Workouts for Skiers and Snowboarders
If you're headed into the backcoun-try for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing, stop by park headquarters for maps, information on where the snow is best, and a free backcountry permit if you plan to stay out overnight. Keep in mind that trails are not groomed. On winter weekends starting in February, rangers often lead guided snowshoe walks on the east side of the park and guided cross-country ski trips on the west side. Participants must supply their own equipment.
Trails of all skill levels leave from the nortwest and southwest entrances. Heated bathrooms and running water are available at Loomis Plaza at Man-zanita Lake and will be in the new visitor facility at the southwest entrance when it opens in 2007. Popular trips are the trails to Sulphur Works. More advanced skiers and snowshoers can make the trek to Lake Helen. You can also ski the popular 30-mile course of the Park Road, but doing this overnight trek involves a long car shuttle. For safety reasons, the park requires all skiers to register at the southwest entrance or Loomis Ranger Station before heading into the backcountry, even for a day trip. A free wilderness permit is required for overnight camping.
Gros Morne National Park grooms and tracks nearly 20 miles of trails in the winter, or you can roam the coastal lowlands and back country. Two back-country ski huts have been added recently, one on the eastern end of the Tablelands, and another near Bakers Brook Pond. The Gros Morne National Park Visitors Centre has a map of the ski trails, with hut locations marked, and they can give you advice on good back-country areas. Most of the trails are for novice and intermediate skiers. Back-country skiing is only for advanced to expert skiers. A scenic (albeit windy) trail especially good for novice skiers runs along the coast, following the old mail road north from Shallow Bay, a round-trip of about three miles, with a shelter in the campground. At Berry Hill, a series of stacked loops offers four-, six- and 10-mile trails, with a shelter. You can ski to the frozen cascades of Baker's Brook Falls, one of the most scenic destinations of any trail in the park. Trout River has forest trails...
At the end of the tunnel on the way to Malbun, a small and idyllic cross-country skiing paradise with 15 km (10 miles) of trails awaits you in Steg at 1300 meters (4265 feet) elevation. Four different types of trails for beginners and advanced crosscountry skiers are prepared, both for classical skiing or skate skiing. Those who like skiing by moonlight are also in luck The three-kilometer (two-mile) long, illuminated night trail will make you star-struck. And whoever wants to discover the sport of cross-country skiing is in the right place at the Cross-Country Ski School. www. valuenalopp.li
The State of New York has been providing downhill skiing facilities for a long time at three major areas Whiteface Mountain and Gore Mountain in the Adirondacks, and Belleayre in the Catskills. Trails on Whiteface were first cut for the 1932 Winter Olympics, and Gore's predecessor was a ski bowl on the other side of the mountain. Both areas came under the aegis of the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA), which continues to manage them, in the early 1980s. For more information, contact Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA), 218 Main Street, Lake Placid, NY 12946, s 518-523-1655, www.orda.org. Gore Mountain - Gore has been a favorite with locals and skiers from afar since the 1930s. Over the years the area has added more quads and increased snow making to 95 . And the new gondola is appreciated in this frosty north country. The elevation is 3,600 feet and the vertical drop 2,100 feet. A network of 60 trails is served by the gondola and seven chair-lifts, including two...
Just about every park in Toronto becomes potential cross-country skiing territory as soon as snow falls. Best bets are Sunnybrook Park and Ross Lord Park, both in North York. For more information, call Toronto Parks and Recreation (& 416 392-8186 www.city.toronto.on.ca parks). Serious skiers interested in day trips to excellent out-of-town sites like Horseshoe Valley can call Trakkers Cross Country Ski Club (& 416 763-0173), which also rents equipment.
This budget motel lets you experience the trappings of the old Aspen. Built in 1962 and decorated like a Swiss Chalet, the lodge is right next to the remaining towers on the old Lift 1, which was Aspen's first chairlift and was once the longest lift in America. In the morning, you can easily walk to a modern, functioning chairlift when you're done skiing, you can glide back to the door. The motel has more character than the Limelite Lodge, but its rooms are darker and older-feeling, and they get noisy when people in ski boots clomp past on the wooden walkways. Ask for a room facing the ski area. It doesn't cost extra, and the views of the skiers and ski hill are spectacular.
Let's be frank the best Pyrenees skiing lies across the watershed, in Spain's Baqueira-Beret and Andorra's Gran Valira. But the more modest resorts on the French side offer reasonable downhill skiing and snowboarding for beginners and intermediates. The Pyrenees receive less snow than the much higher Alps and the falls are generally moister and heavier. In addition to downhill skiing, the potential for cross-country skiing, ski touring and, increasingly, snowshoeing, is also good. Val d'Azun The best cross-country skiing in the Pyrenees, about 30km southwest of Lourdes, where you can plough along 110km of trails between 1350m and 1600m. There's a tourist office in Arrens-Marsous.
Skip the Olympic Training Center (421 Old Military Rd.) there's not much open to the public. For downhill skiing on Whiteface, see Outdoor Pursuits, below. You can see all of the following in one day. Start off at the Verizon Sports Complex jp, Route 73 (& 518 523-2811), 20 minutes west of Lake Placid, for cross-country skiing (see Outdoor Pursuits, below). In the same complex and definitely something you should not miss is the bobsled luge skeleton track, where you'll watch athletes bomb down on and in crazy machinery. You can even strap yourself into a bobsled and race down the half-mile track with a guide and brakeman ( 40) you'll never watch the Olympics the same way. The sleds are on wheels in summer, but they go much faster on the winter ice. Then drive 10 minutes back toward town and you'll see the towering presence of the ski jump towers at the MacKenzie-Intervale Ski Jumping Complex (jf, Route 73 (& 518 523-2202). From December through March and June through October, watch...
Three modern chairlifts, one with heated seats and windbreak hood, and a double T-bar lift whisk skiers and snowboarders of all ages warm and dry up to the wide world of snow. For downhill skiing, 23 kilometers (14 miles) of optimally groomed ski slopes ranging from easy to challenging are waiting for you. Thanks to the artificial snowmakers covering 10 kilometers (6 miles), winter fun in this accessible and idyllic landscape is guaranteed until far into the springtime. www. bergbahnen.li
Some of the finest downhill skiing in the world is here, with slopes for beginners as well as for the most advanced skiers. A kindergarten will look after the very young while you hit the slopes. The most populous part of Klosters, centered around the railway station, is called Klosters-Platz (Klosters Square). A smaller, less populated neighborhood site of the resort's excellent ski school lies about a mile to the north and at a slightly lower altitude. Set near the departure point for the Madrisa cable cars, it's known as Klosters-Dorf (Klosters Village). The region contains two principal areas for skiing or hiking, the more popular of which is the Gotschna-Parsenn. To reach it, board the Gotschnagrat cable way in Klosters-Platz the cable car carries more than 50 skiers up to the 2,263m (7,545-ft.) Gotschnagrat elevation. In the peak season, especially around February, expect lines. A series of cable ways, a chairlift, and 18 ski lifts hook up with the Davos-Parsenn skiing areas,...
