How to Introduce the Kids to Skiing at Deer Valley Resort (and Why It’s a Great Place to Do So)

This is the year—your kiddos are finally old enough to ski, and you’re eager to get them on the slopes. But which resort should you visit? Put them in lessons or teach them yourself? What if they hate skiing? Your questions may be endless, but if your destination is Park City, Utah, Deer Valley Resort is the answer.

Deer Valley® is well known for world-class service and palm-sized chocolate chip cookies, but for parents, the kid-friendly ski school and welcoming terrain are the real standouts. The snowboarder-free slopes and limited daily lift tickets make Deer Valley the perfect place for littles to fall in love with sliding on snow.

Are They Ready?

Even if kids aren’t ready to ski, they’ll have plenty of fun at Deer Valley Resort.

Deer Valley Resort

Before you buy a shiny new set of kid’s skis and send junior barreling down the slopes, figure out if your mini me is ready to learn to ski. Assess their eagerness, maturity, and fear factor, and if you’re still unsure, go with the ski instructor guideline of 5 or 6 years old.

If your little grommet seems ready before then, they can get started sooner. Deer Valley allows 3-year-olds in private lesson/day care combos—if they’re fully potty-trained. On the flip side, if your 5-year-old isn’t ready for ski school yet, that’s OK, too.

Even if your kids don’t ski yet, don’t let that stop your Deer Valley visit. The resort’s Children’s Center welcomes infants and children up to 12 years old who spend the day crafting and playing while you have a grown-up adventure, skiing Deer Valley’s legendary terrain.

Start with a Lesson

Learning to ski at Deer Valley.

Deer Valley Resort

If you’re a skilled skier, you may be tempted to take the reins and teach your little how to make pizza wedges and French fries down the bunny hill. But if you both want to enjoy your Deer Valley day, leave the on-hill intro to the experts. It’s too easy for kids to whine and give up when mom or dad are in charge, so they’ll be less likely to succeed than with an experienced instructor at the helm.

Plus, Deer Valley’s enthusiastic Children’s Ski School instructors know how to fuse learning with fun activities like hot cocoa breaks, snow cone parties, obstacle courses, and on-mountain scavenger hunts. Lessons are taught with low instructor-to-child ratios to focus on personalized learning with just two kids to one instructor for 4-year-olds, four kids to an instructor for 5- to 6-year-olds, and six kids per instructor for 7- to 12-year-olds.

Explore Kid-Friendly Terrain

You’ll find plenty of slopes appropriate for young, first-time skiers.

Deer Valley Resort

For some kids, getting on and off the lift is the scariest part of skiing. Deer Valley Resort assures that ski school students first master the basics before riding the chairlifts, with three conveyor lifts that shuttle them to top of the beginner slopes. From here, kids ski around small cones and obstacles on a gentle slope to get comfortable with navigation and turns.

Once your kids are good on greens, grab a Children’s Adventure Area Map and take them to explore fun runs through the trees like the Enchanted Forest, Oompa Loompa Land, and Bucky’s Frontyard. Small bumps and turns challenge kids, and seeing Deer Valley’s four fuzzy mascots roaming the trails makes the learning more fun.

Spread Out

Deer Valley has 27 percent of its runs rated for beginners.

Deer Valley Resort

When kids are starting out, the size of the resort is less important than the availability of beginner terrain. Thankfully, Deer Valley Resort has both the space and the green circle runs needed to learn.

Twenty-seven percent of Deer Valley’s slopes are for beginners with plenty of slow skiing zones. Plus, Deer Valley’s policy of capping daily lift tickets prevents overcrowding, so there’s more space for kiddos to explore and perfect their turns down the mountain.

Once your kids get the hang of skiing greens, take them on some of Deer Valley’s long, signature groomed runs like Success on Bald Eagle Mountain, Ontario on Flagstaff Mountain or Homeward Bound on Bald Mountain.

As your tiny tots advance their skills, don’t pull them out of ski lessons. Instead, sign them up for advanced classes where they can continue learning proper techniques while gaining confidence to tackle more difficult terrain.

Stop for Snacks

There’s nothing like hot chocolate and cookies to energize a young skier.

Deer Valley Resort

Nothing can make a kid hate skiing more than being forced to go, go, go, when they’re tired or hungry. While you may want to ski the corduroy and powder stashes all day long, you’ll have to slow your roll with the little ones along.

Take frequent breaks for snacks, and hot cocoa or chocolate chip cookie treat time. Filling lunches like Deer Valley Turkey Chili or hearty burgers give everyone’s legs a rest and prevent the whole family from getting hangry.

When the kids are in ski school, you won’t have to worry about them going hungry or eating junk. Deer Valley Resort provides healthy eats like grilled chicken fingers, baked potatoes, and veggie couscous, and they can accommodate dietary restrictions and allergies.

Make a Reservation

Deer Valley’s Ski School programs are popular, meaning you’ll want a reservation to ensure your kids have instructors during your visit. This is especially true during the December holidays, Martin Luther King weekend, Presidents’ Day week, and the month of March. For more information visit To make a and reservation please call Skiers Services at: 888-754-8477 | 435-645-6648  or email

Originally written by RootsRated Media for Deer Valley.

One Response

  1. Janie Garretson says:

    My youngest granddaughter loves coming to Deer Valley ski school. She started Three winters ago and is now a pretty accomplished little skier, I’m told.

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