Avid trail runner, freelance writer and a mother of four with a healthy obsession for the great outdoors. Join me in my discoveries along the Mornington Peninsula and further afield by subscribing to my articles.
It's the perfect time to learn to ski. The mountains have snow, it's spectacular and it's only cold when you stop moving. But with snow and scenery this spectacular, I'm sure the only thing you will feel is the thud of your first fall and the exhilaration of conquering your first ski lesson.
I got the skiing bug two years ago at Lake Mountain after a ski lesson with a lovely instructor who taught me the basics of cross country skiing along with 6 other keen first timers. Since then I have been eagerly awaiting to get back there. So on Sunday I finally got back to Lake Mountain and decided to take another beginners lesson and share it with you all. After all It's too much fun to keep it to myself.
Although I had done it previously it was completely different and the techniques used between ski instructors varied. The first was a Norwegian man who was a competitive cross country skier and the second was a Frenchman who specializes in snowboarding but somehow ended up teaching at a cross country mountain. For beginners though, it's all about the basics and they both provided them with a good sense of humor and plenty of fun.
Lessons are definitely good value and I recommend them to anyone wanting to get started. With skis, boots and poles from the ski hire shop on the mountain and a ninety minute lesson it costs $75 or if you organize your hire through Marysville ski hire they can also add a ninety minute lesson as a package for $65. Kids lessons and private lessons are also available through both companies.
During the lesson we spent time walking with one ski on and then on two skis, it sounds easy doesn't it ? But there were lots of stumbles as we tried to go through the basic skills. We went from from upright to lying on the snow within seconds but it was always followed by lots of laughter. After we all took turns of doing what the instructor asked in the ski school area we got the opportunity to hit the trails. With much enthusiasm we got up the hill only to realize we must go down, so before that happened the instructor had us practice on a gentle down hill slope where he tried in vain to get us to 'snow plow' to stop instead of using our backsides. This wasn't all that successful for most as laughter overtook and control of the skis diminished and resulted in our french instructor throwing snowballs at anyone who didn't listen to his instructions.
Coming back down the hill to the resort buildings was the challenging bit with our lack of experience in steering combined with speed. I had a spectacular crash at the bottom but it didn't hurt a bit. Some of our group decided to walk down probably laughing at us all falling in front of them.
Whilst we all had plenty of spills along the way we all had a great time learning to ski, meeting new people and having lots of laughs along the way.
The environment is very supportive and it's guaranteed to be fun.
Lessons are held every day from 9am - 3pm ( time the last lesson leaves) until the snow is no longer on the mountain. Bookings are not required but if you would like to make an inquiry or find out more about the ski school click here.
One thing that I will have a gripe about is the lack of organisation in the ski hire building. It was frustrating to say the least. Staff were overwhelmed, admittedly on a very busy day. Areas aren't clearly marked. Ski's aren't returned through the clearly marked 'returns door' but surprisingly through the exit only door. Waiting time for hire, lesson booking, returns and staff confusion added up to just under 70 minutes. The previous year it was seamless with the ski school bookings being taken in the building opposite and I hope they go back to that format as there was less congestion and things flowed really well.
Overall the facilities are great with a restaurant and cafe, warm rest rooms with enough cubicles to prevent queues, a ski wear shop selling clothing at regular prices, ski and clothing hire, car parking attendants to direct you to a car park, happy ski school instructors, 3 toboggan runs if you're taking the kids along and a fantastic atmosphere.