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Welcome to a Lifetime of Winter Fun!

Congratulations on your decision to discover the thrill of skiing/snowboarding!

3 Skiers

This "Beginner's Guide" is to help you with your first experience to be sure it's a great one!

By reviewing this information you'll arrive at Pats Peak well prepared to begin your skiing or snowboarding adventure.

Base Guide

Also, check out our new Interactive Base Area Guide - It's pretty cool!

  • Dress in layers. A number of lighter layers allow you to adjust your clothing as the temperature changes.
  • Wear a base layer of long underwear or tights.
  • Warm collared shirt, sweater or fleece.
  • Water and wind resistant pants. Snow or ski pants work best but jeans are OK as long as you bring an extra pair. Avoid sweat pants, they get wet very quickly! Be sure your pants are wide enough at the bottom of the legs to fit over large boots.
  • Jacket or shell with a high collar, once again water and wind resistant is best.
  • High socks. Bring a couple of extra pairs of socks - the higher, the better. Avoid socks with big, thick seams, if possible.
  • Gloves or mittens. Gloves allow more freedom of movement, but mittens are warmer. Avoid knit gloves, they get wet very quickly.
  • Warm hat that covers you ears. The old saying "If your feet are cold, put on a hat" is true!
  • Sunscreen and lip balm, SPF-15 or greater. Even on cloudy days it is very easy to get too much sun when on the snow.
  • Eye protection. Either sunglasses or goggles.
  • Be sure to bring extra clothes to change into for the ride home!

The Pats Peak Finish Line Ski & Board Shop, conveniently located just steps from the slopes, carries everything listed above. Stop by the shop upon arrival to Pats Peak and our friendly staff will help you complete your outfit!

Your first few moments at a ski resort can be a little overwhelming. This page will guide you from driving through the gate, parking and getting to the ticket windows. Every member of our staff is here to make your visit a pleasant one - please feel free to ask if you have a question!

Parking

There is plenty of free parking at Pats Peak Ski Area. If you arrive early in the day, you will probably get to park very close the the lodge area. For later arrivals, there are unloading zones in front of the lodge and ticketing areas. Please be sure to bring everything you need from your car and lock your vehicle. Your first stop is the Rental Shop.

Starting Gate

First Stop - The Rental Shop

Head towards the lodges and enter our Rental Shop to equip you with the latest and greatest rental equipment. It is here where your journey to winter fun begins...the Rental Shop entrance is on the bottom floor of the lodge on your right. Minor children under the age of 18 need to have a parent or guardian sign the Rental Form

Our Starter Special package is a great way to learn!

STARTER SPECIAL:

For the First Time Skier Ages 6 and Up.
Includes Beginner Group Lesson, Rental Equipment, and Full Day Lower Mountain Lift Ticket (8:30am-4pm). This is the package that enters you in the Passport Program.*

Starter Special $89

*PASSPORT PROGRAM:

THIS IS A 4-DAY PROGRAM:

  • Purchase 4 Starter Special Packages on 4 separate days for $89 each (total: $356)
  • On the 4th day of the program, receive a FREE PATS PEAK UNLIMITED SEASON PASS and FREE DAILY USE OF RENTAL EQUIPMENT for the remainder of the season! Use of Rental Equipment is based on availability and not available for Saturday Night POP. 
  • Plus, receive 50%-Off additional Group Lessons at Pats Peak Snowsports School.
  • Must be 6+ years old.

FINE PRINT:

  • Free Pats Peak Unlimited Season Pass is valid for the remainder of the 2016-2017 season.
  • Lessons do not need to be consecutive but this program needs to be completed by the end of the 2016-2017 season.
  • Lessons are offered daily at 10:00 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 p.m. (Please note that 1:30 p.m. lessons may be limited on some weekdays.).
  • This is a one-time program per person for someone NEW to skiing.
  • There are no refunds if the program is not completed by the end of the 2016-2017 season.
  • This program cannot be combined with any other offers.

