Now that the snow gods have smiled upon us, chances are the local resorts will soon be swamped with hoards of skier and riders, if not today. Powder junkies will be hustling to make first chair; parents will be struggling to manage their kids’ meltdowns; and parking lots, lift lines, and lodge cafeterias will be jam-packed. With all of the chaos, it’s easy to forget our manners. Seems that every season I witness some form of egregious behavior that makes me understand why lions occasionally eat their young, so it might be in everybody’s best interest to bone up on some mountain etiquette do’s and don’ts. Plus, there really is such a thing as mountain karma – mess with it at your own risk.
Do: Wave and say “Good Morning” to the teenage kid parking cars in the morning. He/she is probably only making minimum wage, and it took an Act of Congress to get them out of bed.
Don’t: Give them the finger and make your own parking spot right up front.
Do: Hold the lodge door open for ladies, kids, and middle-aged men who obviously have never worn ski boots.
Don’t: Knock down above mentioned people as you charge out of the lodge in order to be first in the lift line.
Do: If skiing/riding alone, identify yourself as single when in a long lift line.
Don’t: Poach the ski patrol/instructor line, then sneer at those who call you out.
Do: Comment on how much fun you are having while standing in line on a busy day.
Don’t: Complain how long the lift line is. Seriously dude, a 5-10 minute wait is no big deal.
Do: Pick up any trash you come across while on the mountain.
Don’t: Toss your Keystone Ice empties off the chair.
Do: If you smoke, do so far away from other skiers/riders. If you chew, swallow it.
Don’t: Smoke on the chair or spit chewing tobacco off the chair while near other skiers/riders. Copenhagen racing stripes do not look good on any jacket.
Do: Help a fellow skier collect their gear after a yard sale.
Don’t: Spray them with snow and yell “You suck!” as you ski by.