Here’s to the people that keep winter going.
Here’s to the ones that blow snow all night, and the ones that groom our corduroy for the morning. Here’s to the ones that keep the ticket’s printing, the lifts spinning, and the beers clinking at the end of the day.
Without them, there would be no hot laps on the Facelift; no safe and open trails to ride or face shots on a pow day. There would be no Whiteface Mountain. They’re volunteers, seasonal workers, and they’re dedicated to winter. They’re skiers and snowboarders just like the rest of us.
It can be easy to forget the work that goes into keeping the chairs spinning all season long. The next time you’re making early season turns, catch a chair to the summit, or have a close call as you’re barreling through the glades, think of the people that make it all possible.
Here's who you have to thank
Thank a snowmaker
You know the feeling. It’s late November, and the rest of town is still clinging to the dull yellows and light frosts of the fall. Yet somehow your favorite trails are glowing bright and white as you pull into the parking lot. How does that work?
Those cold nights aren’t the most pleasant conditions to work in, but eager snowmakers won’t let that get in the way. They’re ready to ride, and are working hard to open up the trails for everyone to enjoy. When you see this hearty crew beating the ice from a frozen snow gun, be sure to give them a thumbs up as a thanks for keeping us all riding late into the season.
Thank a ski instructor
It doesn’t matter if you’re an expert or a “never ever,” we all started somewhere. Instructors give everyone the chance to experience the sports that we love so much, even if that means passing up a few powder laps the morning after a storm.
You may not find yourself at the Bear Den Learning Area that often, but say thank you to the instructors when you see them (and tip them if they teach you).
Thank a ski patroller
It’s more than just courtesy rides and medical attention (although those are pretty big things to be thankful for). Ski patrollers are up there every day before the parking lot fills up, checking trails, marking hazards, and prepping equipment. They work open to close, no matter the conditions, to ensure that everyone can enjoy the slopes safely.
The mountain is a better place thanks to the tireless work of these volunteer and seasonal patrollers. So the next time you see ski patrol roping off an uncovered trail, marking exposed rocks, or just enjoying the rest of their run, be sure to thank them for all that they do to keep us skiing and riding.
Thank a liftie
When you’re out moving, slashing turns, and staying warm, lift attendants remain at their post — weathering the cold to keep the chairs spinning ‘round.
Most skiers and boarders will accept their smooth load onto the chairlift in silence, but a brief conversation while you wait for the lift can always brighten the mood. Say hello, ask how their shift is going, and, most importantly, say thank you for grabbing the chair before it crashes full force into the back of your knees.
It seems simple, but it never hurts to go out of your way to say thank you.
Express your gratitude to the people that make the good times possible. Thank the barback, the gift shop attendant, the ski tech in the rental shop, and the person at the ticket counter. These are the people that keep this place running. These are the people who keep the season alive. Whether you're enjoying the season from the slopes, the new Legacy Lodge, or a relaxing motel with mountain views, there's a lot to be thankful for.
So, from all of us skiing and snowboarding in the ‘dacks, thank you.