Cross country skiing tailormade

Tailormade Cross Country Skiing


Tailormade cross country skiing

We have acquired a reputation for being specialists in the field of cross country skiing, perhaps largely due to our own passion for this particular skiing discipline. With this in mind we find pulling together the elements to create a tailor-made cross country ski trip a truly pleasurable task. For a better understanding of cross country skiing and its various forms please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions

Any of our 'Scheduled Departure' track skiing trips can be adapted to a bespoke trip. We also can create bespoke trips which are nordic 'off-track touring trips' featuring hut-to-hut journeys in Scandinavia. 

By booking a bespoke trip you are ensuring that you have your own qualified Ski Instructor, either on a 1:1 basis, or perhaps shared within a group of your friends. It is an excellent way of gaining intensive instruction to improve your ski skills, perhaps with a view to taking on one of our 'Scheduled Departure' long distance ski journeys. Alternatively, having your own Instructor can mean a very relaxed session on skis with minimal instruction and maximum cake and coffee stops. It really is up to you.

For athletes, and those of you who like to improve your fitness, cross country skiing can be as challenging as you choose it to be. Arguably it can be the most aerobic of sports and is ideal for winter cross-training from other endurance sports (such as cycling, running and triathlon). So why not take on a challenge and train for a cross country ski race? We will be happy to help you achieve your goals. 

Please also take a look at the Itinerary section above for just a few ideas which may help you make a start. Or if you already know what you want then get in touch with our office. 


Just want to say what happy memories I have our holiday at the beginning of the year, then to my surprise, Moya said that she has been in touch to say what a positive experience it was for her. Well, there was me feeling guilty for dragging her out on the snow!! I am of course delighted. It was a fantastic holiday and I feel privileged to been in the position of being able to learn so much from you. It will be interesting for me to see how I get on in the snowy wastes of northern Canada.

Thank you to all of you for making every aspect of my recent trips with you a pleasure and absolute joy. The application of your considerable expertise, boundless enthusiasm and attention to detail meant everything ran smoothly especially in the ever changing conditions. We couldn't help but fall in love with cross country skiing.

 

Itinerary

We can create bespoke adventure itineraries to suit most requests. We have extensive experience in the European Alps, and in particular in France, Switzerland, and Italy. In Scandinavia in winter we also have a breadth and depth of knowledge of running trips in Norway, Sweden, and Finland. 

We will soon be giving suggested itineraries for your corporate event, but in the meantime please contact us to discuss your requirements. 

  • Getting to know a particular area, and knowing exactly what you are heading home to at the end of a day of skiing is rather nice. A chance to savour the thought of that log fire, the cup of hot chocolate, the sauna, the excellent wine, and the delicious food. For this reason we have listed a few of our favourite areas for cross country skiing which offer a first class cross country skiing and have some great hotel options. 

    Äkäslompolo, Lapland If you have ever dreamed of seeing wild reindeer in the snow or watching the Aurora Borealis dancing overhead then this is the one for you. This village in Finland, beyond the Arctic Circle, is a wonderful destination offering over 300 km's of tracks. It is perfect for those who love to cruise around the forests stopping for cake and coffee at the native Larvu huts by the tracks! There is a range of accommodation but we love the Hotel we use for our Scheduled Departure week. It's a once in a lifetime experience!

    Venabu, Norway How we love this remote family run hotel and all the ski tracks that surround it. On the edge of the oldest National Park in Norway, the Rondane, the hotel is perfectly placed to enjoy the mountains. Ski from and to the ski room door each day, and look forward to what is possibly the best food on any of our trips. A Norwegian buffet served nightly that features many local dishes, and is enough to fuel you for any number of kilometres on skis! At Venabu we base a number of weeks every year, and many of our guests just keep coming back. 

    Cogne, Val d'Aosta, Italy The Aosta Valley, a land of fir trees and mountain pastures becomes a superb high location for cross country skiing when the snow falls. We adore the village of Cogne with its cobbled streets and remote feeling. Lying at the end of a steep sided valley it has 55 kms of tracks which offer everything from gentle to very challenging. There is a stadium area which is perfect for learning and indeed this is where we base our introductory Italian Ski Breaks

    Swiss Jura Close to Geneva this gentle mountain range lies along the frontier between France and Switzerland. Visit traditional shepherds' farms and chalets in rolling snowy pastures. The home to so many cheeses and other culinary delights that food becomes a serious part of this holiday. This is the venue for our Trans Jura Swiss, a point to point journey you may like to consider?