SKIING For downhill skiing, the city-owned Eaglecrest Ski Area (& 907 790-2000 www.juneau.org eaglecrest) is the large, steep home hill of Olympic silver medalist Hillary Lindh, Juneau's favorite daughter (her father helped choose the site in the 1970s). A chair goes almost to the top of Douglas Island, with expansive views and 640 acres of skiing terrain. There are 31 runs with a total vertical drop of 1,400 feet, rated 40 expert, 40 intermediate, and 20 novice. It's only 12 miles from downtown on North Douglas Highway. An all-day lift ticket is 26 for adults. Eaglecrest is a hidden treasure It's the second best ski resort in the state (after Alyeska Resort near Anchorage), yet few people know about it outside of Juneau. There are 5 miles of cross-country-skiing trail at Eaglecrest. Juneau's warm, damp winters don't always provide enough snow for good cross-country skiing at the lower elevations, but many of the hiking trails into the mountains become winter backcountry routes, and...
CHENA LAKES RECREATION AREA This is a wonderful and unique place for a family camping trip. A birch-rimmed lake created for a flood-control project has been developed by the local government to provide lots of recreational possibilities flat walking and bike trails a swimming beach fishing a place to rent canoes and paddleboats a self-guided 21 2-mile nature trail a playground big lawns and a terrific campground, with 80 camping sites, from pull-throughs for RVs to tent sites on a little island you can reach only by boat. In the winter, it's a popular area for cross-country skiing, ice fishing, and dog mushing. Camping costs 10 day use is 3. Drive 17 miles east of Fairbanks on the Richardson Highway and turn left on Laurance Road as you leave North Pole. For information, contact Fairbanks North Star Borough Chena Lakes Recreation Area (& 907 488-1655). Follow the same directions (then drive along the dam past the recreation area) to the Moose Creek Dam Salmon Watch, a picnic and...
Recreation, of course, is what draws many people to the Valle d'Aosta. You'll find some of the best downhill skiing and facilities on the runs at Courmayeur, Breuil-Cervmia, and in the Valle di Cogne. At the first two, you can expect to pay 26 to 30 ( 30 35) and up for daily lift passes. Cogne is a little less expensive, with daily passes running around 18 ( 21). Multiday passes, providing access to lifts and slopes of the entire valley, run 90 ( 104) for 3 days and 117 ( 135) for 4 days, with per-day rates sliding down a scale to 14 days at 319 ( 366). For more info, call & 0165-238-871 or visit www.skivallee.it. Ski season starts in late November early December and runs through April, if the snow holds out. Cross-country skiing is superb around Cogne in the Parco Nazionale del Gran Paradiso, where there are more than 48km (30 miles) of trails. The Valle d'Aosta is also excellent hiking terrain, especially in July and August. For information about hiking in the Parco Nazionale del...
HIKING Nice and easy hiking trails can be found at the state historic sites Clermont (Clermont & 518 537-4240), Olana (Greenport & 518 828-0135), and Martin Van Buren Park (Kinderhook & 800 724-1846). WINTER SPORTS For downhill skiing, try Catamount, Route 23, Hillsdale (& 800 342-1840 www.catamountski.com), on the Massachusetts border in the southern Berkshires. There are good cross-country ski trails at the state historic sites Clermont (Clermont & 518 537-4240), Olana (Greenport & 518 8280135), and Martin Van Buren Park (Kinderhook & 800 724-1846).
Several of the small towns in this region get their biggest jolt from winter downhill skiing and snowboarding at Windham and Hunter Mountains (see Sports & Outdoor Activities, below), though the areas, with their golf courses and summer music and arts festivals, are also good year-round destinations. The village of Hunter has a newly thriving arts scene due to the efforts of the Catskill Mountain Foundation, Rte. 23A (& 518 263-4908), which operates an arts center, farm market, excellent book store and cool movie theater. In Tannersville, next door to Hunter, is a sight for naturalists the Mountain Top Arboretum,
During the 1960s, the northern (and eastern) slopes of the Cairngorms were opened up for downhill skiing with the building of a road from Glenmore into Coire Cas. From there chair lifts ascended via an intermediate station to Ptarmigan, the top station at 1080m. However, the lift was often closed by the strong winds that regularly buffet the plateau.
All unplowed roads become trails for snowshoers and cross-country skiers, who rave about the vast powdered wonderland here. Guided trips into the backcountry are a great way to experience the park in winter, or you can strap on a pair of snowshoes and explore on your own. Note Snowmobiles are prohibited in the park. Snowshoeing & Cross-Country Skiing.
Mile 68.5 is the entrance to the Turnagain Pass Recreation Area, a popular spot with cross-country skiers - you might find 12 feet of snow here in February. At Mile 63.7 is the Johnson Pass Trailhead, and you can camp at the Granite Creek Campground, Mile 63, for 9. Fifteen miles up the road is the northern trailhead for Resurrection Pass. This is a 19-mile trail that's fairly easy, for the most part. In winter, it's a favorite cross-country skiing trail. The southern end of the trail comes out at Mile 52 on the Sterling Highway.
Forget decathlons and cross-country skiing Estonian wife carriers rule Since the traditional Finnish sport of wife carrying was revived in 1992 in the northern Finnish village of Sonkajarvi, Estonians have upstaged their Scandinavian cousins by winning several world championships and capturing the world record (yes, there is such a thing). A well-known name in the sports world is Erki Nool, the decathlon gold-medal winner at the 2000 Olympics. Krishna Smigun was the darling of the 2006 Winter Olympics, picking up two gold medals for cross-country skiing.
THE HIGHER ALTITUDES BECKON IN WINTER. Skiers the world over come to Taos Ski Valley for pure skiing under bluebird skies. Family owned and 100 snowboard free, Taos Ski Valley combines a relaxed atmosphere with varied terrain from groomed runs to steep chutes and sheer pitches. Nearby, Red River Ski Area, Angel Fire Resort, and Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort welcome skiers and snowboarders on their challenging runs and terrain parks. Want something more serene Enchanted Forest Cross Country Ski Area has miles of trails for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
From the June long weekend to the October long weekend, you can go night skiing, downhill or cross-country skiing, snowboarding or tobogganing, or even ski off-piste with a guide. If you're a complete novice, there are instructors who cater for all skill levels. And at the end of an exhilarating day on the slopes, you can relax in a small family-friendly lodge or a heritage-listed chalet before hitting the lively apr s-ski scene.
Good accommodation and ski facilities are plentiful, offering access to downhill and cross-country skiing, as well as sci alpinismo, which combines skiing and mountaineering skills on longer excursions. Snowboarding and most other winter sports are also equally well catered for. Ski schools at every resort offer boarding lessons and classic downhill skiing lessons. A six-day course (three hours of group tuition per day) costs around 130, and private lessons average around 40 per hour.
W England is where skiing and boarding began in the USA. New Hampshire in general, and the Mount Washington Valley in particular, are recognised as the birthplace of downhill. Yankee ingenuity dreamed up mechanical ways to get skiers to the top of the mountains with ease - and suddenly everyone could take part. Equally revolutionary was the invention and perfection of the snowboard in Vermont. Jake Burton's flagship store near Burlington, VT is like a shrine for riders. By then, folk in Maine's Aroostook County had been swooshing through the snow with ease for 100 years. Back in 1870, Swedish immigrants introduced cross-country skiing as a means of transport ever since, it has been part of the local lifestyle.
