CONC Plans Skiing-Skills Class On Feb. 27

The Central Oregon Nordic Club will be holding a “Beyond the Blue Diamond” class on cross-country skiing skills on Tuesday, Feb. 27.

Participants will carpool to either Swampy Lakes or Dutchman Flat sno-park. They will work on back-country skills to gain comfort skiing off of groomed trails.

The group will ski down gentle hills, climb up hills, learn how to handle terrain features and different snow conditions. Leaders will also discuss navigation and what equipment to bring on back-country tours.

“Perhaps you have been cross-country skiing a while, and are pretty comfortable with doing a snowplow turn on a groomed slope,” says Susan Sullivan, vice president of CONC and one of the instructors. “You are reasonably comfortable skiing the trails at Meissner or the Nordic Center, but find you struggle with how to control your speed in ungroomed terrain where doing a snowplow usually doesn’t work. You find yourself side-stepping or just sitting down to control speed on intermediate trails or off trail. And going uphill isn’t a lot better when you can’t herringbone in ungroomed terrain.

“If this description fits you, then the upcoming skills class might be just the ticket. We will cover the basic skills needed to manage backcountry terrain, particularly when skiing off marked trails.”

Participants can only sign up on the CONC MeetUp site, where there are more details.  The class will be limited to 12 students. If you have any questions, also contact the leaders via the MeetUp comment section.

The class is not a telemark course, but will cover many ways to get down a hill. The seminar is intended for those who have already mastered basic cross-country skiing and are ready to venture off of the tracks.

This session may be postponed if the snow conditions are not conducive to learning. Organizers add that they hope to follow up with a class in basic navigation skills in late spring or early fall, once the snow is mostly gone.

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