    Obergoms Valley, Switzerland This is a very popular venue with Swiss cross country skiers. Reliable snow conditions and a variety of long distance ski trails attract nordic skiers who want plenty of km's to perfect their technique. The valley is served by the local train and our ski pass includes access to the train service. A wonderful way to explore the whole length of the Valley is to ski as far as you can then simply hop on a train and head for home. The Obergoms are featured in our Gorgeous Goms Ski trip.  

  • We find that many of our bespoke trips are based on the Scheduled Departures which we already offer on this website. Simply browse the Scheduled Departures and decide which one you would like as a private trip. The itineraries can be adjusted to suit your needs with 'rest' days inserted where appropriate, and the number of trip days either extended or shortened.

    In this respect we find that our Peer Gynt Trail, in Norway is one of the most popular options for a private trip. Other wonderful cross country ski trips include the epic Trolls Trail, in Norway and our Grand Traverse of the Jura, in France. To be honest there are many options and we are happy to talk you through what is possible to suit your skiing ability. 

  • Our totally bespoke trips are those where you have the ideas and the dreams and we discuss how these can be achieved. They could feature an element of our Scheduled Departure trip itineraries, but also include other optional activities, such as snowshoeing, alpine skiing, ice climbing, dog sledding, or maybe something more relaxing such as a visit to a thermal spa such as the one at Pre St Didier, near Courmayeur, in Italy, followed by compulsory gelato, to end your trip?

    Another example of the variety which can be included is available at Venabu, in Norway, a tranquil mountain hotel on the edge of the Rondane National Park. Here there are many activities which can be included in a cross country ski trip, there is dog sledding, snowshoeing, horse drawn sleigh rides, yoga/pilates classes and massage available. 

    In other words 'Bespoke' means created and crafted just for you and your family or friends. A unique experience in the stunning mountains of the Alps or indeed farther afield in Scandinavia.

  • Making a journey through the mountains on skis is a truly wonderful experience. Setting off in the morning with a sense of expectation and adventure, not knowing exactly what is ahead, is surely one of the best feelings that can be had while sliding on snow! Over the years we have become specialists in cross country ski journeys offering some long distance journeys which are certainly not on offer elsewhere. Please note that the trips given below are all ski journeys on pre-prepared tracks, they are not off-track.

    If you have dreamed of seeing the Northern Lights then our Finnish Russian Frontier trip is perfect for you. Last year we spent hours watching the dancing lights in the snow. This trip is great for those who have just started cross country skiing but who are keen to do a journey as soon as possible. We spent the first three days teaching you at a cross country ski centre in Finland, then we make a 3 day journey along the Russian Frontier. 

    If you love Scandinavia then we have some excellent adventures on skis that are six day journeys across a landscape which is the birthplace of the sport. Our Peer Gynt Trail is a wonderful introduction to touring with days that are not too long, and hotels that are cosy and characterful and offer great food. 

    The Trolls Trail is another Norwegian offering that provides a wonderful challenge for experienced cross country skiers. An epic journey from Otta to the Olympic town of Lillehammer, we love it! Joining the Trolls Trail for winter 2019 is the stunning Hallingdal Track. This is the first winter we will offer this trip and without doubt it is a true mountain experience with some excellent skiing for advanced skiers. 

    In the Alps you can enjoy the Grand Traverse of the Jura in France, or the Trans Jura Swiss which is, yes you guessed it, the traverse of the Jura mountains but on the Swiss side. Both are brilliant journeys, and each offer sufficient differences that we often have guests who have done both of them. 

    finally, in Germany there is the wonderful Traverse of the Black Forest, and in the Czech Republic we have combined two long distance ski 'races' to create out Czech Polish frontier experience. 

     

Accommodation

On all our trips we aim to accommodate our guests in well-situated, clean, characterful, family run accommodation. We are painstaking in our research to give you the best option possible and one that is good value. Our suggested accommodation, listed below, is subject to availability at the time of booking. We have given details of our favoured venues and those we intend to use. If unavailable we will book alternative accommodation of a similar standard.

Our trip fees are based on two people sharing a room. If you are travelling on your own your booking will be based on a twin bedroom sharing with someone of the same gender. 

However, on many of our trips single rooms are available on request for a supplementary fee. We recommend booking as early as possible to secure a single room as these are always limited in number. Please contact us for details. 


  • You must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity, including helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. We also advise you take out Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance in the event of you being unable to join the trip. The insurance referred to should only be purchased AFTER we have confirmed your trip is guaranteed to run. 

