Everything You Need To Know for Skiing at Thredbo
Posted on Thursday, 7th of May 2015
Packing for a ski holiday is a massive task and not for the faint hearted, especially if this is your first family ski trip to Thredbo. With a few tips and a list of priorities it can go really smoothly and ensure you get the most out of your ski holiday.
Don’t leave things until the last minute. Life is too busy and complicated to ensure that that procrastination will win the day. It won’t. Pack early, book early, go over things twice.
Book online and you receive discounts. Ski lessons fill up so make sure you get a spot in a class and make sure your kids are in a class. If you’re not sure of your ability or your kids ability call up and talk to someone about it.
Ski / Snowboarding Gear
At a minimum the gear you’ll need for skiing or snowboarding is:
– ski or snowboard boots
– thermal underwear
– a ski jacket
– ski pants
– t-shirt or skivvy
– and some clothes to get changed into after skiing (known as après-ski) and to wear on travel days. Beanie is optional.
If the weather is particularly inclement you will also need a facemask (balaclava ) and another layout under your ski clothing, like stockings.
Depending on the age of your children they will not need many clothes if they go straight from the slopes into a shower and pyjamas. One outfit of clothes worn on the travel day is enough.
If they are babies or toddlers they need one or two more changes of clothing to allow for clothes to be soiled or covered in food.
All those little things that you can’t forget:
– Lip cream
– Zinc for lips
– Lysine for cold sore sufferers
– Hair ties (your hair will drive you mad if you forget them)
– Pull ups for kids at night
– Nappies or swimming nappies if you’re planning to jump in the pool at the Thredbo Leisure Centre
– Hand warmers for family members who really feel the cold
– Socks (remember thin rather than thick).
If your meal strategy is to eat out you need après-ski boots (boots with appropriate grip on the base of the shoe) in case of ice on the ground.
Around ski resorts it is acceptable to wear your ski jacket out at night, this cuts down on the packing, just throw some jeans in and a change of top for under your ski jacket.
Any type of gloves are fine, leather, woollen, even your ski gloves are socially permissible at night.
Pjs are mandatory for inside your apartment as comfort is key. If you’ve worn après-ski boots down for your ski holiday, shoes are not essential. People in the Snowy Mountains region are very accustomed to seeing people shopping in Jindabyne and around the area in après-ski boots.
Sourcing ski wear
The best place to start looking for secondhand ski wear is at op shops. It is an excellent opportunity to pick up ski wear, gloves or helmets. Garage sales are also excellent sources.
Stores like Audi and even Coles sell cheap jackets and pants that are fine for children especially in our Australian conditions, which can get very cold but you won’t find -30° temperatures, so with a little layering cheaper ski wear is fine. Online sites eBay and Gumtree are also good sources of second-hand ski wear. Thredbo Sports has a wide range of gear for all ages if you need any last minute extras.
If you are free on the June long weekend, it is worth heading to Jindabyne to pick up some excellent ski wear and equipment bargains at the massive secondhand snow sale in the memorial hall in town. For $500 you could pretty much kit your family out in secondhand everything (clothes and equipment) and have fun doing it.
Ski boots, skis, snow boards
It depends on your circumstances whether you will hire, borrow or buy ski or snow boots skis or snowboard. If you’ve never been before, or haven’t been for a long time, it makes good sense to hire equipment that way you can test out different types of equipment such as powder skis, shorter skis or new season equipment before making the decision to commit.
Ski boots need to be tried on with thin socks. Take the time to get the right size ski boots, as it could mean the difference between having one hour on snow and limping to the restaurant in agony or enjoying an entire day on snow without a problem.
Stocks or poles are essential for balance, however they are not necessary for children under a certain age or ability, advisable by your instruction, as they detract from their stability and style rather than add to their skiing skills.
A great way to try out new season equipment and get a feel for what skis and boards are on the market and whether they match your ability is to attend demonstration days or ‘demo’ days down at the snow. Thredbo has several demo days, bring your drivers license and a credit card to register and try out all the new stuff.
These are a must, and if you’re not wearing one it’s a sure sign you haven’t been on the slopes since 1986, either that or your bell bottom one piece suit will give it away. Hire a helmet, borrow or buy one and if you crash and land on it, it’s destined for the rubbish bin as it’s effectiveness as head protection becomes compromised.
