With many states extending ‘Stay At Home’ orders through April, we know skiers and snowboarders are still waxing nostalgic about the abrupt loss of the remainder of their winter season. While we would normally be celebrating spring skiing and closing days with reckless abandon, we’re now stuck with the reality of sheltering in place, working from home, keeping the kiddos busy, and maintaining social distancing recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19. It can be tough to fill the hours we would normally spend on snow, so we’ve got a few ideas to jump-start your creativity and keep you in better spirits this spring.
Round-Up Your Old Goggles
Surely many skiers and snowboarders have old goggles sitting around in drawers or bins. Put those goggles to good use and help nurses and doctors on the front lines by donating your new, old, used, or unused goggles to Goggles for Docs. This recently formed organization gets ski goggles into the hands of healthcare workers who currently have no eye protection as they treat COVID-19 patients. For more information and a drop off location at Ski Utah: Click Here.
Ski Utah Coloring Pages
To keep kiddos and adults alike entertained, I’ve been doodling up winter scenes to help skiers and shredders reflect on their mountain stoke. All you need is a printer and some art supplies to revel in the joy that Utah’s amazing snow brings. Click Here to access our coloring book pages!
SKI UTAH Activity Book
Yep, download a fun-filled activity booklet that covers all 15 ski areas in the great state of Utah. Keep busy with word searches, coloring pages, mazes, crossword puzzles and more. Click Here to download!
Use All Your Delivery Boxes to Craft a Pet Fort
Many of us have resorted to ordering essentials or groceries online and have plenty of cardboard boxes lying around. (Don’t forget to thank your delivery person!)
What to do with all those boxes before they hit the recycling bin? Craft a pet fort. The more elaborate the better, bust out the paint, markers, and masking tape. Don’t have a pet? No worries, offer to make one for a friend’s cat or pup or maybe a human fort instead. I spent over a week perfecting a Campurr Van for my Cat Darwin, made from a grocery delivery box. If you need inspiration, don’t worry, I created a Pinterest board for that.
This is a great project for kids and you can encourage them to dream big, adding levels and chambers as new boxes arrive. For more stellar ideas on activities for kids, see Kathy’s latest article about bringing snow fun indoors: Click Here.
Tackle the Ski Utah Book List
Since we’re not skiing or snowboarding, there are more hours in the day that we may not be willing to relinquish to more mundane activities. Dive straight back into skiing or snowboarding adventures with our favorite ski and snowboard-themed books. Book #1 on this list, Silence in the Age of Noise, I found to be the ideal companion to the quieter hours of quarantine life. On our list you'll find colorful skiing history, tales of adventure, and the science behind Utah’s perfect powder snow. Click Here to see the list.
Plan Future Ski Trips
The Man Behind The Map is the ideal gift for any ski, snowboard, or winter lover. This gorgeous book contains over 200 pages of colorful ski maps from illustrator Jim Niehues. Ignite the fireplace, pour a glass of whiskey and mull over the watercolors of mountain landscapes across the globe. Take some time to organize your bucket list of must-visit resorts or click here to learn about Jim's amazing legacy encompassing three decades of painting ski area trail maps.
Bust Out The Art Supplies
Forget what your mean 2nd grade teacher told you, everyone is an artist or creator. Engaging in a creative outlet is one of the most therapeutic ways to spend extra hours. Recreate your favorite photo from this season, try a collage with old magazines, sketch your favorite run with some pens or markers. Try watercolors or journal about your favorite ski or shred days. For inspiration, see the Ski Utah piece on the Meinhold family, Click Here. Capturing your memories in a creative way can also be a helpful way to find closure after the abrupt end of the 2020 ski season.
Honor The Memories
Reminisce about the best ski and shred days of your life. Since phones have been equipped with fancy cameras, people seldom print out or preserve paper copies of their photos. Why not return to analog and celebrate your favorite memories or moments from the season. There are many companies that offer a service to easily and quickly convert your favorite Instagram posts into printed photos. (I've used a local company, Persnickety Prints.) While you wait for the photos to arrive, gather old ski maps, tickets, season passes, and mementos. Then spend a little time each day creating a photo book or scrapbook of your best ski and snowboard shots, trips, fun times and memories.
Listen To Ski Utah’s Last Chair Podcasts
I've found it difficult to remain positive while listening to countless podcasts about politics and current events. For relief, I've lately been turning to Ski Utah’s podcast host Tom Kelly, a renowned journalist and U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Famer, for deep dives into the ski industry on the Last Chair Podcast. Tom chats with resort employees, athletes, and industry leaders to bring the stories of skiing and snowboarding in Utah to light with his charismatic and engaging storytelling.
Click Here for Tom’s Last Chair episode directory.
Go Hard Core
Well, since we're all confined to home and gyms are closed, there is no better time to get off the couch and establish a daily exercise routine. Here are a few Ski Utah articles to get you moving because I suppose it's never too early to begin strengthening for next season! Many gyms and studios are offering free online classes or specials, so if you need a little extra motivation, connect with local businesses to see what they are offering.
Fun Facts About Ski Resorts
Think you know everything about your favorite Ski Utah resorts? Think again. There are plenty of zany and little-known facts about Utah’s resorts in this fun article: Click Here.
Look no further than George Jedenoff, a 102-year-old skier who still makes an annual pilgrimage to Utah for skiing each winter. Click Here for George’s story or catch the inspiring film below.
Wax Your Skis & Board
Take proper care of your equipment and get it all tuned up, waxed, and ready for next winter. For tips, Click Here. Be sure to patronize local shops if you need to stock up on tuning supplies. In Utah, we like to use Sports Den, AJ Motion Sports, Christy Sports, Cole Sport, Canyon Sports, Backcountry.com, Jans Mountain Outfitters, Level 9 Sports and Utah SKI Gear.
Edit Your Footy
If you’ve been stacking POV footage for years, you can use this time to finally edit all that goodness and remember the best times. If you have no idea how to edit video files there are plenty of online, subscription-based platforms that are offering discounts or free trials on video-based learning programs. I’ve been using Skillshare, Lynda, or YouTube to learn about subjects as diverse as meditation to playing the ukulele, and video editing.
Trail Running & Hiking
Trail running and hiking are popular pastimes here in Utah and a great antidote to stir craziness. In the current atmosphere, where social distancing and 'Stay At Home' orders are in place in Utah until May 1st, it is imperative to practice responsible decision-making when outdoors. Continue to observe social distancing guidelines, avoid crowded trailheads or peak times like weekends. Click Here for an article from University of Utah Health on how to safely and responsibly get outside during the COVID-19 pandemic.
And here are some helpful articles about both trail running and hiking:
Trail Running Basics – Click Here
Top 10 Trail Runs in Northern Utah – Click Here
8 Spring Hikes in Salt Lake City, Park City, and Ogden - Click Here
5 Hikes For Toddlers - Click Here
Ogden’s Top Trails - Click Here
We'll see you when the snow flies! If you have any more great ideas for how to keep busy in the age of social distancing, pop them in the comments section below.