Helpful Hints

Click on the links below to learn helpful hints on:
Deciding to take a lesson & which lesson to take
What to do Before coming TO EcHO Mountain for lessons

What to expect when you arrive at Echo MOUNTAIN

Deciding to take a lesson & which lesson to take

Take a lesson
If it is your and/or your child’s first time on skis or a snowboard, take a lesson. Instructors will provide a positive start to skiing and snowboarding by teaching basic skills and safety considerations that will help to keep your first days on the slopes fun and injury free.    

Think about whether your child is ready for a ski or ride lesson
If you answer YES to the following questions, it is more likely that your child is ready for ski or snowboard lessons.

  • Does your child attend regular daycare or preschool?
  • Does your child participate in organized physical activities?
  • Does your child enjoy playing outside on cold days?
  • Has your child asked if s/he can go skiing or snowboarding?

If you answer NO to the following question, it is more likely that your child is ready for ski or snowboard lessons.

  • Does your child have separation issues when you are not around?

Ski if you want to ski. Snowboard if you want to snowboard
You do not need to know how to ski in order to learn how to snowboard or vice versa. So pick the sport you want to participate in. Doing what you want to do will make your experience on the mountain more fun!

The same goes for your child
The primary goal of a first time youth lesson is to get your child to have fun on the mountain, so let your child choose what sport to take up. Keep in mind that toeside turns in snowboarding require fine motor skills that most kids don’t develop until they turn 7. If your child under age 7 gets frustrated easily, it may be best to stick with skiing.

Kids should take lessons when they are at their best physically and mentally
You know when your child has the most energy, schedule a lesson during that time. Don’t schedule a lesson during the time in which your child typically gets hungry, tired or cranky. When your child is sick or when they did not get a good night’s sleep, don’t put your child in Ski & Ride School; reschedule the lesson for another day when the experience can be more fun. The same goes for you.  

Sign up for the proper level & have realistic expectations
Click here for lesson levels & goals. It may take multiple lessons at a given level to achieve the goal, or students may achieve the goal of their level before the lesson is over and move towards the next level’s goal. Remember, it is always easier on you and your child to move up a level, rather than moving down a level.

Make a reservation
We hate having to turn you away after you drive up here, however classes do fill up, especially on weekends and during holidays. Please book early to guarantee your spot. Pre-payment is required to make a reservation.

Call the Ski & Ride School Desk at 303-325-7347, ext. 2 to make a reservation and pre-pay.

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What to do Before coming TO EcHO Mountain for lessons

Make a reservation
We hate having to turn you away after you drive up here, however classes do fill up, especially on weekends and during holidays. Please book early to guarantee your spot. Pre-payment is required to make a reservation.

Call the Ski & Ride School Desk at 303-325-7347, ext. 2 to make a reservation and pre-pay.

Fill out the required forms
To save yourself time at check-in, fill out the forms below before you arrive at Echo:

Get your child excited about skiing
Be sure your family talks about your child’s upcoming ski or snowboard lesson and gets your child excited to come to the mountain. Play in the snow at your house and be sure to take lots of falls and make lots of laughs as you do so. If you don’t have snow to play in, talk about it and try to play outside on the colder days. Tell your child stories about your experiences learning to ski or ride. Your child will be happier knowing a little about what to expect.  

Get a good night’s sleep
Plan ahead and make sure the entire family goes to bed early so that you are well rested and full of energy for your day on the slopes. It’s hard to have a good time and learn when you are tired and cranky, so get a little extra shut eye the night before you head up to Echo Mountain. 

Dress in layers & be prepared for changing weather
Dress in layers so you will be prepared for changing weather conditions. The wind can pick up quickly at Echo Mountain and the temperature drops as the sun drops behind the mountains. Dress in polypropylene, polyester, or wool/polyester blend base layers that absorb sweat, dry quickly and keep you warm. Avoid wearing base layers made of cotton; it retains moisture and will not keep you as warm. Wearing ONE pair of wool or polyester socks will keep you warmer and more comfortable in your ski or snowboard boots.  Add a turtleneck or long sleeve shirt, and a sweater or fleece.