Snow Mountain Ranch Operated by the YMCA of the Rockies, Snow Mountain Ranch (1101 County Road 53, Granby 970887-2152 www.ymcarockies.org) has accommodations ranging from campsites ( 20 per night) to two-bedroom rustic cabins ( 143) and four-bedroom cabins ( 243). The ranch has a dining hall for all meals, and a cafe that's open during ski season. Among the vast array of amenities and activities are an indoor pool, climbing wall, sauna, craft shop, hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoe-ing. Lodging-and-ski packages are available in conjunction with Winter Park Ski Resort, and outdoor education packages for both adults and kids are available. Conference groups and family reunions are welcome as well. If you're staying elsewhere, you can drop in and snowshoe or ski cross-country in some of the best terrain in the state they have equipment rental and guided day trips available com) grooms 100 kilometers for skate and classic skiing and also has marked trails for snowshoers. But it...
Downhill ski slopes are scattered throughout the country, although cross-country skiing is more common, attracting legions of skiers during the long winters. Given the wealth of open space (even near Moscow), you won't have a problem finding a place to hit the trail. The few sporting goods stores carry decent, inexpensive Russian-made equipment.
Although there are both Alpine and cross-country skiing on Mont Ventoux (at the Mont Serein snowpark), snow is really too unreliable to make a special trip for it. But ifyou are in the area after a snowfall on the mountain, you can go on a snowshoe hike. Half-day tours for five to 12 people explore the forest slopes of the mountain in the UNESCO protected biosphere reserve. The price - adults 22, children between 8 and 12 15 includes a professional guide and snowshoe rental. (Agarrus, Maison des Dentelles, Place du March , 84190 Beaumes de Venise, s 33 04 90 65 06 41 or 33 06 80 43 12 12, fax 33 04 90 62 93 25, agarrus wanadoo.fr). Check out whether there is snow on the mountain via Mont Serein station's live webcam at www.stationdumontserein.com.
A paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, the Bavarian Forest National Park stretches for about 24,250 hectares along the Czech border, from Bayerisch Eisenstein in the north to Finsterau in the south. Its thick forest, most of it mountain spruce, is crisscrossed by hundreds of kilometres of hiking, cycling and cross-country skiing trails. The three main mountains, Rachel, L sen and Grosser Falkenstein, rise up to between 1300m and 1450m and are home to deer, wild boar, fox, otter and countless bird species. The Bavarian Forest has seven ski areas, but downhill skiing is low-key, even though the area's highest mountain, the Grosser Arber (1456m), occasionally hosts European and World Cup ski races. The best resorts are in the north, such as Bischofsmais near the Geisskopf (1097m), Bodenmais near the Grosser Arber, and Neukirchen near the Hoher Bogen (1079m). The major draw here is cross-country skiing, with 2000km of prepared routes through the ranges.
In winter, most visitors come for the downhill and cross-country skiing on the Bocksberg. Day tickets for the Seilbahn (cable car) and lifts cost 17. Snow-Fun ( 2172) is the main equipment-hire place in town - head to Hindenburgstrasse 4 for nordic skis, and Rathausstrasse 6 for snowboards and alpine skis. The Berghotel ( 2505 An der Buchwiese 1) is another ski hire option. HahnenkleerSkischule ( 0175-507 9138 Rathausstrasse 6), alongside the cable-car station, runs various ski courses.
Immediately southwest of Grenoble, this gently rolling nature park (1750 sq km) is a slow-paced oasis of calm and an ideal family destination, cheaper, easier and smaller than big Alpine resorts. If you're not an adrenalin junkie, you'll love it here. Known for its cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, caving and hiking, it was also a Resistance stronghold during WWII, nicknamed Forteresse de la R sistance. From humble Lans-en-Vercors (population 2300, elevation 1020m), 25km southwest of Grenoble, buses shuttle downhill skiers 4km east to its 14-piste Montagnes de Lans ski area. Villard de Lans (population 4000, elevation 1050m), 9km up the valley, is linked by ski lifts to Corren on-en-Vercors (population 358, elevation 1111m) for 125km of winter-wonderland downhill pistes at melting prices ( 28 for a day). For alternative fun, the Colline des Bains (half- full day 6 8), in Villars-de-Lans, offers six sledging tracks pick your vehicle (sledge train for extra chaos, solo sledge, rubber...
T Cross-country skiing You can skate-ski (cross-country skiing with a skating technique) on 95 kilometers of track at Snow Mountain Ranch ( 970-726-4628), 9 miles south of Granby on U.S. 40. Snow Mountain has 5 kilometers of dog-friendly trails and illuminates another 1.5 kilometers of track for night skiing. Daily trail passes cost 12 for adults, 5 for ages 6 to 12.
Camping is available at Mile 49.5, Beatton Provincial Park, on the east end of Charlie Lake. It's one of the oldest provincial parks, and the lake has good fishing for walleye and pike. In winter, there's excellent cross-country skiing and ice fishing. The park has a boat launch, a playground, and swimming. There are 37 sites, going for 12. The campground is open May to October.
Snowshoeing is coming back as a sport, and here in the Northwest Territories, the snow is often ideal for beginners and experts alike. It's dry and soft and clean and untraveled. Cross country skiing has a tradition in the Northwest Territories, too. Canada's first Olympic cross country ski team was composed of young people from the Mackenzie Delta, and the Firth twins went on to ski for Canada in four winter Olympics. Today there are excellent trails in most large communities. The Rock and Ice Ultra is a new series of races for extreme adventurers, willing to challenge long distances and cold weather.
HIKING & BIKING The Catskill Scenic Trail (& 607 652-2821 www. catskillscenictrail.org) is 19 gentle miles of Rails to Trails (hard-packed rail path) that run from Grand Gorge to Bloomville it's terrific for hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing (in winter, watch out for snowmobiles roaring by). The best spot to pick up the trail is Railroad Avenue in Stamford. Within 15 miles of Margaretville, there are 12 peaks above 3,000 feet Balsam Lake Mountain has nice marked trails. Dry Brook Trail begins at a trailhead in Margaretville and passes Pakatakan Mountain, Dry Brook Ridge, and Balsam Lake Mountain. In Andes, a nice hike is around the Pepacton Reservoir to Big Pond and Little Pond from the trail heads, you can hike to the summits of Cabot or Touch-menot Mountain. The Catskill Center for Conservation and Development, Route 28, Arkville (& 845 586-2611 www.catskillcenter.org), offers guided hikes, snowshoe excursions, and bird walks. Birders and naturalists may be interested in...
Thanks to its beautiful scenery and favourable snow conditions, the Krkonose National Park is one of the most popular recreational resorts all year round. The chief centres here are Spindleruv Mlyn, Harrachov and Pec pod Snezkou. Located directly on hillsides, a number of mountain chalets offer accommodation to visitors. Hiking enthusiasts will find 800 kilometres of marked hiking trails in the Krkonose Mountains, while lovers of winter sports can make use of400 cableways and ski lifts and 500 kilometres of cross-country skiing trails.
