Castlegar Nordic Ski Club - A Brief History

The Castlegar Nordic Ski Club started in 1961 as the Sons of Norway Sports Club for members and families of the Sons of Norway Nordic Lodge #76.  Skiing activities started out at Sheep Lake (now Nancy Greene Lake) where the club organized a picnic site and a ski race start area and hand cleared trails around the lake. Over the next few years the Club extended their trails from the Lake up into the Nordic basin (Gloryview trail) and built the Sons of Norway shelter (now referred to as the Nordic Hut).  During this period a tracking machine was built by the B.C. Forest Service and stored at Kokanee Park.  The Castlegar Club made the most use of it with the local Snowmobile club donating time to do the tracking. 

The building of the Nordic cabin resulted in more use of the Glenmerry parking area and road system. An equipment cabin was erected in this area and an old, well used, small snow-cat was purchased for packing and track setting.

In 1975 the club decided to expand by opening up membership to everyone.  The Club was renamed the Castlegar Nordic Ski Touring Club, the annual fees were set at $5 per family, and the bylaws stated that the President had to be a Sons of Norway member as that organization was still sponsoring the Club. This requirement was later deleted.

In the late seventies the Ben Shaw Ski Club, operating near Mud Lake, amalgamated with the Castlegar Club resulting in another westward expansion, another increase in membership and new trails, cabins, signage and activities. The Forest Service became more heavily involved in the development of the area. As well, during this period, the Ski Club was setting track and skiing on the Castlegar Golf Course and surrounding areas.

The current system of trails, cabins and other facilities has been developed through a close cooperative relationship over the years between the Ministry of Forests and the Castlegar Nordic Ski Club. This cooperation has resulted in the construction of low impact roads with varying grades for timber hauling. These roads, designed with input from the Club have resulted in a trail system consisting of a network of loops suitable for cross-country skiing.  It is expected that the BC Timber Sales agency of the current Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations will continue to plan for the harvesting of timber throughout the ski trail area with consultation and input from the ski club.

Most recently, the Club has signed a formal Partnership Agreement with Recreation Sites and Trails BC, covering the Paulson Recreation Area. This Agreement recognizes the Club’s involvement in the planning and management of the ski trail area and allows for the collection of  fees for skiing on the groomed trails. As well, the Club is committed to the long-term maintenance of the trails to the standards that skiers have come to expect.