Do-it-Yourself Olympic Winter Sports
But WaitThere's More
Find other great ideas in these related stories:
- Slope to Table ›
- The Last Wild Place ›
- 11 Hard-to-Get-to Hotels ›
- Last-Minute Escapes: Beach Vacations ›
- New Zealand's Otherworldly Landscapes ›
- Adventures That Give Back ›
- World's Sexiest Fitness Retreats ›
- How to Vacation Like Indiana Jones ›
- Extreme Sports for Spectators ›
- Comeback Destinations for Experienced Travelers ›
- Ski Vacations for Beach Lovers ›
Ski Cross at Big White Mountain, British Columbia
Sporting chance: The latest Olympic sport is ski cross, a motocross-inspired melee of four skiers flying over jumps and banking through turns as they each attempt to reach the finish line first. One of the few North American courses open to the public is at Big White, in British Columbia's snow-heavy Okanagan Valley. Both skiers and snowboarders can race their pals on Big White's 2,300-foot-long course, designed by pro racer Flynn Seddon. Not sure how to navigate the twists, bumps, and rollers? Big White's instructors offer private lessons.
Training tip: Start doing squats, lunges, and 60-second sprints on the treadmill; ski cross runs last for about a minute and require both strength and endurance to handle the jostling and jousting.
Learning curve: Steep. It takes years of training to master Alpine racecourses, let alone a course riddled with other racers' arms, elbows, and skis. But experienced downhill skiers and snowboarders should feel comfortable—former Alpine racer Daron Rahlves has switched over to ski cross in his quest for an Olympic medal.
Lift tickets at Big White are about $67, while private lessons are $380 for a full day; the course is open daily and Thursday through Saturday nights each week during ski season.