This extremely popular family resort is an ideal place to get away from it all. It makes a great home base while exploring the Estes Park area. Lodge units are simply decorated and perfectly adequate, but we prefer the spacious mountain cabins. They have two to four bedrooms (accommodating up to 10) and complete kitchens, and some have fireplaces. The center, which occupies 860 wooded acres, offers hiking, horseback riding, miniature golf, an indoor heated swimming pool and children's pool, fishing, bicycle rentals, three tennis courts, and cross-country skiing. Other facilities include a self-serve laundry.
This 543-acre park has trails for hiking and cross-country skiing, and a pond for fishing. Junior anglers (16 and under) accompanied by an adult are invited to fish on Willow Pond from April 1-October 31 (catch and release only). Hikers should pick up a self-guided trail map in the park's nature museum. The half-mile loop was constructed by Eagle Scouts and is clearly delineated and numbered at intervals. The Greenbelt Trail also runs through the park.
The ski area around Wengen is highly developed, with ski trails carved into the sides of Mannlichen, Kleine Scheidegg, Lauberhorn, and Eigergletscher. A triumph of alpine engineering, the town and its region contain three mountain railways, two aerial cableways, one gondola, 31 lifts, and 250km (155 miles) of downhill runs. You'll also find a branch of the Swiss Ski School, more than 11km (7 miles) of trails for cross-country skiing, an indoor and outdoor skating rink, a curling hall, an indoor swimming pool, and a day nursery.
At the head of MjoifjorSur, the farm Heyda-lur ( 456 4824 www.heydalur.is sites Ikr3500, sb s d Jun-Aug lkr3500 5500 8000, Sep-May lkr3000 4000 6500) offers cosy accommodation in a renovated barn and cow shed. It's a peaceful and secluded spot and a great place to go horse riding (Ikr2000 per hour) or kayaking (Ikr2000 6000 per hour day). In winter you can go snowmobil-ing, cross-country skiing and ice fishing.
For all its otherworldly character, Glacier is pretty easy to explore, whether by road, trail, or stream.The Going-to-the-Sun Road, a historic byway that crosses the Park over Logan Pass, is easily the most scenic drive you'll ever take. On foot, you'll find over 750 miles of maintained trails and more alpine meadows, forested footpaths and hillside bridle paths than you could cover in a hundred sunny afternoons. By water, you can cool off on a scenic boat tour of a glassy St. Mary Lake, or jump on a guided adventure down the Middle Fork of the Flathead River for a whitewater thrill. And just in case you're wondering, the Park is open in winter, too, for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and just plain staring. Gawking, really. After all, Glacier is one of the largest intact ecosystems in the lower 48 and a designated biosphere reserve, making the Crown of the Continent distinctly unfamiliar ground for most people.
On a longer visit to Anchorage, you may want to spend a day or two in the suburbs to the north, known as the Mat-Su Valley. Reached by the Glenn Highway about 40 miles from Anchorage, the area is both a bedroom community for the city and a former frontier farming region with its own quirky identity. If you are driving anywhere north from the city you will pass through this area and there are some interesting places to stop if you have the time. In this summary I've covered a few highlights in the central area (the whole thing is the size of West Virginia). Some of the best attractions are covered in other parts of this guide The Alaska State Fair, held before Labor Day, is covered under Special Events, near the beginning of this chapter. The Musk Ox Farm is under Shopping, earlier in the chapter. Funky Talkeetna, a gateway to Denali National Park, is in chapter 8. The Matanuska Glacier area (on the Glenn Highway), with its great canyon views and late-season cross-country skiing and...
Tidal River Ridge Retreat is at Moose River between Parrsboro and Five Islands. The four new cottages have two bedrooms, full bath and fully equipped kitchen. They are spaced well to ensure privacy. The extensive property lies along the shore of Moose River and the Bay of Fundy. There are hiking trails on the property, used for cross-country skiing and for snowmobiling. They are also adjacent to snowmobile trails. A week's stay is 500 for two, with extra persons at 7 per person per night. Rates are lower off-season. They also arrange guided hiking, cross-country skiing, fishing and skating.
The massif of the Jizerske Mountains forms a natural border between the Czech Republic and Poland. The most impressive part of the mountain range is the central plateau with expanses of marshland and peat bog, framed by dwarf pines and tiny birches. In the summer the Jizerky, the short name for the mountain range, are crowded with lovers of cycling, while in the winter the local gradual ridges and mild slopes prove ideal terrain for cross-country skiing enthusiasts. Apart from beautiful scenery, the area of the Jizerske Mountains prides itself on a glorious tradition of glass making. The first glass works appeared in their foothills sometime in the 1300s, and the manufacturing of glass and artificial jewellery continues to be an inseparable feature of the region. The area's focal points are the towns of Liberec and Jablonec nad Nisou, both located in the southern foothills, and Frydlant in the northern foothills.
The Ledges Inn has three suites and four individual rooms, all with TV and phone, and they offer laundry service to guests. The inn also has a lounge and full dining room. During the summer, guests have access to an indoor pool. Packages include activities such as fly-fishing, canoeing, birding, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. 30 Ledges Inn Lane, Doaktown, NB E0C 1G0, s 506 365-1820, fax 365-7138, e-mail souwest nbnet.nb.ca. ( - )
On Snow Amiata's winter sports activity is centered on Abbadia San Salvatore and, across the border in the Grosseto province, at Castel del Piano. Both have facilities for downhill and cross-country skiing. To book yourself a lesson, contact the Scuola di Sci Monte Amiata (Loc. Pianello (Vetta Amiata), Abbadia San Salvatore, s 0573-789740).
In addition to the dozens of volcanoes and geothermal features, Lassen Volcanic National Park includes 150 miles of hiking trails, more than 50 beautiful lakes, large meadows, cinder cones, lush forests, cross-country skiing, and great backcountry camping. In fact, three-quarters of the park is designated wilderness.
Lake Its the deepest lake in the country but more important its astoundingly beautiful Visitors to the area havent the
I came, I saw, I left, could be the motto of many of the almost 500,000 annual visitors. From mid-July to mid-September, they ride dutifully around the Rim Road and then move on. If you're looking to interact with the landscape on a more personal level, however, you have some options, such as road biking around the Rim Road or day hiking to the summits of several peaks, including that of 764-foot Wizard Island in the middle of the lake. The area also offers superb cross-country skiing and snowshoeing opportunities in winter.
Stormdale Lodge is not far from Hartland's famous long covered bridge. Operated by Tim and Leslie Varney, the inn has four rooms, all fresh and attractive, with lots of knotty pine and big bright common areas with a wood stove. It's wheelchair-accessible, and guests have access to a kitchen and laundry. An extended continental breakfast is included. Canoeing, paddleboating and hiking opportunities are available, and in winter there is cross-country skiing. From TransCanada-2 take Rte. 104 for a bit over 4 miles, then turn onto Mainstream Road, crossing over the longest covered bridge. Turn left onto Foster Road and proceed just over a mile the lodge is on the left. Box 892, Hartland, NB E1P 3K4, s 506 375-4566, fax 392-8330, 877-448-8008, www.stormdalelodge.com.
