Frequently Asked Questions
If you are new to the Lake District Ski Club, please read the following frequently asked questions before you set off.
First and foremost, be well equipped for a mountain environment! Inexperienced skiers /boarders should not attempt the climb unless accompanied by some one who is experienced in winter conditions. Mobile phone coverage locally is pretty good and both both O2 and Vodafone work in the car park and at the top of the mountain. (EE not so much.)
When is the ski club open?
The ski club runs the button tow during the winter season, provided there is enough snow and conditions are suitable. The tow runs most weekends and some days during the week, usually from about 11am until about an hour before dusk. For the latest updates check our Facebook page, or sign up for the Twitter feed (reproduced on our website).
What should I bring?
Bring your ski gear, obviously. The walk up to Raise is a steep hike, which will take you about an hour if you are fit - more if you are carrying your kit and the snow is deep. If you're a skier then you're best off carrying your boots, if you're a boarder then provided your boots are comfortable they should be fine for the hike.Increasingly our members are using ski touring kit because of its light weight and versatility.
Try and attach skis and boots/boards to your rucksack or get them on your back if you can as it will make the walk easier. Walking/ski poles are a good idea, especially if it's icy or the snow is deep. Crampons or spikes are advised if it's icy. Bring warm clothing - layers are best because you will need to shed them on the walk up! Bring food, something to drink and a cup (there is a kettle and water from a nearby spring in the members' hut)
How do I get to Glenridding and what is the best way up to the tow?
What do I do when I get there?
When you get to the top, you can leave your stuff in the members' hut whilst you ski, and eat your lunch and make a brew in there.You will be asked to show your pass to haver it scanned. If you are not a member, please pay cash (£20) at the tow hut.
You can leave your skis/boots/snowboard behind (no helmets, poles or other items please) so you won't have to carry them up next time, but please make sure that you write your name clearly on them. Space is limited in the hut and every now and again we have a clear out of unused and unlabelled equipment. The toilet, AKA The Powder Room, is located at the back of the engine hut at the bottom of the tow.
Skiing on Raise
There is one permanent fixed button tow on Raise and for 21-22 we have introduced a rope tow below that. Make sure you get a briefing on how to use them! The ground under the main tow has a camber to the left for the first few pylons. This can make it quite challenging for snowboarders, particularly if you are regular, where you will have to ride on your toe edge to keep yourself under the tow line. If you do find yourself veering off to the left and you can't stay under the tow line LET GO OF THE TOW! If you pull too hard to the left you risk derailling the tow at one of the pylons, which can take some time to fix.
At the top of the tow is a sign that says 'Danger Dismount'. YOU MUST get off the tow either before or at this sign - if you travel any further than this sign then you risk pulling the cable off the bull wheel. If this happens it's really bad news and probably means no more uplift that day for anyone. You will not be popular...
To use the rope tow, you will need a quick-release belt and hook, available from the tow hut. Please ensure you are briefed on safety measures.
There are nine or so recognised runs on Raise, as indicated by the piste map. Please note, these are not groomed pistes, they are naturally occurring parts of the mountain and can vary considerably. They aren't always all complete and are different every day. Ask the tow operators about which run is the best to start in the prevailing conditions and if visibility is poor make yourself aware of naturally-occurring hazards, such as the drop at the bottom of Savages...