I’ve always loved the idea of skiing. Bundling up in a cute ski outfit, complete with hat and goggles, while I ever so coolly glide down the mountain. Even snowboarding sounds awesome. In that dream, I jump off the lift chair and do flips in the air over huge cliffs, right before winning my first XGames award.

The thing is though- I’m terrified. The idea of skiing and snowboarding sound like so much fun, and in my dreams even award winning. But, the scary cat inside me would rather just sit by the fireplace and make snow angels safe and sound on my own two feet. 

This winter, I decided, enough was enough. This year I was going to get off the couch and join the rest of my friends on the slopes. And, the first thing I was going to do was sign up for a lesson (or two). 

‘Skiing doesn’t have to be terrifying. It can be fun.’ Those were the first two lines out of my ski instructor’s mouth. It was like she was inside my head! Exactly, I thought to myself. It can be fun. I don’t have to fake an injury at the top of the mountain because I’m scared to go the rest of the way down (that happened, once, and don’t ask- I’m too embarrassed to fully share that story!).

Before we even took the lift up, we went over the basics. Instead of just falling down to stop yourself, like I had always previously done, we went over ways to control yourself on the skis. We even went over techniques (which I will still call pizza and French fry even if I’m 30 years old). About an hour into the lesson, we boarded our first lift and went on an easy bunny slope. It wasn’t super graceful, but I did it. I didn’t fall, I didn’t break any bones, and I survived.

I did the bunny slope about a hundred more times after that, even though the other kids in my group had long gone to conquer the rest of the slopes. I was perfectly fine with my little slope all to myself. Eventually, I got up the nerves to go on a slope that the rest of the ski resort was on. It was fun, too, a little more difficult but really just meant I had to control my leg muscles more than before. This is a work out, I was screaming to my friends.

After all was done and my thighs iced down as I laid by the fire, I was so proud of myself for taking the risk. Skiing was fun and now I understood what everyone was talking about regarding why they liked it so much. I felt part of the cool club, even if for only one day. 

If you’re like me and you want to learn to ski, check out these spots in Idaho for world class skiing with professional instructors that will teach you with the same care they did for me.

Learn to Ski in Idaho:

– Sun Valley Resort– Offers kid and adult only classes and clinics, split between two different mountains

– Kelly Canyon– A member of Professional Ski Instructors of America, you can join private or group clinics

– Grand Targhee Resort– Book a half day or full day lesson in a group or private setting. You are bound to improve with this hands on class.

– Brundage Mountain Resort – In addition to their ski and snowboard clinics, Brundage Mountain Resort works with Adaptive Wilderness Sports of McCall to help teach people with disabilities how to ski and snowboard. This resort works with special equipment to help those with disabilities. 

Sponsored by Idaho Tourism.