Don’t underestimate your energy consumption on the slopes. The sheer act of being out in freezing temperatures burns calories shivering. Moving around for hours on end, pushing off on ski poles, standing around picking up kids who have fallen over.
It’s anything between subtle to vigorous exercise, your snow trip is not the time to diet or rely on lean meal options.
Your triceps will burn, your back may be sore, and your thighs will ache.
If you eat out, choose the hearty meal options of minestrone soup, chilli con carne and protein based meals rather than salads or bread based options. Fill up, you will burn it off.
Take your own meals
Self-catering accommodation is great as you can pre-cook the evening meals, curries, lasagnes, hot pots, potato bakes, roasts in the weeks prior to your trip and freeze them. Then all you need to do is merely defrost and heat them up after a day on the slopes. This is your holiday, put your feet up, relax, have a glass of schnapps or red wine or a hot drink, and sit around laughing at ‘who fell on who’ that day.
Snacks & drinks
Visit the supermarket before your trip to stock up on electrolyte drinks, like Powerade or Gatorade and large bottles of water for the car trip or after a day on
the slopes. Don’t forget your hot drink options like hot chocolate or herbal tea, soups or coffees. It’s nice to wrap cold hands around something hot when you get off the slopes. Keep hot drinks back at your accommodation or in a thermos in a ski locker or in the car if you’d prefer not to spend money in a cafe or restaurant.
Everybody gets hungry for snacks when they’re out on the slopes it must be all that teeth chattering. Shop before your trip for healthy options like bliss balls, trial mixes, healthier muesli bar options, mandarins, apples and other fruit that travels well and won’t squash in your bag.
If you prefer to reach for more processed snacks, chips like Pringles travel well in ski bags due to their hardy cylindrical container, small chocolate bars can be slipped into pockets to be used for rewards and bribes for children, or to sweeten the chairlift ride up, especially in inclement conditions.
Thredbo has a supermarket in the village at the base of the mountain as does Jindabyne.
Plan your journey stopovers if you’re driving from far away, from north of Sydney or Sydney itself or country areas. Cooma is a good stop for decent ski shopping, stop in at Rhythm Snow Sports, fill your car up with petrol and check out the deals on skis, boots, boards and snow fashions for on the slopes and après-ski.
Canberra is a really good stopping off point for a more significant stop of an hour or two with kids. Questacon is a family crowd pleaser, there something for everyone. The National Art Gallery or National Museum are also good choices. If you get down all the way down to the snow but you want kids to have a run around before reaching your accommodation, the Wild Brumby schnapps distillery located between Jindabyne and Thredbo is a good choice, as there are large sculptures scattered around the paddock for kids to run around, and parents can stretch the legs while admiring sculptures.
You can get breakfast and dinner there, or just a hot drink or pick up some schnapps to have after a day at the snow.
The Bredbo Christmas Barn is an eye opener, you’d be hard pressed to see so many Christmas baubles or Christmas toys, trees and decorations under one roof.
The best car activities for kids are colouring books, textas, portable DVDs and little objects like figurines or toys that they are actually interested in at the time of the trip. Many a parent has packed the car for toys and games that the kids don’t touch and just get underfoot every time the kids get out of the car. Less is better, you can always pick up an activity book in a newsagent if you feel the kids would benefit. Likewise for adults a magazine, book and newspaper should suffice.
The Lantern Thredbo Apartments in Thredbo have a very extensive range of self contained apartments ranging between 1 to 4 stars. All have cooking facilities and clothes washing facilities. All are located all around the Thredbo village which puts guests within walking range to ski slopes. A free shuttle bus takes guests from accommodation higher up the hill down to the base of the mountain between the June long weekend and the October long weekend.
Call Jill or Ian and outline your family needs in regards to number of bedrooms are required or if you have little ones or if you prefer accommodation with a car space. Not all accommodation options have a car space right outside the door, although there are three large car parking bays at the base of the mountain. The best strategy with a car full of ski and snowboard equipment and luggage is to pull up outside your accommodation and unload everything and leave one adult to park the car in the parking bay before returning to your accommodation.
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