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Mat-Su Ski Club News

Are You Ready for Junior Nordics?

It’s nearly time for Mat-Su Junior Nordics to begin!  Our coaches are preparing and our volunteers are dusting off their skis.  We hope all our Junior Nordics participants are ready to hit the trails this coming week!

Junior Nordics Orientation will take place at the GPRA parking lot at the following times:

  • January 4th at 1:00 pm for M/W afternoon session
  • January 4th 5:30 pm for M/W evening session
  • January 5th at 5:30 pm for T/Th evening session

An outdoor orientation will take place near the Chalet, and skiers will end with a brief ski with their groups.  Parents and skiers should attend.  Please allow space for social distancing between family groups and wear a face covering.

A few items of business to help orientation run smoothly:

  • Health and safety is of special importance this year.  It is the goal of MSSC to have a fun, successful season.  Adhering to the guidelines in the COVID-19 mitigation plan is the responsibility of both participants and volunteers.  Please follow the guidelines closely.  Download the Covid Plan 
  • ALL SKIS LOOK THE SAME!  Sorry to yell, but it’s true!  Don’t assume that because the skis and poles are supposed to be attached to your skier that they’ll stay attached until you pick your skier up!  Please use blue painter’s tape/permanent marker and write your child’s first and last name on all skis and poles before orientation night.
  • For returning Junior Nordics skiers:  you need to move UP one level from the group you skied with last year.
  • For skiers new to the program:  Our head coaches will be helping you determine which group is most appropriate for you during orientation.  Age and ski experience will be taken into account.
  • All groups starting spots are spread way out in the stadium this year to allow for social distancing. Check this map to see where your group will be starting.  Coaches will also be leading groups to their start spots during orientation.Click here for larger image
Moonlight Ski Tour Dec 29 6:30pm

Moonlight Ski Tour Dec 29 6:30pm

Come join us in the moonlight on the beginner friendly old-school trails in the Matanuska Moose Range. Best for people who have been on skis a few times already. Bring the kids if they are already happy on skis for at least an hour.

Meet at 6:30 pm at the Sun Valley Drive trailhead. Use this map to find the trailhead, or put it on your phone
Our tour will take us out onto the “swamp” where there is a big wide view of the sky and the moonlit Talkeetna’s.
Don’t trust the clouds – bring a headlamp.  Expect to be out for an hour to 90 minutes. More info or questions? Ask here

GPS address of the trailhead is approximately 9345 Sun Valley Dr. Palmer AK

Please do not park across from or right next to driveways, and everyone should park on the same side of the road, leaving clear room for emergency traffic.

The Blue Crew needs You!

The Blue Crew needs You!

Be the Blue Crew! Volunteer for the Icicle Double next weekend, Saturday December 26th – Sunday December 27th. We need you, on skis or not, experienced or not!

Please click on the link to the Sign Up Genius and come out for a great day of ski fun and competition.

Sign up here.

Ski 101 class for curious beginners

Are you new to skiing. or even to snow sports at all? You can participate in our live, interactive on-line virtual Skiing 101 class. On Tuesday, December 15th at 6:30pm. It’s free. On Google Meet. Lorene and Sydney will lead you through the basics of the equipment, how to prepare and dress for Nordic skiing, and set you up with a fundamental understanding to get you started right when you hit the trails.

Contact for more instructions on how to attend Skiing 101 on Tuesday.

A followup on-snow Ski 101 clinic for first-timers will be offered also (date TBD).

Join a notice list for future Ski101 clinics – click on the Ski101 tab on the Adult Ski Lessons page.

A Chance to Give


Please consider donating to the Mat-Su Ski Club during #GivingTuesday.  Support from members and businesses isn’t just helpful to the Mat-Su Ski Club; in fact, that’s how this non-profit operates!  Generous donors give of their time or money (oftentimes both!) to give our community better access to groomed trails, updated trail conditions, ski lessons, and more.

Mat-Su Ski Club would be grateful for any donation, large or small.  Donate by clicking the button below or at our Facebook page.

Thank you for investing in our community!

1st Annual Turkey Trax at GPRA

1st Annual Turkey Trax at GPRA

Friday Nov 27th at GPRA. Turkey Trax is a family-friendly, costume-optional, community Nordic ski event and race. Pie raffles! Gift-card awards for costumes!

