With our ski season in full swing, the most common remarks that we hear while relaxing in the warming hut, traveling on the bus, or sipping a glass of wine (skiers happy hour) include “this is such a great sport, I feel so wonderful on the trails, breathing the fresh, clean air, getting the 'best' exercise, and sharing my day with friendly and interesting people.”
Roughly two million Canadians participate in cross-country skiing each year, and in B.C. alone there are over 50 cross-country ski venues. Sport for Life writes that cross-country skiing has no limit regarding age, region, gender or conditioning level. It’s easy to learn and its benefits for health and fitness are fantastic. Regardless of whether cross-country skiers pursue competition or just personal enjoyment, each skier belongs to a “community” in which a love of the sport is the common denominator.
For the Vancouver Skiers, our community consists of 218 club members who love this exceptional sport. To date, we’ve run seven trips and one coaching day, with a total of approximately 345 registrants. Attendance at our November, January and February club nights was impressive, approximately 65 club members (and friends) joined us for each event. The Vancouver Skiers Executive is delighted that participation in our club is increasing and Skiers experiences are positive, rewarding, and enjoyable. There are five trips remaining in our 2016/2017 season.
Sign-up to enjoy and reap the many benefits of our fabulous sport:
1. Offers a full body workout
2. Burns a lot of calories (vigorous nordic skiing burns more calories than most other forms of exercise)
3. Improves cardiovascular endurance and health
4. Significantly improves physical fitness (studies indicate that cross-country skiers are 40% fitter than physically fit individuals)
5. Is an excellent form of cross-training
6. Relieves stress
7. Promotes social engagement
8. Allows you to connect with nature
53 Vancouver Skiers ventured out very early on a Friday morning to take a bus destined for Stake Lake. The Trails were freshly groomed and beautiful. The chilly temperatures made for slower snow conditions and face freezing excitement on the downhills. Some people skated, some used their classic skis, and one courageous soul tried snowshoes. All in all, everyone braved the elements to have a good time.
The next two days were spent at the SUN PEAKS ski area. Skiers enjoyed the Trails even as the temperatures remained on the cool side. We stayed at the Coast Hotel. It was within easy access to the Nordic trail system and Village where Vancouver Skiers were spotted in the restaurants, coffee shops, and pubs.
The theme of this year's Happy Hour was to come as a famous person. It was hosted by none other than HRH Queen Elizabeth herself ( Roz ) and her handsome husband the dashing Prince Philip ( Ross ) who was sporting a rather revealing kilt. They spoke eloquently and were honoured by the adoring crowd who sang a lively and spontaneous rendition of God Save the Queen. In attendance at the gala in no particular order were Nancy Green, Elvis, Donald Trump, Princess Leila x 2, Clara Hughes and some sexy guy in colourful tights. Johnny Depp, Groucho Marx, Meryl Streep, Vladimir Putin, a Scary Clown, Bart Simpson, the little Mermaid, King Kong, and even Santa on vacation. There were Bob and Doug Mackenzie, Lady Gaga, and many more intriguing characters. Mo and Diane were our esteemed judges and made excellent and informed choices. When Mo spoke the crowd was spellbound.Our ski club co-president ( Irene ) was there as an elegant Audrey Hepburn and gave out the academy awards with style.
If you are wondering why the trip leader is writing this report, it is because she forgot to ask anyone else while on the bus and because she forgot some luggage and was last on the bus.
Top 10 reasons to be a trip leader:
1) you get to sit at the front of the bus
2) you get to flirt with the bus driver
3) you get to pick the movie
4) you sit the greatest distance from the lavatory
5) you are the first off the bus at the washroom and refreshment stops
6) you get to pick your roommates
7) you get to use the microphone to make announcements
8) you get your trail fees paid
9) you get to practice your memory skills as you try to remember 56 names
10) And finally.....it is nice to give back to our wonderful volunteer ski club!
Don't miss out—there are 4 more trips in 2017!
Manning Chalet #2 — February 17-19. We have five spaces available. Manning Park Day Trip, February 19. Lots of room! Methow Valley, February 21-26. There are now four spaces available!
It was my first trip with The Vancouver Skiers—a friend heard about the group and I'd looked them up on Google. I’m happy I found them, as I had a great experience on Sunday.
I would say that a day trip is perfect for a new member joining the group, everything was just as planned. The bus arrived at the pick-up location, and left the Manning Park Lodge exactly on time due to the driver’s (George) and Eda's explanations, but also thanks to all of the participants -- no one was late.
The Manning Park area is very nice for cross-country skiing, with some ups and downs on the trail, but with enough flat trails as well. The bus left us at Strawberry Flats where there is a nice flat loop. I loved that I could leave my day pack on the bus, go and do the loop, have an idea about how cold/warm I would be, and then go back to the bus and pick up my pack with only what I needed for the ski to the lodge. For people who enjoy relaxing after the ski, there is a pool at the Manning Park lodge (with a small entry fee). I didn't know and didn't bring a bathing suit, but even if I did, I probably wouldn’t have used it, as I was enjoying the skiing so much.
Thank you, Eda (trip leader) for the timely response to my emails, and for the clear explanation of the schedule - most appreciated as I didn't know exactly what to expect. Thanks, Maia, for the warm-up and the gliding tips; thank you, Marion, for skiing with me and waiting for my slow downhill runs. Thanks everyone for being so friendly and welcoming to a new member. Hope to see you soon!
(Felicia moved from Romania to Vancouver 4 years ago and enjoys her new home.)
Stake Lake and Larch Hills - January 27-29, 2017
Having been on a few early morning ski trips now, snuggling into a nap on the bus while the sun rises is a great way to start the weekend.
The Overlander Ski Club’s cozy cabin at Stake Lake and heated bathrooms are a welcome respite in the cold, but we were lucky this trip as the temperatures didn’t dip below minus 5 degrees. A lovely ski was had on Friday as our group meandered along Cartwheel, Ponderosa, Drifter and Cowpoke. The sun peered out from behind grey clouds making for a beautiful early afternoon.
Many stories were swapped about the loppet days at Larch Hills. A little racing and a whole lot of dancing seemed to be the norm. Arriving at Larch Hills on Saturday morning, a troop of young teenagers heading into the woods for winter camping greeted us. The stove at Cec’s cabin was stoked and inviting, the trails were varied and in great shape. Tasting wine at Larch Hills Winery allowed many to purchase the local fare. On Sunday, the last run of the weekend down Larch Hill Road in the sunshine, made heroes of all who skied it.
An unexpected delight was the view of Shuswap Lake along the route home. It was a bluebird day and the choppy waters of the vast lake set against the winter valley was stunning. While the bus trips can be long, they are a great way to see our province on the way to and from wonderful skiing.
Wanted: Skiers for the Manning Day Trip on February 19!
We need more Skiers for this excursion! Manning Park has great trails, excellent facilities, and superb snow conditions. Join a group of friendly, interesting, and like-minded people and have yet another super ski day!
For more information go to http://www.theskiers.ca/trip-schedule/manning-park-2