Saturday, 18 January 2014

CCNL member clubs offer great cross country skiing in Newfoundland

 by Keith and Heather Nicol   

      It has been said that cross country skiing is just about the perfect activity since it exercises legs and arms and is also a good way to get aerobic exercise in the winter. For some people, breaking their own trail through the woods and experiencing nature under a blanket of snow is their idea of a perfect winter outing. Others like the social atmosphere of a local cross country ski club. For many families this is a good option since most ski clubs in Newfoundland will have a chalet, trails groomed specifically for cross country skiing and programmes  for kids and adults alike.
The Blow me down ski club in Corner Brook has hosted many national events
     Cross Country Newfoundland and Labrador (CCNL) is the umbrella group for cross country ski clubs in the province and these clubs are located in just about every corner of the province. There are close to 20 clubs which are members of CCNL and together they offer 100’s of kilometers of well groomed tracks for both classic and skate skiing as well as snowshoe trails. Classic skiing refers to the traditional style of skiing whereas skate skiing refers to the newer, faster technique. You will find that both of these are best done on trails that are specifically designed and groomed for this activity. In addition to groomed trails, most CCNL member clubs also have chalets which offer food and a chance to warm up, rest and relax.  A number of ski clubs are located in Western Newfoundland where there is usually an abundant amount of snow. There are also several cross country facilities in central and eastern Newfoundland and several clubs in Labrador. The CCNL web site: has lots of information about these cross country clubs and is a great resource for anyone planning a cross country ski trip in the province. CCNL also hosts a variety of races and loppets and its web site has a detailed event schedule. 
Menihek Nordic ski club in Labrador City is also well known for hosting races

     This is going to be a big winter for cross country skiing in Newfoundland and Labrador since there will be 2 large national events held this winter in the province. The first event will be Canada’s National Cross Country Skiing Championships to be held in Corner Brook from March 15-22, 2014. This is a very  prestigious series of cross country ski  races  and Corner Brook could see upwards of 800 visitors (athletes, coaches, managers and families) for this event, including Canadian National Team athletes and Olympians! No ski club in the province has ever held this event and it promises to be one to remember. This is going to be followed by the Canadian Masters National Championships which will run from March 23-30, 2014 at Menihek Nordic Ski Club in Labrador City. So between these two events the province will see a flood of cross country skiers from across Canada this coming winter. So whether you are a world class athlete or a novice skier, cross country skiing offers a great way to stay fit through the winter and all the CCNL clubs welcome visitors.
Many clubs like Birch Brook Nordic in Goose Bay have well groomed trails

Skating is a faster technique than classic skiing and normally requires well groomed ski trails


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