One Good Tour Deserves Another! 

Registration for 2022 Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour Underway

The 49th annual Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour will take place in person in Ketchum, Idaho, on its traditional day, the first Saturday in February, falling in 2022 on February 5. Due to the popularity of last year’s virtual event, “Our Boulder, Your Backyard,” participants may opt to ski on a course of their choice between February 1-6 (except for the Harriman Trail, which will be closed to virtual skiers on February 5.) 

Registration is now open at skireg.com/zions-bank-boulder-mountain-tour. All entrants who sign up between now and October 31 will be entered into a drawing for season Nordic ski passes courtesy of the good folks at Sun Valley Resort and the Blaine County Recreation District. 

Early-bird race fees are $99 for adults and $69 for juniors (18-under) for the Full Boulder and $79 for adults, and $49 for juniors for the Half Boulder. Entry fee includes race bags, official 2022 BMT SWIX race hat, event program, sponsored goods, a raffle ticket, a 10-week training program for beginner, intermediate and advanced skiers, and the opportunity to win amazing prizes from event sponsors. 

For the virtual event, participants will ski a 30k or 15k course of their choice in a convenient location. Trails will be suggested at various areas and resorts in regions throughout the United States. Times will be submitted by racers for posting on the BMT Leaderboard. Prizes will be awarded via  livestream drawing on Monday, February 7. 

The “Virtually Amazing BMT” cost is $49 for adults and $39 for juniors. This fee includes an official 2022 BMT race hat by SWIX, a raffle ticket, a BMT program, training plans, and shipping if needed. 

The BMT annually recognizes its fastest, oldest and youngest racers, on-course preem champions, wave winners, and Jon Engen Perpetual Awards for most significant time improvement (male/female) from one year to the next in the Full Boulder.  

Post-race, the BMT Block Party and Awards Bash will be from 5-7:30 p.m. at Ketchum Town Square. Food and beverage trucks, awards, music, and a good time will be on tap. Raffle prizes include skis, boots, poles, clothing, bags, and training aids from our generous sponsors and supporters. You must be present to win.

Additionally, the BMT honors nonprofit organizations via its “Ski It Forward” award. In 2021, the Boulder distributed $5,000 to 10 nonprofit organizations throughout the United States as voted on by participants, including The Advocates, Hunger Coalition, Meissner Nordic Team, Protect Our Winters, Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, Bogus Basin Ski Team, Community Shares of Wisconsin, Idaho Food Bank, and Higher Ground.

Last year’s winners were Best Costume – Team Breadcrumb, BMT Oldest – Nancy Fichter, BMT Youngest – Isla Sundby, Most BMT Swag – Kurt Dudley, Team Spirit – No Pressure, 15k Pacesetter – Lizzy Albin, 30k Pacesetter – Brian Elkins. 

In 2022, award categories will be Pacesetter, Youngest and Oldest, and Best Costume. All winners will be drawn by raffle with the exception of the costume category – which will be recognized in both the in-person and virtual events. 

The Boulder Mountain Tour is proud to announce the 15k Half Boulder has been named in honor of valley-and-event favorite Charley French. Participants can now ski the 15k Charley Course Half Boulder. 

Born in St. Louis, Mo., on August 3, 1926, French enlisted in the US Army at age 17, serving as a machinist aboard the USS Cleveland in the South Pacific during World War II. He graduated from Long Beach State University with a degree in electrical engineering. In 1971 at the age of 45, he came to Ketchum for a job as an engineer and in product development with a new and growing company named Scott USA. One of his developments was shaping cycling’s aerodynamic handlebar, which was strategically utilized by American Greg Lemond in his 1989 Tour de France win. 

A notable athlete himself, French is a devoted skier, cyclist, and triathlete with numerous BMT age-class championships under his belt. 

“I think I have done all the Boulders but four,” Charley said. 

Charley French and Shauna Thoreson at the 2019 award bash.

