Nordic’s growing popularity is paying big dividends for Silver Star’s XC Camps. The recently completed two-week program at the resort, located just outside Vernon, B.C., saw more than 220 participants up 60% from last year. According to Silver Star Nordic manager Glenn Bond, this year’s camp drew record numbers.
“From coast to coast to coast, people flocked to Silver Star to take part in this year’s camps,” said Bond, one of 23 coaches participating in the camp. “Everyone raved about the quality of the coaches, video analysis, massage, yoga, and of course the incredible ski conditions. It reaffirms what kind of product we deliver.”
Bond said the appeal of the camps stems from the variety of terrain and skill level they cater to. From expert skiers working on stamina and technique to beginners grasping the basics, the xc camps appeal to a wide demographic, he noted.
“Nordic skiing is enjoying incredible growth as people are looking to stay fit, active and outdoors in the winter. The energy from the Olympics and the success our Canadian Cross Country Ski Team has lifted the exposure of xc skiing in Canada.”
Silver Star Mountain Resort has been the favourite early season training ground for the Canadian Cross Country Ski Team team for 24 years, feasting on the resort’s early snow and ideal training conditions.
“Being able to ski from your door is attractive to not only national team skiers but this is the same reason the xc camps are so successful,” added Bond.
Participants met each morning at 9 a.m. in the village center and can do skate, classic, or both techniques throughout the camps.
The word-of-mouth marketing by the clients of previous xc camps has certainly helped achieve record numbers on the trails, noted Bond. On the weekend of December 4 and 5, there were more than 400 Nordic skiers on the trails, enjoying the fresh snow and sunny skies. Bond said it’s what garners Silver Star such high praise in Nordic circles. The resort has been voted the number one Nordic destination in North America by the USA Cross Country Ski Team in Forbes Travel magazine.
“In addition to contributing to the financial bottom line, these camps have helped to turn Silver Star into a vibrant village at a time of year when most ski resorts are just waking up for the season,” said Bond. “The village is buzzing with Nordic skiers in the restaurants, retail shops, hotels and vacation homes. ”
Bond said the growing popularity in road biking, canoe/kayak and triathlon is spilling over into Nordic skiing in the winter. With over 105 kilometres of Nordic trails at Silver Star and neighbouring Sovereign Lake, cross country skiing in the North Okanagan is positioned to continue to see incredible growth, he said.
Silver Star’s Nordic manager said this year will be the biggest Nordic season the resort has ever experienced, with the xc camps kicking things off and then with Sovereign Lake hosting the Sparkling Hill Masters World Cup March 3 to 11, 2011.
As a gold sponsor of the event, Silver Star will host the opening ceremonies as well as award ceremonies daily in the village center.
“It’s exciting to see the growth of the sport, both at the grass roots level and on the national stage.” Notes Bond