Craftsbury Outdoor Center
Skiing and Snowshoeing
January 6-9, 2012 

Trip Report
By Margaret Gaffney

On January 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th NERSFL had their annual Nordic ski and snow shoeing weekend at Craftsbury Outdoor Center in Craftsbury VT. We arrived on Friday, settling in to great food and good camaraderie. The weather was cold and crisp with little snow which did not dampen our excitement and enthusiasm.

On Saturday morning after a delicious breakfast all participants and guides met for the daily morning meeting led by Marie Hennessy, NERSFL president. Marie stressed communication, safety, and having fun. She also introduced our new student guides from the University of New Hampshire. We were all glad to have the students join us. We all next hit the trails. A group of us tried snow shoeing while others tackled Ruthie’s way and skiing on the lake. I as a relatively new participant had the opportunity to try snow shoeing. I learned what a challenge it was and what a wonderful day it was in the cold crisp air with some new friends. After lunch, we all hit the trails and lake again. All the participants were matched with guides who were all able to work with us, with differing ski and snow shoe ability and differing sight impairments. That is where the communication came in. The participants and guides became a close team.

After dinner we all chatted, played cards and scrabble. We all shared our experiences of the day.

On Sunday the same structure of events took place. I for my part had the chance to learn the basics of Nordic skiing. Learning how to fall, get back up and go up a hill was a real confidence builder. Others had the chance to practice and increase their skills on the runs that were open. On Sunday night, the NERSFL auction occurred in which Dave and Amy’s daughter Sarah was an enthusiastic helper. The scrabble game was fierce and the card game was enjoyed by all.

On Monday, we had a half a day of events. We all hurried, to make the most of our remaining time. Like most good things, our trip came to an end, we all hugged and said goodbye, no one wanted to leave.

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