Event sponsorships are available. Details? Please contact race director Jody Zarkos at bouldermountaintour@gmail.com or 208.720.1810. 

 

Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour Coming to a Town Near You

Your trail. Your choice. Your Boulder.

While many of the hallmarks of the 48th annual Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour remain in place, there are a few key changes this year in response to the Covid pandemic and desire to keep racers and the community-at-large as healthy as possible.

The first is the date. Instead of one day, participants can ski any day and any style between Monday, February 1 and Sunday, February 7.

The second is the place. BMT organizers are encouraging racers to use their imagination to create and complete self-supported 15 or 30-kilometer races. To this end, many ski areas and organizations have established courses in conjunction with the BMT. Course partners are located throughout the United States. They include Soldier Hollow Nordic Center, Utah, Tahoe XC, Calif., Mount Bachelor, Ore., Meissner Nordic Community, Bend, Ore., Craftsbury Outdoor Center, Vermont, Washburn Ski Trails, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, Rendezvous Ski Trails, West Yellowstone, Mt., Sun Valley Nordic Center, and the Blaine County Recreation District.

“We appreciate everyone rallying to make the Boulder happen. The response has been amazing. We want to emphasize you can ski anywhere. It doesn’t have to be an official course. It is whatever and wherever makes you happy. If you want to ski 10k at three different venues that is awesome,” BMT executive director Jody Zarkos remarked. 

Registration runs through January 31 on SkiReg.com. The cost to “Rock the Boulder” is $39 for adults, $25 for 18-under, and $125 for teams of four. The entry fee includes an official 2021 BMT race hat by SWIX, raffle entry, sponsored items, BMT collateral, and a general training plan geared to novice, intermediate and advanced skiers. 

The Boulder Mountain Tour, sponsored by Zions Bank with substantial support from the Challenged Athletes Foundation, Sue Engelmann of Berkshire Hathaway, Sentinel Security, and Blaine County Title, believes in the power and passion of nonprofit organizations performing vital work during these difficult days. To this end, the BMT will expand its “Ski It Forward” award, in recognition of the vital work these organizations perform. This year, the BMT will donate $5,000 to nonprofits throughout the United States. Registrants vote on the charity of their choice, and organizations receiving the most votes will receive donations at the BMT’s culmination. 

Prizes will be awarded via raffle on an almost daily basis throughout the week via livestream at vimeo.com/2021BMT. Prize categories are Oldest/Youngest Racers, Best Costume (based on photos), Team Spirit (based on photos), and Pacesetters. Some of the great prizes up for grabs include skis from Salomon and Madshus, a pour-over coffee bar from Lizzy’s Fresh Coffee, boots, and outstanding cross-country gear from industry standouts. 

Event sponsors also include Atkinsons’ Market, Backwoods Mountain Sports, Clear Creek Disposal, Davis Embroidery, Elephant’s Perch, Engel & Völkers Jones Grover Team, EnjoyWinter, Fischer, Hammer Nutrition, Lizzy’s Fresh Coffee, Power Engineers, Rex Wax, Rossignol, Sturtevants, Sun Valley Associates, Salomon, Swix, TOKO, Zenergy, with support from Blaine County Recreation District, Bluebird Solar, Boulder Nordic Sport, Cellar Pub, Conrad Brothers Construction, Dons, Galena Lodge, Lefty’s Bar & Grill, Morgan’s Fine Finishes, Mountain Rides, Nourish Me, Perry’s, Rickshaw, Sawtooth Avalanche Center, Sawtooth National Recreation Area, Sun Valley Community School, Sun Valley Company, Sushi on Second, VAMPS, Wrapcity and Wood River YMCA. 

Details? Please contact race director Jody Zarkos at or visit the BMT website at www.bouldermountaintour.com.

Ready, set, go.

Hydration Tips and To-Do’s from Hammer Nutrition

To help participants gear up for the 2021 Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour, the good folks at Hammer Nutrition provided hydration tips to get you to the starting and finish lines in the best possible shape; physically and mentally.

