We don't need to show you no stinking passes. We can just ride the terrain parks at Ski Sundown.
Don't get me wrong, the snow sports area in New Hartford is strict about the rules. One must look, communicate and practice general mountain etiquette when approaching an element in the park.
But a safety course and a pass are not necessary.
"We have the rules on the signs at the entrance to each park," Jarrod Moss, the terrain features manager and assistant ski school director at Sundown, said.
"We want everyone to feel welcome. We want everyone to enjoy that aspect of the mountain,” he said.
Are the parks at Sundown on a small scale? Absolutely, but as Moss points out, "It's not like we're even going to compete with Carinthia (at Mount Snow).”
"I could build something huge and send people to the moon," he said, "but we're better off with a lot for the kids."
So Sundown has employed two parks on the hill — one featuring novice and intermediate elements and rollers and the other featuring everything from straight rails to an S rail to jumps that produce decent air.
The beginner jumps were hit with a 7-year-old who rode park all day for the first time. There was one dug right into the snow to allow beginners the experience without the trepidation of the raised platform.
She loved it. It really is set up well.
To Moss, the parks are a passion — from grooming to changing elements based on input from skiers and riders to the rail jams he promotes in the summer. Yes, he does it with snow borrowed from a skating rink.
"We like to start in August in parking lots in the state," he said.
It's still March and there is still plenty of snow. Recently, when Moss peered up the hill toward his creations, he offered one more bit of philosophy.
"Terrain parks are one of the core parts of a ski area," he said, “and we want our customers to be able to experience that.
That happens at Sundown.