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Soldier Mountain Takes Safety Seriously



Using and riding the lift in a responsible manner is an important safety consideration. Riding a chair lift is extremely safe. However, it is important to remember that it is a moving machine, and people should always be careful when interacting with large machinery. You will load and unload while the chair lift is slowly moving. We work diligently and effectively to make the chairlift experience as safe and seamless as possible, but you should always stay aware. Please let the lift attendant know if you are unsure of what to do and would like instructions on loading the lift. The lift can be slowed down and even stopped for people who are new to using the lift. A few tips to help improve your experience:

  • Keep your seat on the seat and hold on to the sides of the chair if it makes you feel more comfortable.
  • Remove pole wrist straps and any backpacks or fanny packs before loading.
    Suppose you drop something while on the lift; do not jump off and immediately go after it! Talk to the lift attendant at the top of the chair lift.
  • Use care when unloading to ensure you get off in the right area. Move out of the way as soon as you can, as the next chair may also be unloading people.

Visit NSAA’s Kids On Lifts website for more information.


  1. We offer free helmets with our rentals and rent helmets, even if you are not renting skis or snowboards from us.
  2. Skiing or boarding responsibly is the best way to stay safe. Your next safety precaution is to wear a helmet. Remember, it doesn’t make you invincible, and accidents do occur! Stay aware.
  3. Helmets may make the difference between a minor and a major injury. Being on the slopes is fun. Wear a helmet so you can have fun.
  4. Helmets do have limitations, so remember not to let them give you a false sense of security.
  5. Helmets must fit properly to work well. Take the time to ensure your helmet fits right. Remember to try your goggles on with your helmet so you know those will fit and work as well while you are wearing your helmet.

Visit NSAA’s Lids On Kids website for more information.

KNOW THE CODE: Your Responsibility Code

  1.  Always stay in control. You must be able to stop or avoid people or objects.
  2.  People ahead or downhill of you have the right-of-way. You must avoid them.
  3.  Stop only where you are visible from above, and do not restrict traffic.
  4.  Look uphill and avoid others before starting downhill or entering a trail.
  5.  You must prevent runaway equipment.
  6.  Read and obey all signs, warnings, and hazard markings.
  7.  Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
  8.  You must know how and be able to load, ride, and unload lifts safely. If you need assistance, ask the lift attendant.
  9.  Do not use lifts or terrain when impaired by alcohol or drugs.
  10.  If you are involved in a collision or incident, share your contact information with each other and a ski area employee.

Visit NSAA’s Responsibility Code page for more information.

Always remember to warm up and stretch before you start skiing. When you get to Soldier Mountain ski resort, sign up for ski lessons if you’ve never skied before — or even if you have. Even the best athletes in the world can’t ski on their own the first time out. The best way to learn is from a trained instructor certified by the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA). Private lessons will give you the most one-on-one time with an instructor, but less-expensive group lessons work very well and are an opportunity to make new friends.

Visit our Snow School page for more information.


  1. Always ski with a friend: No matter how good a skier you are, it’s possible to have a bad fall and be unable to continue skiing. Having a friend to look out for you and, if necessary, summon the ski patrol is much safer than skiing alone.
  2. Know your limits: Be honest with yourself when it comes to your skiing ability. If you’re a beginner, stick to the beginner slopes until you feel comfortable enough to move up to something steeper. Most ski trails are clearly marked as green circles (beginner terrain), blue squares (intermediate terrain), or black diamonds (advanced terrain). If a trail says it’s for experts only, it means just that. Skiing terrain that is beyond your ability is not only fun; it’s also a good way to get hurt.
  3. Follow the rules: Never venture past the ski area boundary or ski into a closed area. These areas are off-limits for a reason. The ski patrol does not patrol them; they usually contain hazards you don’t want to deal with. Also, pay attention to any warning signs you might see. If a sign says, “Slow skiing area,” you’ll want to go slow to avoid other skiers. If a sign says, “Cliff,” you’ll want to go another way or stop before you go over the edge.
  4. Practice skier etiquette: Remember that skiers in front of you or below you on the trail have the right of way. You can see them, but they probably can’t see you, so it’s up to you to avoid them. Never stop in the middle of a trail, or anywhere you can’t see above, such as below a dropoff. Look uphill to ensure no one is coming toward you before starting down a trail or merging onto a new trail. If you’re passing another skier on a catwalk or narrow trail, call out “On your right” or “On your left” to let them know you’re coming up behind them.
  5. Have a great time: Skiing is fun—lots of fun. And while there are risks involved, this shouldn’t keep you from having a blast on the slopes. So grab a friend and get out there!


