Hundreds of cross-country skiers glide through Larch Hills in Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet

The first cluster of skiers, competing in the 17- and 34-km events, leave the starting line of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)The first cluster of skiers, competing in the 17- and 34-km events, leave the starting line of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Skiers leave the finish line in the Classic R30, A3, A4 event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Skiers leave the finish line in the Classic R30, A3, A4 event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Telemark Nordic’s Sinead Unsworth glides along with fellow skiers at the start of the 10 and 17 Recreational Classic events of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Telemark Nordic’s Sinead Unsworth glides along with fellow skiers at the start of the 10 and 17 Recreational Classic events of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Kara Gill (56) of the Sovereign Lake Nordic Club, and Larch Hills’ Jade Hanson (67) and Lila Potzold (69) navigate the first bend in the 1 and 2-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Kara Gill (56) of the Sovereign Lake Nordic Club, and Larch Hills’ Jade Hanson (67) and Lila Potzold (69) navigate the first bend in the 1 and 2-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Larch Hills Nordic’s Scarlett Voth (64) leads a pack of skiers around the first bend in the 1 and 2-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Larch Hills Nordic’s Scarlett Voth (64) leads a pack of skiers around the first bend in the 1 and 2-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Larch Hills Nordic Henry Bollans glides to the finish line to come in first place in the 2-km Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Larch Hills Nordic Henry Bollans glides to the finish line to come in first place in the 2-km Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Larch Hills Nordic Society Para Nordic skiers Kaden Baum and Lily Brook race in the 3.5-km Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Larch Hills Nordic Society Para Nordic skiers Kaden Baum and Lily Brook race in the 3.5-km Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Tove Brown of the Larch Hills Nordic Society and Neva Clark of MVNT cross the finish line in the 5-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Brown and Clark came in 26th and 27th place in the race, and second and third place in the 8-10 Female category. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Tove Brown of the Larch Hills Nordic Society and Neva Clark of MVNT cross the finish line in the 5-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Brown and Clark came in 26th and 27th place in the race, and second and third place in the 8-10 Female category. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Larch Hills Nordic’s Stella Bollans makes her way to the finish in the 10-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Bollans came in sixth place in the race and second place in the Female category for any age. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Larch Hills Nordic’s Stella Bollans makes her way to the finish in the 10-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Bollans came in sixth place in the race and second place in the Female category for any age. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Xavier McKeever of Foothills Nordic is the first to make his way back to the stadium and, later, to cross the finish line in the looping 34-km Classic, taking first place in the race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Xavier McKeever of Foothills Nordic is the first to make his way back to the stadium and, later, to cross the finish line in the looping 34-km Classic, taking first place in the race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Loic Letailleur and Chad Ulansky of Telemark Nordic loop out of the stadium and back onto the trails in the 34-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Letailleur finished fourth in the 30-39 Male category and Ulansky third and the 40-49 Male Category. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Loic Letailleur and Chad Ulansky of Telemark Nordic loop out of the stadium and back onto the trails in the 34-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Letailleur finished fourth in the 30-39 Male category and Ulansky third and the 40-49 Male Category. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
The Sovereign Lake Nordic Club’s Nathan Weiman leads a group of skiers on a stretch in the 34-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)The Sovereign Lake Nordic Club’s Nathan Weiman leads a group of skiers on a stretch in the 34-km Classic race of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Larch Hills Nordic skier Thomas Hardy and Ian Williams of Telemark Nordic are stadium bound in the 34-kilometre Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet, held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Williams came in second place in the race followed by Hardy. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)Larch Hills Nordic skier Thomas Hardy and Ian Williams of Telemark Nordic are stadium bound in the 34-kilometre Classic event of the Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet, held at Larch Hills on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Williams came in second place in the race followed by Hardy. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Close to 400 cross-country skiers competed in the 2023 Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills.

Though it was foggy in Salmon Arm, participants arriving at Larch Hills on Saturday morning, Jan. 14, were greeted with more agreeable weather conditions.

A total of 393 skiers ages 2 to 85 took part in the event, which included strong representation from the Larch Hills Nordic Ski Club, including Thomas Hardy and Maggie Beckner who competed in the 34-kilometre Classic event. Hardy took third place, arriving at the finish line behind Ian Williams of Telemark Nordic and Xavier McKeever of Foothills Nordic. Jesse Heckrodt was fifth to cross the finish line. Beckner came in at 22nd in the race, and first in the 18-29 Female category.

In the 17-km race, Larch Hills’ Jonathan Breugem and Callum Orchard took first and second place.

Jeremia Bucher was first place in the 14-17 Female category, and 22nd overall.

Among the youngest skiers were Larch Hills’ Ana Widmer and Edwyn Connelly, both age 2, who competed in the 1 and 2-km Classic event. Roy van Ryswyk, 85, competed in the 10-km race.

Approximately 125 volunteers co-ordinated everything from the races themselves, to where vehicles were positioned in the packed stadium parking lot.

Event participants were from as far as Savonlinna, Finland and Melbourne, Australia.

Signs marking the loppet routes are being left up for a week so people can ski them.

For results and more information from the 2023 Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet, visit skilarchhills.ca.

Read more: Hundreds race, thousands raised at Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet

Read more: In photos: Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet at Larch Hills


lachlan@saobserver.net
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