When you hit the mountain on your first skiing or snowboarding trip there are a lot of things on your mind. Are you going to embarrass yourself out there? Will you learn quickly enough? Most of all, you’re likely excited over how much fun you’re about to have. However, it’s important to keep in mind that skiing and snowboarding are sports filled with equipment, starkly colder weather, and the spending of money. So, on your first trip up the mountain, be sure to have the right equipment with you to ensure you are ready.

Everything you wear should be waterproof. You might have decided at the last minute to go on that ski weekend with your classmates, but you need to pick up or borrow something to wear other than your cotton sweater and long johns. If you don’t wear the proper waterproofed gear you’re going to be very cold, very wet, and very unhappy by the end of your first afternoon on the slopes. Don’t get sick right away. It’s not a good way to commemorate your first skiing trip.

Food is very important when skiing or snowboarding. You’ll be using a lot of energy up very quickly and you likely will not notice as you have the time of your life doing it. You should have energy bars or trail mix on you while out on the slopes and remember to feed yourself every couple of hours. It’s likely that when you step out there, you won’t be back inside for a few hours. In that case you shouldn’t be starving when you return. Stay energized.

Right along with forgetting to feed yourself, you might forget to hydrate yourself. While it’s cold outside and you’re wet, you are still exerting a lot of energy and in the process dehydrating yourself. It’s good to have a source of hydration on you at all times when exercising and when on the slopes. It’s even more important if only because you’ll likely forget you need it.

Bring along some cash and your ID. It might upset you to consider that you’ll lose any of it while swapping clothes and sliding down a mountain. However, it’s always good to be prepared and unless you live in the mountains, you’re likely far from home. If anything goes wrong you should be ready to deal with it. The last thing you need is to get injured and not be identifiable because you left your ID back in the city.

Have your cell phone neatly tucked away on your person if you can manage it. Preferably you will have a nice ski jacket with enough packets to hold all of your cash, ID, food, water, and cell phone. But if not, convince a friend to carry their or your phone on them. Once again, you don’t want to think about it, but if something goes wrong it’s best to be prepared.

None of these things include the basic equipment you’ll need when skiing or snowboarding. These are the essentials that everyone tends to forget, whether it’s because they are too excited or simply because they were in a hurry. The important thing to remember is that when you step out on that mountain you need to be prepared for anything, including bad weather, hunger, and thirst. You’ll be having too much fun to pay attention to the details, so thinking ahead will go a long way in making sure you’re covered by the time the sun goes down.