    The insurance clause set out in our 'Terms and Conditions' is below:

    Insurance: It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, cost of repatriation, and personal accident risks. This must include cover for the activities to be undertaken during the trip. For tours taking place outside the United Kingdom you must ensure that your insurance covers rescue from the mountains, including helicopter rescue. It is the right of the leader to make a decision to call for helicopter rescue if such assistance is needed. Costs incurred by you, the client, due to an evacuation, rescue or other emergency shall be your responsibility. Any subsequent costs incurred for expenses, not limited to but including such costs as hotels, food, transport etc, shall be borne by you, the client. You are responsible for ensuring insurance cover is adequate for the particular needs of your chosen activity. You must be fully aware of the implications involved in arranging your own travel insurance and understand the limitations and exclusions of the policy. By agreeing to our Terms and Conditions you are authorising Tracks and Trails Ltd, or the person employed to lead the trip for Tracks and Trails Ltd, to instigate rescue and/or helicopter evacuation procedures without previously obtaining the permission of the company issuing your insurance policy. We reserve the right to cancel your booking at any time if we are not satisfied you have the necessary insurance policy covering your activity. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip then please contact us for specific details. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres (9840ft), except the Tour de Monte Rosa which reaches 3316m (10,877ft). You must bring all insurance documentation with you at the time of the activity. We also recommend your insurance covers you for trip cancellation and baggage loss/damage. Tracks and Trails Ltd are unable to accept responsibility for the loss or damage to any client equipment or luggage.

    For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.

  • For each of our trips there is a minimum number of guests required to book before we can 'guarantee' your trip will run. This is normally 4, and on some occasions 5. 

    In the 'Dates and Prices' section you can hover over the 'Status' button to see how many more bookings are required for your trip to be confirmed. 

    The maximum number of guests that we take on any given trip is indicated in the 'At a Glance' box on the right hand side of the trip page. 

    We will, on occasion, run trips that have not reached the minimum number because our guests have agreed to pay a supplement to allow the trip to go ahead, enabling them to book their travel. If the trip then reaches its minimum number we refund the difference. Do contact us if you wish to discuss this option. 

    We strongly advise you do not book travel until we have confirmed your trip is 'guaranteed' to run. If you book travel before we have confirmed it is 'guaranteed' we cannot be held responsible for any financial loss if the trip does not go ahead.

  • After we have processed your booking we will send you a comprehensive clothing and equipment list that is appropriate to your trip and activity. There will be some items on this list that we strongly recommend and others which are suggested. Our list is based on our experience of what is needed for any particular trip, but it is not the definitive article! If you have items you like to use then do bring them, but be aware of over-loading your 'day' rucksack with items that are heavy and therefore making the trip more challenging.

    Please contact us if in any doubt about what to bring.

  • On many of our trips there will be an element of 'group kit' which will be shared amongst our guests. As mountain people you will be used to team work and working together to the mutual benefit of the group.

    The 'group kit' will be minimal and simply a case of sharing out a few lightweight 'survival shelters'. On a week-long trip you may carry a small shelter for just one day before passing it on to the next person. 

    On many of our cross country ski trips to remote areas there will also be a few additional items to share such as the grip waxes/klisters, spare pole, and snow shovel. These items are shared in such a way that no one is over burdened. 

    Other group items necessary for safety and comfort will be carried by your guide/instructor.

  • We go to great lengths to work with first class guides and instructors who are passionate about their work. They are all fully qualified, and insured, and hold the correct documentation.

    Please note your guide/instructor has complete discretion to make a daily decision on whether or not to take the advertised route based on the weather and the ability of the members of the group. They have our authority to make any route changes they believe are necessary in the interests of safety and enjoyment. 

    For our walking, family, and snowshoeing trips your guide will be a fully qualified and experienced International Mountain Leader. For our running trips your guide will be an International Mountain Leader, and an experienced mountain 'trail runner'.

    If you have booked on a cross country ski trip you will be with a fully qualified professional BASI Nordic Ski Instructor or equivalent. BASI is the British Association of Snowsport Instructors. 

  • This is a general statement with regard to luggage and is not specific to your trip. Please read on.

    Point to Point

    The majority of our point-to-point trips have luggage support which means your bags are transferred each day to the next accommodation and you only need to wear a small/medium sized 'rucksack' for items you might need during the course of the day. 

    On some trips which feature a night in a refuge/rifugio/hut your main luggage may not be available that evening due to lack of vehicle access. Your rucksack should be of sufficient capacity to carry a few extra items required for this overnight. Your trip itinerary will indicate on which nights you do not have access to your main luggage. If in any doubt please contact us

    Centre Based

    For our centre based trips, in other words where you are staying in the same accommodation all week, you are welcome to bring whatever luggage you require. However, do refer to the note below with regard to 'size' and the lack of elevators in some hotels. 

