Cross-Country Skiing in Norway – Touring on the Peer Gynt Loipe

The Peer Gynt Loipe is a long-distance ski-trail that runs high along the west flank of Gudbrandsdalen, a wide valley that starts near Oslo and then runs north to Lillehammer and beyond.

The trail itself extends from the little settlement at Dalseter to the ski-resort at Skeikampen. It goes through an area known as the Peer Gynt Ski Region. Up here the cross-country skiing is very good, with over 600km of track. And there are good hotels, which are usually willing to accept bookings for just one or two nights – at least, outside the high season weeks in February and at Easter.

The Peer Gynt Loipe links together some of these hotels. Its total length is about 60km. The entire distance is tracked by grooming machines, so you can use light skis without metal edges.

This combination of well-maintained tracks, good accommodation, high altitude and snow security makes the Peer Gynt a good choice for fit and capable skiers.

SKIING ITINERARY

You start from one of the hotels at Dalseter, at 880m altitude and right at the head of the Espedalen valley.

You can get there by public bus from Lillehammer (which is reached by train from Oslo Gardermoen airport). Alternatively you can stay on the train beyond Lillehammer, to Vinstra, and take a pre-arranged hotel car to Dalseter, a 35km drive.

The tour can be broken down into the following stages.

The first is an 18km stretch from Dalseter to Fefor. The trail climbs steadily to 1030m, makes a long descent and then winds easily over to Fefor. At Fefor there is a hotel.

The next stage goes to Gala-Wadahl. The distance is 10-15km, depending on which of these neighbouring villages you aim for. Each has a hotel. Initially the trail undulates through forest, but then drops down to the lake Galavatn. After following the lake shore for a couple of kilometres it climbs steadily up to Gala. The continuation to Wadahl is flatter.

The next stage, to Lauvasen, is less than 10km and the track is flat and easy. At Lauvasen there is a mountain hotel with rooms in the lodge or in adjacent cabins.

The final stage, from Lauvasen to Skeikampen is a long one, about 25km. The trail mostly keeps to a height of about 1000 metres – above the tree line. Finally it comes steeply down to the bustling resort of Skeikampen where there is a hotel. From there you can take a bus down to Lillehammer.

Of course it’s possible to combine some of the stages. A reasonably strong skier could consider doing it in three days, with stops in Dalseter, Fefor and Lauvasen. I once did it in two days, overnighting at Lauvasen.

LOGISTICS

Some travel companies offer a supported tour along the Peer Gynt Loipe. They make a relaxing week of it, with a few extra side-loops and with baggage transfers between the overnight stops so that you can ski with just a light pack.

But it’s easy to make your own arrangements, especially if you are prepared to travel light and carry all your kit in a rucksack. (You can leave your main bags at left-luggage at Gardermoen airport or at Oslo rail station.)

It is also possible, although rather expensive, to have your baggage transported between the hotels. You need to set this up with the individual hotels at the time of booking.

Alternatively, you could leave your main bags at Dalseter and return there after the tour, taking buses via Lillehammer.

Why Telluride, Colorado?

After living in Breckenridge for 18 years, my wife and I decided to move to Telluride. The main reason was that now we have a child and we wanted to move to a small safe town with a good school district and a kid-friendly atmosphere. Telluride was our first choice for many reason, however, the main reason was the excellent school district empowered by some of the happiest teachers we’ve ever encountered.

My daughter was born in 2008 and as new parents we started exploring the school system in Summit County and we were extremely disappointed by it’s offerings. The director of the gifted program at the time was a very good friend and she gave us an insight on what is happening to the school district in Summit County. My wife and I were shocked to learn that the Summit County school district was not up to par with other nearby school districts. Some of our friends with kids suggested that we have our daughter join a school in Vail, Colorado. Good idea, nevertheless, driving 80 miles round trip five days a week was a huge burden of which we could not fulfill without being out of our comfort zone. Thus, we started exploring Vail as a new home for our family, however, my wife was not happy with the fact that Vail is located directly on I-70 regardless of how great the town is. A very good friend who has moved to Telluride years earlier recommended that we rent a home in Telluride for few months and explore the possibility of us calling Telluride our new home so we did and never felt the need to leave the area since then.

The town of telluride is isolated and truly it is a town located at the end of the highway. Telluride locals have consistently demonstrated that they are some of the friendliest people we’ve ever met. No wonder Telluride as named the friendliest ski town in North America. The first thing we noticed was the speed limit set to 15 miles per hour allowing families and kids to roam the town as if it was an extension of Town Park located at the eastern end of town. It was summer when we moved to Telluride and we were able to explore nearby towns, hiking trails, Ouray’s hot springs and we just fell in love with the town.

As winter approached, we decided to explore a ski school program for our daughter who was 4 years old at the time and had never skied before. We decided to have her join the Telluride Ski Squad program for her to have a fun outdoor activity at least twice a week though out the winter months. Time goes by and our kid is skiing every weekend and then one day we got an invitation to attend a ski birthday party for one of my daughter’s friends, therefore, my wife and I decided to get our ski gear out and join the fun by attending the party and lending a hand and keeping the kids safe on the slopes. We fell in love with Telluride Mountain that day, unlike Summit County and Vail ski resorts, we where shocked to see that there were no lift lines and the number of skiers on the mountain was about 10% of what we are used to. My wife an I stopped skiing in 2004 due to the unpleasant time spent waiting in lift lines and constantly trying to dodge thousands of skiers covering the ski slopes like a moving carpet of death where my wife and I sustained few injuries caused by skiers who like to go fast but don’t really know how to ski.

