable pair of boots will end your day quicker than anything else when it comes to equipment.

You will also need some goggles to protect your eyes. Goggles come with a range of different lenses, including mirrored and low light, which are best suited for different weather conditions. If it’s a grey or foggy day, you’ll want some low light lenses (these are usually yellow or orange in colour), whereas on a bright sunny day, mirrored goggles or sunglasses will be better at protecting your eyes. Wearing sunglasses? Always use a strap to keep them from flying off your head when you’re carving up the slopes!

Stay energised with snacks

Skiing and snowboarding are both great workouts, which makes them the perfect way to keep fit and healthy on your winter holiday. But the flipside is that you’ll burn a lot of energy while you’re on the slopes, so it’s smart to keep some snacks handy so your energy levels don’t dip in the afternoon—fruit & nut bars or chocolate are good choices for a quick energy hit.

Get fit in advance

Want to ski or board for longer each day without fatigue setting in? Consider doing some extra training on your core and leg muscles before you embark on your ski holiday. These large muscles do a lot of the work when you’re skiing, and you’ll definitely start to feel the burn in your lower body after a few runs. A good base level of fitness will help you to ski for longer and enjoy more time on the slopes with less soreness.

Ski within your limits

There’s something exciting about taking on a challenge and going beyond expectations. But when it comes to the mountain, it pays to know your limits. If you’re a first-timer or still learning, stick to the green and blue runs, and leave the black runs to those with more experience. Prematurely taking on advanced runs can be dangerous to yourself and others.

Protect your skin

There’s nothing worse than unexpected sunburn—and it can happen in the middle of winter, too! On sunny winter days the sun reflects off the snow and will leave you red faced if you don’t wear sunscreen and protection for your lips and eyes. On windy days or days with heavy snowfall, it’s a good idea to wear a face tube/gaiter to protect your face and mouth against harsh winds and ice.

And that’s it! Now you’re ready to get packing and head off on your New Zealand ski trip. Still have questions? Contact Ski Express today and our team will be happy to assist.