Roger Lohr, the Cross Country Ski Writer is the founder and editor of He is a writer and marketer who lives in Lebanon, NH. He’s had Nordic skiing and snowshoeing content posted on,,, NSAA Journal, CCSAA Nordic Network, Cross Country Skier, SkiTrax, Ski Area Management,...

Roger Lohr, the Cross Country Ski Writer is the founder and editor of He is a writer and marketer who lives in Lebanon, NH. He’s had Nordic skiing and snowshoeing content posted on,,, NSAA Journal, CCSAA Nordic Network, Cross Country Skier, SkiTrax, Ski Area Management, NASJA, Green Energy Times, and others. Lohr also wrote the Board Report snowboard column in SnowEast Magazine. He conducted the CCSAA Skier Visit Study and created the Best XC Ski Area Poll and worked for the industry trade organization SIA. He loves skiing on xc ski trails, telemarking in the backcountry, and snowboarding in powder. On Twitter @XCSkiTravel


National Ski Pass for Cross Country Skiers



Most dedicated winter sports enthusiasts are familiar with the major season passes such as Epic, Ikon, Mountain Collective and Indy Pass, among others. So far, these multi-ski area passes have been geared toward Alpine skiing and snowboarding. Not anymore! Make way for a new season pass specifically for cross country (XC) skiing and a deal that highlights XC skiing for Alpine skiers and snowboarders. 

The new Indy XC Pass recently introduced for the 2022-23 season will provide two days of trail access to (as it stands now) more than a dozen XC ski areas for $69 adult and $29 youth (12 and under).  XC skiing will also be included in the regular Indy Pass marketed to alpine skiers and snowboarders ($279 for adults) at 100 alpine ski areas, where applicable. The price is an early season offer and the Indy Pass prices was expected to increase on May 17 (the Indy XC Pass is still $69 in end July). 

The Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA, which is an organization of XC ski areas) is partnering with Indy and will be receiving 10% of the Indy XC Pass proceeds. The initial XC ski areas are located in different regions where XC skiers can ski two times at each area and they include High Point XC Center, NJ, WhiteGrass Touring Center, WV, Maplelag Resort, MN, Enchanted Forest Cross Country Skiing and Snowshoe Area in NM, Woodstock Nordic Center and Rikert Nordic Center in VT and in NH Jackson XC and the Adventure Center at Waterville Valley. Treetops Resorts in Gaylord, Michigan has been added and alpine ski areas that have XC skiing at Black Mountain of Maine, 49 Degrees North in WA, and Meadows Nordic Center at Mt Hood, OR have been added. Manning Park and Sovereign Lake in British Columbia, which are Canadian resorts are participating, too. These areas provide a wonderful cross section of experiences and destinations and it is anticipated that the Indy XC Pass will have another couple of dozen XC ski areas sign on by the start of next winter.

Depending on where one lives, that cost for XC skiing can be reduced further. Currently, those who live in the northeast can receive eight ski visits (two visits at each of five resorts in New England and New York within reasonable driving distance) for the $69 Indy XC Pass or less than $7 per visit. As more locations are added to the Indy XC Pass, the savings will become more widespread. However, the $69 price tag allows current XC skiers to discover new areas to visit and also offers an attractive enticement to those who are interested in learning the sport.

Most XC ski areas charge about $25 for a day pass to ski on their marked, maintained, and groomed trails. Many of these trails have set manicured tracks that make it easy for anyone to ski. Taking advantage of the Indy XC Pass will save a small amount and help XC skiers to discover some new ski areas to visit.

Promoting the Indy XC Pass will increase awareness of XC skiing and it will educate nonskiers and alpine skiers about XC skiing at areas that provide marked and regularly groomed trails. The image of XC skiing to many 

people is going out to ski at parks when it snows, breaking trails, or skiing in a previous skiers’ tracks in ungroomed snow conditions. Cross country ski areas use machines to groom the trails to provide consistent ski conditions all winter. Additionally, there are more than 50 areas that can produce machine-made snow because sometimes Mother Nature can be snow-stingy in the winter.

XC skiers who go to a few XC areas because of the Indy XC Pass may very well discover the joy of XC skiing regularly and raise it to a higher status as a prime recreational endeavor in their quiver of things to do in the winter. For more information, see  or 

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American Meccas Of Cross Country Skiing


Ask the general public to name an alpine skiing “Mecca” — described as a location where people, who share a common interest, yearn to go — even those who don’t ski can come up with at least Aspen or Vail, if not Killington and Sun Valley.

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Tips To Start Kids Cross Country Skiing


You might save money by giving your kids outdated and hand-me-down cross country ski equipment, a heavy nylon parka, and a fur-lined cap with earflaps, but this gear will increase your kids' chance of having a rotten time while cross country skiing.

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Top Cross Country Skiing Family Resort Destinations


Plan to gather up the kids and head to the hills. No need to head to warmer climes - winter can be snowy, yet mild, and perfect for a family vacation with plenty of activities such as cross country skiing and snowshoeing.

