Weekly practices are based on the team's progress, the weather, and a variety of other factors. Practice information for the upcoming week will be available on the preceding Sunday by 7:00 p.m. on the schedule. The information will include
- Skiing method (Classic or Freestyle/Skate)
- Workout details
Because skiing is a sport that is highly dependent upon the weather (and now Covid), it may sometimes be necessary to change practice and meet locations at the last minute. While this may cause inconvenience to some individuals, it is a much better solution than allowing students to ski in unsafe conditions. In all instances in which such changes are made they will be updated in the schedule and communicated via TeamSnap.
For other additional information relevant team practices beyond the on this page, see
Days and times
The 2021/2022 Nordic Ski season starts November 15th, regardless of snow conditions.
Practices typically run Monday through Friday from 3:15 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. with shorter practices scheduled on the days prior to competitions and during that time of the year when it gets dark earlier. Since middle school days end later, middle school students' later arrival is expected. They should arrive to practice around 3:45 p.m. to 3:50 p.m.
High school skiers
High school skiers are expected to attend practice five days per week. Varsity skiers are required to to practice the five weekdays AND attend 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturdays. Saturday practices are optional to Junior Varsity skiers.
Middle school skiers
Middle school skiers are expected to ski three days per week between Monday and Friday. We believe a three day-per-week commitment is needed to develop ski related skills, but anything beyond that is up to the students and their parents. This means across the middle school group of skiers, there will be different skiers each day. Each middle school skier should discuss their practice plan with Coach Abery.
Practice is most often at Valleywood Golf Course in Apple Valley. However, practice locations will vary, so that athletes gain experience skiing in a variety of terrain and prepare for competition. Over the course of the year we will hold practices at the following locations:
- Valleywood Golf Course in Apple Valley »
- Battle Creek Ski Area in St. Paul »
- Cleary Lake Park Reserve in Prior Lake »
- Hyland Recreation Area in Bloomington »
- Kenwood Trail in Lakeville »
- Lebanon Hills Park – Mountain Bike Loop in Eagan »
- Lebanon Hills Park – Jensen Lake in Eagan »
- Lebanon Hills Park – Schultze Lake in Eagan »
- Murphy Hanrehan Park Reserve in Savage »
- Rosemount High School Course in Rosemount »
- Wirth Park in Minneapolis »
Travel to and from
Transportation to and from practice is not provided by the school districts. Skiers need to be able to get to and from practice. Parents of skiers who do not drive will need to be flexible in order to make this happen. Carpooling is strongly recommended.
For parents dropping off skiers, you will drop your skier off at the parking lot and pick them up in the same location at the end of practice.
The later middle school release creates some complexities. Each day, one of the coaches will start training with the high school students and then return to the practice start point in order to pick up the middle schoolers.
- We really need to make sure that all Middle School skiers are present by 3:45 p.m. to 3:50 p.m. at the latest.
- Coach Abery needs to know each middle schooler's schedule, so that coaches know the skiers to wait for at the practice drop-off location.
- Parents should NEVER drop students off in at practice unless they are sure their skier has connected with a coach and we can be sure that they are with someone to supervise. This is ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT when we are practicing at Lebanon Hills on a wooded trail system.
- When practices are at Valleywood Golf Course, we start practice on the driving range. You can drop your skier off there if you don't see a coach in the parking lot.
- If you are late and do not see or connect with a coach, please do not drop your skier off. They will just need to miss that practice.
For all parents picking up skiers, be sure to pick your skier up on time at practice's end. If a skier is not picked up, two coaches must remain with the skier until the skier is picked up, which is challenging for everyone involved.
What to take to practice
Coach Abery specifies ski equipment needed for each practice in the schedule. Besides specified ski equipment and appropriate clothing, skiers should bring water and their kick wax kit, if skiing Classic that day.
If a skier brings a cell phone, make sure it can be kept warm and dry while skiing.
ISD 196 Nordic Ski Booster Club