Vail Nordic Snowsports School Offers Alternative Winter Activities

31 January 2011

Adult coed, kids and women’s “Free Heel Betties” workshops offered during the months of February and March

[caption id="attachment_5606" align="pull-right" width="300" caption="Photo courtesy of B. Winsett, Vail Resorts"][/caption]

Vail, CO. - The Vail Nordic Snowsports School, located in Golden Peak, offers alternative winter activities to alpine skiing and snowboarding including snowshoe tours, cross country skiing and telemark skiing. Activities at the Nordic Snowsports School are open to all ability levels but are generally recommended for ages 14 and up, unless noted otherwise. Group lessons, private lessons and specialty programs are all offered at the school which operates on Vail Mountain and surrounding areas of the White River National Forest.

Lessons and tours are guided by experienced leaders and provide a valuable opportunity to learn about the area history, wildlife and natural surroundings. Snowshoe group tours are offered daily from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and include snowshoes, boots and poles, and shovels and beacons when necessary. Beginner cross country skiing tours are offered Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday mornings from 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., with all-day tours available Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

The Nordic Snowsports School also offers several telemark workshops this season with classes geared towards adults and kids ages 5-14. Telemark skiing, also known as “free heel skiing,” is the art of skiing downhill with your heel and body free to move in a more natural way with a binding that connects the boot to the ski at the toes, similar to cross-country skiing. All ability levels are invited to participate in the workshops which take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and cost $93 per lesson, or $153 for a lesson and lift ticket combination. Participants who pre-register will receive $10 off. Upcoming adult telemark workshops are slated for Saturday, Feb. 12 and Saturday, March 5; upcoming kids telemark workshops will be held Sunday, Feb. 6 and Sunday, March 6.

Ladies are encouraged to participate in the “Free Heel Betties” workshop, specifically tailored towards the intermediate female telemark skiers who are hitting the blues and ready to move to the blacks. The three-day workshop, scheduled for three consecutive Wednesdays – Feb. 9, 16 and 23 – is $270 and is a progressive clinic for women, taught by women. The registration deadline for the “Free Heel Betties” workshop is Monday, Feb. 7.

More experienced telemark skiers who wish to explore the wilderness, learn about avalanches, tour with skins and other backcountry activities can participate in Ski and Skin Tours. The tours take place on Fridays from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and include avalanche equipment and skins. Participants must provide their own tele equipment and food. Telemark skiers who aren’t quite ready for a full day of skinning are able to prep with Skin Vail Mountain classes every Wednesday from 4-6 p.m.

For more information on programs and workshops, or to book a lesson with the Nordic Snowsports School, visit or call (970) 754-3200.