Get On Track This Winter With the Top Nordic Events in British Columbia

Skinny skis and snowshoes are set to hit the tracks and trails as the Nordic season kicks off in British Columbia. BC Nordic has put together some great event picks, from dogsled races to annual loppets, this season’s event calendar is chalk full of activities for the entire family. Plan ahead and check out these and other events at throughout the winter season.

Dec.17-19, 2010 – Haywood NorAm Teck Sprint Series at Black Jack Cross Country Ski Trails, Rossland, BC

Elite athletes from Canada and the US will compete in exciting head-to-head race action at this prestigious three-day event. After the races, hit the 35 km trail network and enjoy great Monashee Mountain views. Known for its lively arts community, Rossland offers an abundance of post-ski activities, charming boutiques, eateries and live theatre.

Jan. 7-9, 2011 –Cariboo Challenge Sled Dog Races – The Hills Health Ranch/100 Mile Ranch

The Hills Health Ranch and 100 Mile Ranch community in BC’s Cariboo Chilcotin region celebrates a dog sledding tradition at this annual event with teams competing from Western Canada. Experience the excitement of your own dog sled tour, ranging from one hour to full day and overnight Iditarod style adventures at The Hills Health Ranch.

Jan. 15, 2011 – Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills Cross Country Ski Trails, Salmon Arm, BC

Kick and glide at the 27th Annual Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet, a classic technique loppet. It’s a fun family friendly event and encourages participation regardless of skiing experience. Grab your friends and form a “Cardiac Challenge” team and enjoy a day on the trails while helping raise funds for the BC Heart & Stroke Foundation.

Jan. 23, 2011 – Silver Star 75 Team Challenge at Silver Star Mountain Resort

This Victorian-inspired resort near Vernon, BC is known for superb skiing conditions and is where the best international Nordic ski teams choose to train. It’s also home to North America’s longest race, the Silver Star 75 Team Challenge. Ski the entire 75 km with friends, or try the 30 km loop on your own.

Jan. 30, 2011 – Bulkley Valley Open at Bulkley Valley Nordic Centre, Smithers, BC

Organized by the Bulkley Valley Nordic Club in northern BC, this mass-start, classic technique race is a great event for loppet beginners. A variety of distances are available for adults and children. The Nordic Centre is located on the slopes of Hudson Bay Mountain and bustling ski town Smithers is only 10 minutes away.

Feb. 5, 2011 – Callaghan Classic at Ski Callaghan (Whistler Olympic Park and Callaghan County Lodge), Whistler, BC

Ski Callaghan, home of Whistler Olympic Park and Callaghan Country Lodge, hosts “The Callaghan Classic.” Ski the 13.5 km up to cozy Callaghan Lodge at your own pace and reward yourself with the free BBQ lunch. It’s a fun grassroots Nordic skiing event open to all and part of Callaghan Country’s annual three-event Benchmark series.

Feb. 13, 2011 – Dakota Ridge Winter Snowfest at Dakota Ridge Winter Recreation Area, Sechelt, BC

Try out Nordic activities with a twist, like the Luge Run and SnowCross Race at Dakota Ridge’s Annual Snowfest Day. Snowshoe races, a cross-country loppet and gear demos round out the day. Dakota Ridge, only a short ferry ride from Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver, has a 21 km network of snowshoe and ski trails and stunning views of the Coast Mountains and Vancouver Island.

Feb. 26, 2011 – The P’ayakenstut at Ski Callaghan (Whistler Olympic Park and Callaghan Country Lodge), Whistler, BC

The P’ayak, BC’s newest cross-country ski loppet has got everyone covered. Hardcore skiers can test their mettle with the P’ayak 50 km, while the less hardy individuals can choose the 15 or 30 km recreational routes. This inaugural event has plenty of race day activities for children, including the P’ayak Youth Skier Cross and Kids Tournament.

March 26, 2011 – Vancouver Island Loppet at Mount Washington Alpine Resort

Located on Vancouver Island, Mount Washington hosts a late season favourite, the Vancouver Island Loppet. Choose from either the 15 or 30 km routes on rolling terrain and take in the stunning views of Strathcona Provincial Park, the Comox Glacier, and Mt. Arrowsmith. The kids take on the 2 or 5 km distance, team categories available too.

BC Nordic Marketing Society (BCNMS) is a non-profit organization comprised of Nordic facility operators, ski areas, resorts, and tourism marketing organizations. The organization actively promotes and supports Nordic winter recreation activities such as cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding and backcountry skiing at destinations located throughout British Columbia.

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Ryan Alford

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