By Governor’s Office Of Economic Development in partnership with Deseret Digital
After the holiday excitement has waned and the kids get bored with their new toys, you may be wondering how to keep everyone entertained through the long winter months.
With the Centers for Disease Control experts urging people to cut down their traveling, and with limited indoor activities available, you need something fun and low-risk that’s close to home. Even better if the activity helps strengthen the local economy.
A Utah ski-cation checks all the boxes.
So if you’re looking for a fun way to support the community while staying safe during the global pandemic, here are a few good reasons for hitting the slopes this winter.
Give Utah’s economy a lift
Skiing isn’t just a fun wintertime activity. It’s also a great way to strengthen the state’s economy. When you visit one of Utah’s world-class ski resorts, you’re supporting the local economy by keeping hundreds of resort staff, instructors, lift operators, drivers, and other workers employed, says the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation.
And after a year when so many businesses have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, supporting the local community has never been more critical.
Outdoor recreation is good for your health, especially in the winter
It can be tempting to stay inside when the weather is cold, but getting out into the fresh, brisk air may be just what you need to boost your health in the wintertime.
Looking for a way to burn off those extra Christmas cookies? Since your body requires more energy to keep warm in colder weather, you can burn more calories by exercising in the winter, says Health.com. (Don’t expect drastic weight loss, but every little bit helps!)
Aside from the physical benefits, exercising outdoors is also good for your mental health. Spending time outside — even when it’s cloudy — can help you stave off Seasonal Affective Disorder, according to WebMD.
Experts recommend getting at least 30 minutes of exercise five times a week for optimal physical and mental health, notes WebMD. What better way to do it than by hitting the slopes at Utah’s many ski resorts?
You don’t have to stay in one place
If you’re worried about crowds as you head out on your ski-cation adventure, have no fear. With 10 world-class ski resorts within a one-hour radius of the Salt Lake International Airport (and others scattered through the state), there are plenty of options for every type of skier and snowboarder.
Choosing a hotel or rental house in a central location frees you up to sample different resorts to determine which one you like best. If one resort is more crowded on the weekends, catch a shuttle to a different one. You might discover a new favorite!
Whether you’re looking for affordability, pristine powder, adrenaline-pumping runs, or something more family-friendly, you can find the right slopes for you on the Ski Utah website.
Tired of homeschool? Try ski school!
You’re not the only one who needs a good break this winter. After a challenging year of homeschool, virtual learning, and modified in-person learning, your kids could use a fun distraction.
Ski school is a great way to keep them healthy and active outdoors, all while supporting the local economy. Lessons are available for all ages and skill levels. Choose from private lessons to multi-day camps, or find a terrain park to learn special tricks and techniques.
For a full list of available ski school options, visit the Ski Utah website.
A safer way to stay COVID-free
With the pandemic still at large, everyone is looking for safe ways to have fun. Utah’s ski resorts have taken special safety measures and precautions to ensure that all skiers and snowboarders can still enjoy shredding the slopes.
The National Ski Areas Association found that ski areas offer many advantages for people looking for low-risk recreational activities, including:
- Space. Ski areas provide hundreds of acres of space, and ski operators monitor traffic flow and volume.
- Natural outdoor environment. Outdoor activities are generally considered safer than indoor activities when it comes to slowing the spread of COVID.
- Standard gear. Face coverings, goggles, mittens, and other ski gear provide added protection.
- Touchless transactions. Ski areas have reduced contact between guests and employees by using touchless methods of payment and access.
Of course, keeping people safe is everyone’s responsibility. Before you hit the slopes, be sure to plan ahead by reading your ski resort’s guidelines and restrictions ahead of time, and be prepared to cooperate with resort staff.
Plan your Utah ski-cation today!
Now that you know how beneficial a ski-cation can be for your family and the economy, it’s time to get out and enjoy that world-famous snow. For help planning your ski-cation adventure, visit inutah.org/ski.