Covering more than 36,000 acres along the western edge of Rocky Mountain National Park in Arapaho National Forest, the Arapaho National Recreation Area contains excellent fishing lakes (several with boat ramps) and opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, hunting, and camping.
The Nature, History & Spirituality Trail This 2.5-km 1.6-mile trail departing from Chiusi della Verna climbs up Monte Penna (1,283 m 4,208 feet) to the Santuario della Verna, an area of much spiritual and naturalistic interest. Also suitable for cross-country skiing, it follows the Via Francigena through the splendid secular forest the monks have been managing since the sanctuary was first established, and on to the summit of the sacred mountain, where a little chapel built in 1570 once welcomed pilgrims.
Bars are an integral part of the Lillehammer experience, especially during the ski season. Haakons Bar (Storgata 93 Sl1am-3am) During the day Haakon's Bar is the preserve of elbow-on-the-bar locals and very slow. After the sun sets, it kicks into action, becoming a crowded and agreeable place to drink. It can get a little raucous during the ski season.
In the ski season Autocares Bonal ( 958 46 50 22) operates three daily buses (four at weekends) from Granada bus station to the ski station (one way return 4 7, one hour). Outside the ski season there's just one bus daily (9am from Granada, 5pm from Pradollano). A taxi from Granada to the ski station costs around 40.
You'll have to book months ahead to find a place during the ski season (especially on weekends). And don't expect to find a lot of bargains. The Kosciuszko Accommodation Centre, Nuggets Crossing, Jindabyne, NSW 2627 ( 1800 026 354 in Australia, or 02 6456 2022 fax 02 6456 2945), can help find and book accommodations in the area. Other private agents who can help find you a spot for the night include The Snowy Mountains Reservation Centre (& 02 6456 2633) and the Thredbo Resort Centre (& 1800 020 622 in Australia). Super cheap beds are offered by the Thredbo YHA Lodge, Jack Adams Pathway, Thredbo (& 02 6457 6043 www.yha.com.au). Dorms cost A 23 (US 15) and twins 42 (US 27). There's a ballot in April for places here during the ski season.
This award-winning bed-and-breakfast, which occupies adjacent 19th-century Victorian homes laden with art and antiques, offers excellent service with a personal touch. Some rooms offer canopy beds, jet tubs, and TVs all the accommodations have air-conditioning. During ski season, the Queen Anne features a special Ski Train package ( 295 double) that includes two nights' lodging and one-day Ski Train tickets for two.
The Sierra Nevada Ski Station ( 902 708090 www .sierranevadaski.com), at Pradollano, 33km southeast of Granada, is one of Spain's biggest and liveliest ski resorts. It can get overcrowded at weekends and holiday times. The ski season normally lasts from December to April. Nonskiers can ride cable cars up from Pradollano (2100m) to Borreguiles (2645m) for 10 return, and then ice-skate, dogsled or snowshoe. One cable car has wheelchair access. Outside the ski season Sierra Nevada Activa (www.sierranevadaactiva.com in Spanish) operates a host of warmer-weather activities, such as mountain biking, trekking, horse riding and canyoning.
North of Pistoia, the SS66 (the Regia Modenese) forks off to the left side of the Montagna Pistoiese, the right side reached along the panoramic SS64 Porrettana (also linked by the Porrettana tourist railway). Both are served by Copit buses although you'll find that most head towards Abetone (the line allows for the transportation of bicycles), especially during the winter ski season. There are tourist offices at Abetone (Piazzale Piramidi, s 0573-60231, fax 0573-60232), Cutigliano (Piazza Catilina 22, s 0573-68029, fax 0573-68200) and San Marcello Pistoiese (Via V. Vittoria 129a, s 0573-775252, fax 0573-622120), next door to the Comunita Montane Appennino Pistoiese (Via V. Vittoria 129b, s 0573-622462).
The three most popular destinations in Austria are Vienna, Salzburg, and Innsbruck. All three are easily reached by rail, and, most importantly for the rail traveler, none of the major routes between these cities usually suffers any snow delays or closures during the popular winter ski season.
The Montecito is a well-stocked resort that caters to families with children and large groups, although guests of all ages will enjoy this well-run facility. The comfortable rooms, which all have private bathrooms, occupy four separate buildings the 13 cabins share two bathhouses. Bed types and number vary, with units that sleep from two to eight. The property has a mountain-lodge atmosphere, with simple but attractive units that have carpeting and ceiling fans and are decorated with photos of the area. Meals are served buffet style, and there is a bar on the premises. A small lake accommodates sailing and canoeing. During winter, guests can also go crosscountry skiing, snowshoeing, and iceskating. There's a large heated outdoor pool, a Jacuzzi, a sun deck, two outdoor tennis courts, watersports equipment, nature trails, a game room, children and teen programs, conference rooms, and a self-serve laundry.
The park includes Stormy Lake, which has a boat launch at its north end and a boat-in only campsite at its narrowest point. There are crosscountry skiing trails near Bishop Creek Campground, and the end of the Swanson River Canoe Trail is right by the Discovery Campground.
One of the wonderful things about Bryce Canyon is that even though hiking is the best way to explore it, you don't have to be an advanced backpacker to really get to know the park. There are ample opportunities to experience much of the park on easy walks, and many people see the park from the back of a mule or horse. In the winter, the park's trails open to snowshoers and cross-country skiers.
This small 14th-century logging and fair town is tucked in the Moldavia Valley at an altitude of 621m. Campulung Moldovenesc is a good access point for hiking in the Rarau Mountains, 15km to the south. In winter, Campulung attracts cross-country skiers. There is also a short 800m ski slope served by a chairlift at the foot of the resort. Between 1786 and 1809 many German miners setded in the region at the invitation of the Habsburg authorities.
In winter, the resort attracts cross-country skiers and downhill novices (topspeed skiers go elsewhere). It has a cable car, two chairlifts, and four ski tows the National Nordic Ski Center offers a ski-jumping station. The 2km (1 ' 2-mile) cross-country ski trail is floodlit in the evening. Other facilities include an indoor and outdoor ice rink. If you select Kandersteg for your winter vacation, don't expect the breadth and diversity of ski slopes that are available in the much larger, more varied Jungfrau region accessible from Wengen, M rren, Interlaken, and Grindelwald. Kandersteg's ski trails lie on the slopes of a bowl-shaped depression whose sides slope down into the waters of Oeschinensee, and incorporate 13km (8 miles) of downhill runs, 76km (47 miles) of cross-country trails, and eight ski lifts, three of which are short baby lifts for beginners. Adults pay 66F ( 43) for a 2-day pass, 144F ( 94) for a 5-day pass, and 191F ( 124) for a 7-day pass. Skiers looking for more...
