The weather in the Bulkley Valley may be trending towards spring, but on Hudson Bay Mountain winter is in full swing.
Up at the Nordic Centre, the Cross Country club got the weekend started with the annual Wetzin’Kwa Loppet.
One-hundred-and-thirty-four competitors from all around the northwest battled inclement weather conditions to take part.
“The snow was a bit of a mixed blessing,” Smithers Cross Country Club’s Ken Eng said. “For the classic skiers they had to constantly change their waxes, but it was good to have a bit of snow, because it was hard out there.”
The rabbits and bunnies got the races started with one and three kilometre races, while adults competed in classic or skate styles at 17 and 34 kilometre race lengths.
In spite of the weather, almost everyone managed to finish. Podium finishers were awarded prizes and the group gathered afterwards for prize draws and lunch.
That’s a wrap for the younger kids in the club this season, but there will be a marathon at the Nordic Centre later this month, hosted by McBike and Sport
“Overall, it was a good season,” Eng said. “The weather was challenging, but we managed to get all our events off. Participation was generally good, we had a great turnout at the Wetzkin’Kwa Loppet, and we are looking forward to next year.”
1 km Bunny
1) Claire Chandler
3 km Rabbit
1) Birch Page
6 km female free
1) Bridgit Borek
6 km female classic
1) Jenna Chandler
6 km male free
1) Elliott Tone
6 km male classic
1) Scott Doering
17 km female free
1) Jessica Vetsch
17 km female classic
1) Theresa White
17 km male free
1) Boris Egil
17 km male classic:
1) Yohannes Vanderberg
34 km female free:
1) Irene Ronalds
34 km female classic:
1) Zoe Hallman
34 km male free:
1) Greg Tone
34 m male classic:
1) Peter Kruase
A little further up the hill, the Smithers Ski and Snowboard Club held the final leg of the Shamrock Cup on Saturday afternoon.
This time it was the ski cross that tested the mettle of 65 riders, bent on topping their personal bests and hitting the podium.
The weather also provided a challenge for organizers, but they managed to get the races off, albeit in a slightly different format than originally planned.
“There were some tough conditions, but we were able to get our time trials off in the afternoon,” head coach Jan Wengelin said.
From one run to the next, Wengelin noticed a huge improvement.
“During the first time trials, a lot of our younger racers weren’t making it over the first hill and had to be pushed over by their parents. But the second time, they just pointed it downhill and every single one of them made it. It’s amazing how fast they learn.”
Final results from the Shamrock Cup will include the dual grand slalom and the slalom, which were held earlier in the year. The winners will be announced at the Ski and Snowboard Club’s AGM in May.
Up next, 25-30 skiers and snowboarders will head to Taber Mountain to take another crack at the Canada Winter Games ski cross track, before gearing up for the Schuss Boomer, which takes place on Hudson Bay Mountain March 29.
U10 (5-9) boys Skiers
1) Leo Boyle
U10 (5-9) Girls Skiers:
Little Riders (5-9) Mixed:
1) Tosh krauskopf
U12 (10-11) Boys Skiers:
1) Darcy Fraser
U12 Girls Skiers:
1) Hannah Buchanan
U14-18 Mixed Skiers:
1) Jason Oliemans
R2-4 Riders(10-17) Mixed Category boarders:
1) Elise Dube
On Sunday, Rayz Boardshop hosted the third annual Trix in the Stix freestyle event at the terrain park.
“It was the smoothest event we’ve ever had,” organizer Jason Krauskopf said.
Eighty competitors from all age groups turned out to the event, including a record 20 girls and women.
Trix in the Stix is an informal competition.
Skiers and Snowboarders in each age group had an hour apiece to show off their best tricks.
“We wanted to keep it casual, no pressure and make sure it’s fun.”
After the main event, they did a best-trick competition on the Brant Holenstein Memorial Rail.
Krauskopf singled out Jan Wengelin and Hudson Bay Mountain for all their help.
“We couldn’t ask for anyone better than Jan. We are really lucky to have him in this community.
“And the staff and Hudson Bay Mountain did an excellent job of grooming.”
Proceeds from the event went to the Boarding for Brandt charity, which helps kids or families access sport. The event raised $800.
For full results, check back next week or go to www.interior-news.com.