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By the time you are reading this, the ski season has been well underway. Lift service skiing in the eastern United States started around mid-October when Killington and Sunday River opened. That’s right, you’ve already missed a month and a half of skiing but there is still a lot more in front of us. Yes, if the weather holds there are still five more months of skiing, December (1), January (2), February (3), March (4) and April (5) with a little bit of luck. Remember to enjoy a long season skiing is not what you see in front of your door, down here in the low lands, but it is about what is happening in the higher elevations. The higher you go and the further you are from the warm ocean waters the colder it gets. So check out those snow reports and drive up into the Catskills for early season skiing. Get on your skis or snowboard and start sliding and gliding.

Starting in December often means you get on the slopes and trails before the first winter rains have touched the snow place on the mountainsides by either nature or snowmaking. By skiing in early December, you avoid the crowds that will start to find their way outdoors around Christmas, and which will present well into February. Starting early also means that you will have a few days in before Instruction Weekend and your multiday ski vacation out West, in Vermont, or in Europe. Get more value out of a five or seven day ski vacation by not spending the first days of your vacation getting a year's accumulation of rust out of your ski technique and your edges.

No matter what you must plan on skiing on Saturday and Sunday, December 14 and 15th for great deals and opportunities. That weekend is Demo Days Hunter; Ski Council days at Belleayre where you’ll only pay $38 for lift ticket instead of $60 and opportunity for Free Lessons to Ski or Ride at Plattekill. Check area websites for details.
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Don’t forget to checkout Hunter’s demo days on Saturday and Sunday December 14 and 15. If you never been to a demo day, they way Hunter usually organizes it, is that with a credit card and a drivers license you can try skis and boards for free. The Demo registration booth will be located inside the main lodge with registration starting at 9:00 AM. Hunter has announced that the following companies will be participating:
Salomon Skis Atomic Skis Dynastar Skis K2 Skis Nordica Skis
Rossignol Skis Fischer Skis Head Skis Kastle Skis Goode Skis
Line Skis Arbor Snowboards Burton Snowboards
I make it most years to Hunter to demo skis. It gives you a chance to try skis out on snow with enough time to take advantage of the big sales at the beginning of February. Just trying out different skis will help you know more about your skiing and how different skis work. One thing to remember, demo skis are usually in good tune. So if the ski you try seems great, are the demo skis great, or are your skis in need of a good tune? Check last month’s column for tuning tools and wax resources to do your own. Don’t forget bring your own skis to the demo event for comparison and to warm up on at the start of the day.

There will also be a Ladies Only Demo Day at Hunter on Friday December 27, when skis and snowboards specifically designed for women will be available to demo.

Check the calendar below for special events, deals, or just where to think about go and plan to ski with Ramapo.

DATE

AREA

EVENT

Saturday 11/28/15

Belleayre

My season kick off day Sunday
Saturday 11/29/15

Hunter

 
Saturday 12/5/15

Plattekill

Tentative opening date Sunday
Saturday 12/12/15

Hunter

Consumer Demo Weekend
Saturday 12/12

Belleayre

SKI COUNCIL DAYS valid ski club ID ticket $38, window price $66
Sunday 12/13/15

Hunter

Consumer Demo Weekend
Sunday 12/13/15

Belleayre

SKI COUNCIL DAYS valid ski club ID ticket $38, window price $66 Sunday
12/13/15

Windham

Dress as Santa and Ski for free check their website for details
Saturday 12/19/15

Plattekill

Learn to ski or snow board for FREE
12/20/15

Plattekill

Learn to ski or snow board for FREE
Saturday 12/26/15

Windham

 
Sunday 12/27/15

Belleayre

 
Friday 1/1

Hunter

An avoid the crowds day?
     
Check the calendar below for special events, deals, or just where to go.
DAY DATE AREA EVENT
Saturday 1/7 Gore Instruction Weekend
Sunday 1/7 Gore
Saturday 1/14 Belleayre Belleayre Cup Race
Sunday 1/15 Belleayre Coalition Cup Race
Saturday 1/21 Plattekill Plattekill Cup Races
Sunday 1/22 Windham 51st Anniversary Extravaganza
Saturday 1/28 Hunter Mogul Workshop
Sunday 1/29 Hunter Mogul workshop
Snow Phones
Belleayre 1-800-942-6904 Hunter 1-800-FOR-SNOW
Windham 1-800729-4SNO Plattekill 1-800-NEED-2-SKI
Looking forward to skiing with you, so give me, Bob Reich, a call!
(my number is in the Club Roster)

ramapo xc skiersRamapo's X/C contingent generally plans their outings at club meetings, so if you are interested in getting together with a group going to a nearby X/C Ski Center, it is best to come to a meeting! As weather and snow conditions permit, we often have groups going to Minnewaska or Fahnestock as well as many other locations, occasionally skiing trails in Harriman Park. We would love to have you join us!