Dec 1, 2004 | Marmot, Winter 2004

Strathcona Nordics Offer Expanded Programs

Mount Washington boasts of a strong, family-oriented Nordic skiing club that is also known for its racing programs.

The Strathcona Nordics are Vancouver Island’s cross-country ski club. The Nordics are a non-profit society dedicated to skier development and the promotion of the sport for fun, fitness, recreation and health.

The club is based at Mount Washington and offers a range of recreational to racing programs for cross-country skiers of all ages, abilities and interests. Last May the club hired a full-time professional head coach, Dave Battison, who has expanded club programs and opportunities with a long-term goal of sending skiers and officials from Vancouver Island to the 2010 Winter Olympics at Whistler, B.C.

Battison brings with him a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the club. Before moving to the Comox Valley he was head coach of the Rocky Mountain Racers club in Canmore, Alta., where he coached many elite athletes who achieved national team status and competed at the highest levels, according to a Strathcona Nordics press release.
Battison was a professional triathlete for six years and he has experience coaching skiers and athletes in a variety of sports including skiing, mountain biking and endurance racing. He is a fully certified Level 3 coach, but says his mission with the Nordics is not restricted to racers. “I am thrilled to be part of such an enthusiastic club with so much potential,” he said. “I look forward to working with skiers of all ages and abilities, and am committed to help them reach their goals – whatever they may be.”

Some of the programs available through the club include Rabbit Ski League (skills-based lessons for children aged four through 12 years), Devo and Junior Racer programs, Adventure Program (offering other Nordic recreation opportunities such as telemark skiing, backcountry trips, avalanche awareness and snowshoeing), High Performance Race Team and Senior and Masters Race Teams for adult racers. There are also programs geared for the more recreational adult Nordic skier, such as Master Beginner and Intermediate programs.

The club also offers an Introduction to Biathlon program and a Backcountry program that enables skiers to explore the terrain around Vancouver Island. The club and its activities are organized and run by volunteer effort and supported through membership fees, fundraising and sponsorships.

For more information on the club, visit them on the World Wide Web at <>.

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