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Cross Country Tips

bulletYou do not have to be a super athlete to enjoy cross country skiing and benefit from the improved fitness. If your style is little more than walking, you will still enjoy the great scenery and sliding along the tracks on a sunny day. 
bulletA layered approach to clothing is best. X-C skiing is an excellent fitness activity where you use all parts of your body. You will soon get quite hot in standard downhill padded clothing. It is best to be able to take off one or two layers as you start to slightly climb and to put on layers on as you reach more exposed spots, stop or go downhill.
bulletX-C skiing can be a lot more pleasant than downhill skiing when the weather and visibility are not perfect. It is much easier to find sheltered spots to ski amongst the trees. However do yourself a favor and make your first experience a nice sunny day if possible.
bulletIf you can walk and ride a bike you can quickly learn the basics of cross country technique. Despite this it is  wise to take a few lessons early on to avoid picking up bad habits which must be unlearned later. The Nordic bowl is a great place get your X-C legs.
bulletX-C equipment can be hired at Mount Beauty and at Windy Corner Falls Creek.
bulletWhen the weather is poor resort trails such as the Aqueduct trail, lower part of McKay Road and Pipeline Loop can be a pleasant sheltered spot to ski.
bulletTrail fees fees no longer apply on Falls Creek 40 km+ network of groomed trails.
bulletWith a little experience you will find that you can cross country ski at twice walking pace and can average more than 6 km per hour without allowing for lunch or extended breaks. 20 km is usually a good full day tour, leaving plenty of time for lunch, viewing the scenery and a good daylight safety margin in case of weather change. You can now head across the Rocky Valley Dam wall for tours into the national park. From your map note alternative routes and huts and shelters along the way. 
bulletWith no lift queues and no expensive lift tickets, most cross country skiers have a more relaxed start to the day getting to Falls Creek later than the downhill skiers. However if you are going on a longer tour of 20 km or more it, it will pay to get started fairly early.
bulletDo not be over adventurous at first. Before you do your first 20 km tour, do two 10 km tours in the one day. One in the morning and one in the afternoon. This way you can be confident of your endurance and speed. If the weather starts to deteriorate do not continue to ski away from the resort. Change your plans and head back to the resort or find a trail closer to the resort.
bulletMake sure that you are properly prepared for a weather change before you ski outside the resort area. You should carry;
bulletBad weather gear including, waterproof and wind proof jacket, warm gloves, hat, goggles and extra layer of clothing.
bulletMap and compass
bulletSilver emergency blanket, emergency food and matches or lighter, in case of injury or becoming trapped by bad weather.
bulletDo not ski alone. Record details of your party in the intentions book at Windy Corner ski hire. If you are skiing in the national park and for any reason you have the slightest doubt as to the health or fitness of a member of your party or your ability to get back to Falls Creek on time record details of your party, the time and date and where you are heading to next in the log book of any hut you visit or intensions book you pass.
bullet Make sure that there is someone at your accommodation or someone back home that you have agreed to ring who will raise the alarm if you do not return at the end of the day.  A phone is provided at Kiewa View so that friends or relatives can ring you if they have any doubt as to whether you have returned.
bulletThousands of well prepared people ski tour in the Alpine National Park each year without any problems. Take the basic precautions above to ensure that you are not one of the very few who need to be rescued.
bulletOn a nice sunny winter day there is nothing to compare to a family ski tour picnic. Try it.
bulletSee our Ski Tour page for suggested tours.