WINTER SPORTS -- Nordic skiers have plenty of options for special events or competition in the Inland Northwest.
The 35th annual Langlauf 10-kilmeter classic citizens race, set for Feb. 10 at Mount Spokane, is among the largest and all participants qualify for thousands of dollars in prizes.
Langlauf is one of four events – two classic and two freestyle – in the Selkirk Nordic Series. Participants are eligible for prizes, while the top skiers compete for bragging rights as the region’s fastest overall skier. Racers must combine scores on at least one classic and one freestyle race.
“The goal of the series is to increase participation in Nordic racing as a recreational activity for adults,” said Spokane Nordic Ski Association member Al Pokorny, who helped link the events.
The other three events are the Cougar Gulch race at Schweitzer Jan. 15, Chewelah Peak Challenge at 49 Degrees North on Feb. 2 and the series event to be held in the bustling atmosphere of the Group Health/ Providence Health Care Challenge Junior Nordic Qualifier races at Mount Spokane on Feb. 23.
The Methow Valley Sport Trails Association (MVSTA) and other groups around Winthrop have the most ambitious schedule of events in the region.
Read on for a long list of notable regional 2012-2013 nordic skiing events.
Ski Rodeo - Dec. 29 near Mazama, Wash. Skate and kids races (10k, 5k, 2.5k and 1k), 10:30 a.m. at Mazama Trailhead. Info: MVSTA, mvsta.org.
Cougar Gulch – Selkirk Series, Jan. 5 near Sandpoint. Classic (5k or 10k), at Schweitzer Mountain Resort. Details to be announced. Info: Resort Nordic Center, (208) 255-3070, schweitzer.com.
Skirennen - Jan. 19 at Leavenworth. Skate and kids races (10k, 5k and 2k), 9 a.m. at golf course. Info: Leavenworth Winter Sports club, skileavenworth.com.
Gunnar Hagen - Jan. 20, off I-90 at Cabin Creek Exit 63 near Snoqualmie Pass. Classic (30k or 7.5k), 10 a.m. at Kongsbergers. Info: Kongsbergers Ski Club, kongsbergers.org.
OSCR - Jan. 26 near Seeley Lake, Mont.. Freestyle (10K, 25k or 50k), the 31st annual event that formerly went from Ovando to Seeley (Ovando to Seeley Citizens Race), now a loop at Seeley Creek Ski Trails. Info: Seeley Lake Nordic Skiing, seeleylakenordic.org.
Bakke Cup - Feb. 2, at Leavenworth. Nordic races, ski jumping and alpine events at the Ski Hill. Info: Leavenworth Winter Sports club, skileavenworth.com.
Methow Ski Derby - Feb. 9 at Winthrop. Classic (15k and 30k) at Sun Mountain’s Chickadee Trailhead. Info: Methow Valley Nordic Club, mvnordic.com.
Spokane Langlauf – Selkirk Series, Feb. 10 at Mount Spokane State Park. Classic (10k) at Mount Spokane Cross-Country Ski Park, 11 a.m. Info: Langlauf Association, spokanelanglauf.org.
Extreme Nordic Ski and Snowshoe Race - Feb. 15 near Sandpoint. Different course options and details to be announced, at Schweitzer Mountain Resort. Info: Resort Nordic Center, (208) 255-3070, schweitzer.com.
Methow ValleyTour - Feb. 16, around Winthrop. Non-competitive ski tour of Methow trails (20k, 30, 50 or 80k) at Cub Creek, Mazama and Town Trailheads. Info: Methow Valley Nordic Club, mvnordic.com.
Bavarian Cup - Feb. 16 at Leavenworth. Freestyle and one-day pursuit races for all ages (2k, 3k, 5k or 15k), 9 a.m. at the Ski Hill. Info: Leavenworth Winter Sports club, skileavenworth.com.
Stampede - Feb. 17 near Snoqualmie Pass. Classic, skate or freestyle events (7.5k) plus 15k skiathlon, 11 a.m. Info: Kongsbergers Ski Club, kongsbergers.org.
Hog Loppet, Feb. 23 at Wenatchee. Non-competitive 30k Ski Trek from the top of Mission Ridge Ski Area to Blewett Pass, 7:30 a.m. Info: Leavenworth Winter Sports club, skileavenworth.com.
Selkirk Series-Challenge and JNQ --Selkirk Series, Feb. 23-24 at Mount Spokane State Park. The Group Health/ Providence Health Care Challenge features a two-day series of classic and skate events that run the same days as the Junior Nordic Qualifier events for teens. Morning starts. This is the last of four Selkirk Nordic Series events. Spokane. Info: Spokane Nordic, spokanenordic.org.
Fun Loppet - Feb. 24 near Castlegar, British Columbia. Events to be announced. Ski area is between Castlegar and Rossland. Info: Castlegar Nordic Ski Club, castlegarnordic.ca.
Blackjack Loppet - March 2 near Rossland, British Columbia. Classic, skate (18k and 36k) and kids races, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Black Jack Ski Area. Info: skiblackjack.ca.
Selkirk Challenge - March 3 at Mount Spokane State Park. Self-timed freestyle event, 50k starts at 8 a.m., 35k starts at 8:15 a.m. at Mount Spokane Cross-Country Ski Park. Info: Spokane Nordic, spokanenordic.org.
Paws and Poles - March 9 near Chewelah. Participants on skis or snowshoes team with their dogs in a fun event at 49 Degrees North. Details to be announced. Info: Resort Nordic Center, ski49n.com.
Ozbaldy - March 10, near Snoqualmie Pass. Freestyle (50k), 9 a.m., at Kongsberger Ski Club. Info: kongsbergers.org.