This trail falls into the Gotta Do It category, and its popularity is its only disadvantage. Despite the probability that you'll be sharing the territory with others, there are several compelling reasons to give it a go. From the trailhead, you'll wend your way through a forested area along a trail that parallels the Fire-hole River. The payoff for your effort is the arrival at the geyser, sitting alone, a vanilla-chocolate ice-cream cone near the middle of a vast meadow partially covered by grass and trees, exposed rock, gravel, and volcanic debris. The geyser erupts about every 3 hours, and the eruption lasts about 30 minutes. Small, bubbling hot springs and steam vents surround it. The trail is popular with cross-country skiers in winter.
Army erected Camp Hale just north of the current location of the Ski Cooper ski area to house a special division of American servicemen whose mission was to study technical mountaineering, alpine skiing, and mountain survival. (Think Outward Bound with artillery.) For those who crave more exciting terrain, Ski Cooper offers Snowcat Tours on nearby Chicago Ridge. The daylong tours usher skiers to seldom-skied runs of up to 1,400 vertical feet on 2,500 acres of terrain more than six times the acreage inside the ski area. Cost is 234 per day (including lunch), and reservations are required. For more on Ski Cooper, see the chart on the inside back cover.
Odell Park Arboretum has an outstanding collection of well-labeled native New Brunswick trees, including some speciments over four centuries old. An additional seven miles of walking trails through the woods are kept groomed in the winter for cross-country skiers. The park's entrance is at the end of Rookwood St. Odell Park is a good place to find songbirds, including the scarlet tanager.
Being a nerd for old ski stuff, I love this museum. It has timelines showing major developments in skiing and snowboarding, along with gear and memorabilia from the different periods. It displays uniforms and equipment from each winter Olympics. And it devotes an entire room to the 10th Mountain Division. I'm partial to the vintage posters advertising ski areas and ski movies, and the old-time footage of powder skiers shown on the TV. See map p. 242. 231 S. Frontage Rd. E. (in Vail Transportation Center, Level 3), Vail. 970-476-1876. www.skimuseum.net. Open Tues-Sun 10 a.m.-5p.m. Closed May and Oct. Admission 1 adults free for children under 12.
Like the town of Steamboat Springs, Steamboat Ski Area ( 970-8796111 www.steamboat.com) prides itself on being friendly. Former Olympic medalist Billy Kidd, now the resort's Director of Skiing, often guides complimentary mountain tours, and Nelson Carmichael, the bronze medalist in mogul skiing in the 1992 Winter Games, schedules free bump-skiing clinics for the public. As for the terrain, Steamboat's 2,939 acres make it the third largest area in the state, behind Vail and Snowmass. The 20 lifts efficiently move skiers, and the 142 trails tend to follow fall-line paths down the four linked mountains. More than half the runs are designated as intermediate, so mid-level skiers will relish being here. Advanced skiers will love threading their way through the mountain's seemingly endless aspen glades, which become especially enticing after the resort receives some of its famous dry powder. Beginners have fewer options, since only 13 percent of the terrain is for novices. Still, this is...
There are five national parks scattered across the province. On the western flank, Jirisan National Park is noted for serious climbs. Hallyeo National Maritime Park is a spectacular ocean playground encompassing coastal islands from Namhae to Geoje. Along the border separating South and North Gyeongsang provinces, Gayasan National Park is famous for Haeinsa, one of the country's most important temples (although it's located in South Gyeongsang province, access is easiest from Daegu pi 95). Tucked into the northwest corner of the province, Deogyusan National Park is where you'll find downhill skiers and snowboarders hitting the slopes at Muju Resort (p301).
Not surprisingly, this part of the country is an adventure playground for outdoor sports enthusiasts. Aviemore, Glen Coe and Fort William draw hordes of hill walkers and rock climbers in summer, and skiers, snowboarders and ice climbers in winter. There are purpose-built mountain-biking trails at Nevis Range and Laggan (near Newtonmore), the world's biggest indoor ice-climbing wall at Kinlochleven, and three of Scotland's five ski resorts at Nevis Range, Cairngorm and Glen Coe.
Skiers can break from the slopes at Parc Polaire (Polar Park 03 81 69 20 20 www.parcpolaire.com, in French adult 4-11yr 7 5.40 h 10am-6pm Jul & Aug, 2-6pm Tue-Sun Mar, April & Jun, 2-6pm Mon-Fri & Sun Sep & Oct, 10am-5pm Tue-Sun Jan & Feb), a husky-and-reindeer park in Chaux-Neuve where Claude and Gilles Malloire will introduce you to their 40 huskies and their life as a pack.
At an elevation of more than 5,500 feet, this is the highest ski area in the eastern United States. It's a full-service resort with a large complex that includes a variety of accommodations and a number ofshops, stores, ski schools and restaurants. Beech Mountain has 14 ski slopes of varying difficulties five for beginners, six for skiers of intermediate skill, and three more reserved for advanced skiers. The vertical drop is more than 830 feet, and the mountain is served by a high-speed chairlift, a J-bar tow and a rope tow. Ski packages are available. For information, reservations and brochures, s 800-438-293 or 828-387-2011.
Home to Dave's Ski School, offers water-ski lessons, water-ski and wake-board charters, and rentals of personal watercraft (such as Waverunners and Seaddoos). The center, on the shores of Lake Bryan, is geared to beginners, and kids as young as three can join in. Non-skiers can use the lakeside beach, volleyball net, and picnic area. 13245 Lake Bryan Rd
These Disney World-based centers were founded by four-time world champion water-skier Sammy Duvall.The Contemporary Resort branch offers parasalllng, water-skiing, wake-boarding, knee-boarding, and tubing. Guests can either rent a boat and driver or take lessons. The slalom course is geared to more hardcore water-skiers. Guests can bring their own gear or rent it. Map F1 & G2 407939-0754 Open winter 10am-5pm daily summer 8am- 6pm daily Adm
Chez Jacky & (finds SWISS This provincial bistro should be better known, although it already attracts everyone from grandmothers to young skiers en route to Verbier. It's the domain of Jacky Gruber, an exceptional chef from Valais. There's subtlety in Monsieur Gruber's cooking that suggests the influence of his mentor, Fr dy Giradet, hailed as Switzerland's greatest chef before his recent retirement. You might begin with Chinese cabbage and mussels and continue with filet of turbot roasted with thyme or perhaps beautifully prepared pink duck on a bed of spinach with a confit of onions. Be prepared to wait for each course. The chef tirelessly seeks the most select produce for his imaginative and innovative dishes, and he continues to dazzle his regular clients year after year, winning new converts as well.
The slopes are serviced by three chairlifts and a rope tow. The lodge incorporates rental and nightly accommodations, a restaurant, a gift shop and a ski shop. Rental equipment, clothing and lessons for skiers of all skill levels are available, and the management provides instruction for young skiers aged four to 12. For rates, brochures and information, s 800-322-2373 or 828-2957828.
Girdwood, 37 miles south of Anchorage, is proof that a charming little town can coexist with a major ski resort, as long as the resort goes undiscovered by the world's skiers. Girdwood still has a sleepy, offbeat character. Retired hippies, ski bums, a U.S. senator, and a few old-timers live in the houses and cabins among the big spruce trees in the valley below the Mount Alyeska lifts. They all expected a development explosion to follow the construction of an international resort here a few years ago, but it hasn't happened. That may not be good news for the Japanese investors in the resort, but it is for skiers and other visitors who discover this paradise. They find varied, uncrowded skiing through long winters, plus superb accommodations and an authentically funky community. The primary summer attractions are the hiking trails, the tram to the top of Mount Alyeska, and the Crow Creek Mine, described below. In winter, it's skiing. Mount Alyeska doesn't have the size of the famous...
