Kath Lyons took up skiing in later life – but is now well and truly hooked
Learning to ski in later life may seem a little more daunting for some. At 50 years young, Kath Lyons not only learned to ski, she took the experience one step further – and spent three seasons working as a chalet host! Kath, now an SB Ski instructional holiday regular, still loves to take lessons and improve her skiing.
Since hanging up her chalet host’s apron, Kath has continued to enjoy lots of different ski holidays. “I’ve sampled a lot of ski holidays, some excellent, some not so great. I’d rate the SB Ski holiday – and the instructor team – as by far the best,” she says.
“Holidays are so easy to book, quality ski instruction is included, the food is some of the best in the Alps, and the service from the chalet staff is just great. I also really enjoy staying at the Hotel Chalet d’Antoine as it has such a comfortable, relaxed atmosphere. It makes the perfect combination for an excellent ski holiday.”
How it all started
“Until age 50 my main exercise was gardening!” admits Kath. “But in 2003 I was persuaded by a good friend to join her on a ski holiday. After that I viewed the winter in a totally different way. Once you get the skiing bug, it’s totally addictive!”
Kath’s first ski holiday experiences in 2003 and 2004 had their ups and downs. But she was determined and continued to take ski lessons. “It was such an exciting time,” she says. “It felt like being in another world.”
After that, Kath wanted more. “I wanted to ski the red runs with my friends. And I knew I needed more than one week a year to do that.”
Fate stepped in, and Kath took early retirement. She followed up an advertisement for chalet staff in Alpe d’Huez. “This was a vastly different role for me,” says Kath. “However I enjoy cooking and I got the job!” She then moved out to the Alps for the winter, which was a big life change. “Eventually, I was skiing five days a week and taking regular lessons. My skiing came on, and my aspirations changed. I was aiming to ski the Sarenne, the longest black run in the Alps at 16 km, which I achieved.”
After this, Kath worked two further seasons in Corcheval and La Praz.
“It was a fabulous experience,” she says. “I loved being in the mountains to see the change from early winter with the colder and heavier snow falls, to the mix of sun and spring snow. Also meeting and working with so many different and interesting people.”