Last year it was a pandemic, it was a frantic windstorm, and it was a two-day format for the first time! This year Saturday was a bluebird day with some fresh powder and Sunday, some even thought was a t-shirt day! Grand Nordic’s 9th Annual Ranch2Ranch Nordic Trek in 2022 was not only as safe as it could be but also as fun and beautiful as it could be – both days! Participants were spread out in half hour slots both days and started at their leisure. Sending people out into the sunshine and moderate cold on Saturday was like living a skier’s dream. Sunday, the temps were even warmer and the sky even bluer. The wind from 2021 was nowhere to be found.
Instead, we had smiles and happy faces, laughter and giggles as people gathered around the aid stations or a particularly scenic viewpoint in the 12 km distance from Snow Mountain Ranch to Granby Ranch. Some people chatted for a half hour or more and it was OK. That’s what you do in a Trek, enjoy yourself! Some people were out to prove to themselves that they COULD DO IT. The scenery along the way was incredible and participants could turn around anywhere on the course and decide their own distance to be covered. There were aid stations, medical personnel, a good track most of the way, and other skiers – what better conditions to test yourself…
Thank you to all our volunteers at registration, aid stations, finish area, marshals along the way directing and helping where needed, Bryan Mountain Nordic Patrol members offering medical advise and ready for emergencies, groomers for the course preparation from Snow Mtn Ranch – Headwaters Trails Alliance – and Granby Ranch. Special thanks to Granby Ranch events coordinator Quinn and her crew for all the coordination with the new owners and to Charlie Rau for all his patience and support to keep me going.
Air station volunteers were cheerful and smiling, offering warm drinks, bananas and oranges, cookies and granola bars to all. Middle School Nordic team manned one aid station while High School Nordic team members manned another to help thank people for supporting this fundraiser for youth skiing. Since the 90’s, Grand Nordic has supplied skis and boots to preschools, elementary schools, recreation departments and rec districts, Middle school Nordic team, high school Nordic team and coaches. We have supplied scholarships to kids helping them with expenses for school fees and equipment as well as advanced training programs. We have held free lesson programs for both Grand Nordic members and the public for about 20 years as well as hold the only Nordic Ski Swap in the County each October. Our mission is to promote all aspects of Nordic skiing in Grand County. The Ranch2Ranch Trek is our biggest fundraiser for these youth promotions and the school team kids and coaches as well as Winter Park Competition Center kids and coaches were there to show their appreciation.
Grand Nordic club website www.grandnordic.org tells about programs we offer, assistance we offer, as well as information on events and Nordic happenings. Grand Nordic is a member organization that is a non-profit supported by member dues, donations, and grants. Our board members are all volunteers and their service is tremendously appreciated. Please let us know if you would like to volunteer with us by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or call 970-887-0547.
We also take the lead on the only website touting to the world All Things Nordic in Grand County – www.skigrandnordic.org. Here we have More K’s and More Days (to ski!). Check it out to find where to ski choosing from Nordic Centers, free trails, guest ranches, and backcountry areas. We have Backcountry reports, Nordic News, Competitive programs like Colorado Biathlon, WP Competition Center, and Colorado Nordic Masters, the Adaptive program National Sports Center for the Disabled, School and Youth programs as well as a new section on retail shops in the County. The section on local information takes you to towns, Chambers, and the Tourist board for additional items so crucial for a well-planned trip. All categories give a direct link to the provider for easy site navigation. Check it out!! We really are All Things Nordic!