TO EARN YOUR SEASON PASS, YOU MUST:

  • Keep ALL your lift tickets from the 4 Starter Special Packages.
  • Have your instructor sign the booklet at the end of EACH lesson.
  • Go to the Pats Peak Guest Services Desk with your:
    • Completed and Signed Passport Booklet
    • Four Starter Special Package Lift Tickets
    • ID or Driver's License (minors must be accompanied by adult)
Purchase Online

Another great option is to pre-purchase the Passport Program PLUS for additional savings!

Passport Program PLUS - $349

Plus Ski
  • Valid for (4) Skier Starter Special Packages for $349!
  • On the 4th day of the program, receive:
    • FREE PATS PEAK UNLIMITED SEASON PASS
    • FREE ELAN SKIS WITH BINDINGS*
    • SKI SHOP DISCOUNTS
  • Plus, receive 50%-Off additional Group Lessons.
  • Participants must be 18+ years old.
  • Limited to two participants per household.

*A free pair of Elan skis with bindings is limited to the first 150 participants, Ages 18+ that purchase this Pre-Paid Passport Program Plus. Ski sizes range from 146-160cm and will accommodate appropriate skier type abilities for participants in this beginner program. There are limited amounts of equipment per size. Sizes will be distributed based on a first-come, first-served basis upon completion of the program.

Purchase Online

 

PATS PEAK HAS PARTNERED WITH THESE SKI SHOPS TO PROVIDE DISCOUNTS:

Finish Line Logo
Pats Peak
SW Logo
Concord, NH
Proctor Ski Logo
Nashua, NH
Buchikas Logo
Salem, NH
Ken Jones Logo
Manchester, NH
Ski House Logo
Somerset, MA
 

FINE PRINT:

  • Pats Peak Unlimited Season Pass is valid for the remainder of the 2015-2016 season.
  • Lessons do not need to be consecutive but this program needs to be completed by the end of the 2015-2016 season.
  • Lessons are offered daily at 10:00 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 p.m. (Please note that 1:30 p.m. lessons may be limited on some weekdays.).
  • This is a one-time program per person for someone NEW to skiing.
  • There are no refunds if the program is not completed by the end of the 2015-2016 season.
  • This program cannot be combined with any other offers.
  • Some restrictions may apply.

TO EARN YOUR SEASON PASS AND RECEIVE YOUR FREE ELAN SKIS, YOU MUST:

  • Keep ALL your lift tickets from the 4 Starter Special Packages.
  • Have your instructor sign the booklet at the end of EACH lesson.
  • Go to the Pats Peak Guest Services Desk with your:
    • Completed and Signed Passport Booklet
    • Four Starter Special Package Lift Tickets
    • ID or Driver's License 

Purchase the Pre-Paid Passport Program PLUS ONLINE now!

Please note: Once this program is sold out at 150 participants, it will no longer be available for purchase.

Getting To Know Your Equipment

Fitting Your Ski Boots

Snowboard BootsThe first equipment you are issued are your boots. The rental technician will need to know your street shoe size to assure that your boots fit properly.

Your boots should feel snug around your foot, but not tight. Once buckled, you should be able to wiggle your toes, but your heel should not move when you pull up on it. If your boots feel too loose or too tight, please do not hesitate to ask for a different size!

Everything You Wanted to Know About Skis

Next, you will receive your skis. Our skis are expertly tuned and waxed. Your ski technician will explain the finer points of the equipment you have selected. On the top of your skis you will find complicated looking devices called bindings. These miracles of modern engineering not only hold your feet on the skis, but they also know when to let you go if you fall. A binding technician will set your bindings based on your weight, height, age, and ability level. Please be as accurate as possible to assure proper settings!

You will also be issued ski poles - which are used for balance and moving around. A good fit on ski poles is to grab the ski pole that puts your elbow at a 90 degree angle. Once you are out on the snow, your instructor will show you how to use your bindings to attach your skis to your feet. It's actually quite simple - place the little ledge on the front of your boot under the front binding piece (called the toe piece), line up your heel and press down. To get out, you simply press down on the lever in the back with your ski pole. If you ski comes off during skiing, the ski brake will stop it from continuing down the hill without you!

