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Volunteer crew prepares XC ski trails for U.S. Nationals

Mon, Dec  28, 2015 - By Michigan Tech

HOUGHTON, Mich. — A crew of 60 volunteers worked this morning to prepare the Michigan Tech Nordic Training Center for the upcoming U.S. Cross Country Skiing Championships. The event is scheduled to begin Jan. 3.

Later-than-usual snow accumulation this season and heavy rain and wind this past week left the trails in need of extra work to get them ready.

The corps of volunteers raked debris from the high winds off of approximately 10 miles of trails, hauled in snow to fill in thin spots on the trails and set up fencing in the stadium area.

Volunteer Crew Prepares XC Ski Trails for U.S. Nationals

"We had a really big group of people helping today, and I can't thank them enough," said Tech Nordic skiing coach Joe Haggenmiller. "We've been battling the lack of snow for the last month. I think we're in great shape now compared to where we were two weeks ago. Plus, Mother Nature's helping us out with a lot more snow."

Race days are scheduled for Jan. 3 (classic distance), Jan. 4 (freestyle sprint), Jan. 7 (freestyle distance) and Jan. 9 (classic sprint).

Volunteer opportunities still exist for before, during and after each race. Contact Emily Fiala (fiala@pasty.com) for details.

The official U.S. Cross Country Skiing Championships website is at NordicChampionship.org.