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Callaghan Country, Whistler Olympic Park gear up for season

Callaghan Country expects soft opening on weekend

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While it’s shaping up to be a late start to the season for Nordic skiers, at least compared to recent years, now’s a good time to wax your skis and break the Lycra out of storage. Members of the Callaghan Valley Training Centre were already out on snow on Nov. 7 at Callaghan Country, but that was called after four hours when the rain started to fall.

Starting Wednesday, Callaghan Country owner and operator Brad Sills hopes to groom trails for a weekend opening.

“The snow line appears to be holding at around 3,500 feet, which should give us three to four kilometres of trail this weekend,” he said.

Most of the grooming will likely be by snowmobile, as at least 50 cm are needed to use a cat groomer and tiller. More snow at lower elevations could result in more trails being opened.

“It really depends on what happens between now and Friday,” he said. “We need about 50 cm for (cat and tiller), and that may be a little wishful thinking for this weekend.”

Callaghan Country is keeping fees low for the trails that are opened, “like 50 cents a kilometre,” said Sills, which would be $2. “It’s just a nominal fee to get people out, and while we get everything up and running.”

Visit www.callaghancountry.com for more details, or call 604-938-0616 for updates.

Meanwhile, Whistler Olympic Park has set its opening day for Nov. 21, snow permitting. The grand opening of the new daylodge, which features a cafeteria, change rooms, a rental shop, ticket sales and other services, is set for Nov. 22. The first events scheduled for the park are a pair of B.C. Cup races on Dec. 6-7, including one event that doubles as a Coast Cup on Dec. 7. More information will be posted at www.whistlerolympicpark.com.

The Lost Lake trails are scheduled to open Dec. 5, depending on snow.

This year all three cross country ski areas — Callaghan Country, Whistler Olympic Park, and Lost Lake — are offering a Tri-Area Pass. Early bird rates are $325 for adults, going up to $400 after Dec. 5. Youths pay $195 or $240, and children $163 or $200. As well Tri-Area family passes are also available for $650 until Dec. 5, going up to $800 afterwards.

Information on Lost Lake and the Tri Area Pass is at www.whistler.ca/content/view/69/88/

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