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dave norona/for metro vancouver
One of my favourite things to do on a sunny winter morning is to head up bright and early and enjoy the Cypress Cross-Country ski trails. Cypress is the only local mountain to offer cross-country skiing and it is also one of the best venues in Canada.
This winter has been epic with over 500 centimetres of snow falling over the last few months. Now the days are longer and the sun is out more often, which makes for the ideal time to get out and enjoy the 20 kilometres of meticulously groomed trails that Cypress has to offer.
There are two styles of cross-country skiing, skating and classic, and you can enjoy either one at Cypress. If you are new and would like to give it a try, enlist one of their great instructors to give you a private lesson or sign up for one of the many lesson packages offered. You will get top-notch instruction and learn in a comfortable environment with like-minded people. The best part about signing up for a multi-day lesson package is that they include a Nordic Starlite Nitetimer Season’s pass which is good for the rest of the season seven-nights a week from 3 p.m. to closing.
Cypress also offers awesome rental equipment for either skate skiing or classic, which allows you to try the sport without spending a lot of money. Then if you decide to buy your own you have a better idea of what to purchase. While you’re up there you also have to stop by the Hollyburn Lodge that was built in 1926. The building hasn’t changed much and it is a great place to stop in and fuel up on some great food and hot chocolate.
If you are looking for something a little slower paced, the cross-country area is also littered with amazing snowshoe trails that snake along the forest floor. You can choose trails to match your fitness level and again end up at Hollyburn Lodge for a delicious snack. Cypress also offers high-end rental snowshoes so you don’t need to have your own to enjoy this great adventure.
To keep the kids happy you have to visit the Tube Park which is located just below the cross-country area. These epic runs will have your kids screaming with joy and the tube tow will return them to the top for another wild ride!
The Olympics are coming and with Cypress hosting a number of the competitions the biggest changes have been in the downhill area. Cypress has undergone a huge face-lift with 40 per cent more runs, faster high-speed chairs and even more to come. The new runs off Black Mountain will host the Olympic mogul competition but until then you can rip it up and feel what it’s like to be a superstar mogul skier. Check it all out online at www.cypressmountain.com