Larch Hills skier Julianne Moore competes in the Frozen Thunder 2018 race at the Canmore Nordic Ski Centre in Canmore, Alta. (Abbi May photo)

Larch Hills skiers compete in unique first event of the season

Frozen Thunder 2018 allows skiers to hit the slopes a little early

The competitive ski season got an early start on the slopes thanks to a stockpile of the white stuff hoarded by the Canmore Nordic Ski Centre.

Members of the Larch Hills Nordic Ski Club travelled to Canmore, Alta on Oct. 28-29 for the 2018 edition of the Frozen Thunder cross-country ski race which marks the start of another season on the slopes.

“It was really fun, Canmore is always a nice place to go skiing, there is beautiful scenery. It was an opportunity for the team to get on snow in the early season,” says Larch Hills coach Abbi May. “The team has races that start in the beginning of December so it is a good opportunity to get on the snow and train before those races come about.”

Twitter/Larch Hills Nordics

Frozen Thunder is a project taken on by the Canmore Nordic Ski Centre in an effort to get competitive skiers back to training and competition as early as possible. The centre hoards snow from the Rocky Mountains throughout the year and pack it down into a usable track in October to create the perfect site for early-season skiing.

Related: Larch Hills ski club grateful for support from Parasport Jumpstart Fund

“It is different for sure, you are just skiing on this ribbon of snow while people are mountain biking right beside you,” May said. “It’s a pretty good facility that they have there, and the fact that they saved the snow for the national team skiers is really cool.”

In fact, the centre’s website boasts it is one of the few places where someone could ski, mountain bike and run on a trail all in the same day.

Taking advantage of this early skiing opportunity, Larch Hills skiers headed to Canmore to compete in the junior men’s and women’s categories of the Frozen Thunder sprint qualifier race.

Because of the limited space available, this is one of the few events where skiers from all different categories race in the same heats, allowing the Larch Hills junior team to share the track with some of the highest level skiers in Canada.

“It was a good time and the race was cool; it was cool that it was one big category so we got to race against everyone, “You got to watch some top Canadian athletes racing in the faster heats,” says Larch Hills skier Jacob Hepburn.

Twitter/Larch Hills Nordics

Related: Reino Run races through the Larch Hills

Listed below are the placements of Larch Hills competitors in the 2018 Frozen Thunder sprint qualifiers. Fellow Larch Hills skiers Rhys James, Calvin Hepburn and Natalie Wilkie were also registered in the event but could not compete.

Junior men’s category

Stephen Moore – 28th

Trond May – 29th

Jacob Hepburn – 40th

Junior women’s category

Julianne Moore – 16th

Isabelle Wilkie – 26th

Twitter/Larch Hills Nordics


 

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Larch Hills skier Julianne Moore competes in the Frozen Thunder 2018 race at the Canmore Nordic Ski Centre in Canmore, Alta. (Abbi May photo)

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