Skiing Telluride was a reminder of how Breckenridge used to be back in 1994 and we fell in love with the sport all over again. Telluride Ski Resort is unique and best suited for a family ski vacation when compared to any other ski resort in Colorado. It’s truly a hidden treasure tucked in the heart of Colorado’s south-western slopes offering incredible views and safe skiing for all.

What Is Man-Made Snow?

There are different kinds of man-made snows. First, there is the fake snow, that looks and feels like snow but is not formed the same way that snow is formed. The second is the kind of snow which is made under the same conditions as real snow is made in, but requires human initiative to be made. The first kind of snow is widely used in areas where the formation of snow is either unviable because of the climate of the place, or because of the weather conditions prevailing at a time when the snow is required. The second kind of snow is used to augment the amount of snow produced. Here is an article about the various uses of man-made snow.

The most common and cheapest form of man-made snow is the fake snow. They are widely used by children and adults, not for an authentic snowy experience, but only for fun. They are available like spray paints in cans. This form of man-made snow is called fake snow because it is synthetic in nature. It is not frozen water droplets, but a concoction of chemicals that form a dry foam-like substance or emulsion. They look like snow, and hence are called fake snow. You may have experienced them yourselves in parties or science projects. Children can also make their own fake snow with ease. You just have to look at YouTube videos. The materials required are not hard to find, and the fake snow to be made is not hard to make. This is the reason that it is so cheap.

Another form of man-made snow is that which is not synthetically produced. It is real snow, the wet, frozen water droplets. Except, it isn’t formed in the atmosphere, but inside a machine. The basic inputs are energy and water. Electrical energy is required to recreate the conditions required for the formation of snow- the right temperature and humidity. Such snow is used in ski-resorts to augment the snow-cover. The environment in ski-resorts is maintained by using snow-making machines. Without them, ski-resorts are bound to remain closed when snowfall is inadequate. If you are at a ski-resort, out of curiosity, you can look out for snow outlets. They may be installed inconspicuously most of the times. But you will find it if you are looking for it. While those machines used in ski-resorts are very expensive, considering that they construct snow-making plants, there are also smaller snow making machines that can be used at home. The water supply can come from a hose pipe, while generators can be used for the electricity requirement. Even though they are more expensive than fake snow, they are real. So even if you have to pay a greater price for them, it may still be worth it. It is not impossible now to build a snow man in your backyard if you live in Florida or San Francisco. It is not impossible to have a snowy Christmas in Las Vegas. Man’s ideas have made it possible to recreate mother nature’s phenomena. Though this is not recommended by environmentalists, you can try it once in a while, or actually visit a cold, freezing place for the overall experience, instead of the instant gratification you receive otherwise.

Adventure Awaits On a School Ski Trip To Mallnitz

Organising a school ski trip offers multiple rewards, from letting students broaden their cultural horizons to putting their skills and stamina to the test – not to mention having a great time with their classmates in an inspiring new setting. Europe has numerous ski resorts to choose from, and the best ones for school groups combine great routes and modern facilities with friendly and visually appealing surroundings. Mallnitz offers all of the above, with a good amount of variety in difficulty levels – making it ideal for groups of mixed experience and ability. A state of the art lift system, bus links to the nearby Molltal glacier skiing area, and a full range of student-friendly apr├Ęs ski activities makes this one of Austria’s best resorts for school groups. Read on to find out more.

Introducing Mallnitz

Nestled in a valley in the picturesque Hohe Tauern mountains in the Austrian region of Carinthia, the village of Mallnitz is a highly appealing school ski trip destination, surrounded by sublime natural beauty. The area has a long history, thanks to its location on age-old mountain trade paths, which were later incorporated into the Roman Road, and continued to be a key trade and transport route well into the middle ages. Today, the area is part of the Hohe Tauern National Park, the largest such park in Austria – not to mention the most extensive nature reserve in all of the Alps. Key parts of the park are protected from human activity, but even the populated areas and ski routes are graced with extremely beautiful evergreen plants.

Skiing in Mallnitz

When it comes to the primary activity of a school ski trip – skiing – Mallnitz is a gem of a resort. Students will primarily find themselves skiing on the 2,800 metre high Angkogel Mountain, which offers progressively more challenging runs the higher up they go. A key feature of the resort is its suitability for a variety of levels: beginners will find a gentle range of slopes at the mid-point of the mountain, while intermediate skiers can proceed to the top, where they will be treated to the pick of all the mountain’s routes. Additionally, students will have access to the stunning Molltal Glacier and its superb pistes.

Non-Skiing activities

Mallnitz is has plenty to offer school ski trip groups off the slopes as well as on them, and your students will be spoiled for choice when it comes to opportunities for unwinding after a successful day’s skiing. There is a good range of student-friendly evening activities, including karaoke and disco nights, and a choice of shops and cafes for them to investigate. Swimming is an excellent way to relax the muscles after skiing, and Mallnitz provides with the Taurnbad pool, one of the region’s best.