Coming from a semi-tropical island in the heart of Asia, skiing isn’t a sport that’s ordinary in my home country Taiwan. Even after I moved to upstate New York in the USA, learning how to ski still didn’t cross my mind. On the other hand, coming from a Scandinavian country, Jim enjoys skiing, and he wants me to learn, so we can enjoy skiing together. Therefore, since we planned to go to Beijing during the Spring Festival, we decided to find a ski resort in Beijing.
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Unfortunately, Spring Festival is the most expensive time to go skiing anywhere in China, and a room at the resort would cost at least 600 RMB. After an extensive research comparing all ski resorts in the big Beijing region, we chose Jundushan Ski Resort because of its location. We decided to NOT stay at the ski resort but a hotel not too far away. The Ski Resort is close to the Ming Tombs and the Great Wall as well as Xiaotangshan (小汤山), a town that has several hot spring resorts.
My experience skiing as a beginner in Beijing
Watch the 2 minutes video to see what happened during my first ski experience, or scroll down for essential tips and information for skiing at Jundushan Ski Resort in Beijing!
I managed to ski down the green slope on my own after 1.5 days, but skiing at the Jundushan Ski Resort was a stressful experience. People were yelling and not paying attention to where they were going. As I mentioned in the video, “it was like not knowing how to ski but got caught in a traffic with no rules.” Frankly, traffic in Vietnam was way better.
And that was not the worst part.
After I’ve spoken to a few friends who learned skiing in Europe recently, I realized I probably chose the craziest place to learn how to ski.
As you can see in the photo, not only at the bottom of the green lane was full of people, the magic carpet was also tightly packed with skiers. The line for the lift got so long that Jim decided to ski uphill to wait for me on the other end. Moreover, although Jundushan Ski Resort also offers ski instruction, many inexperienced skiers chose to do it on their own. Most of them didn’t know how to turn or stop themselves from skiing into someone. They basically treated the slope like a giant slide.
Many Chinese dressed inappropriately to ski. What I considered as basic safety such as wearing a helmet was not enforced at Jundushan Ski Resort in Beijing.
The resort features seven ski runs, a slalom run, double seat cable-way and cross-country path for snowmobiles.The snow got quite slushy on our second day that the track became very slippery. It was quite a challenge for a new skier like me.
However, we managed to get the best out of the worst situation, and I definitely have to thank Jim for being extremely patient with me since I was freaking out the whole time during our first day. By the end, I could navigate through crowds on my skis without much help from Jim!
Essential Tips & Information for Skiing at Jundushan Ski Resort in Beijing, China.
Ski pass & ski equipment rental
The snow season goes from early December to early March. Below are the types of passes Jundushan Ski Resort in Beijing offer. Weekdays, weekends, and holiday prices vary:
- Whole day pass
Valid between 8.00 to 18.00.
- 4-hour day pass
The clock starts from the moment you get your skis till you return your ski boots. The official website suggested that you could also purchase the ski pass by the hour, starting with 2-hour minimum. However, we didn’t see this option when we were there.
- Night pass
Valid from 17.00 to 22.00, but you must enter before 20.00.
- Seasonal pass and prepaid pass
The resort offers seasonal pass and prepaid pass with discounts and restrictions apply. Since this post is for tourists travelling to Beijing, I won’t go into details.
The ski pass includes skis, ski boots, and poles rental. You can also bring your own skis, but the price isn’t that much different. The Ski Resort is also equipped for snowboarding. Snowboard and boots are included in your ticket. Below is a list of items with additional charges:
- Locker: 20RMB
- Helmet: 30RMB
- Goggles: 20RMB
- Aki clothes: 30RMB/set
For equipment rental, you must get the pass at a separate counter inside the resort. There’s a 100RMB deposit that must be paid in cash. The official website says the deposit was 50RMB, but that was not our experience. You must return the pass to get your deposit back.
The rental staff were very helpful, but the sizes of the boots were confusing. There must be something wrong with their size labels. Jim took a size 46 the first day. The second day, size 46 doesn’t fit anymore.
How to get there
Jundushan is possibly the most accessible ski resort from Beijing city centre. Located in Changping, a taxi ride from the city centre cost around 120RMB. It’s also accessible by public transportation. Simply take the subway to Changping or Changping Dongguan Station, and get a cab to the Ski Resort (around 20RMB).
588 Zhenshun Cun, Cuicun Zhen, Changping District
Tell me about your first ski experience! If you’ve never skied before, would you like to try? What do you think about the video? Leave a reply below!
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Also published on Medium.