MacLeod: Tyler’s Travels, Crossing over to cross-country |

MacLeod: Tyler’s Travels, Crossing over to cross-country

The view looking south to Winter Park from the cross country trails in Grand Park. Read Tyler MacLeod's column on page 16.
Photo Courtesy of Tyler MacLeod |

A few weeks ago I found myself in a state of what I’ll refer to as mid-winter depression. It wasn’t because I was missing sunny days and warmer weather, but rather it was because those sunny days and warmer temps arrived way too soon. Now, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the first few 45-degree days last month (spring skiing is one of my favorite times of year), but I just wasn’t ready for it to be a permanent pattern. To top it off, March brought an influx of skiers to the mountain, and I found it a little more difficult to justify waiting in line on a Saturday to make some slushy afternoon turns. But lucky for me, there is no shortage of outside activities in our community, many of which I had yet to try. I was sure I could find something new to beat my winter blues, maybe even something right out my back door.

Last week I decided to give the old snowboard a break and try a new winter activity for a day: cross-country skiing. The kind folks over at Epic Mountain Sports – an advertising sponsor of the Fraser Valley Metropolitan Recreation District – set me up on a nice pair of skate skis and I was ready to go. Yes, I can already hear the flak resonating from my snowboard buddies, but hear me out on this one – cross-country skiing was a darn good time. Sure, it might not have been the same rush as ripping down steeps on my snowboard, but when it came to my mid-winter depression, it was just what I needed.

I was able to dip out of the rec center’s back doors on my lunch break, and in just a few short steps, was right on the Grand Park trails. Surprisingly enough, I found myself catching on rather quickly. After a few hundred yards, I was in a rhythm; skiing along and taking in the sprawling scenery in every direction. My mind was finally clear, I was fully relaxed, and without realizing, I had worked up a steady sweat.

As I passed other skiers along the way, I kept thinking about how much I enjoy living here in the Fraser Valley. Our access to the great outdoors is second to none, and I hope our community never takes that for granted. I’m excited to check out the rapidly expanding winter trail network in Grand County. Maybe I’ll just swing by the Chamber and pick up a trail map. In the meantime, expect to see me skiing around Grand Park on my lunch breaks.

See you next month!

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