Snowboards 101

Snowboards work pretty much like skis do. The big difference is that they are much wider, and you only get one. They have a sidecut just like skis, and turn the same way a ski turns.

Snowboard bindings have one big difference from ski bindings - they don't release! Once your feet are in, they should stay there. Getting in your snowboard bindings is easy, you put your foot as far back in the binding as possible, push the plastic ladder strap into the end of the main strap with the buckle on it, until the ratchet clicks and the straps will not come apart. To tighten the strap, pull the large lever on the buckle back and away from the boot. Then let the lever spring back to position and repeat until the strap is tight enough. The straps should generally be quite tight so that the boot cannot move much in the binding, although not so tight that your circulation is starting to be cut off. To release the binding simply push the release catch in the middle of the buckle forwards and pull the main strap away from the plastic ladder strap. The release catch lifts the ratchet off of the ridges on the ladder strap so that the straps can slide smoothly apart.

Burton Learn To Ride (LTR) Center:

Designed to accelerate learning by utilizing beginner-specific equipment. It provides snowboard beginners with gear designed to improve their experience as well as proven teaching methods to make for an enjoyable and successful first day. The equipment is tailored by gender and age to maximize each individual's learning potential.

LTR boards are designed to reduce the likelihood of catching an edge while learning and the LTR boots and bindings are softer flexing, allowing the rider to more easily guide the board into a turn. Developed in conjunction with the American Association of Snowboard Instructors (AASI) and major resorts around North America, the LTR methodology stresses getting people to link turns in the first lesson.

The Kids LTR Boards are designed for children 12 and under and groups kids with their peers, on equipment to fit their height & weight.

Women's Burton LTR Center

PATS PEAK has earned the distinction of becoming the first Burton Women's Learn to Ride Center in New Hampshire. This commitment showcases a strong dedication to women-specific teaching and learning. Burton's specialized women's rental equipment and snowboard lessons are offered for women every day, but female snowboarders are guaranteed a 100% Women's Only lesson, at 11:30am every Saturday.

You're properly dressed, you've got the right package, and your rental equipment is ready to go!

In your lesson, you'll learn all of the basic skills that you need to get started on a lifetime of skiing or snowboarding fun!

The first thing you will learn is how to put on your skis or snowboard and how to move around on the flat. This will give you a chance to get to know your equipment and get the feel for sliding around.

You will also learn how to climb up the hill and turn yourself around while standing still. All of these skills are presented in a very flat area with a "runout". A runout helps you stop yourself while you are learning.

Next you will learn to slide straight down the hill. Unless you are an ice skater or in-line skater, your brain has been programmed to believe that sliding across the ground while standing up is, as a rule, something to be avoided. It takes a few runs down the hill before your brain figures out that it is not only OK, but a lot of fun.

Once you have mastered "straight runs", you will be taught how to turn your skis. Turning offers two benefits - it allows you to avoid things you do not wish to meet up close, and it allows you to stop whenever you want - both commendable goals.

Your rental skis were designed to turn easily so you'll be happily turning in no time. Once you get to the point that you can go where you want to go and stop yourself with confidence, it is time for your first lift ride.

The First Lift Ride

If you have ever sat on a porch swing, you have mastered the art of loading and riding a chairlift. As you slide out onto the loading area, the chair will come up behind you. When the chair touches the back of your legs, simply sit down and enjoy the ride. There is a restraint bar that you pull down in front of you for the ride, please use it. At the top of the lift, you will see signs instructing you to raise the restraint bar and prepare to unload.The snow will gradually come up to meet your skis or snowboard.

When you get to the "Unload Here" sign, stand up, lean slightly forward and slide straight down the ramp. Your instructor will give you instructions on where to meet.

When you take your first look down the hill, you may feel like you have been deposited on the summit of Mount Washington - don't worry. Your instructor will guide you down the most gentle terrain on the mountain and will help you fine tune your turns all the way. By the time you reach the bottom of the hill, you'll feel like an old pro!

Congratulations!

You are now well on your way to a lifetime of winter fun.