An original in the industry, Hammer has offered endurance fuels, supplements & education since 1987.

To visit Hammer’s website and see their great lineup as well as additional information and articles, please click HERE.

Hammer Tip One – Hydration 

FACT: In general, most athletes, under most conditions, will satisfy hydration needs with a fluid intake in the range of 20-25 ounces per hour – roughly the equivalent of a standard size small or large water bottle.

Lighter athletes or athletes exercising in cool weather conditions may only require an intake of 16-18 ounces per hour. Larger athletes or athletes exercising under very hot and humid conditions are the ones that can consider a fluid intake in the range of 28 ounces per hour, perhaps up to 30 ounces per hour in extreme conditions.

It’s important to remember that regular fluid intake over 30-34 ounces hourly significantly increases the potential for serious performance and health problems

Hammer Tip 2 – Caloric Intake

For best performance, DO NOT follow the “calories out, calories in” advice given by some “experts.” Instead replenish calories in “body cooperative” amounts, allowing your fat stores to make up the difference. For most athletes, 120-180 calories/hour is the ideal range. In very rare instances, larger athletes and hyper metabolic types may need slightly more calories per hour.

Workouts/races of 2 hours or less: choose a fuel with complex carbohydrates, not simple sugars (glucose, sucrose, fructose, etc.). Simple sugars cause energy peaks and crashes, and must be mixed in weak concentrations for efficient digestion. Complex carbohydrates absorb at about three times the rate as simple sugars. Plus, you get steady, reliable energy—no peaks and valleys.

Workouts or races of 2-3-hours, or more: Fuel primarily with complex carbohydrates, not simple sugars. Also, 10-15% of your fuel’s calorie content should come from protein, ideally soy, to help satisfy energy requirements and prevent muscle tissue catabolism.

Hammer Tip 3 – Electrolytes

FACT: Salt (sodium chloride) cannot fulfill your entire requirements for electrolytes. The minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium also must be replenished to ensure the proper functioning of key body systems. In addition, your daily dietary sodium intake, fitness level, acclimatization, and the environmental conditions, such as heat and humidity, all affect the amount of electrolytes you will need to replenish during exercise.

For a balanced, full-spectrum formula of electrolytes, replenish with Endurolytes. Choose regular Endurolytes, Endurolytes Extreme, or Endurolytes Fizz in doses appropriate for the conditions.

Hammer Tip 4 – Pre-Event Fueling

To perform and feel your best during races or workouts, consume no more than 300-400 calories. Choose easily digested, complex carbohydrates, along with a small amount of protein and a little healthy fat. Avoid fiber, simple sugar, and acidic foods. Finish your meal 3 hours before exercise. Eating within 3 hours can seriously hurt your performance by 1) reducing the conversion of fats to fuels, and 2) accelerating glycogen depletion.

Tip: If your race is early, don’t sacrifice sleep to eat. Instead, consume a small amount of supplemental fuel, such as one Hammer Gel, about 5 minutes before starting.

Hammer Tip 5 – Recovery

What you do immediately after your workout is just as important as your workout itself. “Refill the tank” as soon as possible; ideally within the first 60 minutes to fully replenish glycogen and build and repair muscle tissue. Consume 30-60 grams of complex carbohydrates and 10-20 grams of protein. Recoverite supplies both in the ideal 3:1 ratio. Also, be sure to take antioxidants after exercise to neutralize cell-damaging free radicals and speed recovery.

Hammer Tip 6 – Reflecting Back, Looking Forward

Whether your recent race was a “personal best, a “DNF,” or somewhere in between, now is the time to reflect—making written notes even—on how things went and why.

 Start with reviewing what went well from the race, so that you can be sure to incorporate it into your next race. This includes factors like physical performance (such as pacing) and your gear and fueling choices.

