The Gunnison-Crested Butte Valley, located in southwest Colorado, has emerged as a Nordic skiing hot spot with trails and events that sizzle.  Groomed Nordic trails now number more than 100K, backcountry routes are plentiful, and a jam-packed calendar of events, tours and races offer opportunities to have fun and stay in shape.  In fact, there are more new Nordic happenings than ever for the 2011/2012 season.

What’s New

Art and skiing do mix, and local professional photographers Xavier Fane and Raynor Czerwinski are out to prove just that with six Nordic photography workshops offered from January through March.  Learn how to photograph winter in a number of ways, accessing subject matter on Nordic skis or snowshoes.  Workshops cost $55 each and include a Nordic ski pass but not equipment. For times, equipment needed and registration, go to www.crestedbuttearts.org.

  • January 22 – Let the Right Light In (Fane) & New Moon Milky Way (Czerwinski)
  • February 19 – Catching the Action (Fane) & Photographing the Earth Shadow (Czerwinski)
  • March 18 – Playing With the Stars (Fane) & Winter Landscape Photography (Czerwinski)

Western State College of Colorado’s popular Wednesdays at Western has expanded to include winter.  A Cross-Country Ski Outing for Beginners led by Karen Immerso will be offered on Jan. 11 from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.  Transportation from WSC’s campus in Gunnison to the Crested Butte Nordic Center and a sack lunch are included in the $30 cost but not equipment.  To register, call (800) 876 5309, ext 7.

The inaugural Ski For Hope Nordic Challenge on March 10 will take place on Crested Butte Nordic trails.  The challenge will include a 25k competitive race, and a Ski-a-thon will be a fun event for all ages and creatures.  Ski-a-thon participants will be encouraged to collect pledges per lap, and prizes will be awarded for most funds raised, team efforts, most laps by a dog, dog sled teams and more.  The registration fee for both events is $30.  All proceeds benefit Living Journeys, Gunnison County’s community cancer support network.   For more information and to register, go to www.livingjourneys.org.

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