Due to the fact ski season is relatively short and we’re at the mercy of unpredictable weather conditions, it’s crucial to maximize your runs when you get out on the slopes. Sometimes, accomplishing this requires strategically ditching your friends or family that simply don’t possess the same skills as you do.
Here are 5 creative ways to ditch your friends on a powder day without jeopardizing a friendship or après ski partner:
- The Early Bird Special: Powder days are not ideal ski conditions for newbies since it’s more challenging than groomed snow. Let your friends know you’re going to get out there a couple hours early and, being the good friend that you are, recommend they get their beauty rest, avoid the difficult early-morning conditions and come meet you later in the day. When your friends arrive at the slopes, spend some time with them on the groomers now that fresh tracks are history.
- It’s The Phone Service’s Fault: This is one of the easiest, most commonly used excuses to separate yourself from Beginner Benny. It’s almost inevitable that at some point you’ll get lost from your friend. You can then be off on your way and argue that you tried to reach them, but due to poor cell phone reception or water damage to your phone, you were unable to reach them. However, beware that your friends may catch on to the “water damage excuse” if it’s used too often or the phone miraculously comes back to life just as you’re ready to call it a day.
- Liquid Lunch: Newbie Nancy is so excited about how well her morning lesson went and how much she’s improving that she wants to ski with you that afternoon. What do you do? Be a pal and buy her a congratulatory mid-day cocktail, or two or three. The result? A great return on investment: she gains some liquid courage and increases her speed on the hill.
- The Bathroom Break: If you had a long night out on the town the night before, or ate something for dinner that’s essentially a laxative alternative, tell your friend you have to run to the bathroom and that you’ll contact them afterwards. To increase believability, pro-actively suggest a chili or curry dinner the night before – just keep in mind that at that point, it may not be a lie that you have to hit the restroom for awhile.
- The Cristiano Ronaldo: The name stems from a Portuguese soccer player well-known for faking injuries to draw penalties from the other team. If you use the fake injury approach, make sure you fabricate the story a tad by saying the injury occurred from another skier or rider running into you, and not what truly happened (you tried to land a trick well beyond your ability). You don’t want to destroy your rep.
In all seriousness, we Liftopians do not advocate lying, but we do love when everyone gets the most out of their days on the slopes. While the above methods were more for your reading enjoyment than anything else, the best approach is usually to be brutally honest: “Sorry Tony, but it’s a powder day. Enjoy the bunnies and I’ll catch you later.”
If you’re wondering why I’m so well versed on this topic, it’s because I’ve been a ditch victim more times than you can imagine. For all the new and less experienced skiers and snowboarders out there, never turn down a ski trip because everyone else going has more ski days under their belt than you.
Resorts like Sun Valley, Aspen, and Winter Park do a great job of catering to skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels. Keep in mind that once the sun goes down and the boots are hung up, everyone (regardless of how fast you can get down the mountain) unites at the lodge for an après ski or hot chocolate.