Baby’s first ski holiday: everything you need to know
At what age can you take your baby to the mountains?
Before planning a ski trip with your baby, there are a few medical recommendations to bear in mind. We’ll tell you straight away: climbing Mount Everest or Mount Blanc is not recommended for toddlers. In fact, doctors advise against climbing above 1,700 metres before the age of 15 months. Remember, choose a resort that’s not too high, to guarantee your baby (and you!) a peaceful stay.
The pressure created by altitude can be painful for your baby. To help him/her, take breaks when you climb in the car (between 1,200 and 1,400 m altitude, for example). Then, remember to feed your baby either with a bottle or a pacifier. Babies don’t swallow like adults. This system will prevent potential earaches, like when taking off in an airplane!
Preparing baby’s suitcase for the mountains
When it comes to snow and sub-zero temperatures, you need the right clothes! Bring warm clothes and several layers (bodysuit, undershirt, long-sleeved t-shirt, sweaters, tights), a sleeping bag, an angel’s nest, mittens, hats… Outside, keep your child well covered. When indoors, remember to undress your child too, to prevent him from roasting… In a previous article, we explained how to tell if your baby is too hot or too cold, and how to dress him at night.
Beware of the sun in the mountains
Babies’ eyes are sensitive and the sun’s reflection is strong because of the snow. Think about sunglasses. Choose an anti-UV sunglasses model. Protect your baby’s face, too, with a sunscreen suitable for toddlers.
In the mountains: stroller or baby carrier?
Find out about your future holiday destination. Is it accessible by car, a small town with sidewalks or a hamlet with snow-covered slopes? Whatever the case, a baby carrier will come in handy for hands-free strolling. Some ski resorts offer three-wheeled strollers for hire, which are ultra-practical when you’re out and about. Again, check with your local tourist office or sports store.
Stay hydrated, even more so in the mountains
Yes, in the mountains, the air is dry both indoors and out. Between heated dwellings and the need to wear warm and sometimes technical clothing, babies and adults quickly become dehydrated in the mountains. So, here’s a quick reminder to keep well hydrated:
- Drink water regularly (flask, bottle…),
- Moisturize baby’s skin with appropriate creams to prevent dryness, itching and tightness.
Anticipating your childcare needs
You want to hit the slopes, but what are you going to do with Junior? Anticipate your child’s childcare needs while on the slopes. Sometimes, ski clubs and day-care centers are overbooked… Find out more before your trip. Day-care centers generally accept babies as young as 4 months. Please note: we strongly advise against skiing with your child in a baby carrier.
Preventing future boo-boos
Our final recommendation: in addition to taking a good first-aid kit with you, find out about doctors and medical emergencies at your vacation destination.
Here are the essentials for a baby’s first-aid kit:
- Paracetamol: for fever.
- Soothing gel or homeopathic chamomile: for teething troubles.
- Rehydration solutions: for diarrhea
- Antidiarrheal: to relieve your baby’s colic.
- Physiological serum: multi-use.
- Moisturizing cream
- Arnica: for bruises and bumps.
- Antiseptic: for wounds.
- Baby fly
- Pair of small scissors
- Cotton square
Enjoy your stay in the mountains!
The Charlie Crane team
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