Frog's Note: We've got early bird discounts on 2018-2019 ski lift tickets for the Vail resorts. You can save up to $308 off of adult gate price for Vail, Breckenridge, Park City and the other resorts. So hop to it!
Mom confession time. I love skiing with my family, but all of the ski clothes and equipment can be a lot to manage. With hats, gloves, helmets, goggles and socks to keep track of, staying organized is one of my big sanity savers for a family ski trip. Over the years I have learned a few tricks on how to pack for a ski trip, tips for flying with skis and how to store my gear for the next season (which makes packing so much easier for the next trip — it's like a beautiful cycle when it all works properly). But once a journey is underway, I follow some tips for managing ski gear so that I am not always hearing, “Mommmm! Have you seen my gloves?” as we are trying to get out the door for lessons. Here’s how to manage and care for you gear so you can stay organized and make mornings less hectic!
7 Tips for Managing Ski Gear on a Trip
I have found it much easier to find items when I pack each person’s ski gear together. It helps me to be sure that each person has everything, and there is no question about whose items are whose. Tad has all his items in his bag ready to go; Lily has hers. My ski items are all in my boot bag, and Leap has his gear. No exceptions! Another method is to pack all of the underclothes like thermals and socks together, and the outer clothes (ski pants, gloves, hats, face shields, etc.) together. Find what works for you in managing ski gear. If you have kids who are close in size, you may like having their items packed individually so they can’t mix things up as easily. All those little thermals and gloves start to look the same until the larger child tries to wear their younger sibling’s items. Lol.
Clip Gloves Together
Gloves have clips for a reason! Clip gloves together and preferably to their owner’s ski jacket. It makes it much easier to keep the pair together because losing one glove is no fun at all. We have a bin of single gloves of all sizes to prove the importance of this critical step in managing gear on a ski trip. If you stop at a ski lodge for lunch, clip those gloves to the jacket so they don’t get separated. Some boots have Velcro straps that can be stuck together to form a strap, making ski boots much easier to manage and carry with one hand or over the shoulder.
Assign cubbies, drawers and hooks to each family member
Many ski lodges have hooks or cubbies near the entrance to the unit. We assign each family member their own hook and cubby if available. If not, a drawer, shelf or hanger in the closet will do. When they come in, their items get clipped together and hung up to dry or stored in their cubby. That way, they know where to find their items next time they head out.
If the gloves, boots or other items are wet, be sure to dry them near a heater or fireplace, or by placing soft items in a clothes dryer (remove lift tickets from pockets beforehand). Nobody likes to put their foot in a wet boot or hands in a wet glove in the morning. We want to keep those fingers and toes warm and dry! Once items are dry, move the items back to their designated hook or area.
Utilize Ski Valet or Concierge
If your ski hotel or ski school offers overnight storage of skis and poles or snowboards, take advantage of that service. The less you have to carry with you the easier it will be for you. We like easy. Some resorts such as Breckenridge will store your skis or snowboard overnight for a fee.
Take advantage of wagons and lockers
Nothing makes me hoppier at a ski resort than seeing wagons for carrying gear or tired tadpoles. (Thank you, Northstar and Steamboat!) When we are not staying in slope-side lodging, we often bring a bag of extra gloves, dry socks, extra layers or boots to store in a locker. That way we can stash a layer if we get hot and change into walking boots for après ski time in a ski village. It’s also feels good to shed those ski boots for some more family fun beyond the ski slopes in the afternoon like tubing, bungee trampolines or sleigh rides. Some fancier ski lodges may offer an overnight locker for gear and overnight boot dryers. Oooh lala!
Keep items in your jacket and pants pockets
Before bed, I always get organized for the next day. That means filling pockets or backpacks with lift tickets, sunscreen sticks, lip balm, snack bars, money, credit card, ID, hand warmers or anything else we might need on the mountain. That avoids morning craziness, keeps us on schedule and keeps me from forgetting critical items.
As mentioned, following tips for managing gear on a ski trip is a huge sanity saver for our family. Hop on over for more sanity-saving tips for a family ski trip. It will keep you happy and when your children have everything they need and a low-stress environment, that will make the kids happy skiers too.