Lake Mead National Recreation Area straddles the border between Arizona and Nevada, and, with its two reservoirs and scenic, free-flowing stretch of the Colorado River, is a watersports playground. Throughout the year, anglers fish for striped bass, rainbow trout, channel catfish, and other sport fish, while during the hot summer months, Lakes Mead and Mohave attract tens of thousands of water-skiers and personal watercraft riders. Due to its proximity to Las Vegas and the fact that there are more facilities on the Nevada side of Lake Mead, the recreation area tends to be more popular with Nevadans than with Arizonans.
It's down the road a ways from Creede, on U.S. 160 between Del Norte and Pagosa Springs near the top of Wolf Creek Pass, but there's some good skiing down here. With the entire ski area above 10,000 feet and the summit at 11,900 feet, Wolf Creek ( 970-264-5639 www.wolfcreek ski.com) averages 450 inches of snow a year, easily the highest total in the state. The abundant snow usually lets Wolf Creek open in mid-November, long before most other resorts get rolling, and it keeps skiers and riders knee-deep in powder for much of the winter. As for the terrain's 1,600 skiable acres, it's a mixed bag, with some nice glades, but there aren't many long, consistently steep slopes.
Any time of year, some part of Utah is in its prime. In winter, skiers flock to the greatest snow on earth, Utah's champagne powder. Most of its dozen major ski areas are clustered to the east of Salt Lake City, but Brian Head ski resort, nearly 10,000 feet with a long snow season, is 12 miles off I-15 at Parowan, near Cedar City. St. George in the southwest's Dixie area is mild in winter. Fall and spring are the ideal times for RVers to visit Utah's national parks summer is hot in the lower elevations, but cooler at Brian Head, Cedar Breaks, and Bryce Canyon. All the national parks, however, are jam-packed in summer with Americans and Europeans.
Ail as we know it didn't exist before 1962, when a former member of the 10th Mountain Division started a small ski area with a lodge and restaurant at the base. He and his friends fashioned the buildings after the mountain villages they had seen in Europe during World War II. They named the area for the highway engineer who designed the road into the area, and the place took off from there. Like Aspen, Vail is now beyond expensive, but it still welcomes thousands of skiers who drive up from Denver on weekends, not to mention many destination travelers. Some of the people who helped build the town have stuck around, helping preserve Vail's sense of tradition. Forty years after it started, Vail still feels as much like a town for hardy skiers as it does a retreat for the very rich. And it still retains its European flavor.
There's a spectacular ascent to Point Plaine-Morte -k*, at nearly 3,000m (9,840 ft.) but even at such a great height, there are still runs suitable for novice skiers. To get here, take the gondola from Montana-Barzettes to the east of Montana, stopping at Les Violettes first. There's a restaurant at Plaine-Morte. Piste Nationale is known for its steep, narrow runs, which attract many skiers. Mount Tubang, especially its La Toula run, is another slope only for the advanced skier.
A ski-tube train midway between Jindabyne and Thredbo on the Alpine Way travels through the mountains to Perisher Valley and then to Blue Cow. It costs A 15 (US 9.75) a day for adult skiers and A 9 (US 5.85) for child skiers A 30 (US 20) for non-skiing adults and A 17 (US 11) for non-skiing children. Prices are cheaper in summer. Ski gear can be rented at numerous places in Jind-abyne and Thredbo.
The view from the top is spectacular (clouds permitting). Two chairlifts transport skiers to and from various slopes between December and April. A small cafeteria serves skiers and hikers alike. In summer, many people return to Zakopane on foot down the G sienicowa Valley, and the most intrepid walk the ridges all the way across to Lake Morskie Oko via Pi ciu Stawow, a strenuous hike taking a full day in good weather.
The ski facilities around Davos aren't the most widespread and far-flung in Switzerland, but they nonetheless incorporate enough challenges to keep intermediate and expert skiers engrossed. Most visitors opt for the RegionPass, which includes access to five different ski regions around Klosters and Davos. Together, they incorporate 322km (200 miles) of marked ski runs, and access to three funiculars, 10 cable cars, four gondolas, and 39 other mechanical conveyances designed to haul you and your equipment uphill. It also includes free rides on the railway cars from Kublis, a nearby hamlet surrounded by snowfields, back uphill to Davos. Adults pay 123F ( 101 53) for a 2-day pass, 212F ( 174 91) for a 4-day pass, and 285F ( 234 122) for a 6-day pass. Children 6 to 12 are granted reductions of around 70 off those rates, and children 5 and under ride free.
Winter (December to March) in Slovenia is for skiers. It can be very cold and, away from the mountains, often quite bleak. At the same time, winter sees museums and other tourist sights closed or their hours sharply curtailed. Skiers should bear in mind that Slovenian school kids have winter holidays for about 10 days between Christmas and just into the New Year and again for a week in the second half of February.
This is the closest lodging to the northeast (White River) park entrance and the Sunrise area. The resort has wooded grounds and makes a good base in winter when skiers flock to the slopes of Crystal Mountain, just minutes away, but it is most popular from late spring through early fall. The resort features suites in chalets and a log honeymoon cabin, all with a mountain-lodge atmosphere and
Greer Lodge Only 20 minutes from the Sunrise Park ski area and boasting its own trout ponds and section of the Little Colorado River, this old lodge is a good choice for both skiers and anglers. Rooms in the main building have nice views of the mountains or river, but tend to get quite a lot of noise from the lobby (which doubles as a TV room). If you're seeking quiet, request a cabin. The lodge's restaurant has walls of glass that look out over a river, meadows, and a trout pond, and in winter, there's a cozy fireplace. There's also a barbecue area.
There are also more than 2600 km (1600 miles) of prepared ski-trails that run deep into the forests of Oslo. 90 km are floodlit until 10 PM for the special experience of evening skiing. Skiers can stop for food and refreshments at 68 picturesque cabins. If skiing is not your forte, try the ice skating rink at Narvisen in the city centre, or at Frogner Stadium. To rediscover the child within you, take the local underground to the top of the Korketrekker'n toboggan run, where you can go down at great speed. When you reach the bottom of the run, you simply get on the underground again to reach the top
From the moment you step off the train or out of the bus in Arthur's Pass village, you are surrounded by rugged peaks and an urge to reach the top of them. As the gateway to an immense alpine area, this tiny village hosts climbers, skiers and visitors from all over the world. But mostly it's visited by trampers, who arrive to do a bit of pass-hopping in Arthur's Pass National Park.
