Ski Safety Tips
Ask any Ski Patroller, and they will tell you that they are happy to be of assistance on the slopes... but they would prefer to be ON the snow, skiing/riding and keeping a watchful eye, than in the Patrol Room providing first response care. Nothing ruins a great day of fun on the slopes as much as an accident that didn't have to happen. Ultimately, ski and snowboard safety on the mountain is each person's responsibility.
Following the Skier Responsibility Code will help ALL skiers and snowboarders have a safer mountain experience. For freestyle skiers and riders, the Smart Style Guide (included at the bottom of this page) is a must-read before you enter any of our parks or freestyle terrain. These ski safety tips can help keep yourself and others out of harm's way.
ON THE SLOPES
Always ride or ski in control and within your ability. Do not ride or ski too fast or recklessly. Do not ski slopes too difficult for your ability.
When walking or climbing always keep to the side of the trail or slope.
If you have a collision resulting in an injury to another person it's your responsibility to stay at the collision site until the Ski Patrol arrives. All injuries must be reported before leaving Alpine Valley.
Inverted aerial maneuvers (flips) are not recommended.
It is your responsibility to control your body on the ground and in the air. Always clear the landing area quickly. Never jump blindly. Use a spotter when necessary. Look before you leap! One user on a terrain feature at a time. Inspect terrain before using and throughout the day.
Do not ride or ski beyond CLOSED AREA signs into a closed area.
Do not build up jumps, schuss, or ski out of control. Schussing means skiing straight down the hill extremely fast and/or recklessly.
ON THE LIFTS
Do not jump out of chairlifts.
Snow Passes must be permanently attached by wire wicket to the skier, so that the passes are easily visible to lift operations.
A skier/rider who is alone when entering the lift line should call out "single" so that others may ride the chairlift with him on double, triple or quad lifts.
Remove pole straps from wrists before loading on chairlifts. Stand close together in the loading area.
Absolutely no cans or bottles are to be taken on ski lifts or ski slopes.
Do not cut lift lines. Only Alpine Valley Ski Patrollers and Instructors are allowed to enter the lift line ahead of those already waiting.
Get on and off lifts only at loading and unloading areas. Do not swing or bounce chairs while riding chairlift. Do not cross operating rope tow tracks.
ETIQUETTE AND BEHAVIOR
- Be courteous to and respect of others. Do not use rude language and/or behavior.
- No carry-in beer and alcoholic beverages will be allowed on Alpine Valley premises. Such beverages may be confiscated.
- Do not bring skis, snowboards or poles into the lodge.
- "Brown Bagging" is allowed only in restricted areas.
- Follow Your Responsibility Code. Do not sit at the top of the run in such a way as to block the starting area or otherwise obstruct any area of the slope.
- Do not abuse rental equipment. Do not go on dry pavement with skis on.
- Snowball throwing will not be tolerated on Alpine Valley property.
- A ski area representative (including any employee in uniform, not just Ski Patrollers) upon finding a person skiing/riding in a careless, inappropriate or reckless manner, could dispense consequences ranging from a one-on-one Safety Awareness Seminar with a Ski Patroller to a lifetime suspension from Alpine Valley. So take it easy out there. Give people some space!
These actions may not be construed to create an affirmative duty on the part of the ski area operator to protect skiers from their own or from another skier's carelessness or recklessness. If you do not agree with the above, then do not use the facilities at our ski area.
Skiing in its various forms, including the use of snowboards and snow skates, is a dangerous sport with inherent risks. These risks include loading, riding and unloading from ski lifts, variations in snow, steepness and terrain, ice, moguls, rocks, trees and other forms of forest growth and debris (above or below the surface), bare spots, lift towers, utility lines an poles, fencing, snowmaking and snow grooming equipment, and other forms of natural or man-made obstacles on and off designated trails, as well as collisions with equipment, obstacles or other skiers. Trail conditions vary constantly due to weather changes and skier use. Inherent in the sport is the risk of permanent, catastrophic injury or death.
Accepting these risks is a part of the challenge of man against the mountain and the elements. To enjoy skiing, you must also know and be willing to accept the limits of your ability. Skiing challenges your physical condition and may cause stress. You will reduce the risk of skiing and enjoy it more if you are in good physical condition.
YOUR RESPONSIBILITY CODE
The National Ski Areas Association established "Your Responsibility Code" in 1966 as a code of ethics for all skiers on the mountain. Today, the code reflects not only skier safety, but snowboarder and lift safety as well. The points listed in the Your Responsibility Code are the rules of the road when you are on the mountain. So, whether you ski with one board or two, or use other specialized equipment, always show courtesy to others so that your paths don't cross.
It is important to remember that there are elements of risk in mountain activities that common sense and personal awareness can help reduce. Please note, violations of Your Responsibility Code, and the following additional rules, ordinances and/or guidelines may result in criminal prosecution, civil liability and/or loss of lift privileges without compensation or refund:
- Always stay in control and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects.
- People ahead of you have the right of way. It is your responsibility to avoid them.
- You must not stop where you obstruct a trail, or are not visible from above.
- Whenever starting downhill or merging into a trail, look uphill and yield to others.
- Always use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
- Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
- Prior to using any lift, you must have the knowledge and ability to load, ride, & unload safely.
Smart Style is a terrain park specific safety program that you should check out before using terrain parks. Be sure you Know the Code, too: Your Responsibility Code provides safety tips while on the slopes.
The 4 MAIN POINTS OF Smart Style:
MAKE A PLAN
- Every time you use Freestyle Terrain, make a plan for each feature you want to use.
- Your speed, approach and takeoff will directly affect your maneuver and landing.
LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP
- Before getting into freestyle terrain observe all signage and warnings
- Scope around the jumps first not over them
- Use your first run as a warm up run and to familiarize yourself with the terrain
- Be aware that the features change constantly due to weather, usage, grooming and time of day
- Do not jump blindly and use a spotter when necessary
EASY STYLE IT
- Know your limits and ski/ride within your ability level
- Look for small progression parks or features to begin with and work your way up
- Freestyle skills require maintaining control on the ground and in the air
- Do not attempt any features unless you have sufficient ability and experience to do so safely
- Inverted aerials increase your risk of injury and are not recommended
RESPECT GETS RESPECT
- Respect the terrain and others
- One person on a feature at a time
- Wait your turn and call your start
- Always clear the landing area quickly
- Respect all signs and stay off closed terrain and features
For more hints on how to Smart Style it, including Stuff to Know, the ATML method, Vocab, and helpful videos, check out the Terrain Park Safety Website