We will hold a Covid-safe event by being outdoors the entire time, using an interval start, requiring mask wearing for everyone not actively racing, requiring conscientious social distancing, and other measures. We want to see you and ski with you. But please, if you or anyone in your bubble has any symptoms, or has had a close contact with a positively tested person in the last two weeks, we ask that you stay home.

Click here to see course map

Click here to REGISTER

Race to the Outhouse – Saturday, Nov 14th, Independence Mine

Our annual season-starting race is on for Saturday, Nov 14th.  The venue is the mostly uphill 3.4 km course at Independence Mine. Registration will begin at 9:30 am in the parking lot. Interval starts will be from 10:00 AM – 11:30AM. Cost is FREE. Covid adjustments including an interval start, mask-wearing for non-racing people, conscientious social distancing, and non-sharing of pens and stuff will be in place. We need a few volunteers to help with timing and recording; volunteers will be stationed up the trail at the finish line. Contact Ed at 354-7524 or if you want to help.

Final Ski Rental for Junior Nordics

November 12th is the last chance to pick up ski gear for the upcoming Junior Nordics season!  Volunteers will be at the shed at GPRA at 5:30 ready to size gear, help with the necessary rental paperwork, and accept payment for a short time only.  Please sign up here to let us know you are coming.  If you want to volunteer during this event, please contact Allison Fry at .

*Skis and poles can be rented through Mat-Su Ski Club for $50 a pair.  This includes skis with bindings and poles.  We accept cash, checks, and cards, however cash or check are preferred (the card reader isn’t Alaskan enough to work consistently in the cold!).

*A refundable ski and pole deposit of $150 per pair of skis is required at time of rental. Please bring a separate check with you for this deposit.  The check should be post-dated for April 17th, 2021.

It’s also important to note that Backcountry Bike & Ski will be set up in the parking lot of their store in downtown Palmer to rent boots and sell wax kits to Junior Nordics families on October 31st at 12:00-3:00 PM.  They will be accepting cash, card, and check, but will not have change, so please bring exact change.  The price of boot rental is $41.20 and wax kits will be sold for $46.35.


FIS homologated Nordic race courses at GPRA

FIS homologated Nordic race courses at GPRA

Thanks to the efforts of John Estle of the Fairbanks Nordic Ski Club and of Mat-Su Ski Club volunteers, there are now three internationally recognized Nordic race courses at GPRA. They are a 1.3-km sprint course, and 5-km and 7.5-km courses. GPRA is now one of 33 locations in the USA with homologated Nordic ski trails. Thanks John!

See the details here:

Sprint course – 1.3-km

Hatch-Eska – 5-km course

Mitten – 7.5-km course

A Faster Skier article about homologation.


Junior Nordics ski rentals

Ski pick up is happening today, Saturday October 17th, from 4:30-6:00 PM at the GPRA parking lot.  An email with details has been sent but we’ve been getting reports of people who didn’t see it.  If you’re one of them, check your spam, and if you still don’t see it there, please contact us at .

The link to sign up for the remaining slots for ski rental is here:

The link to sign up as a volunteer is here:

Don’t forget – a check is required for the refundable deposit!  We also appreciate check or cash payment for the ski rental, however we will accept cards as well.

We hope to see you there!

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Mat-Su Ski Club Calendar

January 27, 2021
  • Moonlight Ski Tour Archangel Road.
    January 27, 2021  6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
    Archangel Road

    Meet at Archangel trailhead parking lot 6:30pm. Bring a headlamp.

January 30, 2021
  • Besh Cup #5 - backup location
    January 30, 2021

    This Besh Cup is scheduled for Birch Hill in Fairbanks. The Mat-Su Ski Club and GPRA are an alternate host.

January 31, 2021
  • Besh Cup #6 - backup location
    January 31, 2021

    This Besh Cup is scheduled for Birch Hill in Fairbanks. The Mat-Su Ski Club and GPRA are an alternate host.

February 2, 2021
  • MSSC Board Meeting
    February 2, 2021  7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

February 14, 2021
  • Ski for Women
    February 14, 2021  11:00 am - 3:00 pm

    The Mat-Su Ski For Women is an annual event hosted by the Mat-Su Ski Club to benefit Alaska Family Services.

February 21, 2021
March 2, 2021
  • MSSC Board Meeting
    March 2, 2021  7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 5, 2021
  • Jr. Nordics End-of-Season Party and ski return
    March 5, 2021

    Potluck food, races and kid-fun, return of rental ski equipment.