Grand County residents managed to avoid gatherings, wear masks, stay apart and reduce the COVID numbers over the holidays, they kept family and visitors under control and the numbers of infected people went down!  Our people either just stayed home or headed to the fields of white, the rolling  hills, and the mountaintops that Grand County is so famous for.  Hopefully the trend continues and we can avoid a spike in the next couple of weeks after the holidays.

So many traditional events that have been a normal part of our lives have been missing and social interaction has been pretty non-existent.  Well kids 5-10 years old now have the opportunity to join the annual Grand Nordic Free Friday lessons at Snow Mountain Ranch. The lessons start on January 22 this year through Feb 26 (except Presidents Day weekend) at 1p thru 230p. New this year, YOU MUST PRE-REGISTER online by clicking here. Parents are encouraged to help and will also be given equipment and trail pass for the duration of the lesson. Maximum of 20 kids allowed and COVID restrictions  apply.

Grand Nordic has a plan for our Annual fundraiser – the Ranch2Ranch Nordic Trek – planned for Saturday Feb 6 since the County has gone back to Orange. Check on our website for updates and changes. We plan to even change it up and ski from Granby Ranch to Snow Mountain Ranch over the same course which is about 12 km.  But with Covid19 restrictions, we cannot include lunch or transportation.  We are still manning two aid station tables and will have lots of fruit, cookies, energy bars, and warm energy drinks or water for you to take off the table and maybe a couple of surprises along the way…  you and a close friend or family member can carpool or leave a car at both ends.  I challenge you to start and ski to first or second aid station and turn around and ski back to where you started!  The Snow Mtn Ranch end has a hill down to the Nordic Center – just don’t go down but turn around at the top and go back down the hill you just skied up! That hill has great turns… Who needs two cars?  Some people skied the whole distance last year, did all the hills and turned around and skied back!  One gal did the course four times to practice for a marathon…crazy!

Our plan is registration on-line with waivers printable so you can bring a signed copy, check in    at our tent and flag at the base of Granby Ranch, verify your name from a safe distance, of course, and get your bib to signify you are on course.  Then climb our private corridor up the beginner downhill Deer trail to the fabulous Pirouette trail meandering through the woods over to the aid station. Grab a snack – maybe a banana and an energy bar – or a drink off the table and head across Traci’s Trail and the Fraser to Granby trail to Tim’s Tunnel under Hwy 40 and the second aid station.  This time I recommend the cookies and some orange slices.  It’s a trek – no timing – no pressure – enjoy the beautiful scenery…

The next section is now SMR trails and at the top of Adun is a great 360 view of the entire valley!  Well worth the climb. If your car is parked at Granby Ranch, turn around at the top and zoom back down, meandering on the trail through the NSCD Riding Center and back to Tim’s Tunnel.  This time I recommend two cookies… or ski on down to the SMR Nordic Center and turn in your bib at the starter shack to say – I’m done!  Time to hit the sales at the SMR Nordic Center!  Ski back or go to your car.  You can turn around anytime to return to Granby Ranch – how far can you go?  Push yourself a bit if you want.  We have medical personnel ready to help you if needed. Or just park a car at the Tim’s Tunnel parking lot.  The choice is yours!

Grand Nordic, Granby Ranch and Snow Mountain Ranch are working with the Grand County Department of Health to make sure all we are planning is safe for both you the participant and our volunteers and staff.  Stay tuned for full approval and cost to participate.

Grand Nordic has now provided ski equipment to all the pre-schools, elementary school programs and Rec Department programs in the county.  We even teach those teachers how to ski. We have helped the Middle School and High School programs with both equipment and scholarship for the kids who cannot afford fee and equipment to ski. We provide scholarships to the kids who apply to the Competition Center for more competitive programs.  This Ranch2Ranch fundraiser and our membership fees support all those activities.  Come support our efforts!  Volunteer or ski the Trek yourself.  It’s time for a little contactless fun…