Growing a Skier at Deer Valley

By Growing A Skier Mar 12, 2019
Growing a skier at Deer Valley: early ski instruction makes all the difference for new skiers.
Growing a Skier at Deer Valley

There is a reason why Deer Valley is ranked THE TOP kid-friendly resort in North America again this year. The littlest skiers on the mountain truly thrive at Deer Valley. While they maintain their legacy of being one of the most rigorous ski schools in the country, Deer Valley Resort also knows how to nurture budding skills and prepare skiers to explore their expansive mountain. With the nurturing guidance of an instructor, your little skier will be ready to take off in no time.

Ski School Lessons

While there is certainly value in spending time experimenting and practicing on the hill, an hour (or a half day) of instruction can go leaps and bounds towards helping your little ones develop correct technique early on. The Ski School at Deer Valley is anything but childcare on the mountain. While the day will certainly feel fun for kids (Cocoa! Games! Visits from the Deer Valley Mascots!), instructors are working hard to make sure your little ones are practicing correct form and building confidence. The low ratio of instructors to students ensures that each child is getting private instruction throughout the day. The takeaway from each ski school class at Deer Valley is setting up every skier with a deeper love and enthusiasm for skiing and making sure everybody feels more confident in the nurturing environment.

Snow Park Lodge and Beginner Terrain

The base of Snow Park offers enough beginner terrain to keep little ones engaged and interested throughout the day. Most ski resorts have a tow-rope and beginner lift. Deer Valley has a whole portion of their mountain devoted to helping beginners advance. Instead of making a big jump from the magic carpet to the lift, Deer Valley has a progressive series of magic carpets and obstacles for drills (or games from a child’s perspective). Snow Park Lodge is a beautiful place for families to camp out for the day while little ones work on skills. You’ve surely heard about the Deer Valley turkey chili and it absolutely lives up to its reputation. 


Exploring the Mountain

After skiers are feeling confident, hop on the Silver Lake Express lift to go explore the mountain. The mountain at Deer Valley is expansive and has terrain for every level. Most lifts offer at least one green or blue run back down to the bottom. After a morning of working on skills, sharing a cookie on the Silver Lake Express to ski some “big-kid terrain” can feel like the ultimate reward! Grab a map and plan a route that will feel inspiring and achievable for your little skier.

Does my skier really need ski school? And when can they start?

Getting young ones started in the correct direction from the beginning is especially important. While many resorts don’t start lessons until a child is 4-5 years old, Deer Valley actually starts lessons as young as 3 years old. Look, we can all benefit from instruction, even if we just learn one small way to improve our technique. A single lesson each season can help little ones make small changes in their form and help increase their confidence.


Our Experience

Huck, my four-year-old, is actually a fairly decent skier. He can follow my turns down the mountain and stops when he needs to stop. During his lesson at Deer Valley, his instructor followed his lead. They did run after run on the bunny hill, working on small goals each time. It didn’t look like much from an observer’s point of view, and it didn’t feel like “work” to my son. But his teacher knew exactly what he was doing and was building Huck’s abilities in a subtle way. After his lesson, we rode the Silver Lake Express lift and accessed his longest and steepest runs yet. My son was a different skier. Instead of stopping at the top of a steep pitch and plowing his way down, he confidently made turns down every run we encountered. One morning of instruction changed the whole pace of our season! Thank you, Deer Valley!

For more in the Growing a Skier series, check out these stories:

Growing a Skier at Alta
Growing a Skier at Brian Head Resort
Growing a Skier at Snowbasin
Growing a Skier at Park City
Growing a Skier at Brighton