We Love to Ski

We Love to Ski

Monday, February 27, 2012

Only In New England

It seems that our Bill Koch season is winding down already. Can you believe it? Our kids have become experts at skiing in all kinds of conditions, from fluffy snow to sticky snow to ICY snow. They've even learned things with NO snow. All the while fun has been front and center. Only in New England do you find folks so willing to take whatever weather we get and just go with it. We're adaptable, flexible, and undeterable!

Yesterday found the different ski groups cruising along on some pretty decent trails - some thin, bare, or icy spots kept things interesting. I have to say, though, that I was seriously impressed with what those grooming folks at Notchview can do with just a little bit of snow! After an hour or so of working up an appetite we all congregated back by the Visitor's Center for ice cream sundaes! Again, only in New England do people eat ice cream sundaes outside in the middle of winter!

The big news for Bill Koch clubs around New England this week is the upcoming Bill Koch Festival. All the details for this year's festival can be found here. What a great way to celebrate our young skiers and all they've learned this season! Don't forget to keep track of your kilometers skied this winter either. Here's the link for that.  In two weeks we'll officially end for this year, but if you're like me you'll be counting down until we are back at Bill Koch next season. Hopefully next year we'll have lots of snow to ski on. You know, only in New England do we appreciate a good snowy winter!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Ski for Ks Update

By Lisa Cook

Well, January was a pretty tricky month as far as snow goes. There were times when we had no snow, some snow, and perfect snow. I know it has been a tricky month to plan Bill Koch games and activities! All it takes is one big storm to come our way and set us up for a great rest of the season. Here's hoping February will bring that storm!

In preparation of the big storm that we're going to get sometime you can sign your kiddos up for the Ski for Ks program through NENSA. Remember I told you about it a couple of posts ago? Well, it seems they've made the program even more user friendly this year! You can track your child's kilometers right online and even see who, among registered users, has skied the most Ks this season. A simple registration online is all you need to get started. It took me all of two minutes to get an account set up and plug in our totals. Check it out here.

Just for fun I 'd thought I'd share some snow day rituals with you. You really can find anything on the internet! Maybe they'd work to get a snow storm! ;)

1. Eat a snow cone the day before you want a snow day.
2. Tape a penny to your door.
3. Open up your freezer and spin around five times counter clockwise.
4. Sleep with your pajamas on inside out and backwards.
5. Sleep with a spoon under your pillow.
6. Put twelve orange index cards on the hood of your car.
7. Throw an ice cube at a tree.
8. Do a snow dance.

Mostly we just have to wait. One storm, that's all we need...

Friday, January 27, 2012

New to Skiing?

By Lisa Cook

Did you get to ski last weekend? Wasn't it gorgeous out there? Notchview was buzzing with lots and lots of skiers, and yet I found myself all alone at times on the trails. I guess we all spread out pretty good!

I feel like we have a lot of people who are new to skiing among our ranks this year. It's so easy to send our children out for an afternoon on the trails, then hunker down in the cozy lodge with a good book and a cup of cocoa. But, I'd like to encourage you to get out there and experience all that skiing at Notchview has to offer. There are trails for every ability level - yes, even brand new skiers - and plenty of people who are more than happy to offer a ski tip or two. If skiing doesn't seem like your thing, then how about snowshoeing? Snowshoe rentals are available! Just check with the person manning the desk inside the visitor's center.

Here are my top ten reasons you should give cross-country skiing a try...

1. There are no age limits for cc skiing.
2. It is a lifelong activity.
3. Your whole family can enjoy it together.
4. It is a great way to stay active all winter.
5. There is nothing quite as peaceful as a snowy forest - and no better way to enjoy it than on skis.
6. Notchview is one of the nicest cc skiing places anywhere.
7. Cross-country skiers are a community.
8. You'll meet new people and make new friends.
9. Inspiration will surround you as you see little tykes chugging up a hill or senior citizens speeding down one.
10. Trying something new and stretching yourself will make you feel really good.

I can almost hear you saying that you don't have equipment. Don't let that stop you! There are a couple of places locally that offer ski rentals and sales. Just ask anyone at Bill Koch and we'll be glad to offer some recommendations.

Now, no more excuses. I'll look forward to seeing you on the trails!

Thursday, January 19, 2012


By Lisa Cook

Ah, our first week on the snow... Despite the biting wind and freezing temperatures I'd say it was a perfect day to be out on the trails. The crew at Notchview did a fantastic job packing, grooming, and tracking the forest pathways in anticipation of the crowds that gathered there over the weekend. The snow covered branches created a beautiful winter wonderland among the trees. I hope you were able to get out there and enjoy it.

Now that we are skiing I wanted to bring your attention to a NENSA program that's pretty fun. It's called Ski for Ks. Basically, you keep track of how many kilometers your child skis this season and at the end of the winter you send in your totals to the NENSA office. They'll, in turn, send your child a pretty cool patch. Patch colors are determined by how many kilometers your child skis. My girls did this last year and it was fun keeping track of how far they'd skied. Check out the link here. You'll find everything you need to know in order to participate.

