Lake Winnipesaukee
Tree Skiing Tips
In New Hampshire

These Lake Winnipesaukee tree skiing tips will help you have a more enjoyable time while skiing through he glades in New Hampshire.  In the northeast, skiers have been getting more into the off-trail terrain by taking skis into the woods or back country.

In recent years, many ski areas have added more wooded terrain for those skiers looking for more of a challenge.  These areas are referred to as glades on the trail maps and are marked as expert trails with a Black Diamond.

Once you've moved into the trees or glades in New Hampshire, your risk of injury increases, such as hitting a tree.  Remember, a tree doesn't bend.  So hitting one with any part of your body could result in a serious injury.  There are many hazards skiing in the glades.  By following these safe skiing tips, you can lessen your risk of injury:

Ski At Your Ability Level

The glades are marked expert for a reason.  They are difficult and require a skill level of upper intermediate or higher.  The trees are close together and and pose hazards with low branches, tree roots and various other obstacles.

Since trees don't move and can be tightly packed, the recommended ability level is an upper intermediate skier.  Most ski areas have marked glades.  Some are more difficult than others.  The snow groomers don't fit between the trees, so you ski on whatever Mother Nature dishes out.  You can find powder, crud, iced over ruts, bare ground, etc.

When you tree ski, you will need to make many quick, short turns.  If you're not in shape, this can tire you out.  Many areas have double-black diamond glades where you have steep verticals, bumps, cliffs and other obstacles.

Many of these Winnipesaukee tree skiing tips are for tree or glade skiing all over, not just in New Hampshire, especially the larger mountains in the West.  It is still good advice to follow these tips, even if it's to a lesser degree for the small local ski area.

Ski With a Buddy and Stay in Sight

It is important to ski with someone in case you get hurt.  It's even better to ski in threes.  That way, one person stays with the injured skier and the other goes for help.  In some areas, it's easy to lose sight of your buddies and you can take a wrong turn.  Either call them on walkie-talkies or a cell phone or carry a whistle because the sound travels further than yelling.

Do Not Ski on Closed Glades

If the glades are closed, don't ski under or around the ropes.  Ski patrol cannot ski everywhere and will close the glades, if necessary.  By the same token, stay within the resort area as they are not patrolled beyond the boundaries. 

Stick to Daylight hours

It's best not to enter the glades after 3:30pm.  If you get hurt or lost, it becomes more of a problem after dark.  A lot of places will close the glades later in the day to avoid this from happening.  This is a very important Winnipesaukee tree skiing tip to remember.

Carry a Cell Phone or Walkie-Talkie

This is good practice in case you find yourself alone.  Don't forget, some areas may not have cell phone service.

Carry a Backpack

If you have a backpack, you can bring water, snacks, compass, trail map, etc. in case you need any of these items.

Look Between the Trees

One of the best Winnipesaukee tree skiing tips when in the glades, is to focus your sight in-between the trees. Many people tend to focus on the trees and getting around them.    The body tends to follow where the eye is looking.  If you're looking at the trees, you'll keep running into them.  If you look between them, it will be easier to ski and maneuver around the obstacles.

Look Before Exiting the Woods

It's always a good idea to merge onto a groomed trail.  Most skiers are not expecting someone to come flying out of the woods.  By looking before entering a groomed trail, could prevent a collision.

Wear Helmet and Goggles

Wearing a helmet and goggles is an important Winnipesaukee tree skiing tip.  In the East and Midwest, the trees are thicker and closer together.  It's easier to get smacked with a branch.  Also, don't use pole straps because the pole can get caught on a branch.  If there isn't sufficient snow cover, the roots of the trees can entrap your ski, which may cause a fall or injury.  Many of the areas have a rocky surface.  If there isn't enough snow cover, these rocks can be treacherous.

In the West there is a lot of powder and the trees have tree wells around them.  This is where the area around a tree has very loose snow that forms a hole or depression around the base of the tree.  This happens because the branches catch all the snow preventing it from falling to the ground around the tree.  These holes are hidden from view and cam be dangerous if one falls into it.

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