December 16, 2012 in Outdoors

Nordic scene shines at Mount Spokane

By The Spokesman-Review
Rich Landers photo

Brian and Ann Grow leave the groomed trails behind to enjoy some old-style skiing on skier-made tracks around Shadow Mountain on a brilliant Saturday at Mount Spokane State Park.
(Full-size photo)

The expanded cross-country trail system at Mount Spokane State Park is growing up to be one of the region’s top nordic venues.

With an $80-a-season vehicle Sno-Park Pass, a car-load of skiers can access more than 40 kilometers of nordic trails being manicured by a new beast of a groomer. The snowcat made its debut on the trail system on Friday.

The Nova Hut, a popular ski-in pit stop in the middle of the sprawling trail system, has been graced with a new, larger and hotter-burning wood stove for comfort. Stacks of firewood have been cut and split, making use of some trees cut this summer to widen trails for the new groomer.

The Selkirk Lodge at the parking area for the Mount Spokane Cross-Country Ski Park has been outfitted with Wi-Fi this season and upgraded with an enclosed ski-waxing area. Most of the improvements to the trails, including the preseason trail clearing, are owed to the state park staff and the volunteer efforts of the Spokane Nordic Ski Association.

The SNSA offers a wide range of nordic skiing activities that encourages a larger membership to enjoy and support the Mount Spokane Trails. Among them:

• Adult cross-country skiing lessons for classic and skating.

• Nordic Kids skiing program for kids 5-15 years old.

• Junior Nordic Ski Team for teens.

• Skiing events, such as the Feb. 23-24 Group Health-Providence Health Care Challenge.

Spokane Nordic is planning a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the new groomer and more than 12 kilometers of new trails added to the system this season. The ceremony is set for 9 a.m., Saturday at Selkirk Lodge.

Mount Spokane nordic trails contacts include:

• Daily grooming updates, call (509) 238-4025.

• Spokane Nordic, spokanenordic-

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