Busy opening weekend for 100 Mile Nordics

Ian Watson, left, and Gary Carlson, take a fast turn at the 99 Mile cross-country ski trails. The 100 Mile Nordics opened the season on Nov. 26. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Jennifer Antonchuk tries out the classic skies on the 100 Mile Nordic cross-country ski trails. The season opened on Nov. 26. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Avery Jonasson, 8, and Tanner Jonasson, test out the 100 Mile Nordic cross-country ski trails for the first time. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).Avery Jonasson, 8, and Tanner Jonasson, test out the 100 Mile Nordic cross-country ski trails for the first time. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Kathleen Rotuff pulls in for a break at the Nordics lodge after a tour of the trails Sunday. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).Kathleen Rotuff pulls in for a break at the Nordics lodge after a tour of the trails Sunday. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Ilia Visscher, 6, and Debra Visscher take a spin on the 99 Mile cross-country ski trails. The 100 Mile Nordics opened the season on Nov. 26 (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).Ilia Visscher, 6, and Debra Visscher take a spin on the 99 Mile cross-country ski trails. The 100 Mile Nordics opened the season on Nov. 26 (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Avery Jonasson, 8, and Tanner Jonasson, test out the 100 Mile Nordic cross-country ski trails for the first time. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).Avery Jonasson, 8, and Tanner Jonasson, test out the 100 Mile Nordic cross-country ski trails for the first time. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Rick Rotuff stops in for a break at the Nordics Lodge Sunday after a tour of the trails. (Kelly Sinoski photo -100 Mile Free Press).Rick Rotuff stops in for a break at the Nordics Lodge Sunday after a tour of the trails. (Kelly Sinoski photo -100 Mile Free Press).

The 100 Mile Nordics got off to a strong start this season.

Nordics president Kristi Iverson said it was a busy weekend at the 99 Mile trails and Nordics lodge on Ainsworth Road last weekend, following the official kick-off to the season on Nov. 26. About 250 people – up 30 percent over last year – have become members of the Nordics this year, with many of them buying seasons’ passes compared to day passes.

“It was a busy weekend for sure,” Iverson said. “There’s not a lot of options that people can do right now. This is one thing they can do that’s safe and be outside.”

The Nordics’ youth skills development program, for members aged five to 19, is also experiencing a 30 percent boost this year. The program runs from November to March.

To capitalize on the increasing interest in cross-country skiing, the Nordics are offering the option for skiers to buy yearly passes and book rentals online.

It is also offering the opportunity for adult beginner ski lessons through the club, with a coach ready to go as needed. Those interested can sign up on the website at 100 Mile Nordics.com.

The Nordics Lodge is also open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day for people to buy a day pass, rent skis or warm up with soup or hot drinks. Masks are mandatory within the lodge.

“I’m excited especially having the early snow is really nice, with the opportunity to get out earlier,” Iverson said.

The club is preparing to host the Teck B.C. Northern Cup races at the 99 Mile cross-country trails next February. Organizers hope the entry-level race, sanctioned by Nordiq Canada and Cross Country B.C., will renew interest in cross-country racing, particularly among youth. The 100 Mile area, which has top-notch racing trails, had been a favourite spot for racers before it fell off the circuit some time ago.


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