Winter Parent Resources
Winter Adventures Program
Participants receive lessons from a Ski Professional/Instructor from 9:00am to 3:00pm. Each lesson includes a lift ticket and rentals for the day. Lunch is provided by the family.
We are outdoors on the mountain most of the time and will take frequent breaks indoors when needed, but please dress your son/daughter in the appropriate winter clothing. Ski/snowboard equipment will be available for rent through Four Mountain Sports, but please bring any equipment of your own that you may have!
- Long underwear
- Winter coat
- Winter pants
- Wool Hat
- Change of clothes
- Have you packed all your child’s gear, as per gear list here on this page?
- Have you marked/labeled all of your child’s belongings?
- Have you clearly labeled your child’s medication, with name and dosage? Please make sure all medications are in their original bottles, do not separate into other containers!
- Are all your original signed waivers ready and packed in your suitcase?
- We would like to encourage you to leave electronic devices at home. We understand that some electronic devices are needed for communication and these devices are fine to bring, but please make sure they are well protected, as we are outdoors in various weather conditions most of the time.
- To help your son/daughter keep track of all of their gear, please label ALL of their items.
Places to Stay in Snowmass, CO
Travel Tips and Resources: Preparing your child for Ascendigo
“Transitions are usually difficult for many on the spectrum,” says autism mom Chantal Sicile-Kara, “and traveling is really a series of transitions.” Odds are that traveling to our camp will be stressful to your child, whether you’re traveling a few hours by car or an entire day by plane. We want your child to arrive to camp as soundly and happily as possible, the better to smoothly transition into our activities. In that spirit, here are some tips and links to resources that can help you and your child manage your journey here, one transition after another.
Let us know if you have any tips or resources of your own in the comments section!
In select airports, JetBlue offers its Wings for Autism program, a walkthrough/ simulation of the air travel process for people on the autism spectrum and their families. Check to see if the program is offered at your nearby airport.
Air travel tips from Laura Vickers, author of the picture book Flying to See Janet. A social story for those on the autism spectrum about waiting for, boarding, and flying on an airplane.
A downloadable airport flight simulator for personal computer use modeled after the Denver International Airport.
Information for persons with disabilities at Eagle County Airport (near Vail).
Travel information for persons with disabilities from airlines that regularly fly to/from nearby airports: Aspen/Pitkin County Airport
Eagle County Airport
Grand Junction Regional Airport
Tips From Parents of Ascendigo Campers
- Always request bulkhead seating (seats that have no seating in front of them, allowing for more leg room and personal space).
- Let all crew know ahead of the flight that your child has autism and not to be alarmed by any sudden movements and/or noises.
- Always ask for special assistance in the security line. They may let you cut to the front.
- Use a visual story for the entire travel day, including “waiting,” as there is so much of it.
- Ride the train back and forth in the Denver airport on layovers. Not much else to do there for kids.
- Encourage crying if you think it will be helpful! It’s a natural cleansing process, with the bonus that it helps to pop ears on the airplane.
- Put IDs on your child’s bags and person.
- Carry a snapshot of your child to show to other travelers if he/she gets lost.
- National parks now offer free parks passes to those with autism. Bring a recognized certification of your child’s autism to any park ticket office and your purchase will be compensated in full.
- Check for early boarding if you can!