No more puddles and ruts as Black Jack completes major upgrades in time for start of season!
The Black Jack Cross Country Ski Club, with 677 members last season, is pleased to announce the successful completion of significant upgrades to its trail system this year. The much needed trail work was made possible thanks to generous support from multiple organizations, and will result in earlier and better skiing for our members as well as our thousands of annual visitors.
“Skiers may remember the many puddles, ruts, and muddy sections last November and December that resulted in trail closures, a delayed season start, and the cancellation of the December Kootenay Cup,” says Black Jack Club president Alex Loeb. Much work has since gone into the main areas of concern, such as Gibbard’s Trail to Torresan’s Cabin, and the improvements will be especially noticeable at the start of the season. And after a multi-year hiatus due to a loss of access, the club has finally been able to reconnect and reopen Ophir Trail! “Like old times, the climb is still, well, breathtaking, but so are the spectacular views of the Rossland Range!” adds Alex.
The improved trails will certainly be showcased at the upcoming Haywood NorAm this December, when hundreds of the top XC skiers from across North America will be descending upon the region for the week. The NorAm event is also serving as the Junior and U23 World Championship Trials and a number of young up and coming Black Jack skiers will have home turf advantage for coveted national team spots for the 2014 World Jr/U23 Championships in Val di Fiemme, Italy. Many of the recent trail upgrades were mandatory in order to comply with FIS (Fédération Internationale de Ski) specifications, allowing the club to continue hosting international events such as NorAms.
“Black Jack has really put itself on the map for consistently hosting great events” says Dave Dyer, Events Director for Cross Country Canada. “Enthusiastic volunteers, great snow, great trails, top notch grooming, a strong race committee, and a very welcoming town – the perfect mix! We’re excited to see the trail improvements they’ve made and test them this December at the Haywood NorAm.”
None of the improvements would have been possible without the hard work of our volunteers and the generous support of our sponsors, including the Columbia Basin Trust, RDKB Area B, Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust, and the CBT Community Initiative Program; as well as local NorAm Major Sponsors Teck Trail Operations, Kootenay Savings Community Foundation, and Red Mountain Resort;and local NorAm SponsorsNelson & District Credit Union, Gerick Cycle & Sports, and Big Red Cats.
Now in its 30th year, the Black Jack Ski Club has grown from humble beginnings into one of Canada’s premier cross-country ski facilities, thanks to countless volunteers and supporters. It offers 40 km of professionally groomed trails for both classic and skate skiing, 2.5 km of lit trails, 3 cozy cabins, a Biathlon range, a 2 km doggy loop, and programs for all ages. Find out more at www.skiblackjack.ca. Skiing is believing!