Credit: Trapp Family Lodge

Focus On Nordic, Snowshoeing, Fat Biking: Rationale, The Market Forecast, Videos: How To XC, Snowshoe, Fat Bike, Hidden Gem XC Resorts, Lesson Advice, Mystery Nordic Star, Trail Preferences.

There’s more to winter besides downhill skiing. This issue will explore additional ways you can Make More Tracks.

Let’s be clear at the top: We love Alpine skiing, the thrill, the speed, the grace, and all that. We always will, so don’t think this Special Edition of SeniorsSkiing.com devoted to alternative winter snow sports is an abandonment of the mainstay that almost all of our readers have been participating in for years.

However, this year, we anticipate that while our readers will at first enthusiastically head to Alpine resorts, reserve online, gear up in their cars, mask up, social distance, eat a bag lunch, and all the rest, many will grow weary of those restrictions. Or become frustrated. Or not bother going at all.

But, since we know our readers love winter and snow, we also anticipate that they might be open to alternative snow sports that might be new to them or to which they may be returning. Like cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.  These are accessible, easy to learn the basics, affordable, safe (social distance built in), and good for body and soul.

Since the beginning of October we have been publishing a series of articles named Make More Tracks. These include instruction, resort reports, clothing advice, and the like.  In addition, we’ve compiled a Make More Tracks Resource Guide with a compendium of articles about the alternative winter snow sports, covering gear, destinations, technique, and how to dress, and much more.

Co-Publisher Mike Maginn on wooden skis, circa 1970.

We are dedicating this entire issue to Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, and Fat Biking. Hopefully, you will read something that might stir you to think about getting into other winter sports. We’ve been loving cross-country skiing since the early 70s. So much so that we still (occasionally) get out our wooden skis, wax, four-pin bindings, and take a loop around the farm across the street. On a bluebird day with perfect snow, the right wax combo, and a Heineken in your backpack, there is nothing like it.


We are extending our special introductory classified ad offer until Dec. 4th. That means you can post a classified ad for 30 days from the date you post for just $1. We’re hoping you take advantage of this opportunity to find ski buddies, share rides, rent condos or apartments, and sell gear and collectibles.

We’ve been contacted by several readers who are frustrated by having to re-enter their name and email on the subscription pop-up. We know this can be frustrating. Here’s what you can do to eliminate the problem: TURN ON “ENABLE COOKIES” IN YOUR BROWSER ON EACH DEVICE YOU USE TO ACCESS SENIORSSKIING.COM. We’re working with our IT resource to make enabling cookies more clear as a way to avoid constantly re-entering name and email.

This Week

SeniorsSkiing.com’s cross-country editor and publisher of XCSkiResorts.com  Roger Lohr explains what XC means to him. Our thanks to him and cross-country journalist and consultant Jonathan Wiesel for their support and contributions to the Make More Tracks series. Click here.

Our Mystery Glimpse picture this week is a Nordic competitor who may be the greatest xc racer of all time. We predict some of our readers will get this one right away; others will have no clue. Such is the fate of Nordic celebrity in the snow sport world.  You will also learn the name of that odd parka from last week. Click here. 

“Au naturel” trail across Appleton Farms field. Credit: SeniorsSkiing.com

This week’s Question For You asks our reader’s preference for what kind of XC ski trail they like best: groomed and groovy or no grooming. Our choice is actually a little of both. Click here.

We have a short video about a cyclist making his first fat bike ride on a chilly day. We learned that keeping toes warm is a project. Click here.

Kelly Davis is a noted snow sports industry market researcher. We met her several years ago when she was director of research at SIA, the industry trade group. Currently, she runs Snow Sports Insights, a consulting company that brings information to decision-makers about the changing market place. Here’s her view of what’s happening this year in the Nordic/Snowshoe market space. Interesting stuff, and thanks to Kelly for allowing us to reproduce this article which first appeared on the Cross Country Ski Area Association website. Click here.

Credit: LL Bean group lessons

Snowshoeing is the easiest alternative for those who want to get outdoors in the winter without a learning curve or significant outlay of cash. It is also the most grandchild-friendly choice. Here’s a short video that explains the basics of How To Snowshoe from LL Bean. Click here.

Cross-country editor Roger Lohr offers his inventory of XC ski resorts that he considers “hidden gems”, tucked away from hustle and big areas. These resorts offer extraordinary opportunities to enjoy a socially-distanced vacation in snow country. Yes, you can! Click here.

Methow resort has lots of ways to make more tracks. Credit: XCSkiResorts.com

Cross-country journalist and consultant Jonathan Wiesel expounds on when and how you might take XC lessons: Group or private.  Trust us, we’ve been xc skiing since the 70s and we took a brief lesson last winter from a former Olympian and US Ski Team member Sue Wemyss at the Great Glens Trails Outdoor Center in Gorham, NH. Amazing how quickly you can improve your stride with a few simple moves. Click here.

For those readers who have never tried to cross-country ski or who might have tried to learn on their own, here’s a short video from REI that is a clear and really helpful guide on How To Cross-Country Ski. Click here

Finally, the Skiing Weatherman Herb Stevens explains how the winds of November will favor some regions and not others. Click here. 

Thank you for reading SeniorsSkiing.com.  Please tell your friends, and remember, there are more of us every day and we aren’t going away.

Appleton Farms, Ipswich, MA. Trails are groomed by a volunteer group. Credit: SeniorsSkiing.com

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