Nordic goes on annual winter ski trip

Athletes improve skiing, relationship with teammates


Carissa Prestholdt

Junior Danny Walsh double poles at the start of the Metro West Classic race Dec. 16 at Hyland Park Reserve. The ski team went to Giants Ridge Ski Resort Dec. 26-28 to train for future meets.

Sofie Geretz

Junior Max Gohman said the ski trip at Giants Ridge aids athletes in preparation for the upcoming State meet and brings together the team.

“The winter trip is at Giants Ridge, near Biwabik in northern Minnesota where the State meet is,” Gohman said. “It’s good practice for those who are doing the relays at the State meet. The trip brings us together and we’ve done it for the past three years. It’s a really positive thing.”

According to senior Amelia Ryan, the team worked nonstop throughout the few days they were at the ski lodge.

“We got to Giants Ridge at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday. We started right away with the coaches and they helped us with technique. We went on long (workouts until) 5 p.m.,” Ryan said. “Saturday we had a time trial at 11 a.m.”

According to parent chaperone Lisa Klein, the winter trip provides athletes with significant time with the coaches.

“With a team of almost 80 kids, the (three) coaches are spread really thin. With a trip like this to get much more time spending with lots of different kids and different groups of skiers,” Klein said. “Some of the skiers who have had little time with coaching got to do so on this trip.”

Ryan said she enjoyed taking a break from skiing and taking in her surroundings with other Nordic athletes.

“On one of my long skis on Friday, I was with a group of girls and we were going on a 24k,” Ryan said. “We took a break, laid down in the snow for five minutes and took a moment of silence, appreciating the nature and skiing around us. It was really beautiful.”

According to Gohman, although the weather altered a day of the trip, it was a positive and beneficial experience for the team.

“We ended up actually getting snowed in most of Saturday, but it was a lot of fun,” Gohman said. “You really get to know the team better and train a lot and there was more one on one time (with the coaches).

Ryan said the trip improved both skiing and bonds with one another throughout their time at Giants Ridge.

“I’m really happy that I got to go on this winter trip. I learned more about technique and skiing from the coaches,” Ryan said. “But more importantly, I got to know my teammates better. I’m really thrilled with this year’s experience.”

Gohman said his favorite part of the trip was stargazing at night with his teammates after late night skiing. 

“The highlight probably was when we went out at night to ski,” Gohman said. “There was one trail that was far away from the public chalet, we all sat down in the dark and looked at the stars.” 

Klein said not only does the team spend significant time together training, but also has significant recreational time together.

“While they’re working really hard skiing, they’re also playing hard,” Klein said, “So lots of fun downtime for the kids to get to know each other better.

According to Ryan, having teammates work both on their ability and their bonding was worthwhile.

“Teams that have good chemistry go a lot farther than just talented teams. Growing together and getting to know each other better helps so much and creates more positivity on the team, which makes the team a lot stronger,” Ryan said. “I’m really proud to be on this team.”

Gohman said Nordic has done a good job of bringing together not just those similar in grade or gender, but as a cohesive team.

“It really brings the group together. When I joined the team, we were separated by age and gender,” Gohman said. “Over the past few years, that’s been getting way better.”

According to Ryan, the significant amount of skiing the team has done is impressive and important in their bonding.

“If we added up all the kilometers we skied altogether, we would have skied from Giants Ridge to the West Coast and then to the East Coast,” Ryan said. “So that was really impressive to hear from one of the parents who did the calculation.”