A SLEDDING GUIDE FROM A FRUSTRATED NEW ENGLAND EXPAT
I grew up in Rhode Island, and spent the last nine years in DC. After sledding at the Capitol all weekend thanks to Snowzilla, I've discovered that people here lack basic sledding etiquette. Fear not! Here's what you need to know!
- •Tracks - everything goes back to tracks.The mark left in the snow after you go down the hill is called a track. Each time you go down the hill, you improve this track.
- •Walk back up the SIDE of the hill!Once you reach the bottom, do NOT walk straight back up your track. You're ruining the track you just carved, and you ARE going to get hit by the next person coming down the hill. Walk back up the side of the hill to get back to the top.
- •You're the adult. Teach your kids sledding etiquette.Do not walk in front of all the sleds waiting to go down. Telling your kids that "sledders have the right of way" then continuing to walk in front of the sleds is a huge contradiction, and you ARE going to get hit.
- •Makeshift sleds, while creative, could also be dangerous.This baby in the bin? Super cute!! Attempting to send your child down a steep hill in this bin? Yea that's not a good idea. (Spoiler: This baby screamed for a solid 20+ minutes until I had to get out of there.)
- •Be considerate when taking pictures.I completely understand wanting to document your child's first sledding experience. It's adorable. However, don't stand in front of everyone in a TRACK, and expect not to get hit. Take the picture quickly between lanes then quickly get out of the way!
- •Don't build a snowman at the bottom of the hill.Seriously. Do you want a sled to collide with your snowman? I saw some decapitated snowmen today. It was chilling.
- •If you're about to get hit MOVE!If you've ignored all of my suggestions above, then you bound to get hit by a sled. When this inevitably happens, GET OUT OF THE WAY! You have more agility than the sled. Don't stare at the sledder as they are careening toward you, and just stare at them wondering why they don't just flip themselves over. Be the adult.
- •Basics of sledding form (because there is an art to this)Lean back (or even lie down) - you want to be as aerodynamic as possible. People tend to lean forward because they get scared, but this will actually slow you down. Keep you feet in the sled or else you'll stop (or more likely flip over).
- •Understand that the pissed off person next to you is probably a fellow former New Englander. Ask us for tips, we've been sledding for years. Happy Snowzilla to all!