The Huckleberry Loppet returns for its 25th year, taking place over the course of two days beginning on Saturday, Feb. 11 and ending on Sunday, Feb. 12. The event is a celebration of skiing with the intention of bringing people together for fun and exciting day of cross-country skiing.
“The word loppet came from Sweden to designate a fun and long-distance event on cross-country skiing. Now the definition of cross-country differs from person to person so we offer various distances on easy and hard terrains so there’s something for everyone,” said Jeff Dolinsky, chief of competition.
Around 300 people are expected to attend, coming from around the Columbia-Shuswap as well as Alberta and even some from out of the country.
The interesting aspect of this event is that not only are there different distances, but they will offer classic skiing on Saturday, and skating on Sunday. The distances for each are as follows:
Classic: 1k, 2.5k, 5k, 10k, 15k, 30k
Skating: 1k, 2.5k, 3.75k, 10k, 20k
According to Dolinsky, the reason this loppet is considered a celebration more so than a competitive event is because of those who attend operate at vastly different skill levels. Some first-timers show up alongside world champions and even an Olympian with this year’s selection being Golden native Sara Renner.
However, with the fun and friendly nature of the event, there will be prizes for those that take it more competitively than others.
“This year’s event will have some amazing prices like three pairs of skis, as well as others and the medallions that will be awarded, are all handmade by a local ceramist,” Dolinsky said.
The schedule for the event will go like this:
11:00 AM: 15k,30k (open ages)
11:05 AM: 2.5k (ages U10, U8, Special Olympics)
11:10 AM: 5k (ages U12, U14)
11:10 AM: 5k (ages U16, U18, open)
11:15 AM: 1k (ages U6)
11:00 AM: 20k, 10k (open ages)
11:05 AM: 1k (ages U8, U6)
11:25 AM: 3.75k (ages U12)
11:27 AM: 5k (ages U14)
11:30 AM: 2.5k (ages U10)
Lunch will be provided on both days as well as hot beverages like coffee and hot chocolate.
For everyone interested in participating, registration must be completed before Feb. 8 using this link.
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