nhJanuary 2022newsletter header
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Mat-Su Ski Club and Valley Mt. Bikers and Hikers volunteers clear trail
in the Moose Range after the New Years windstorm.

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We hope you will remember the Mat-Su Ski Club when you file for your 2021 Alaska PFD.
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13th Annual Icicle Double next weekend!

At last your chance to earn the unique and very bling 2021 Icicle Double pint glass! And every entrant gets the also awesome 2021 Icicle Double buff!
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The weather teased and tortured us as we neared the originally-scheduled date of the 2021 Icicle Double. Just two days before race day the snow cover was in no condition for racing, but the weatherpeople were predicting snow for the day before race day. So we delayed making a go/no go decision until the day before scheduled race time. When the announcement time came the new snow was still too wet to be groom-able.
So we issued the email postponing the race. Then, as the day went on, and snow conditions changed, we were able to groom. Although that groom provided fine recreational skiing, dodging of ice hazards on steep parts of the race course was still the order of the day; the 2021 Double just wasn't meant to be on those days.
Fingers crossed for the rescheduled Icicle Double Round 2!
We need a slate of volunteers for Saturday and Sunday, the 22nd and 23rd of January for the 2021 Icicle Double. There are plenty of volunteer opportunities, for people on skis and people on foot, for just a few hours, or for a longer time, on one day or on both days.

NORTHERN LIGHTS RACE SERIES

The first race of the 2022 series is on Sunday, January 30th at GPRA.

SKI FOR WOMEN

Everyone is welcome to participate in the Mat-Su Ski for Women. Sunday, February 13th from 1pm to 4pm. All proceeds go to Alaska Family Services.
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Possible GPRA Nordic race events

Just so you know - GPRA is the backup location for Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association (RIMSA) Nordic races on February 1 and 2 in Fairbanks. And on February 5 and 6 GPRA is the backup location for that weekends Besh Cup.

Volunteers respond to Winter windstorm

Hundreds of trees fell across our local trails during the recent howling windstorm. But undaunted, as soon as the wind abated, hordes of trail lovers left their dark and cold homes to take care of the important stuff. Clearing the trails! The work continued for a while, with a crew of fatbikers and skiers clearing many of the last of the blocked trails in the Moose Range just a few days ago.

A Huge Thanks to everybody who pitched in clearing trails!
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Raking GPRA Great Again!
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The trail is there somewhere!

Free Chariots

The Mat-Su Ski Club has four Chariots (2 singles and 2 doubles) available to loan to parents with kids too young to ski. There is no fee, the loan is free.

Membership

Support your ski club by renewing your membership!
Membership fees support our programs, events, grooming, trail building, and equipment purchases. Ski trails don't fall from heaven!

Pioneer Loop Holiday Lights Evening

Thanks to the sponsors who decorated Holiday trees on the Pioneer Loop.The inaugural Holiday Tree Tour hosted by the Mat-Su Ski Club was a festive success! We were overjoyed by how many people came out on Christmas Eve to enjoy the decorated trees and share some holiday cheer. We learned a lot about how to make the event bigger and better next year, so save the date for our 2022 Holiday Tree Tour: Friday, December 23. Trees will be available to sponsor and decorate in early December 2022. If you have ideas on how to make this event better, please let us know by responding to this newsletter.
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Are they there for the cookies, or to hear Ed read poetry?
You decide.
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Ski 101

Want to ski but not sure how to start? Ski 101 is for you!

Please join us for a classroom session on the basics of cross country skiing
on January 21st, at 6:30pm at Backcountry Bike & Ski in Palmer. We'll cover gear, styles, trail options, and more! This event is free and open to anyone looking to learn more about the sport that all of us winter lovers cherish. We will schedule an on-snow session following the January classroom session.
We'd like to thank Backcountry Bike & Ski for being our partners in this event.

An on-snow followup session of SKI 101 happens on Saturday, January 29th from 11am to 1:30pm at GPRA.

There is a waitlist on the Adult XC Ski Lesson page to sign up for Ski 101 (click the "Ski 101 first time skiers read this" tab to find it).
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Adult Ski Lessons are Still Available

We still have openings for beginning skate and classic skiers in our adult ski lessons at noon on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays through the first week of March. There are also still a few openings for the beginner lessons on Saturdays. For skate skiers that are comfortable on skis but want to improve their skills, sign up for our intermediate skate skiing class at 10 am on Sundays. Cost is only $15 per lesson and class sizes are small so you get lots of individual attention. Let our experienced instructors help you have more fun on skis!

