Cross-Calgary Skiing

Confederation Park to see improved cross-country ski opportunities

(Photos by Rebecca Hardcastle)

(Photos by Rebecca Hardcastle)

Wintertime recreation at Confederation Park will see improvements, as Foothills Nordic Ski Club has made arrangements with the City of Calgary to better facilitate cross-country skiing. 

The viability of the sport in the city was under question this past summer, following an announcement from WinSport Canada in June 2016 about the installation of a tube park at Canada Olympic Park.

Previously, this section of the park was used for ski trails, leaving local cross-country skiers on the lookout for new spaces to participate in the sport.

The City of Calgary aims to promote healthy, active lifestyles and to increase year-round use of City golf courses, and so, the Nordic Ski Club’s proposals were in alignment with these goals.

“The Ski Confederation Project was approved thanks to a tremendous amount of support and hard work on the part of the City, our donors and volunteers,” said Kevin McLean, president of Foothills Nordic Ski Club.

Money for the project was fundraised in just over a month, and McLean was pleased to see that the club was able to finalize a new operating agreement with the City on such a short timeline.

Cross-country skiing is a unique lifestyle sport in that it helps people of all ages and abilities maintain active, healthy, outdoor lifestyles. 

Involvement from the Nordic Ski Club will see the creation of artificial snow to augment existing snowfall, the creation of additional trails, which will be free and open to the public, nine light sources at the driving range for night-time instruction, as well as portable toilets in each of the parking lots. 

This initiative is particularly appealing to improve the quality of winter recreation and response from surrounding communities has been positive as outdoor recreation within the city can be difficult in the winter months. 

 “Grassroots programming [is] necessary for creating the next generation of Nordic enthusiasts,” said Kevin Sandau, former Canadian Ski Team Member.

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