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Grand Geneva

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Young boys on chairlift at The Mountain Top
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Tips for First Time Skiers


At Grand Geneva, we want each and every visitor to have a great skiing and snowboarding experience, and ensuring you have all the information you need to make this a great time is key. Below we offer great tips and tricks to make sure your skiing and snowboarding experience is fun, easy, and most importantly safe! 

Beginner skiers taking a Snow Cub lesson

Being a Beginner

  • Beginners at any sport should have reasonable expectations.
  • You will remain in the beginner areas most, if not all of your day.  
    You have a good possibility of falling, maybe more than once while learning.  Beginner snowboarders fall more frequently than skiers do. 
  • Reserve time for a beginner lesson, you will have a better experience. 
  • If you get tired or frustrated, take a break, have a snack and stay hydrated.
  • Helmets are highly recommended for kids as well as adults.
    Apply sunscreen, wear sunglasses or goggles.
  • EQUIPMENT:    We would advise not going out and purchasing skis/snowboarding, boots, etc.  Rentals are available for your convenience.  


  • Make sure the ski/snowboard boots fit.
  • The boot will be snug at your calf and should not allow you to turn your foot from side to side. You should be able to wiggle your toes.
  • Wear ONE pair of knee-length socks. The only item in the boot, besides your foot, should be your sock.
  • This will help prevent your feet from getting cold.
  • The ski/snowboard boots will be awkward to walk in, try walking heel to toe.
Young snowboarder at The Mountain Top
Change Me


  • Dress in layers for flexibility in temperature.  Wear one pair of calf-length socks, warm gloves or mittens, and a hat. 
  • Helmets are available for rental (recommended). 
  • Avoid wearing jeans or sweatpants.   
  • We do not have any rental apparel or goggles.  Our Ski Shop sells reasonably priced items. 
  • Keep warm while standing by moving your fingers, toes, shuffle your feet, etc.  Heat packs for hands and feet are also available in the Ski Shop

Tips and Tricks

hot cocoa at the mountain top

Food & Beverage

Staying hydrated is critical to your success, as one burns calories while skiing/snowboarding. There are two options here: The Mountain Top, the Timber’s Grill, which is a cafeteria-type restaurant and Leinenkugel’s sit-down Bar & Grill. No food or beverages from the outside are permitted at the chalet, per Wisconsin Code.  


student during ski lesson

Ski Lessons

Instruction on any new sport is critical to success; skiing/snowboarding is no exception.  Qualified instructors are eager to make your first time a great experience, teaching you proper techniques that will ensure your safety while having fun.   They will take you to the appropriate slopes for each learning phase.  Our ski and snowboard instructors enjoy teaching others their sport while sharing the responsibility code.

Ski Lessons

Beginners Guide

family at Magic Carpet

Riding the Magic Carpet

Approach the carpet slowly, allow the tips of your skis to enter the carpet while keeping your knees slightly flexed and hands in front for stability. Slowly push yourself with your poles onto the carpet until you feel the carpet moving you.  Keep your poles in your hands but off of the carpet. Once you get near the top, prepare to let your skis/snowboard glide off the carpet on a slightly declining slope. Be prepared to slow down/turn once you exit the carpet. Move quickly out of the departure area.

couple on chair lift

Riding the Chair Lift

Watch others as they approach the lift so you know what to expect. Move quickly once the lift operator indicates it is your turn to load to the loading position (yellow line), place your poles in your inner hand and turn your head to watch the chair approach from over your outside shoulder. As the chair approaches, grab the outer upright rail with your outside hand and sit down as you feel the chair on your legs.   Sit all the way back in the chair as it carries you up the hill. Watch for the “Ski Tips Up” – lift your lift ski tips up and be prepared to exit the chair. As your skis touch the top of the exit ramp, stand up and ski off the ramp (remember to keep your weight forward on your skis).  Move away from the exit ramp area.  

Change Me

Know your responsibilities

7 points to your Responsibility code

1. Always stay in control, and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects.
2. People ahead of you have the right of way. It is your responsibility to avoid them.
3. You must not stop where you obstruct a trail or are not visible to skiers from above.
4. Whenever starting downhill or merging into a trail, look uphill and yield to others.
5. Always use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
6. Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
7. Prior to using any lift, you must have the knowledge and ability to load, ride and unload safely


  • START SMALL - Work your way up. Build your skills
  • MAKE A PLAN - Every feature. Every time.
  • ALWAYS LOOK - Before you drop.
  • RESPECT - The features and other users.
  • TAKE IT EASY - Know your limits. Land on your feet.

* information from Park Smart Terrain Park Safety Program Messages

two kids on slopes

Ski & Snowboard

Additional Safety Tips

Learn more about important safety tips to keep in mind when you're hitting the slopes.