 Next, take note of areas of opportunity, such as consuming too many or insufficient calories or fluids, timing them wrong, going out too fast, or choosing the wrong gear. These extremely helpful lessons learned can lead to improvement next time.

Instead of allowing these setbacks to be stumbling blocks, turn them into stepping stones so you can achieve greater success in your future races.

Mt Bachelor, Oregon

Course Description

Enjoy the beauty of the high Cascades on the fantastic trails of the Mt Bachelor Nordic Center while challenging yourself in the 2021 Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour on our 16km single-loop course.  The course begins on the Common Corridor and immediately rises to the high point of the course on Blue Jay’s Way. From here, the course makes a long and exciting 3 km descent to the low point of the network at the bottom of Oli’s Alley, via the Lower Devecka’s trail. Upon completion of Oli’s Alley, the course winds up and around Leslie’s Lunge and returns to Lower Devecka’s for the steady climb back up to Bob’s Bungalow. From Bob’s, it’s a moderate and gentle climb up Woody’s Way before the final climb up the Screamer Trail to the lap/finish on the Common Corridor. With excellent views, pristine grooming and a true test of skill, it will be an event to remember!

Please note: Mt Bachelor will offer a marked course Monday through Friday,  Feb. 1-5, but not over the weekend.  As well, all participants will require a trail pass or season pass, as well as a (free) parking reservation. 

About Us

Nestled in the Cascade Mountain Range near Bend, Oregon, the Mount Bachelor Nordic Center boasts the longest groomed ski season in North America and some of the best cross-country ski trails in the Northwest. This unique resort, located entirely on United States Forest Service land, is situated on a dormant volcano and surrounded by peaks of 7,000 to 11,000 feet. With 56 km of groomed trails and an average snowfall of 40 feet, Nordic skiers enjoy extensive and exceptional grooming from mid-November through late May. The Mount Bachelor Nordic Center is the spring training grounds of the United States Ski Team.

Website: https://www.mtbachelor.com/plan-your-trip/nordic/overview

Sun Valley, Idaho

Course Description

The Sun Valley Nordic Center has put together three great trails to make a 15km loop.

From the Sun Valley Clubhouse follow Trail Creek Loop out to Trail Creek Cabin. Once there, ski to the left of the Cabin and take the Boundary Loop out over Hyndman View and return back along the creek. When you return to the Cabin stay to the left and ski the Proctor Loop. Upon your return to the Cabin finish the Trail Creek Loop for 15km. Ski it twice for 30km.

About Us

Discover some of the best cross-country skiing in America, with unmatched trail quality, training programs, clinics, rentals and a state-of-the-art clubhouse for skiers of all levels. With over 40 km of trails groomed daily for skate and classic skiing, the Sun Valley Nordic & Snowshoe Center provides a head-clearing experience. Sun Valley’s trail system maintains consistent conditions without leaving you gasping for air. Ski and snowshoe equipment for all ages is available for rent.

Website: https://www.sunvalley.com/things-to-do/nordic-skiing

Craftsbury Outdoor Center, Vermont

Course Description

Virtual BMT racers at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center will contest their efforts on one of the Outdoor Center’s most classic skis, a 7.5km version of the Ruthie’s Run loop. Leaving the lower field and the lap has a mellow start, with a gradual climb and then fun descent down to the Black River. From there the climbing begins, with a two kilometer gradual climb up to the height of land. Another gradual rolling descent back to the Black River gives tired skiers an opportunity to recover. The final 2km include a fast flat kilometer along the river bottom before a series of stair step climbs bring skiers back to the lower field for another lap.

About Us

The Craftsbury Outdoor Center is a 4-season trail center located in village of Craftsbury in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. Our 104km trail network rolls through farm fields, crosses lakes and swamps, and dips in and out of the hardwood and softwood forests that make up the landscape of the Black River Valley. Our team of groomers works tirelessly to provide the best ski conditions for visitors of all ages and abilities, from first timers to World Cup champions. 

