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Safety on the Slopes

Smart Style signageSmart Style in Terrain Parks
Terrain parks are featured around Holiday Valley for both skiers and riders. Elements you might encounter include half pipes, quarter pipes, wash boards, rails, boxes, barrels, table tops and banked turns. Inverted aerials are prohibited. Please obey posted signs as serious injury or death can occur. Use caution as elements and conditions may change daily and variations exist. It's cool to ski and ride safely. The Park Smart safety message is just plain common sense in the parks.

*Make a Plan includes ATML when inspecting jumps: 

A - The approach zone is for setting your speed and stance

T -  The Takeoff zone is for making moves that start your trick

M - The Maneuver zone is for controlling your style

L - The Landing zone is for getting straight and riding away clean. 

Air Rules

Getting Air in the terrain park is awesome, but please ride and ski by these rules...

Know your limits...bad air hurts BAD!
Look before you leap...check out your landing first, and use a spotter.
Learn to turn...don't crash and burn.
Jumping is serious stuff...advanced skills are needed. Serious injury or death can occur.
Conditions can change throughout the day and evening. Be aware.
It just makes sense to follow the rules while skiing or riding. You don't want to cut your time on the slopes short. Plus, getting injured hurts!

Heads Up…Know The Code…It’s Your Responsibility!

Your responsibility code is a set of guidelines to follow to help keep skiing and riding safer for you and others on the slopes. It is the job of the Holiday Valley Safety Patrol to educate guests about these rules, and enforce them if necessary.

This list is officially endorsed by the National Ski Areas Association, but it is a partial list, so be safety conscious.

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

Know and Obey the Code. It's Your Responsibility.

  • Common sense goes a long way!
  • If it is cold, dress properly (including a hat), protect your face and take frequent breaks.
  • If it is sunny, don't forget the sunscreen and eye protection.
  • At all times, carry ID and a phone number to call in case of emergency.
  • If you're new to Holiday Valley, pick up a trail map. Ask any of our staff for directions, lift use or other information.
  • Keep your equipment in good condition. Check your binding settings each year (we can do that for you in the High Performance Shop). Tune your skis or board regularly. This not only helps you make better turns, your equipment will be more consistent and reliable.
  • Lock your skis at the racks. Use a bike lock, or the Ski Key, a locking system that is available at resorts nationwide and in our Mountain Shops. Check your equipment at the Holiday Valley Lodge Rental Shop for a small fee. 

Ski & Ride With Caution & Common Sense

Holiday Valley encompasses hundreds of acres of both gentle and steep terrain. Skiing and riding are exciting, challenging participant sports that often presents dangers and inherent risks, including but not limited to trees, uneven terrain, changing conditions, bare and/or icy spots, natural and man made objects, snowmaking equipment that may or may not be operating, and other skiers, snowboarders or people using the slopes. Some slopes and gladed areas are not groomed or equipped with snowmaking.

While skiing, USE CAUTION and abide by the Responsibility Code and NYS Article 18. Article 18 is also posted at the Holiday Valley information boards. If you can not accept these inherent risks of skiing and riding, we ask that you not ski or ride at Holiday Valley. Remember, safe skiing and riding is everyone's responsibility; it's the law.

Caution: Snowcats, snowmobiles and snowmaking may be encountered at any time and at any location in the resort.

Be Advised: All poles and/or flags, fencing, signage and padding on equipment or objects or other forms of marking devices are used by the ski area to inform you of the presence or location of a potential obstacle or hazard. These markers are no guarantee of your safety and will not protect you from injury. It is a part of your responsibility under Your Responsibility Code to avoid all obstacles or hazards, including those that are so marked.

Chairlift Safety

Holiday Valley has a variety of uphill transportation including high speed quad chairlifts, quad chairlifts and conveyors. Be advised that you cannot board a lift unless you have sufficient physical dexterity, ability and knowledge to negotiate or to use such lift safely, or until you have asked for and received information sufficient to enable you to load, ride and unload the lift safely. You may not use a lift or any ski trail while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 

Here are some important things to know about chairlift safety...

  • While waiting in line watch how people are loading the lift. Ask the lift attendant if you have any questions.
  • Put away phones or game devices before getting on the lift. 
  • If it's your turn to load but you're not ready, it's OK to miss a chair.
  • Sit back as far as possible in the chair and don't lean on the restraint bar.
  • If your pole or glove starts to fall from the chair, don't try to grab it. You can pick it up later.
  • At the top stand up and ski/ride down the ramp, then move out of the way so others can unload.

Persons with disabilities are welcome to make use of Holiday Valley's chairlifts if they are able to do so safely. All customers may ask any lift attendant so slow down the lift so that they may more comfortably load the lift. 

Winter Service Animal Policy: Service animals are not permitted on the slopes or the Holiday Valley lifts.