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Four New England Cross Country Ski Towns For Your Bucket List


The top New England ski towns are the topic of annual debate, but which are the top towns for cross country skiing? Some of the favorite New England towns and areas to go on a cross country (XC) ski vacation include Stowe and Woodstock in Vermont, the Mt. Washington Valley in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and Bethel in Maine. Here are more details from about XC skiing at these fabulous New England ski towns:

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Purchase a Nordic Ski Season Pass and Go Skiing!


This may be the best year to purchase a season pass to cross country ski at a nearby ski area. Such ski areas maintain and improve their trails. Why do ski areas need to charge for skiing?  Because they staff an operation, groom the trails, use fuel to groom, and keep buildings warm, maintain the upkeep of their facilities,  and so on.

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Cross Country Skiing is Booming Despite COVID


The Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA) has been conducting online sessions with its cross country (XC) ski area members since last spring, focused on sharing information about how X-C operations should respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. Discussions resulted in the widespread adoption of plans aimed at minimizing risk of virus transmission for staff and guests.

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Hidden Gems for Nordic Skiers


With a torrent of people hitting the trails and the outdoors across the country, wanted to give a shout out to hidden gem destinations for cross country (XC) skiing this winter. There may very well be an overflow of skiers at the most popular XC ski trails, so this guide will share some of the lesser-known but excellent destinations.

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  2309 Hits

What Has Changed in Cross Country Skiing This Season?


Cross country (XC) skiing dates back 6,000 years depicted in cave drawings and recently there have been some significant transformations in XC skiing to the benefit of everyone who does it.

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So You Want to Try Cross Country Skiing This Winter?


If you get frustrated with reservations, social distancing, and the scene at alpine ski areas this winter, perhaps this is the winter you might want to try cross country skiing.

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  2126 Hits

Will COVID-19 Provide a Boom For Cross Country Skiing?


The COVID pandemic has some in the cross country ski industry projecting a coming boom similar to the bicycle industry, which saw such a surge of sales and activity last spring.

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Brave Enough, the Autobiography of Jessie Diggins


What happens when an American wins the first-ever Olympic gold medal in cross country skiing? She writes a book. Brave Enough by Jessie Diggins with Todd Smith was just released by University of Minnesota Press and it is just what the doctor ordered if you need a pick-me-up while staying at home during COVID.

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  2795 Hits

Older Skiers Want More than Discounts


Older skiers are flocking to the ski slopes on weekdays, but do they deserve special privileges or discounts? Whether appropriate or not, for years ski areas (and many other businesses) have reinforced this sense of entitlement for those aged 65 and older, for example with senior citizen discount offers. Mountain resorts seem to be catering to this age group more and more.

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What to Wear when Cross Country Skiing


Often on the cross country (XC) ski trails the clothes that many of the uninitiated wear are malfunctioning…that is, they are dressed for downhill skiing such as insulated ski jackets and pants, alpine ski gloves or mittens, and ski goggles. XC skiing is a form of recreation that involves moving and thus lighter clothing is appropriate and recreational XC ski garb is versatile, functional, and fashionable, which is different than either outfit for downhill skiing or the suction suits worn by the XC ski racers seen at the Olympics.

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Eat Your Way to Fitness at these Cross Country Ski and Snowshoe Food Events

Nordic Nibbles

Want a guilt-free way to indulge yourself with food while exercising? Cross country (XC) skiing and snowshoeing are some of the best forms of aerobic exercise, but if you go on a "Gourmet Ski Tour" on your XC skis or snowshoes, you may very well eat your way to fitness at a number of trailside food stops. What a grand time so go ahead, eat, ski, and be merry - appetizers, wine, champagne, fondue, entrees, desserts, and more.

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Cross Country Skin Skis Improve the Recreational Experience


The cross country ski waxless “skin” base, uses inserted mohair strips on the ski base, which is extremely effective for all temperatures and snow conditions. It is high-performance waxless base technology for the classic skier, who prefers to use a waxless ski.

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Vacation Destinations for XC Skiers


Plan to gather up the kids and head to the hills during the school breaks next winter. No need to head to warmer climes - winter can be snowy, yet mild, and perfect for a family vacation with plenty of activities such as cross country (XC) skiing and snowshoeing. According to the experts, who regularly update, the nation's top XC ski resorts are exceedingly family-friendly with lots to enjoy together both on the snow and off. What families want and need is exactly what an xc ski vacation delivers: multi-generational participation, quality time and shared memories.

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Top Reasons To Love Nordic Skiing


It seems the older I get, the more I enjoy Nordic (XC) skiing. It probably has something to do with being out in nature and feeling confident on the skinny skis.

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Changing XC Skiing Stereotypes: ‘Aren’t Groomed Trails Free?’


There are at least three unfortunate typecasts that are really important to the cross country ski world: 

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Recreational Therapy for Injured Veterans


More doctors may be prescribing outdoor recreational therapy instead of Xanax if the proposed Federal legislation entitled the Outdoor Recreation Therapy for Veterans Act (HR 2435) passes. Studies are showing evidence that outdoor recreational activities can be therapeutic. I met Veterans Ray Gilmore and David Binford recently at a ski industry meeting and they were engaging anyone who would talk with them about the Azimuth Check Foundation, which provides injured veterans and first responders challenging year-round athletic activities to create wellness in an atmosphere of camaraderie.

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