Take it to the Top

Trying anything new is intimidating, but when you mix snow and speed, we understand you may be a bit more hesitant. I’ve been a skier for years now and consider myself to be a half decent one at that. But working at Stratton, the birthplace of snowboarding, it was only fitting that I strap in and try my hand at boarding.

This March, Stratton launched Take it to the Top, a new lesson option as the next step in progression for the novice skier and snowboarder. The lesson includes a complete gear rental package, an all mountain lift ticket, and six hour of group instruction for $149 and will be offered until March 31.

Wearing much more comfortable snowboarding boots, I walked up to the learning area at 9:45 a.m., where I met Amanda, my teacher for the day. I’d previously had taken a snowboarding lesson about five years ago and had just done two laps on the bunny hill, so I was feeling confident that I’d at least make it off the magic carpet and on to the lift.

Amanda was great. She didn’t baby me and didn’t hold my hand in any step of the process – but actually, which I think was great because it wasn’t a physical crutch to lean on. I was shockingly more comfortable on my toe edge (a rare occurrence apparently) but the transition from toe to heel edge never fully clicked. Amanda’s direction was clear, easy to understand, and personally recognizable.

We moved from Village Walk down to the Villager lift, where I continued to turn and tumble down Stage 1 and Downtowner. Sure, it was frustrating, but I was proud to be able to make it down the trail and make it off a lift.

Take it to the Top is meant to be an all-day lesson option, but I eventually backed out after one gnarly hit to my tailbone. For those who already know the transition from edge to edge and how to link turns, this is the perfect lesson. What more of a confidence boost can you ask for – making it to the summit, seeing views across four states on a clear day, and finally weaving your way through the Meadows back to the base area. I for one, am content making it to mid-mountain.

Book online at Stratton.com.