The Ski Bum's Guide To Summer Activities

The Ski Bum's Guide To Summer Activities

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The Ski Bum's Guide To Summer Activities


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Summertime is here and it’s time to diversify your activity portfolio. Try out these time wasters and keep yourself happy and healthy until ski season starts up again:

Here are a few summer activities that will help achieve those ends.

Coach a Youth Sports Team:

An Unofficial Networks study on the principles of trickle down economics shows that parents of kids on sports teams are great people to know in a ski town.  Coaching a youth sports team is the way to meet and endear yourself to the successful young families in your area.  Unlike back in high school, there’s a good chance you’ll be the best athlete on the field since the kids are under the age of 9. That’s a great confidence boost to bring into ski season.

Learn to play a string instrument:


Jam sesh!

Social media has become an over saturated venue for showing off your skiing accomplishments. That said, Instagram and Snapchat have also made bragging acceptable. So, this summer pick up a guitar and sing songs of your skiing prowess around the campfire, all the while building your legend with a mandolin, picture of yourself, and a hashtag.


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Skate or Die!

Carving it out on some pavement is an awesome way to replicate the feeling of skiing. Not having bindings, edges, or snow to fall on will give you a new-found appreciation for the level of control and safety that skiing offers.

Cross Train:


These three Jackson Hole skiers know the real meaning of cross training 

For the elite skier, summer is all about cross training. When all is said and done, the early bird gets the worm and it’s crucial to be ready to buckle up your ski boots every morning, no matter what challenges you have faced the day or night before. Because of the added sun, summer is a great time to work on this. Buy a 6 pack after work, see where the night takes you, and wake up and get back to work. There’s no better way to replicate the rigors of getting in line for first chair.

Go On Tour:

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Georgia staying cool on Phish Tour

Going on tour with your favorite band is a great way to stay mentally fresh for ski season. By avoiding the rigors of a traditional summer job you will free up time to see the country, kill off the weak brain cells holding you back, and find some great jams to get you through tough bootpacks next season. Surrender to the flow, baby!

Start a Business:

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Photo Credit: Esperluette via Flickr

Some ski bumming greats have proven that waiting tables is, in fact, a sustainable career path. However, you’ve really got to be committed to keeping your hands off the customers every night, year after year. If that sounds like too much of a headache, it might be time to focus your free time on becoming your own boss. The idea part isn’t difficult, it’s just writing and implementing a business plan; all of which takes real motivation. So, spend this summer writing a business plan for that window washing business and you could be a fixture in your ski town by next year. Or get to the restaurant and make that daily cash like the rest of us.

Take a Wilderness First Aid Course:

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Photo Credit: DLG Images on Flickr

Taking a Wilderness First Aid Course is an all around savvy move. It will show your family that you’re really taking this skiing thing seriously while letting everyone know you’re a responsible skier with aspirations to become a ski patroller some day. If you’re a dude, it’s also a huge equalizer when it comes to raft guides, whose rescue knowledge gives them a large advantage when it comes to impressing girls. Just tell her that no, you’re not a raft guide, but you’re taking your “WFA,” just took your “WFA” or are about to take your “WFA” and are working on becoming a ski guide. Boom, playing field leveled.

Become a Beekeeper:

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The author, after losing his cool near the hive

In the classic film Talladega Nights, Ricky Bobby’s father has him drive a car with a panther in the backseat in order to get his mojo back for his return to NASCAR. Bee keeping is a more productive way to practice your relationship with fear. Approach the hive with care, pop off the top, and check out the thousands of dangerous, intelligent insects within. Lose your composure while inspecting your hive and your tiny tenants will immediately turn on you. But stay calm and they’ll reward you with the sweetest of honey. So when it comes time to put on the skis at the top of a steep bootpack you’ll be well-practiced. Just like bee keeping, it’s all a matter of not allowing the obvious hazard distract you from completing the task at hand. Just think about that honey.

Ski on Sand:


Hunter letting ’em rip in Great Sand Dunes National Park

Locate the nearest sand dunes and bring your skis and some rub on wax. There’s no better way to show your commitment to the sport, and it turns out that soft sand is a better skiing surface than breakable crust, sticky deep hot pow, ice, or avalanche debris.

Just Keep Skiing:


The boys getting strange on the summer solstice 

If you live in a ski town in North America, chances are there’s snow around somewhere all of June, and if you really look for it you can probably find some options through July as well. Summer skiing is a way of showing your absolute, non-sensical dedication to the sport. So, put on the sneakers and shorts, strap your skis and boots to your backpack and go get weird.

Also Read: An Ode to the 90-Day Wonder

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