First Timers Tips


Take a lesson! You'll improve the most when you receive guidance. Take a lesson from one of our qualified instructors and you'll safely learn more in a one hour lesson than you will all day on your own. Click here for information on our lesson packages.

  • Obtain proper equipment. Be sure to have your ski or snowboard bindings adjusted correctly. You can rent quality ski or snowboarding equipment from Big Snow Resort at both Indianhead and Blackjack Mountains. Click here to view our rentals page.
  • Dress in layers. Layering can accommodate your body's constantly changing temperature. Dress in polypropylene underwear (top and bottoms), which feels good next to the skin, dries quickly, absorbs sweat and keeps you warm. Wear a turtleneck, sweater and jacket.
  • Be prepared. Mother Nature has a mind of her own. Bring a headband or hat with you to the slopes, 60 percent of heat-loss is through the head.
  • Wear gloves or mittens (mittens are usually better for those susceptible to cold hands).
  • Know your limits. Learn to ski and snowboard in control.
  • If you're tired, stop skiing. Injuries usually result from fatigue. Have a seat and enjoy the people around you.
  • Most of all, have fun.


Here is our list of recommended items for you to bring skiing or snowboarding in order to guarantee a fun first day on the slopes.

  • Hat - If your head is warm, the rest of you is likely to stay warm.
  • Waterproof Gloves/Mittens - Mittens are warmest.
  • Goggles/Sunglasses - Goggles are strongly recommended on cold or snowy days for warmth and increased visibility.
  • Jacket/Parka (water resistant)
  • Synthetic or Wool Based Layers for Top & Bottom - it's better to be warm than cold, you can always shed layers. Synthetic materials help to wick moisture away from your skin. Do not wear cotton as a base layer.
  • Snow/Water Resistant Pants - Very Important. Your 1st day will acquaint your butt with the snow; keep it warm & dry.
  • Warm, Dry Socks - No cotton. Wear only one pair of socks.
  • Sunscreen - SPF 15 or higher.
  • Lip Balm
  • Snack, Fruit, Energy Bar
  • Trail Map - Available at no charge in the lodge
  • ID, Wallet, Cash
  • Extra Clothes, Shoes - To change into when you're done, in order to go out and celebrate your 1st day
  • Equipment - If you are not renting: either skis, poles and boots; or snowboard and snowboard specific boots


Forget something?  Don't worry! You can visit H.W. Rider Ski Shops at both Indianhead and Blackjack Mountains!