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.
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, call the Snow Line for a pre-recorded message, check the website or Facebook page, or sign up for the Twitter feed.
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 and something to drink (there is a kettle and water from a nearby spring in the members' hut).
If you have paid by Paypal, either print out a copy of your receipt, or make sure you can show it to the tow operator on your phone etc. Mobile phone coverage can be patchy but both O2 and Vodafone work at the top of the mountain.
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, take your Paypal receipt to the hut at the bottom of the ski tow and show it to the tow operator. They will then issue you with your membership and ski pass.You can leave your stuff in the members' hut whilst you ski and eat your lunch in there - there is heating and electricity, with a kettle.
You can also leave your skis/boots/snowboard behind so you won't have to carry them up next time, but please make sure that you write your name clearly on everything that you leave behind. 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 button tow on Raise. the ground under the 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 no more uplift that day for anyone... There are nine runs on Raise, as indicated by the piste map.
Please note, these runs are not groomed pistes, they are naturally occurring parts of the mountain and can vary considerably, they aren't always all complete and can be different every day. Ask the tow operators about which run is the best to start in the prevailing conditions.