Once you have a baby, making it to the mountains to ski or snowboard gets a little more complicated. There’s lots of gear to bring, a little one to look after and cold toes that need covering. Luckily, there are ways to make a snowy getaway easier, from bringing along a simple pull-able sled to finding the best spot to camp out in the lodge.
Photo: Amy via Flickr
Here’s an important safety tip: if you’re going up in altitude and you (and your baby) aren’t used to it, make sure that you both drink enough – lots of water for you, especially if you’re breastfeeding, and milk for your wee one. Dehydration comes on fast in the mountains.
Make it even easier by getting baby gear from a local rental spot, like Mountain Tot in Colorado or Tahoe Baby in California and Nevada, which will deliver everything from baby gates to play gyms to your door step. You can travel light, and you’ll still have everything you need for a home-away-from home in a winter wonderland.
Photo: Dave Herholtz via Flickr
Think Layers, Layers, Layers
Make sure to bring lots of layers, including a warm snowsuit, hats, cozy mittens and a pair of sunglasses to protect those baby blues – sunlight is pretty harsh when it reflects off of snow at high altitudes. Check out REI’s Garage, an outlet that offers lower prices on last season’s gear. Then, bundle up your kiddo and get him outside. With the right gear, you can stroll around with your baby and you’ll never have to worry about cabin fever.
Go for Sledding Time
Though they’re not ready to zoom down the big hills, older babies that are sitting up can ride around snow-covered base areas in their own personal chariot, using a pull sled like this one. Or, bring along a sturdy back carrier and go snowshoeing while your kiddo peers at pine trees from the backpack.
Photo: Donnie Ray Jones via Flickr
Lounge in the Lodge
If you make it a day trip, pack a diaper bag with all the necessities, find a perfect table in the lodge by the fireplace and camp out for the day. While one parent takes a few runs, the other can entertain the baby. Swap, then repeat until the lifts close down. The key to this strategy is a well-packed day bag with extra diapers, clean outfits, a few toys, and snacks. For more ski gear tips and tricks, read this.
Make Furry Friends
Mountain towns are dog paradise, which means dozens of animal buddies for your baby to watch as they play in the snow. It’s a perfect way to entertain your little one while you and your partner take turns taking runs. Better yet, get up close with an adorable dog at Colorado resort Keystone’s Meet the Avy Dog sessions, where a ski patroller introduces kids of all ages to trained rescue mountain dogs.
Photo: Dani Nofal via Flickr
Go for a Cozy Cabin
For the ultimate in ski trips, make it a multi-generation vacation. Rent an Instagram-worthy cabin, invite the grandparents, and give them some one-on-one time with your little one while you take a few runs. Then, everyone can gather for fondue and time by the fire before baby goes off to dreamland.
Make it a Date
If you really want to splurge, put your little one in ski resort daycare for day. Most big resorts offer on-site childcare, like Heavenly in Lake Tahoe’s center for kids six weeks and up. You’ll have a date with your partner on the slopes and your kiddo will be safe in the nursery, meeting new friends.
Have you taken your baby on a ski trip? Share your tips below.