Top off your layers with a jacket, pants, and gloves or mittens that are warm, water resistant and comfortable. Mittens are warmer than gloves. Be sure to have a hat or helmet that covers your ears, sunglasses or goggles, and sunscreen on all exposed skin. The sun reflects off the snow and is stronger than you think so be sure to protect your eyes & skin!

Label all personal Items
Gloves, goggles, hats/helmets, skis and boots can look the same. Label everything so that you leave with all the items you arrived with.

Get the proper sized equipment
Skiing and snowboarding will be easier and a whole lot more fun if you have the proper fitting gear. Don’t be tempted to borrow gear from someone who is 6 inches taller than you and 50 pounds heavier; it will make for a miserable experience. Echo Mountain’s rental techs are trained to select equipment that is properly sized for you. We can also recommend ski shops in the area that rent extra small or extra large equipment if you need it. For kids who will be skiing or riding often throughout the season, we can also recommend shops that offer seasonal rentals.

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Getting to Echo MOUNTAIN

Plan to leave early
Plan your time well and arrive at least one hour early to check-in for your lesson, especially if you're renting equipment. Lesson check-in may close up to 45 minutes prior to the designated lesson start time. All lessons begin promptly at the designated start time; late arrivals will be moved to a later class time if space is available. It is better to be early and have extra time than to be late and miss your lesson.

Have a full tank of gas
Echo Mountain is 12 miles up Squaw Pass Road and the nearest gas station is at least 20 minutes away.

Know the road conditions and give yourself extra drive time
Yes, Echo Mountain is only 35 miles from Denver but add a little traffic and weather and the drive can be slow. Be sure to add extra drive time if the weather is making for bad road conditions. Call 303-639-1111 for the CDOT road conditions hotline.

Click HERE to go to our Directions page
Click HERE for Google Maps direction

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What to expect when you arrive AT ECHO MOUNTAIN

Park in the lower lot
At Echo Mountain the lower parking lot is right next to the Lodge and Garage. Unless it is a busy weekend or holiday day, there is no need to park in the upper lot.

Enter the 1st door to your left & check-in at the lesson desk
Echo Mountain’s Ski & Ride School desk is located in the Lodge. The Lodge is the building to the left as you face the buildings from the parking lot. Enter the Lodge through the door nearest the parking lot and the Ski & Ride School desk will be right in front of you.

Fill out your forms
If you haven’t done so already, you will be asked to fill out the forms below:

Tell us about any special conditions your child may have
Even though you have already filled out your child’s medications, allergies and special conditions on the child release form, please TELL US about any of these conditions that may affect your child’s lesson at check-in and when you meet the instructor. If we are aware of any learning disabilities, physical concerns or other special conditions, we are able to provide both you and your child a better experience.

Be sure that the person picking up your child gets a child release tag
All children 12 years old and younger will need to be picked up from their lesson by the person wearing the matching child release tag. If you do not have the matching child release tag, you will be sent to the Ski & Ride School Desk to confirm that your name is listed on the child release form. You will also need to show picture ID at this time.

Walk down the hall way to get you rental equipment
After you have checked-in for your lesson, walk down the hallway to the rental line. No need to stand at a computer again, your info has been sent to the rental techs. All they need is your name. You will be given a pair of boots to try on. Be sure that only your foot and sock go in your boot. It should feel snug but not too tight. Be sure to buckle or lace the boots up nice and snug too. If they are too tight or your foot (not just toes) can move around inside, ask for a new pair. Once your boots fit let the rental tech know and s/he will get your skis/board set up.  

Get snacks & drinks across the walkway in the Garage
Be sure to eat a good breakfast so you that you don’t get hungry and fatigued during your lesson. Also be sure to drink plenty of water to avoid high altitude sickness. Echo Mountain is located at high altitude, above 10,000ft and therefore has less oxygen in the atmosphere than lower altitudes. People coming from lower elevations may experience symptoms that include headaches, nausea, loss of appetite, insomnia, coughing, and difficulty breathing. Being properly fed, rested and hydrated will help you avoid these symptoms.

