FasterSkier’s Kathryn Miller will be profiling a number of ski areas this winter. You can find her profile of Bretton Woods here.
Wolfeboro XC Ski
The Nordic Skier is the local shop in Wolfeboro where you can get ski tickets, find trail maps, rent gear, and purchase nutrition for your ski.
The shop is located at:
47 North Main St.
Wolfeboro, NH 03894
Trail system hours of operation: No set hours, ski when you are able to but make sure you stop in when the shop is open to pay for a ticket. The Nordic Skier is open Monday-Saturday 9-5:30, Sunday 9-5.
Also check out the trail conditions website which updates regularly with trail conditions, grooming, and during questionable weather indicates if staying off the trails might help with later grooming.
Ticket Rates for a day pass:
- Adults $12
- Teens $10
- 12 years and under Free
- 75 years and up Free
If you frequent New Hampshire cross-country ski locations then a Wolfeboro XC season pass might be one way to save money. Included in the purchase of a Wolfeboro XC season pass ($69 individual, $170 family of 4) is a 50 percent off the day rate — with no blackout dates — at the following NH locations: Bretton Woods Nordic Center, Eastman XC, Dartmouth XC, Great Glen Trails, Jackson Ski Touring, Mountain Washington Valley Ski Touring, Waterville Valley Adventure Center, Purity Spring/King Pine XC and Snowshoe Center.
- Rental Equipment (for skiing, snowshoeing, and ice skates)
- Group and private lessons for all ability levels
- Trails that allow fat biking (check the trail conditions site to see if fat biking is open on the day you want to go, only allowed on the Abenaki side of the trail network see map below)
- Trails for snowshoeing
- Bathrooms at the two main trailheads
- Warming huts at the two main trailheads
- Two different trail networks, one offering easier skiing, the other suited for those looking for a challenge
- A youth nordic ski program
The history of Wolfeboro XC:
Wolfeboro XC began in 1972 with the vision of the Flagg family. Verna and Cal Flagg wanted to provide ski trails for the community and since that time, along with their son Steve Flagg, they have realized that vision. In 1972 they opened their ski shop and began to groom, mark, and maintain trails. When the Nordic Skier Shop and Wolfeboro XC began, the outfit was one of only a few places in New England where you could ski on a trail system and buy XC gear. Although beginning with a modest amount of kilometers, the ski area has grown into a 30 k system of trails. Cal and Verna have since retired and now live trail side.
Steve has followed in his parent’s footsteps. He is quick to speak of the community that sustains Wolfeboro XC. Without the support of the community through season passes, use of the land by private landowners, and annual volunteer trail work days, Wolfeboro XC would not have thrived.
Wolfeboro XC Ski Association is the overarching group that runs Wolfeboro XC. The association does not receive financial support from the town and the town is not maintain the trails.
The grooming is top notch. In speaking with Steve, his knowledge of grooming (when to groom, when not to groom, how to sustain snow for the longest period of time) is clear. His ability to groom impeccable trails is even more clear when you are out skiing on them. In 2017, Steve was awarded the Al Merrill Award by Ski NH for his outstanding contributions to New Hampshire nordic skiing.
Here’s the bottom line: if you are looking for high quality skiing and have a family to get outdoors, Wolfboro XC’s season pass (remember that’s $170), this is a score.
Photo: Looking up one of the hills on the Holy Chute trail February 2020
Once you’ve picked up your trail passes at the Nordic Skier shop in downtown Wolfeboro and decided which side of the trails to start on it’s time to head out for a ski. (See parking information below.)
Wolfeboro XC is made up of two connected trail networks. The Abenaki Trail Network and the Sewall Woods Trail Network with a combined total of 30 k. Each trail network offers great skiing with its own unique trail ebbs and flows. The Abenaki side offers “More Difficult” and “Most Difficult” trails with challenging and fun terrain. Trails climb, descend, twist, and turn providing the perfect terrain if you are looking to get in a hard workout or a stay-on-your-toes challenge.
The Sewall Woods side offers mainly “Easiest” and “More Difficult” trails with two “Most Difficult” trails. The trails on this side may be easier but they are no less fun. The Sewall Woods side includes the “Super Loop.” This loop (marked by red diamonds on the map) has been designed to drain efficiently, hold snow, and is able to be skied in low snow conditions.
If you want to connect these two sides during your ski you will want to follow the Internet Trail. The Internet Trail is a “Most Difficult” trail approximately one mile long and is made up of steep ups and downs with three road crossings. It is well worth the journey to check out both sides of the trail network.
Steve’s favorite trail is Holy Chute, part of the Abenaki Trail Network and a “Most Difficult” trail. He fondly recalls cutting and creating the trail approximately 12 years ago with help from the owner of the land, Jim Bean. He remembers standing in the woods talking about where the trail should go. His thought was a straight cut through at the point they were standing, Jim on the other hand said “watch me” and took off running through the woods. Jim ran up and down, turning and twisting through the trees, showing him a place to put the trail that Steve had not seen. It is a trail with multiple steep and turny descents in a row which brought Steve to exclaim “holy S&%$” while skiing it and the clever name Holy Chute came to be.
My favorite trails on the Abenaki side were Home Run and Lower Bog Hill Run. They roll and flow which made for a relaxing ski. But, you still should be ready for the occasional quick turn. On the Sewall Woods side I enjoy skiing the outer trails (keep taking right turns except for the right onto the Internet Trail!) which makes for a mix of “Easiest,” “More Difficult,” and the two “Most Difficult” trails. The best part about this side of the trail network is that you can shorten or lengthen your ski as you choose — at almost every trail intersection there are several trails to choose from.
There is a parking area to access either part of the trail network. On the Abenaki side you can park at the Abenaki downhill area, 390 Pine Hill Rd, Wolfeboro, NH 03894, and access the Abenaki trails. This access point is 2.8 miles from the ski shop. On the Sewall Woods side you can park on Clow Rd. to access the trails. This access point is .3 miles from the ski shop. Both of the trailheads offer bathrooms and a warming hut. There is a third trailhead located on the Abenaki side which offers another option for parking in case the other Abenaki area is full. There are no bathrooms at this trailhead. It is located off of Filter Bed Rd.
Food in Wolfeboro:
Seven Suns Creperie in downtown Wolfeboro is a great spot for a bite to eat or a hot beverage post-ski. They offer a variety of crepes, savory and sweet. They also offer breakfast sandwiches, bagels, fresh juice, smoothies, coffee and tea drinks. A crepe with smoked salmon, tomato, and avocado is my go to. The town of Wolfeboro offers a variety of spots for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, a few offer great views of Lake Winnipesaukee. The view of the lake is gorgeous and only steps from Main St.