.: Ski XCOttawa.ca :: Skiing in Ottawa and Gatineau Park

Tips for Rookies!
By:  Peter Beisel   (2011/02/22)

       In all the excitement for the recent Canadian Ski Marathon, Eastern Canadian Championships, I have noticed a lot of keen young skiers are starting to look carefully at schools and training centers so that they can continue to ski after highschool. Now that I have had the chance to live the full time student life and still ski competitively, I think it’s only right to share a little bit of insight into what makes a good first year of skiing and University!

      You might notice that it isn’t coincidental that I write skiing and University, not University and skiing! For many people out there (especially those who happen to be reading this!) skiing is a major factor in future considerations. There are many different “ski-schools” and training centers out there to choose from such as Guelph, U of T, Queens, Carleton, Lakehead and Laurentian. I came to Ottawa for the skiing opportunities available here, and I am definitely happy with the decision to come to Carleton University. The team holds weekly practices for strength and intensity on campus. There is also excellent coaching and wax support at all Ontario University races. Anyone who’s been to one of these before, knows that Carleton is a force to be reckoned with in terms of competitiveness, spirit, and results. We are known for frequently bringing home winning-team banners from excellent races on the Mens and Women's sides. If you’re looking for that extra edge on the ski-trail, you might consider applying for Team XC Ottawa, which is a great choice for university students who want to race at the bigger venues like NorAm races, World Junior Trials, and Nationals.

     Of course, before coming to University, you have to make some lifestyle decisions. Like do you want to live in residence, do you want to cook all your own food, what program will you enroll yourself in, and how much other stuff your going to be able to do at the same time? Based on my own recent experiences in engineering, I would recommend a reduced course load and definitely avoid getting a part time job until you know what you’re getting yourself into. It is definitely proven that you can be an excellent skier and still get great marks at school!

    Another major choice for me was to stay in residence this first year that I am away from home. For me this was a necessity, but there are some general recommendations I would make to people thinking of going this route. Mainly, get a single room, and the full-time meal plan. Skiers are known for their ability to nap and eat vast quantities of food! It is definitely worth the extra cash on both fronts.

     Hope this helps some of those up-and-comers that haven’t made up their minds yet! Please come talk to me anytime you see me out skiing or shoot me an e-mail if you have ski/school related questions! (peterbeisel@gmail.com) I will be helping out at the OFSAA high-school championships coming up March 3rd and 4th too if you are going to be there!

See you on the trails!


Here I am about to head to chem  lab from rez in my custom Lab Coat.

Here I am, skiing  for Carleton soon after.
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