Summer Service Animal Policy: Service animals are not permitted to ride Holiday Valley chairlifts. We will transport guest and animal as needed by Ranger vehicle when the request can be reasonably accommodated with advance notice.

Safety Awareness Month/Heads Up Program

Holiday Valley joins with resorts across the country in promoting Safety Awareness Month all during January. Special emphasis on safety and the Responsibility Code is featured during various events and activities. Skiers and riders of all ages will find SAM interesting and informative.

Here are the activities you will find during Safety Awareness Month

  • Spin to Win! Know the code and win great prizes. Located at the clock tower on select weekends.
  • Sit in the 60th Anniversary quad chair and learn about chairlift safety. Located on the plaza deck outside Resort Services Center.
  • Cash Chair. On select nights you might happen to have a Safety Patroller join you on the chairlift. They'll ask you questions and your prize amount will keep increasing as you answer them correctly.
  • Poster Contest. Kids at the Holiday Valley Day Care and in Mountain Adventures are invited to draw a poster that illustrates a point in Your Responsibility Code or Park Smart. Holiday Valley's winners will receive prizes and the top poster will be submitted to the National Contest.
  • Lessons  will focus on covering the entire Responsibility Code during the lesson.
  • Get caught by Safety Patrol - doing something GOOD -and get rewarded WITH PIZZA!

Woods Skiing/Riding at Holiday Valley

The woods are available to expert skiers and riders and are not open, closed or marked. Woods are littered with rocks, stumps, fallen trees and other objects that can damage you and your equipment. It is recommended you ski or ride in groups of at least 3.

Do not go into the woods after 3 PM. Respect your ability level. Boundary woods can lead you away from Holiday Valley. Know where you are going and dress properly.

Additional Safety Information

Check out these links to learn more about safety on the slopes.

Lids on Kids helmet information 

Lift Safety information

Smart Style Terrain Park safety info 

New York State Article 18

Click here to view New York State Article 18 in its entirety. 


  1. Not to ski in any area not designated for skiing
  2. Not to ski beyond their limits or ability to overcome variations in slope, trail configuration and surface or subsurface conditions which may be caused or altered by weather, slope or trail maintenance work by the ski area operator, or skier use
  3. To abide by the directions of the ski area operator
  4. To remain in constant control of speed and course at all times while skiing so as to avoid contact with plainly visible or clearly marked obstacles and with other skiers and passengers on surface operating tramways
  5. To familiarize themselves with posted information before skiing any slope or trail, including all information posted pursuant to subdivision five of section 18-103 of this article
  6. Not to cross the uphill track of any surface lift, except at points clearly designated by the ski area operator
  7. Not to ski on a slope or trail or portion thereof that has been designated as "closed" by the ski area operator
  8. Not to leave the scene of any accident resulting in personal injury to another party until such times as the ski area operator arrives, except for the purpose of summoning aid
  9. Not to overtake another skier in such a manner as to cause contact with the skier being overtaken and to yield the right of way to the skier being overtaken
  10. Not to willfully stop on any slope or trail where such stopping is likely to cause a collision with other skiers or vehicles
  11. To yield to other skiers when entering a trail or starting downhill
  12. To wear retention straps or other devices to prevent runaway skis
  13. To report any personal injury to the ski area operator before leaving the ski area
  14. Not to willfully remove, deface, alter or otherwise damage signage, warning devices or implements, or other safety devices placed and maintained by the ski area operator pursuant to the requirements of section 18-103 of this article


  1. To familiarize themselves with the safe use of any tramway prior to its use
  2. To remain in the tramway if the operation of a passenger tramway, as defined pursuant to section two hundred two-c of the labor law, is interrupted for any reason, until instructions or aid are provided by the ski area operator
  3. To board or disembark from passenger tramways only at points or areas designated by the ski area operator;
  4. Not to eject any objects or material from a passenger tramway
  5. To use restraint devices in accordance with posted instructions
  6. To wear retention straps or other devices to prevent runaway skis
  7. Not to interfere with the operation of a passenger tramway
  8. Not to place or caused to be placed on the uphill track of a surface lift any object which may interfere with its normal operation
  9. Not to wear loose scarves, clothing, or accessories or expose long hair which may become entangle with any part of the device

Skiers shall have the following additional duties to enable them to make informed decisions as to the advisability of their participation in the sport:

  • To seek out, read, review, and understand, in advance to skiing, the 'WARNING TO SKIERS' displayed where tickets are sold
  • To obtain such education in the sport of skiing as the individual skier shall deem appropriate to his or her level of ability, including the familiarization with skills and duties necessary to reduce the risk of injury in such sport.

Holiday Valley Drone Policy

Drones are not allowed at Holiday Valley during operating hours. Special permission may be granted to FAA licensed pilots during non-operating hours. Requests should be directed to Marketing at 716-699-3905.