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We’re All Vikings . . . Adaptations and Impacts of Virtual Racing: Part I

The message from the event organizer was devastating . . . we’d been waiting years to cheer on World Cup skiers in person. Jessie Diggins had worked her magic to get the Sprint Finals onto American soil—and here in Minneapolis no less! But COVID was spreading misery across the globe and our race was cancelled: the Sprint World Cup Finals would not occur. $300 in tickets gone in an email. No swag or alternative compensation...

NNF: NNF Cup Celebrating Club Excellence Returns to SuperTour for Another Season

With the first round of SuperTour racing complete in Sovereign Lakes, British Columbia, the NNF is proud to announce the return of the NNF Cup as a presenting sponsor of the US SuperTour this season. Originally launched in 2012, the NNF Cup celebrates club excellence in America’s premier domestic ski competition by tallying performance of club teams across the SuperTour season. The NNF Cup was awarded to Alaska Pacific University last season. The recent success...

Women Ski Coaches Association Launches GearUP, Pairing Women Coaches with the Connections They Need to Outfit Their Programs

  Formed in 2019, the Women’s Ski Coaches Association (WSCA) has been a consistent and ardent supporter of creating gender equality in all areas of North American skiing. With WSCA founders—St. Scholastica Head Coach Maria Stuber and Staffer, Craftsbury Green Racing Project Biathlete (and former St. Scholastica skier) Kelsey Dickinson at the organizational core—a strong actor-network has been formed to advocate for women in the ski coaching profession. This has included some notable partnerships with...

National Nordic Foundation Says Thank You for Drive for 25 Success (NNF)

Dear US nordic skiing community, The National Nordic Foundation (NNF) would like to extend a sincere thank you for the astounding display of generosity and belief in supporting a world-class skiing development system during last week’s Drive for 25. We are humbled, and incredibly grateful, to be part of a grassroots movement propelling our sport forward in this country. This year’s Drive for 25 further demonstrated that our American ski community is a rare one...

A Happy Holiday: North American Skiers Finding Snowy Trails

  In the west, snow has been falling for some weeks, and consistently low temperatures (and no significant rain) have allowed western skiers to enjoy early snow. West Yellowstone, Steamboat, Grand Mesa, Breckenridge, Devil’s Thumb—just to name a few—have all been seeing snowy trails and smiling skiers. And it sounds like a storm is headed for Leavenworth, WA and the Methow Valley. Silverstar, BC is snow-covered and open for business, with teams soon to arrive...

Q and A: Sun Valley’s Rick Kapala on coaching, sport development, and constructing a “complete ecosystem” in the skiing community

“I’m sorry, but once I start talking cross-country skiing, I can’t stop,” admits Rick Kapala. Remove the “talking” from that statement, and it’s still a succinct summary of long-time Sun Valley coach Rick Kapala’s career. This season will mark the first time in thirty-five years that Kapala won’t be manning the wax bench on race day for the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation. This summer, he turned to a new role at the Sun Valley...

Remembering Nils Vikander

On Sunday, October 30 Nils Vikander passed away in Levanger, Norway at the age of 80. He is survived by his wife of 30 years Margarita who was by his side until his last days. Nils spent his life sharing his passion for Nordic skiing and his deep love for Nature. He inspired and mentored many and is known for his talents for connecting ideas and people. Nils began his ski career in Sweden, where...

Viewing Cross-Country and Biathlon in the United States

This season’s cross-country and biathlon World Cup races promise to be some of the most exciting in recent years; however, this season also presents dramatic changes in how American fans will be able to—or unable to—watch races.  The new season will be quite different from what we’ve come to expect in seasons past. NBC’s coverage is gone; it will be replaced by a combination of paid streaming services and accessing European coverage. Cross-Country There will...

Signs of the Season:  Ski Sale/Ski Swap traditions fuel local clubs

  The Elk’s Lodge, the hotel conference room, the middle school gymnasium: those are the places where skiers gather in the fall of the year. Those are the sorts of places reserved by clubs, teams, retailers, and those whose garages and basements are chock-full of skis, poles, boots, suits, and miscellaneous ski-related gear. It’s time for the annual Ski Swap and Sale. Cross country skiing is not a sport that’s rich with sponsorship, or that...

