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What was skiable snow turned into an icy mess after last Sunday’s rain and freeze event. Where numerous people had skied and walked, their tracks had frozen, making a chunky mess. The surface was what we call “boilerplate.” Grooming it was a challenge — it was too hard.

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After Christmas, I went cross-country skiing with my son Joe and his family on some local trails. I had forgotten how much fun it is to ski with kids — they give the experience a different perspective. Iver, age 8, has been skiing since he was 18 months old. Now, he’s flying down the trails …

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Monday was bright and sunny and not as cold as expected. The weekend’s snowfall covered the golf course in a blanket of white. As I put on my cross-country skis for the first time this season, I smiled. Winter and skiing fun were finally here.

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What do you give a cross-country skier for Christmas? That depends on the skier’s age, skill level and interests. A beginner skier’s needs will be different than a long-term, committed Nordic skier. How much are you willing to spend? You could spend anywhere from $5 for hand warmers to $500 …

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In the back of every skier’s mind is a list of places to ski before the season ends. With a short cross-country season, Nordic skiers feel a sense of urgency in March to cross names off that list. This year, I scaled back my list to a few old favorites — Maple Mountain, Bear Notch, Hall’s Le…

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This year, I’ve had many students tell me they signed up for cross-country ski lessons because they wanted to try “something new.” Alpine skiers decide to try Nordic skiing. Classic skiers were curious about skate skiing. People showed up to see what gliding was all about.

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For 26 years, brothers Doug and John Garland have owned and operated the Bear Notch Ski Touring Center in Bartlett. I learned its history from an interview Chris Proulx of White Mountain TV had with Doug Garland 3 weeks ago (tinyurl.com/x55urhdn). The Garland family owned many acres along th…

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Why groom cross-country ski trails? Grooming trails enhance the ski experience by providing consistent ski and trail conditions. As a Canadian Northwest Territory Recreation and Parks Association Ski Trail Grooming Guide states, “Groomed and tracked ski trails are easier to ski on, easier to…

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Cross-country ski trails come and go, often disrupted by development, logging or landowner changes. The Wildcat Valley Trail (once 17.8K in 1981) used to go uninterrupted from the top of the mountain all the way down to Jackson Village. Now there are big gaps in the trail and road walking involved.

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When it was announced that Eastern Slope Ski Club’s (ESSC) Junior Ski Program wouldn’t be happening this year because of COVID-19 concerns, I was sad. When we moved to the Mount Washington Valley in the 1990s, our kids participated in the downhill program at Attitash and the cross-country pr…

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In the world of Nordic skiing, skate skiing is a relative newcomer, even though it’s been around for 40 years. Classical skiing with its diagonal stride, kick and glide is much older, going back thousands of years. Roland Huntford, in his book, “Two Plans and A Passion,” begins his history 2…