What Is a VAMP/DON


VAMPS stands for “Vomen And Muffy’s Programs”
The dictionary says that a vamp is a woman who is believed to use her sexual attractiveness for the seduction and manipulation of others. Muffy’s definition of a VAMP (before she looked in the dictionary) was a woman who is in our ski class who wanted to learn more and have fun in the process.

Muffy says: “It all started in 1997 when a friend wanted me to give her private lessons twice a week for the entire season. I told her to think of a couple other women who might want to join her and I’d then continue the conversation. That winter, I wound up coaching the small group of four women all season. The next year it grew to 40 by word of mouth and I hired three more coaches. The next year it grew to 60. I think there was a niche that needed to be filled here in the Sun Valley area.”

Now, there are around 120 skiers in the program with coaches chosen from Olympians, national team skiers, skiers supported by ski companies, winners of past American Birkebeiner, Boulder Mountain Tour or Yellowstone Rendezvous races and just generally great all-around athletes with an interest in seeing more women learn to ski correctly. We encourage our skiers to participate in events but the main goal is to learn good technique, get fit and have fun.
The VAMPs program is run through the Galena Lodge Ski School and operates at Galena Lodge, the North Valley Trails and Lake Creek.


​To quote the Grateful Dead, “That’s Right, the Women Are SMARTER!”. For many years, the Galena VAMPS have had great success, helping women become better nordic skiers. Feeling left out and with Muffy Ritz’s blessing, in 2017, 8 men gathered to form the DONS.
While the Merriam-Webster dictionary gives various high brow definitions like powerful Mafia leader, fellow in a college in Great Britain, or Spanish nobleman, we don’t aim so high. We are quite simply the Dudes On Nordic Skis. If you can come up with a better description, have at it!!
If you already have the basics of nordic skiing and want to improve, then this program is for you!
Are you:
1) Looking to cement basics?
2) Finish the Boulder Mountain Tour (with ease)?
3) Win races?
If so, we want you to join the “DONS!” Our aim is to stratify members with similar abilities and goals, providing weekly coaching, both at Galena and Lake Creek. Coaching is modeled after the VAMPS, with more options offered as the program grows.

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