Use the restroom
No one wants to delay their learning experience because someone in their class had to use the restroom, so please take your child to use the restroom before heading to the lesson meeting area.

Opt out of the lesson if your child isn’t feeling well
If at any point in time before the lesson your child feels ill, please contact the Ski & Ride School desk to reschedule the lesson. No one is up for learning when s/he is sick and we want your child to be able to have a good time in his/her lesson.

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Meet the instructor by the appropriate lesson sign in the plaza
Lessons meet on the plaza by Ski & Ride School signs. Stand by either ski or snowboard sign of the appropriate level and your instructor will call your name and introduce him/herself. When the instructor introduces him/herself, please let him/her know of any special conditions of your child that may affect the lesson.

Let your child’s lesson begin & watch while “out of sight”
Children have a better experience when they are able to focus on one teacher and when they meet new friends who motivate them. They also have less separation anxiety when parents are out of sight. Therefore, we ask that you watch your child’s lesson from a distance. Our Lodge has tables where you can sit and enjoy excellent views of the learning area.

Allow us to make the appropriate terrain choice
Most lessons will begin in LC-1. Our instructor’s priority is to keep students safe on the hill. Before moving to more difficult terrain, instructors will ensure that all students have the appropriate skills needed on that terrain. Classes may also move back to easier terrain to work on a more difficult skill.  

Click HERE to learn more about our YOUTH LESSON STRUCTURE
Click HERE to learn more about adult group lesson structure 

Meet your child at the place where you drop him/her off & be sure to have your child release tag
You may pick up your child at the place where you dropped him/her off. At pick up, the instructor will tell you: the lesson goals your child met, the skills your child developed and those to practice as they ski or ride with you, safe terrain suggestions, and the next level of lesson they should take to continue developing their skiing or riding skills. Next the instructor will match the number on the your child’s tag to the number on your child release tag. If the tags match you are “good to go” and ready for family time. If you do not have the matching child release tag, you will be taken to the Ski & Ride School desk to confirm that your name is listed on the child release form. You will also need to show picture ID at this time.

Ask the instructor questions
In case the instructor didn’t tell you something about your child’s lesson that you want to know, please ask. The answers to the following questions will help you in skiing or riding with your child:

  1. Where is it safe for us to ski or ride together as a family
  2. What lifts did my child ride and does s/he need assistance loading or unloading?
  3. What is my child working on, so we can practice together?
  4. What level lesson should my child take next?
  5. What can my child do independently and what do they need help with?

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After your child’s lesson, you may want to ski or ride as a family. That is great idea! Here is a list of things to keep in mind as you do so:       

Establish a family meeting place
Echo Mountain is small but your group could still get separated. Establish a meeting place, in case someone gets lost. LC-1 is good place as it is centrally located on the hill and easy to access.

Have a trail map & cell phone numbers of others in your group
This will also help you out if your group gets separated. Let your children know that they can ask an Echo employee for help to locate you. Employee’s can get them access to a phone to call you or have Echo make an announcement over our sound system.

Stay on terrain appropriate for the least experienced group member
Once again, you want your family to have a positive experience on the slopes, so don’t take anyone down a slope that they are not ready for. If your child was in a lesson stay on the terrain the instructor suggested for you. Not only will this keep everyone in his/her comfort zone, it will also keep everyone SAFE!

Ask lift attendants for help before approaching the loading zone
Lift attendants can slow the lift down for you and help boost your child on to the lift if needed. Please ask them before you enter the loading zone. They can also ask the top lift attendant to slow the lift for you to unload, so be sure to ask. Also remind your children to sit still, face forward and keep all clothing and equipment on while on the lift.

Stay hydrated
Keep drinking water throughout the day to avoid symptoms of high altitude sickness.

Watch for sunburn and frostbite
Be sure to reapply sunscreen throughout the day, before you notice red skin. If it is a cold or windy day, watch for patches of white skin that indicate frostbite. If you notice them cover that area and head inside.

Click HERE to learn more about Mountain Safety

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