Other fun things are coming up in Bill Koch too, so be on the lookout for email updates. In the meantime get out there and enjoy this beautiful weather. Winter may be the longest season in our neck of the woods, but the skiing still doesn't last long enough...

Friday, January 13, 2012

Snowless Fun

By Lisa Cook

As I type this it is raining on top of the new snow we received yesterday. Disappointing, but not disheartening. If you've been part of our group these past snowless weeks then you know what I mean. The tone up at Notchview has been anything but disheartening! We have a wonderful group of volunteer coaches and parents who have gone above and beyond to make our Bill Koch time extra fun - in spite of having no snow!

Did you see the amazing obstacle course last Sunday? The kids had to climb up, over, and through different obstacles. They also had to ride a scooter, swing on a rope, and jump over hurdles made of skis! Tod, Art, and Chris C. worked a good portion of the day Saturday to put it all together, and judging from the smiling faces I saw bounding along the course, I'd say they did a fantastic job!

We also had relay races and games set up that day. Again, we had wonderful coaches lend their time to put these events together. Thanks to Chris S. and Chris D. for their willingness to make our time at club super fun! Our skiers had no shortage of exciting activities, that's for sure.

So much planning and preparation goes into making these snowless days as engaging as they are, right down to the cookies and hot chocolate. Our club is special because of the willingness we all have to pitch in. Thank you to Heather for slaving over the pot of hot cocoa for us, and to all the folks who brought treats to share. It really was a great day!

Maybe we'll be skiing this week, maybe we won't. Either way we'll have an excellent time!

Here's a few photos I took before my camera batteries quit on me. Make sure to check out the bulletin board. Our photographers have posted pictures!

Monday, December 19, 2011

We're Back!

By Lisa Cook

I don't know about you, but coming into the Budd Visitor Center yesterday and seeing folks I haven't seen since last ski season ended, felt really nice. The lingering smell of wood smoke, rosy-cheeked children coming and going, and people happily chatting with old friends and new - that's what Notchview is in winter, and I, for one, love it. I'm glad it's finally Bill Koch season once again.

So far no snow. Kind of a bummer, but in the true spirit of our Bill Koch club we made the most of it. Yesterday we got the low down on all things club related and then the kiddos and their coaches set out for the field to play some games. We have over 90 children enrolled this year! And even though many families couldn't make it to our meeting yesterday there were still a BUNCH of people of all ages running around out there. Here's a look at some of the fun..

Hopefully by our next meeting there will be snow covering the ground. But even if there isn't our group is sure to have a great time - we always do!

 I don't know anything about other Bill Koch groups around New England, but I do know that our group is pretty special. A big thank you to our wonderful group of coaches who are committed each week to helping our kids learn to ski and making sure they have fun doing it. And thank you to all the amazing parents who are willing to lend a hand whenever and wherever needed. And let's not forget the tireless crew who has dedicated countless hours to pulling everything together to make this season happen. THANK YOU!

 If you're new to our club, welcome. I know it won't take long for you to see what a good thing we have going here. Jump right in, sign up to help, get involved. You'll be glad you did. There really is no community quite like the Nordic ski community at Notchview. :)

Until next time, THINK SNOW!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Changing Perspectives

By: Lisa Cook

It used to be that winter seemed SO long. Countless snowstorms meant hazardous driving, snow days with no school, and a virtual eternity until spring. That perspective completely changed when our family became Nordic skiers. This year all the snow meant something much different to us. Every storm meant more snow to add to the picturesque trails of Notchview. Every flake meant more time toenjoy skiing as a family. And now as I sit here in the Budd Visitors lodge I feel disappointed at the talk of forty degree temps and rain. This year's Nordic season is coming to an end. BOO! It's already time for Bill Kochers to turn in our leased skis or hang up our owned skis. Nothing fun ever lasts long enough - does it.
As we wrap up this Bill Koch season remember that Notchview isn't just for skiing. The snow will melt away to reveal a different kind of beauty. The perfectly groomed trails we've enjoyed all winter will be transformed into grassy pathways. Ice coated branches will become green leafy canopies. And instead of skiing we can be hiking.
Orienteering was a new venture for many of us this year, but it isn't something that can only be done on skis! I'm thinking we may try to hike to some of the boxes we didn't get to this winter. Maybe pack a picnic lunch and make a day of it. If your interested, a template of the the orienteering cards can be e-mailed to you so you can fill it up this summer.
I've also been told that there are some geocaches located at Notchview. Check out this site to see if it's something your family may enjoy.
So get out there and have some family fun until the snow flies next year! It won't be long until we are back out there skiing once again. This year's new skiers will be veterans, just itching for the chance to learn more. The veteran skiers will have that much more confidence and will be ready to improve their skills even further. I know I'm looking forward to it already. And as of this post there are only 291 days until the first day of winter 2011!
Until then here are a few pictures that haven't been posted yet. Enjoy...