WCHS students get away for MLK weekend


Photo Courtesy of Noa Assouline

Noa Assouline poses with friends at the top of a ski slope during the senior ski trip before taking a run down to the bottom of the mountain.

By Caitlin Murphy, Copy Editor

One of WCHS’ most beloved unofficial traditions is the senior ski trip. Every year, seniors board buses to travel to Canada over Martin Luther King Jr. weekend, where they spend a few days hitting the slopes, exploring the city and making memories.

The ski trip was organized by a private company that is not sponsored by the school. All the seniors who went on the trip paid for their experience, including the price of the bus and hotel. On Friday, January 13, the seniors boarded buses and embarked on a 12-hour-long trip to Quebec City. 

For the past two years, the annual trip has not occurred due to the pandemic. While many thought it might happen last year, rising cases and restrictions ultimately led to its cancellation. Because of this, seniors were elated to have the opportunity to head to Quebec City with their fellow seniors this year.

“I was super excited to go on the trip with my friends,” senior Natalia Mora said. “I had heard from previous seniors that the trip was so much fun so I was really looking forward to it.”

While some people on the trip were veteran skiers, others had never hit the slopes before MLK weekend. While it was a challenging experience for first-timers, being with friends made it easier and worthwhile. 

“This was my first time skiing,” senior Noa Assouline said. “It was difficult to learn, but thankfully I had a few friends that stuck by my side. I think the hardest part about it was learning not to be afraid to fall.”

When first learning to ski, falling is unavoidable. However, at bigger mountains with more difficult runs, it can sometimes be hard for new skiers to transition from the instructional slopes to a green run. While Assouline had a small accident early on in the trip, her friend was there to help and support her.

“I decided to try a green-level slope immediately after learning to ski,” Assouline said. “I fell down and heard my knee pop, but thankfully my friend was there to help me get down the rest of the slope.”

However, even for experienced skiers, the steep slopes in Quebec were a large step up from East Coast skiing. While the local mountains offer numerous trails that are perfect for beginners, Maryland lacks the amount of snow necessary to have an ideal skiing experience. While Canadian skiing is more difficult, it was also a better experience for seniors like Mora because of the real snow. 

“I am definitely not someone who grew up skiing, but I learned how to ski a few years ago, so I was able to go on greens, blues and a black trail,” Mora said. “The Canadian trails were definitely more challenging, but because the snow was real it was much softer which meant it didn’t hurt as much when I fell.”

When they weren’t skiing or relaxing in the lodge, seniors took the opportunity to take advantage of Quebec City and all it had to offer. From trying restaurants to shopping in the city, seniors were able to explore with their friends and decide what they wanted to do for themselves. 

“When we weren’t skiing we were able to go wherever we wanted in the city,” Mora said. “I explored Quebec and the Old City with my friends and we even got to go on a toboggan run!”

One of the focuses of the ski trip was to build connections between seniors and create new friendships. Many parts of the trip allowed for community-building, such as being stuck on a bus with others for almost a full day, going out to restaurants with large groups of people, staying at the same hotel and skiing together on the mountain. 

“We made it a point to include other seniors in activities like going out during the day or finding cool places to eat dinner,” Mora said. “We formed a bond over sharing an amazing and unique experience, and it was so great getting to know different people.”

Overall, the senior ski trip was a success for both new and experienced skiers. The trip offered something for everyone and seniors were able to connect with their friends and other classmates for one of the last times before graduation.

“I would 100 percent recommend this trip to future seniors,” Assouline said. “Quebec City is so much fun, you get to meet new people and ski with your friends! I was really excited before we left, but all my expectations were exceeded.”