Corvatsch, at 1,740m (5,707 ft.), is known for its bowl skiing. Corviglia has broad runs attracting fledgling and intermediate skiers and is the base for skiing Piz Nair -k k, the highest skiable mountain at 3,251m (10,663 ft.), with a vertical drop of 1,424m (4,671 ft.). Nearby, in Pontresina, a neighbor resort (see the next section), are the steep Piz Legalb and Diavolezza, with skiing for all levels of experience, including a run over the Morteratsch Glacier. All five mountains can be skied on one lift pass. The groomed and tracked cross-country runs in the Upper Engadine valley include a tame 1.6km (1-mile) loop near the cross-country center trails are laid out between the valley resorts. A 1.6km (1-mile) segment is lit for night skiing. The Engadine cross-country ski marathon a 42km (26-mile) run conducted in mid-March every year, is a major event. Instruction in cross-country skiing, available in groups on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday from 11am to 1pm, costs 45F ( 37 19) for...
To Vasa's surprise and disappointment, he did not get the immediate response he asked for when speaking to a crowd in Mora. The men were favorably impressed, but wanted to get approval from other villages nearby before making a decision. Vasa, with his enemies in close pursuit, couldn't afford to wait and took off toward the Norwegian border on skis. But it didn't take the men in Mora long to make up their minds and decide in Vasa's favor. They sent their fastest skiers out to find him and eventually caught up with Vasa in S len. When they made it back to Mora, they mobilized their troops and headed for Stockholm, where Gustav Vasa was crowned king of Sweden in 1523 and Sweden finally became independent.
The British, fleeing the oppressive heat of the plains in summer, built enduring hill stations in the Himalayan foothills with Raj-style houses, hotels, churches and boarding schools that still exist. Mussoorie and Nainital have a real holiday atmosphere year-round and distant Himalayan views. Further north, the high Himalaya attracts trekkers, mountaineers and skiers as well as pilgrims on the Char Dham and Hem Kund routes. But it's Rishikesh that draws most foreign tourists for its ashrams, yoga, meditation and all-round spirituality. Whatever your interest, square for square, this is one of India's richest regions for travellers.
You can choose between historic hotels that have lots of character and new hotels that have every imaginable luxury. What you don't find here are a lot of economical lodges that cater to tired skiers on a budget. Gone are the days when bone-weary skiers gladly settled for a stein of beer, a few bites of summer sausage, and a bug-free bed. Completed in 1992, this six-story, ski-in, ski-out hotel has nearly everything a mortal could want except maybe character. It has a 42,000-square-foot spa with 44 treatment rooms, a climbing wall, racquetball courts, swimming pools, a water slide, an immense exercise room, a golf course, two restaurants, and a spacious bar. Located in Telluride's tony Mountain Village community, the hotel, easily the largest in town, observes what it calls seasonality, which in mortal-speak, that means it's closed from mid-April to late May and again for a time in late fall.
'alae Ke'oke'o, or Hawaiian coot 'alae 'ula, or Hawaiian gallinule and Koloa maoli, or Hawaiian duck). Although you can see the fishpond and the refuge from the road, the area is not open to the public. Various small boats, kayaks, jet skis, windsurfers, and water-skiers use the river. You can spend the day watching them ply their crafts up and down. From Lihue, take Rice Street to Nawiliwili Harbor. Turn left on Niumalu Road and follow it to the beach park. The beach does not have a lifeguard, but it does have picnic tables, showers, and restrooms.
Construction of the Glen Canyon Dam came about despite the angry outcry of many who felt that this canyon was even more beautiful than the Grand Canyon and should be preserved in its natural state. Preservationists lost the battle, and construction of the dam began in 1960, with completion in 1963. It took another 17 years for Lake Powell to fill to capacity. Today, the lake is a watery powerboat playground, and houseboats and water-skiers cruise where birds and waterfalls once filled the canyon with their songs and sounds. These days most people seem to agree that Lake Powell is as amazing a sight as the Grand Canyon, and it draws almost as many visitors each year as its downriver neighbor. In the past few years, however, Lake Powell has lost some of its luster as a prolonged drought in the Southwest has caused the lake's water level to drop nearly 100 feet. Although this has left a bathtub-ring effect on the shores of the lake, it has exposed wide expanses of beach in the Wahweap...
The Green Mountains are higher in the north than in the south they include Mount Mansfield, Mount Ellen, Camel's Hump and Mount Killington. The Green Mountain National Forest became a reality in 1932 when President Hoover signed a Proclamation Boundary to establish it. Skiers and hikers flock to these mountains to enjoy a string of ski areas, and to hike sections of major paths like the Appalachian Trail and Long Trail.
Construction of the Glen Canyon Dam came about despite the angry outcry of many who felt that this canyon was even more beautiful than the Grand Canyon and should be preserved in its natural state. Preservationists lost the battle, and construction of the dam began in 1960, with completion in 1963. It took another 17 years for Lake Powell to fill to capacity. Today, the lake is a watery powerboat playground, and houseboats and water-skiers cruise where birds and waterfalls once filled the canyon with their songs and sounds. These days most people seem to agree that Lake Powell is as amazing a sight as the Grand Canyon, and it draws almost as many visitors each year as its downriver neighbor. In the past few years, however, Lake Powell has lost some of its luster as a prolonged drought in the Southwest has caused the lake's water level to drop more than 130 feet. Although this has left a bathtub-ring effect on the shores of the lake, it has exposed wide expanses of beach in the Wahweap...
The world's best aerial skiers take off and fly, tucking and spinning their way to a championship. You'll see mogul action too, as the athletes' skis zig and zag among the mounds of snow. Call & 518 523-1655 or visit www.orda.org. Mid-January. February Olmsted Winterfest, Buffalo. Delaware Park becomes a magnet for fun seekers, with sledding, skating, snowmobiling, softball, ice sculpting, a chili cook-off, and races taking place all over the park. There's a Friday Fish Fry, naturally, and fireworks. Call & 716 884-9660 or visit www.buffaloolmsted parks.org. Four days in mid-February.
New Zealand is also a winter magnet for international skiers and is the white-knuckle capital of the world. This is where you can push it to the limits, pit yourself against your fears and limitations, take risk by the throat, and go for it leaping off bridges into surging river gorges attached to a giant rubber band, or taking a stab at luging, zorbing, sky diving, paragliding, kayaking, whitewater rafting, and jet-boating. There's no lack of invention when it comes to adrenaline-pumping activities in this country.
Menehune (Alakoko) Fishpond Just outside Lihue and Nawiliwili Harbor, on the Huleia River, lies a mystery that still can't be explained the handiwork of the menehune (see Discovering the Legendary 'Little People,' below). The pond, called Alakoko ( rippling blood ) and today known as the Menehune Fishpond, was an aquaculture feat built hundreds of years ago. The builders of this 2,700-foot-long stone wall (that cuts off a bend in the river) were believed to be the mythical people who inhabited Kauai before the Polynesians arrived. The fishpond is located in the Huleia National Wildlife Refuge, 238 acres of river valley that is a habitat for endangered Hawaiian water birds (ae'o or Hawaiian stilt, 'alae Ke'oke'o or Hawaiian coot, 'alae 'ula or Hawaiian gallinule, and Koloa maoli or Hawaii duck). Although you can see the fishpond and the refuge from the road, the area is not open to the public. Small boats, kayaks, jet skis, windsurfers, and water-skiers use the river.
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