  1. Green Circle: Easier
  2. Blue Square: More Difficult
  3. Black Diamond: Most Difficult
  4. Double-Black Diamond: Most Difficult; use extra caution
  5. Orange Oval: Freestyle Terrain.

Remember, terrain designation is based on several factors and can be assigned based on a degree of slope difficulty. The level of difficulty for the blue square at Soldier may be more or less difficult than a blue square run at a different resort. Be safe when choosing runs and make a plan only to choose runs that suit your ability. Look at the posted signs and trail map, and talk to employees if you are unsure of an appropriate run.

Visit NSAA’s Smart Style / Park Smart page for more information.

A tree well/ Snow Immersion Suffocation (SIS) accident can happen when a skier or snowboarder falls into a tree well or area of deep loose snow, is immobilized and trapped under the snow, and suffocates. The more snow there is, the higher the risk, so be aware when you are skiing.

Tips to help prevent a tree well accident:

  1. Ride with a partner.
  2. Avoid the base of trees when skiing and riding in deep snow.
  3. If you are going to fall, attempt to do so feet first.

Visit NSAA’s Tree Well & Deep Snow Safety page for more information.


While snow safety and avalanche mitigation efforts help reduce the risk of avalanches, avalanches, and snow slides may occur at ski areas, both inside and outside of the posted boundaries. Avalanches are an inherent risk of the sport due to the nature of snow and its accumulation on steep, mountainous terrain. Become educated on how to reduce the risk of injury and death from avalanches through your own actions and awareness.

Taking these steps may help reduce the risk:

  • Always ski with a partner and keep them within your sight at all times
  • Obey all signs and closures
  • Carry avalanche equipment such as beacons or transceivers, reflectors, probes, and shovels when skiing or riding in areas where avalanches may occur, and wear a helmet.

Visit for more information.

Visit Sawtooth Avalanche Center for current avalanche conditions.


  • Uphill Travel
    • Access to public lands inside the ski area boundary is limited to non-motorized access. Users may access the mountain via the designated uphill route along the South Fork Soldier Creek Road (identified on ski area run maps). Users may only access the area outside of operating hours. The area may be closed through the season as conditions or operations necessitate. Users must adhere to all signs and guidelines posted at the start of the route and along the route. Users travel at their own risk and must be aware of their surroundings. Uphill customers will travel on skiers right of the run and adhere to all run closures. It is the responsibility of the uphill traveler to be aware of hazards within the ski area, such as groomers operating and active avalanche mitigation measures. Mountain operations occur at all times of the day and throughout the night. If the users enter an area with ongoing operations, they must immediately leave unless a route allows them to safely continue without interfering.
  • Drones
    • Drones are not allowed. Soldier Mountain may approve drone use in special circumstances. Drone operators must be licensed, as required by drone type, and follow all applicable laws.
  • Camping and Overnight Parking
    • Camping and overnight parking are permitted in designated areas year-round but must be in compliance with Sawtooth National Forest policies. The Mountain Manager may restrict camping and overnight parking when necessary to accommodate mountain operations.
  • Backpacks
    • Guests are prohibited from transporting children in backpacks, chest packs, wraps, or other similar devices on their bodies while using chairlifts, conveyors, or ski runs. This policy stems from safety concerns for the infant/toddler, parent/guardian, other guests, and employees. ANSI B77 2.3.6, the standards governing chairlift design and operations, requires passengers to be responsible for their own embarkation, riding, and disembarkation. Safety concerns are also related to the potential evacuation of chairlifts and the equipment employed in such evacuations. Chairlift evacuation procedures require passengers to be unencumbered by packs.

We use a severity and escalation approach.  Violations with mild severity will most likely result in education and a warning.  More severe violations will result in a ticket/pass removal for the day.  Relatively minor violations where the guest’s response escalates the situation may result in higher consequences.  We track guests who receive multiple violations to educate and hold each person accountable.

1st Violation/Strike: The guest is usually allowed continued privileges depending on their attitude and the nature of the violation.
2nd Violation/Strike: Ticket holders will generally have their access revoked for the rest of the day without a refund and will be issued a minimum 24-hour suspension from further skiing or riding.  Guests may be suspended for four days or more, depending on their attitude and the nature of the violation.  Pass holders will generally have their pass suspended for a minimum of 24 hours but may be suspended for four days or more, depending on their attitude and the nature of the violation.
3rd Violation/Strike:  Pass holders and daily ticket purchasers will be suspended indefinitely.  Management will reevaluate eligibility for future ticket and pass purchases anytime a guest receives a third warning/strike in one season.

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