At 7 a.m. on the third Sunday of Block Five, a group of fifteen brave international and minority Colorado College students headed to the Frisco Nordic Center to try out a classic Colorado activity— cross-country skiing.

After renting gear, they learned how to fall and get back up before setting off down the snow-covered trails. Their leaders, freshmen Kayla Fratt, Alex Beutel, and Patricia Weicht, and sophomore Kangmin Kim divided participants into groups of five and instructed them on the basics of Nordic skiing. The weather was ideal with temperatures hovering around 20°F and light snow falling.

“The students really picked up the technique quickly and had a blast learning how to go up and down hills,” Fratt said.

Despite the fact that many of these students had never skied before, they were soon cruising smoothly around the loops at the Nordic Center.

Salsabeel Khan, a freshman from Bangladesh, signed up for the trip for the same reason that many participants did—to try out a new sport and get out into the Colorado winter.

“For someone who is not familiar with snow in the first place, it was really nice to be able to glide through it and have such a nice way of hiking through places and seeing the beautiful views,” Khan said.

“My favorite part was probably the clicking noise from each time the boots attached to the ski’s bindings,” said freshman participant Berlian Khatulistiwa.

After enjoying a lunch in the warm indoors, some of the group traded in their skis and gave snowshoeing a try, while the rest continued skiing the trails.

“The fun part was skiing down a small hill and not falling. The worst part was hitting a tree,” said Anjali Ravunniarath, a freshman from India and another first-time skier.

“It was very challenging to keep going after falling many, many times, especially after lunch and being warm for awhile,” Kahn said. “I would Nordic ski again, for sure.”

The ORC and OMIS teamed up to give international and minority students the chance to try out a new sport. For many of them, it was their first time on skis.

“I heard that downhill skiing is easier, so I think I would like to try that out,” Ravunniarath said.

The ORC has teamed up with BSU and OMIS in the past to get students who may never have set foot on a trail before out into the backcountry that lies just to the west of our CC campus. And they will keep doing so.

Emma Longcope

Staff Writer

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