Southern California is one of the rarer places in the world where you don’t have to go far to get to the beach or the mountains. Granted, it’s not necessarily like Colorado where you can see snow on the mountains until June, but you can still get some good skiing experience. With the proliferation of the X Games and other extreme sports events, kids have plenty of opportunity to see skiing and snowboarding, and to try it themselves. If your kids want to learn to ski or snowboard, here are some of the best resorts in the area for them to give it a try.
Snow Summit & Bear Mountain
880 Summit Blvd.
Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Proof that you can go from the coastal areas to the mountains in approximately two hours, Snow Summit and its sister resort Bear Mountain, are a popular destination which feature a full range of facilities for beginners. One of the main draws of Snow Summit is that it offers lessons for children as young as four years old. For children ages four through twelve, you can choose a package that provides two or four hours of lessons to get them ready for the slopes. Also included in the lessons packages are shelter, food, rentals and a lift ticket. If your little one is between ages three and six and has an interest in learning to snowboard, Bear Mountain offers lessons that focus on safety and fun at Riglet Park.
Related: Winter Camping Guide for Los Angeles
24510 State Highway 2
Wrightwood, CA 92397
At Mountain High, you can enroll your child (ages four through nine) in the children’s academy for the entire day (10am. to 3pm) or just the afternoon (1 to 3pm). The academy includes rentals, a lift ticket, food and a progress card to show how your child improves throughout the day. Registration for the academy closes at 9:30am and the lessons begin promptly at 10am. A full day of lessons is recommended for younger children. A freestyle camp is also available for children ages 10 through 12 who have a little more experience with winter sports and don’t need quite as much instruction as beginners.
35100 State Highway 18
P.O. Box 2337
Running Springs, CA 92382
Located Northeast of Orange County, Snow Valley offers a great variety of options for children at the Children’s Learning Center. For beginners ages 4 through 12, classes are available from 9:30am to 3pm with lunch included where they’ll learn everything they need to learn to get them on the skis. You can also choose a three-hour class in the morning or afternoon without lunch. Children five years old and younger are required to take a class before skiing here. If your child is 10 to 12 years old and already has some experience skiing or snowboarding, you can sign him or her up to try the progression park with an experienced instructor. This class is only available on weekend mornings and holidays. Make sure to bring all your equipment if you have as rental equipment is an additional $10.