Since I came to Grand County almost 35 years ago, we have always had the earliest snow and kept our snow the longest. Since I was looking for more snow that I had living in New England, I thought I had moved to heaven. But then Grand County had a fabulous October in 1983 and I fractured a metatarsal playing soccer and had to keep my foot in a big ole leather hiking boot until after Christmas. The old timers remember that ’83 was a record year when it snowed every day from the end of October until after Christmas and I couldn’t even Nordic ski until January! I shoveled snow every day to keep in shape for the skiing to come.
Well, global warming has made a difference and we now have almost two months in the summer of frost free days instead of only 7 or 8. But we still usually have the earliest Nordic skiing in the country. And we can usually find snow to ski on until at least July.
This great white stuff is one of the reasons why many people move to Colorado, particularly Grand County. We love the snow! We love the mountains! We love being outside! And there are so many ways to Nordic ski in Grand County. Grand Nordic has brought together these World Class Nordic centers, ranches offering groomed Nordic skiing, recreation districts and town recreation departments offering kids lessons, NSCD offering both adaptive and adaptive competitive programs, Colorado Biathlon training and competition, School teams in Middle School and High School, Competition programs for all ages, free skiing in the Center of town and free trails connecting towns for miles across the county or on golf courses.
Grand Nordic’s new marketing program touts More K’s More Days and points people to the new website developed by Firebird Design Works www.skigrandnordic.org where all things Nordic in Grand County come together. The site features logos of all participants, brief program information, major events, contact information and a link directly to their website. Articles explain information about back country touring and more. The calendar shows how many events exist, particularly events that fill your weekend with racing, family fun or a trek into the high country. It is literally a go-to spot to learn about all the Nordic opportunities in Grand County. Look for our national ads in Cross Country Skier and Ski-Trax or banner ads on websites like FasterSkier.com. We want everyone to know Grand County has More K’s of skiing available and More Days when you can ski.
Jeff Russell is one of those writing about our back country touring opportunities. His most recent post tells the backcountry story –
The XC skiing is off to a much improved start over last year. Last week’s storm, followed with moderate temperatures has left enough white on the ground for some extended kick and glide sessions.Daily temperature fluctuations have been making for crunchy morning and evening snow sandwiching around warm, soft midday conditions. Shaded areas, especially those tucked under the north side of east to west running ridges (think parts of St Louis and Deadhorse loops) have remarkably good snow quality. Getting to these areas may entail treading lightly or around some sun-exposed thin spots. “Rock” skis are still recommended as the snow pack is not deep. If you have a pair of old poles you might consider using those to spare your tips, as pole tips are still making it through to the ground. If groomed trails are requisite, Bruce’s trail up on Rabbit Ears pass, (Yes Grand County extends way over there!) has been groomed, and has tracks for classic and room for skating.
Happy Trails! Jeff
Grand Nordic was started in 1993 and became a 501c3 in the year 2000. Since then we have offered to the Grand County community an Annual Nordic Ski Swap, free lessons at each major Nordic Center in the County, and maintained kids and youth programs from pre-school through High School. We have encouraged and supported programs to prepare youth for further competition and a future in Nordic Skiing. This year to round out our program offerings, we hope to add Masters get-togethers for social skiing and perhaps a bit of on-trail tips at least one day a week. Sign up for email notifications at www.grandnordic.org or call 970-887-0547
Our new marketing website www.skigrandnordic.org is the only website that tells about all things Nordic in Grand County offering direct links to events, Nordic centers, free trails, ranches, and back country reports as well as adaptive, competitive, and school and youth programs. The site touts More K’s More Days which really means ski early season or ski late season on endless trails in fabulous Grand County. The website gives links to information sites like the Tourist Board and Chambers of Commerce to find information on about any winter activity. But best of all, it tells the endless Nordic skiing opportunities that are available.
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