Last year, we introduced the kids to skiing, during a weekend in Vermont. I love telling this story, and I bet its happened to some of you, but when we dropped Ryder and Siella at ski school, both complained about the layers of gear, their tight boots, and all of the equipment. Sure this was a drag, but all this changed when we checked in on them after their first hour of session. I saw a boy that looked like Ryder, cruising down the trail, leaning side to side. I remember saying to Jason, “I think that’s Ryder up there.” and Jason turned to me and said “No way, did you see how we left them!” Judging from their reactions to the gear, and their many slips as they took to the hill for the first time, I was surprised to see that it was indeed my boy. And he was killing it.
To keep their interest, we continued to take day and weekend trips, throughout the season last year. Both have made significant improvements, so we couldn’t wait to get back on the slopes this year. It took a while to get into the groove this season, but finally we made it to the slopes last weekend, and this trip marked Gemma’s first time on the mountain.
For years, friends have raved about Camelback Mountain, and after our outing, I can totally see why. We skied, we tubed, we enjoyed hot chocolate. We were only there for the day, and I regret not spending the entire weekend. Truth told, tons of time on the slopes is only way to let the kid improve their ski stance from pizza to parallel.
Camelback Resort is located in the heart of the Pocono Mountains. In addition to plenty of skiing, tubing and outdoor fun, the lodge offers Aquatopia, the biggest indoor waterpark in the Northeast. From NYC, it’s under a two hour drive from New York City.
It was Gemma’s first time on skis, so I immediately opted to enroll her in ski school. Sure I could teach her, but I remember learning as a kid, and a lesson is everything. Camelback’s ski school is offered to children four and up, but since Gemma is still three she received a private lesson. It was slightly more expensive than a group lesson, but the one on one attention from the instructor proved to be extremely helpful during her first run. And since it was the first day back for Ryder and Siella, they too were enrolled in lessons.
The ski school for the bigs runs about an hour and half, while private lesson typically last an hour. With the kids in school, I was free to hit the slopes on my own for a while, but at the end of each run, I found myself heading back to the training area to watch them!
Once their lessons ended, we headed to Camelback’s Trails End Pub for some lunch, hot cocoa and hot apple cider. After our break, it was back on the mountain for a few more runs. Eventually, the fog rolled in, and all three unanimously decided to call it quits, in exchange for some tubing.
On heading to the tubing slides, the plan was to take two runs then call it a day. Well, cut that to twenty plus runs, it was just so much fun! Because of Gemma’s height, I was required to ride down with her. We had our own tubes, but they were attached together.
From tubing, we warmed up by the outdoor fire pit, before heading home. During the drive back, all three were chattering about how it was the best day ever, begging to go back next weekend.
We will 100% be visiting Camelback Mountain again this year, and next time we will have to squeeze in the waterpark for sure!