US Ski and Snowboard Coaches Symposium returns in Virtual Format

Convened for the first time since the pandemic, USSS’s biennial coaches National Coaches’ Symposium brings focus to US Skiing’s progress, and highlights the ever-evolving nature of the sport. Last held in 2019, the US Ski and Snowboard’s National Coaches’ Symposium has traditionally provided insight into program priorities and training philosophies of those coaches working directly with the US Ski Team. With in-person conventions having been interrupted by the Covid pandemic, this season’s re-convening of the...

Building Biathletes: John Farra and the USBA

As the new Director of Sport Development for the US Biathlon Association (USBA), John Farra’s career is coming full circle (maybe even for a second or third lap). As he enters this newly established position within USBA, Farra reflects on decades of involvement—as athlete, as coach, as administrator—within the multi-faceted world of nordic skiing and Olympic/Paralympic sport. An alumnus (and former coach) of the University of Utah, a member of the 1992 Winter Olympic Team...

NENSA is On a Roll

There’s a chill in the air, but winter is still months away. With New England’s weather forecasts predicting a sunny autumn weekend with temperatures in the mid-60’s (high teens Celsius), the coast of Maine looks like the ideal event destination this weekend. The New England Nordic Ski Association (NENSA) is ready to oblige with the staging of The Maine Event: XCX Sprints on Sunday, October 23. This is one of the many events hosted by...

President Biden Designates National Monument at Camp Hale, Preserving American Ski History

In a ceremony held last week in Colorado’s high country, President Biden proclaimed The Camp Hale – Continental Divide National Monument, the first National Monument designated during his presidency. The ceremony was conducted on the former grounds of Camp Hale deep in the Pando Valley between Leadville and Vail. Camp Hale was the training site of the famous 10th Mountain Division—the “skiing soldiers”—who played a critical role in the Italian theater of World War II....

Changing Seasons 2022

We just can’t wait . . . for winter in the air, for the cold in our breath, for fluffy flakes falling from the sky, for snow on the ground. Seasons turn, leaves surrender, days shorten, and our imaginations turn to tracks on the hills and corduroy on the trails. Winter is coming . . . and we just can’t wait. Youth Sport autumn leagues are winding down—soccer, mountain biking, cross country running, all the...

(Press Release) NNF Announces Inaugural Trail to Gold Fellows

  The National Nordic Foundation (NNF), Women Ski Coaches Association (WSCA), and Olympic Women’s Cross-Country Book Project are excited to announce the selection of the inaugural Trail to Gold Fellows. The selection committee determined that the following Fellows represent extraordinary coaching talent, and will have the opportunity to gain international experience and credentials while working with the US Ski Team coaching staff over the course of the upcoming 2022-23 World Cup season: Trail to Gold...

ASC Training Center Creates A Place to Shine

The ASC Training Center on Donner Summit has a long history of promoting winter sport. Founded in 1928, the Auburn Ski Club played a vital role in developing California’s ski culture with initiatives such as lobbying the state legislature to plow Highway 40 during the winter to enable increased tourism. ASC also hosted a 1939 ski jumping exhibition at Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay with snow shipped 160 miles by rail car. More recently,...

Klæbo Comes to Soldier Hollow

Practice had ended for the Soldier Hollow Comp and Devo teams, but no one went to take their roller skis off. They were waiting for something that didn’t happen everyday; shortly, their patience was rewarded. The winningest male World Cup skier of all time—Olympic Champion, World Champion—glided around a gentle left-hand bend, dragged his wheels to a perfect stop in front of the crowd, picked up a microphone, and smiled a familiar smile: Johannes Høsflot...

FIS is taking over governance of Para Nordic skiing, what does it mean for the sport’s development in the United States?

The International Ski Federation’s (FIS) annual Congress held at the end of May this year was an unusually dramatic affair. Fights over media rights – whether to look at serializing the sport of Nordic skiing into something like Formula 1’s Drive to Survive – sent skiing’s international governing body into a metaphorically different part of the Netflix catalog, less Dive to Survive and more House of Cards, West Wing, or Newsroom. If only Aaron Sorkin...

Long time US Biathlon President Max Cobb named Head of International Biathlon Union: Sustainability and Competition keys to Growth He Says

For the first time ever, an American will preside over international governance of a nordic sport. On Tuesday, the International Biathlon Union (IBU) announced that longtime U.S. Biathlon President and CEO Max Cobb has been named the IBU Secretary General. Cobb will finish up his second term on the IBU Executive Board and leave his post as at U.S. biathlon at the end of September, then begin his new role overseeing international competition, governance, and...