Website: www.craftsbury.com

Blaine County Recreation District Trails, Idaho

Course Description

In the winter, the Wood River Valley transforms into Nordic Town USA.  Boasting fantastic beginner, intermediate and advanced terrain, excellent snow for Nordic skiing, and almost perpetual sunny skies. Thanks to the Blaine County Recreation District, the area offers over 200 kilometers of expertly groomed Nordic trails each year.

Please note: For participants familiar with skiing the traditional Boulder Mountain Tour course, this year’s self-supported BMT will not provide the following infrastructure: a groomed starting area at Senate Meadows, constructed or manned road crossing south of Galena Lodge, aid stations, course sweep, or expanded finish area across from SNRA Headquarters.

Also, the North Valley Trail System will be open to the public the week of the BMT. Dogs, recreational skiers and fat bikes could be part of your ski experience. Share the trail and share a smile.

Areas groomed by the BCRD with total kilometers (not including snowshoe trails):

Alturas Lake Trails – 17k

Billy’s Bridge – 9k

Galena Lodge – 38k

Harriman Trail – 31k

Lake Creek Trails – 9.6k

Park Creek Trails – 14.9k

Prairie Creek – 8k

Quigley Nordic  – 22.4k

SNRA/North Fork – 11.2k

Sun Valley Nordic – 35k

Wood River Trail System (bike path) – 32k

Link to BCRD winter trail maps: https://www.bcrd.org/north-valley-trails-winter.php

About Us

In partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, the Blaine County Recreation District manages, maintains and grooms over 160km of terrain including over 50km of trails around Galena Lodge located in the heart of the Sawtooth National Recreation Area.

Website: https://wintertrailink.bcrd.org/

Virtually Amazing 2021 Tour

Rendezvous Ski Trails, West Yellowstone, Montana

About Us

The Gallatin National Forest’s Rendezvous Ski Trails offer a beautiful setting for cross country skiing. Easily accessible from the town of West Yellowstone, Montana, the Rendezvous Ski Trails consist of over 35 kilometers of gently rolling, beautifully groomed trails that wind through tall stands of lodgepole pines. The trail system is located entirely on U.S. Forest Service land and it is managed through a cooperative partnership between the Forest Service, the West Yellowstone Chamber of Commerce and the West Yellowstone Ski Education Foundation (WYSEF).

Details of the course are coming soon.

Website:skirunbikemt.com

SVSEF, Lake Creek & Quigley

Course Description

The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation will have a 7.5k loop at Lake Creek. Half-Boulder participants can ski it twice to reach 15k and four times to record a 30k distance. The public is strongly encouraged to avoid Lake Creek from 2:30-5 p.m. during the week due to lack of parking when SVSEF teams are in training. Thank you! 

There will also be a 5k course at Quigley Nordic. Details will be posted when available. 

About Us

Established in 1966, the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation offers exceptional snow sport programs for the youth of the Wood River Valley. Disciplines include alpine, cross country, snowboard, freestyle, freeskiing and big mountain for youth athletes, ages 5-19. For elite-level postgrads, SVSEF has the XC Gold Team. With a philosophy of Strong Minds, Strong Bodies, Strong Futures, SVSEF views the mountains as the world’s best classroom, where a child’s imagination is captivated and their potential for learning, growth and inspiration is realized.

 Website: https://svsef.org/

 

Cross Country Ski Areas Association

Description

The Cross Country Ski Areas Association offers a comprehensive compendium of ski areas throughout the United States and Canada, as well as an e-magazine, the Nordic Approach, geared to the cross-country ski lifestyle and all that it entails.

About Us

Cross-country skiing is fun… it’s also fun to learn, healthy, family-friendly, accessible, affordable, and offers great variety! Cross-country skiing uses natural movements, it doesn’t require special skills to get started and has a short learning curve. Just a couple of hours spent being coached by a professional instructor will give you the skills needed for a lifetime of fun!

 Website: https://xcski.org/