THUNDER Bay – Robert Jarzebinski has been skiing since he was a youngster.
On Sunday, on the opening weekend at Loch Lomond Ski Area, he decided to pass on what he’s learned to his three-year-old son Marcus, who hit the slopes for the very first time.
What an awesome opportunity, he said.
“I grew up skiing at a young age and I’m trying to do the same for the little guy and he’s been loving it,” Jarzebinski said.
“Today was his first day out ever and he’s been enjoying it the whole time. Obviously we’ll be here a lot here this winter.”
With just one hill open on Sunday, and Loch Lomond operators awaiting the full force of winter weather before the remainder of the runs open to the public, those who did come out on Sunday were having plenty of early-season fun, shaking some of the rust off as they made their way up and down the mountain.
Logan Cameron, 12, was just glad to be out skiing after a summer of waiting.
“It’s really fun and the hills are great,” the Grade 7 students said. “There are a lot of jumps.”
The conditions are great, he added.
“They just opened so all the hills are freshly groomed.”
His buddy, Connor Brindley, also 12, was just as excited.
“I guess I just wanted to hang out with my friends and just ski,” he said. “You’ve got to get back into because of the summer. So you do the hill once or twice and then you start doing tricks and all that. It’s just lots of fun,” Connor said.
Loch Lomond manager Alisia Cameron, said it’s been a busy first couple of days, as season pass holders stop in to pick up their passes and test out their skis for the first time in months.
It’s been lots of work getting to this point, she added.
“It’s nice to finally get those skis on and have the opportunity to use the passes. Most of our passes are purchased in the springtime, so people have a long time to stew on that and get ready for this winter,” Cameron said.
It’s been a busy offseason, she added.
“We’ve got mechanics working on our lifts all summer long. Inspections finished just this week, which is why we’re open today. Snowmaking is also a regular occurrence around here. As soon as temperatures are dropping below -7, -8, the snow guns are going, As soon as those temperatures are there, we’re running snowmaking 24 hours a day.”
They’ve already laid down a good base, with a blast of Arctic weather hitting the Thunder Bay already, and expect to be fully operational within a couple of weeks at most.