Grace Ski Program: Equipment








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Cross Country skiing is safer, faster and more enjoyable with good equipment AND THE RIGHT WAX. GCS aims to work with families to make skiing affordable. Some ski stores, like Alaska Mountaineering and Hiking, help you make good choices and offer a TEAM DISCOUNT if you ask.

Experienced racers may have several pairs of skis, poles and boots. We will be learning and training in BOTH techniques: CLASSIC and SKATE. SKATING uses shorter skis with ironed-in fast downhill wax from tip to tail. Skating poles are longer (floor to eyeball) and the boots higher and stiffer. CLASSIC skis are longer with a special camber to allow fast downhill wax on tips and tails with a "kick-wax" region below the shorter, softer boot. CLASSIC poles are shorter (armpit).

There are TWO common, non-interchangeable boot-binding styles: Solomon (SNS) and New Nordic Norm (NNN); GCS will prefer SNS because it allows team members to share equipment especially during waxing, or if a ski breaks in a race. SNS pilot boots work with non-pilot bindings, BUT SNS non-pilot boots do NOT work with SNS pilot bindings.COMPATIBILITY.

For beginners, one pair of slightly longer, softer skate skis with COMBI boots and TWO sets of poles, 1) skate and 2) classic is a good, less expensive option.

For warmth, a set of "overbooties" and "lobster" mittens is desirable.

Figure (left): Classic skis (L-yellow) and Skate skis (R-red), Classic poles (L-black) and Skate poles (R-silver), Boots (from L to R): Skate, Classic (yellow) and COMBI (red). In front are Overbooties (yellow) and "Lobster" mitts.

The Team will provide some waxes and waxing assistance. Having your store prepare your equipment is good: mount bindings, size poles, base-prep skis.

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