So I'm sure this left everybody who saw me thinking "wow, that guy is not a dad." Well, I'm not but that's beside the point.
So I go through the singles line at the Black Mountain Express and there are three smallish kids there in a group for the 3rd to next chair so I ask/barge in with them to make a (would-be) full chair. There's a little guy (maybe 3ft tall) next to me and two other guys who are probably 4 1/2 feet tall or something (the two older kids seemed the same age).
After I join, for some reason, they try to switch the little guy to be in between them and he falls. I extended my hand for him to grab but he just flailed around a bit before the other kids just grabbed him upright. Successfully getting the little one between them at the same time. I was not dressed as the boogie man, but may have smelled a bit like gin (not actually true).
Anyway, after we load, I look over and the little kid in the middle of the other two boys is just skiing along (plenty of snow after the loading zone) with the front part of the seat of the chair against his back, the other kids start pushing him and telling him to get out of the way (how?) and I start yelling back to the lift operator to stop (we're like 20 feet from the LZ). The kid catches an edge and face-plants and then they stop the lift and attend to him. He didn't appear hurt and rode up a few chairs back. He didn't seem to notice at the time that he wasn't on the chair; he didn't seem to be comprehending the situation that he needed to be on the seat, kinda just being "here we go" about it.
Now, I know that everybody is supposed to know how to ride the lift. I think those kids knew that too. There was no blaming or anything like that of anybody, it was just a mistake. But, given how young these kids were, should I have maybe helped them more? (or some, really, I guess.) It could have been even more dangerous if there wasn't snow over the entire area. I didn't want to tell the other kids to grab him up because I thought they might fall too but no way could I reach over and leverage him up.
What would you do? I usually try not to tell other people's kids what to do but this was potentially dangerous and I was just kind of along for the ride.