Online registration is open click here

If you don't have skis but would like to take classes please contact us at info@matsuski.org. We do have a (limited) selection of skis, boots, and poles available for use by students.

Remember Your 2022 Parking Passes

The Mat-Su Borough is now enforcing the parking rules at GPRA and other Borough park sites. If you do not display a current Borough parking sticker or a day pass - you will get a $40 ticket. If you receive one of these tickets the fine can be used towards the purchase of a trail permit through December 31, 2021. To receive the annual 2022 trail pass, bring the ticket to the Community Development Office located at 350 East Dahlia Ave. The violator has 5 days from the date of the ticket to visit the Community Development Office, pay the $40 and receive their annual pass. The Borough is checking the parking lot several times every day. The parking fees go into a Borough fund for recreational facilities. Click here to buy a day use or yearly parking pass online. Save $10 when you buy two. 2022 parking passes are available now.
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Junior Nordics News and Info

Junior Nordics would like to THANK all the incredible VOLUNTEERS who made this season possible. So much has to be accomplished before we can ever get skis on the snow! We are incredibly grateful for the volunteers who return year after year! We are currently looking for a few more AMAZING individuals to serve on the Junior Nordics Steering Committee, if this interests you please email juniornordics@matsuski.org.

We are skiing!

Winds and the resulting fallen trees and branches delayed the start of Mat-Su Junior Nordics this year, but thanks to a quick clean up response, as well as the flexibility of our coaches, volunteers, and ski families, we once again have nearly 400 skiers making their way around the trails at GPRA.

Groups have changed a little bit this year, with three subgroups in the Otter and Fox groups. This has resulted in smaller groups, and a better coach-to-skier ratio than we have had in the recent past. We have also seen a trend of having more kids join our Yetis group, which is a group for older beginner ski kids. Our coaches and volunteers have spent a lot of time helping get kids into the group they will learn best in, and we are excited to see what the rest of the season brings!

Another change to our program is the addition of Stephanie LaRousse, our Coaching Manager! Stephanie is the mom of a long-time Junior Nordic family and her experience will be valuable to the program. Her job has a long list of duties, but among other things, she will be helping keep our families and coaches informed throughout the season, and she’s the one who sends all the messages letting the skiers know what the wax of the day is. Welcome to the team, Stephanie!

Are you interested in helping shape the future of Mat-Su Junior Nordics? We need your help! Part of what makes the program so successful is our Junior Nordics Committee, and we are currently looking for more members. The committee meets monthly to make decisions and plans that allow this program to run smoothly. Not all committee members are long-time skiers, but all of them have a love for this program and a desire for it to improve year after year. If you want more information about what it takes to be a committee member, email Allison at allison.fry@matsuski.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
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Support throughout the Year!

You can help support the Mat-Su Ski Club through the Fred Meyer Community Awards program and through Amazon Smile. Every little bit counts.

Remember Your 2022 Parking Passes

The Mat-Su Borough is now enforcing the parking rules at GPRA and other Borough park sites. If you do not display a current Borough parking sticker or a day pass - you will get a $40 ticket. If you receive one of these tickets the fine can be used towards the purchase of a trail permit through December 31, 2021. To receive the annual 2022 trail pass, bring the ticket to the Community Development Office located at 350 East Dahlia Ave. The violator has 5 days from the date of the ticket to visit the Community Development Office, pay the $40 and receive their annual pass. The Borough is checking the parking lot several times every day. The parking fees go into a Borough fund for recreational facilities. Click here to buy a day use or yearly parking pass online. Save $10 when you buy two. 2022 parking passes are available now.
Parking at Independence Mine and at the Archangel Road trailheads also require an State of Alaska annual or daily parking pass. Click here to purchase. 2022 State passes are only available for purchase online so plan accordingly.
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Moonlight Ski

Keep an eye on the MSSC calendar located on the home page at matsuski.org for the upcoming January Moonlight Ski tour. An illuminating way to enjoy the beautiful trails.

Seeking Trail Groomers

Are you interested in joining our fine group of volunteer Ski Trail Groomers? We could use your help if you have some evenings free. We will train you! Grooming is usually done late in the evening. We use the Centaur and PistenBulley at Independence. Archangel Road is groomed with snowmachines, as is the Moose Range. At GPRA we groom with either tracked ATV's or the PistenBulley, depending on snow cover and time of season. Contact us for more info.
Thank You to our Generous Donors
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