The Bulkley Valley Nordic Centre hosted the Teck Regional Snow Camp for Northern B.C. last weekend as the cross-country ski season seems to get better and better with improved snow conditions and the excitement of upcoming events.
The Snow Camp attracted close to 50 young skiers and experienced coaches from all over the region.
One of the local coaches was Patrick Williston who has been coaching for six years and was excited about the athletes in attendance.
“We have a terrific group of young skiers, very enthusiastic athletes. And we are drawing from all across northern British Columbia for this ski camp, ” he said.
The camp had coaches explaining and demonstrating technical points of the sport in order that the young skiers would build good training habits that would lead to good competition performances.
Williston said that the first competition would be a qualifier for the BC Winter Games here at the Nordic Centre on Dec. 31.
“That will be classic race. That will be for the Northwest region. I believe that is from Burns Lake all the way to Prince Rupert,” he said. “The Northwest always brings a high level of competition to provincial events.”
He added that not all of the top skiers from the region were at the camp.
“Our region is always well represented at provincial events. We also have athletes from our program placing in the top 10 at the national level almost every year,” he said.
There are two styles of cross-country skiing: classic and skate. The two styles are different in the equipment they use and certainly in the way the movement looks.
At the risk of oversimplifying, the stride of the classic skier appears much more straight ahead and has been simplistically likened to “walking on skis” with the tips of the skis point straight ahead from the body. The stride of the skate skier looks more like that a skater would take and the tips of the skis tend to point out away from the body at an angle.