    Size of Luggage

    Please note that many hotels do not have elevators. This means you may need to carry your luggage to your bedroom. 

    On our point-to-point trips where your luggage is moved along the route by taxi we ask that you keep the weight to a maximum of 15kgs (33lbs), and ONE bag per person. Many of the taxi companies who move your bags impose a 15kg (33lbs) limit and restrict the number because they have to unload and reload the vehicle each day. If you take more than one bag you may be asked to pay a supplement. 

    Luggage on wheels is a good idea, and as stated you need to be able to carry your luggage to your bedroom which may involve climbing several flights of stairs.  

  • We do not include lunches in your trip fee for various reasons. We have found our guests have particular tastes and requirements for 'trail' or 'hill' food and it is better you choose and buy what you require. Buying supplies and trying local specialities is a great way to inter-act with the local people and to practise your language skills. 

    Lunches on our trips are 'picnic' style lunches, in other words you take a packed lunch with sufficient snacks, food and fluid to sustain you throughout your day of activity. If there is the possibility of lunch being taken at a restaurant/farm/cafe beside the trail, your guide/instructor will advise you of this. 

    Each evening you can choose to order a picnic or a sandwich from the hotel, or your guide/instructor will advise you of other options such as a local shop or market and whether you need to purchase items in the evening or if the shop/market is open early enough the next morning not to delay your start. In all cases we would always ask you to settle any 'bill' for lunch or drinks in the evening and not in the morning when there may be a queue. 

    Norway and Sweden

    Norway and Sweden are the exception to this rule and these trips include a packed lunch in your trip fee. You can also bring a thermos flask and have it filled with a hot drink. The reason for this is the remoteness of the accommodation and the scarcity of shops. It is the tradition is to create your packed lunch from the breakfast buffet and the choice is usually substantial with something for all tastes. Please note that in every other country making your lunch from the breakfast is NOT considered acceptable.

  • On your itinerary you will find an indication of the amount of ascent and descent you can expect each day. This offers a guideline to how much effort might be expended each day and allows you to decide, based on previous experience, if your fitness and stamina are correct for the trip. 

    We make every attempt to ensure these statistics are as accurate as possible, but ask you to note that the most modern of technology used to record these details can show considerable variations in terms of ascent, descent, and in particular distance. In other words no two people using GPS devices on the same route will have exactly the same details recorded at the end of the day. 

    The statistics given should be used as a 'general' indication of the effort required. 

  • It is useful to arrive at your destination with some cash in the local currency, however, on most occasions it is relatively easy to visit a 'cash machine' after arrival and withdraw money on a credit or debit card. Some of our locations are an exception to this in particular Norway, where the accommodation will often have no facilities for withdrawing cash, but they will take a credit card. 

    On many of our trips we will visit remote cafes/farms where it is wonderful to enjoy a drink and a cake, at places such as these they will only accept payment in the local currency in cash. 

    On our walking and running trips which take in the route of the 'Tour du Mont Blanc' you will find that Euros will also be accepted in Switzerland as we are never far from the frontier, but the exchange rate will be poor.

    Below is a list of the currency and the currency symbol for each of the countries where we run trips:

    Italy = Euro/€

    Germany = Euro/€

    Sweden = Krona/SEK

    Norway = Kroner/NOK

    Bulgaria = Lev/BGN

    Switzerland = Swiss Franc/CHF

    Finland, including Lapland = Euro/€

    Spain, including Mallorca = Euro/€

    France, including Corsica = Euro/€ 

    Poland = Zloty/PLN = Euros will be accepted, but some local currency is advisable

    Czech Republic = Koruna/CZK - Euros will be accepted, but some local currency is advisable

  • Food

    On all our trips we prefer if you can experience local tastes and dishes that reflect the culture of the country we are visiting and for this reason many of our accommodation options will be family run with a reputation for the traditional food of the region. 

    If you have a 'special' diet because of an allergy or intolerance to a certain food type which will make you ill the accommodation will cater for this as best they can, eg gluten free, nut free, lactose free. 

    If you are vegetarian then this is not a problem as the hotels/refuges are used to being asked for vegetarian meals. This trip is not suitable for those who follow a vegan diet or those with other more specific dietary requirements. Gluten-free diets will be possible with regard to the evening meals, but you would need to bring along some gluten-free snacks for your breakfasts and lunches.

    If you have a 'special' diet which is NOT because of an allergy or intolerance, and is not 'veggie' then we cannot cater for this. The accommodation on the popular routes will be catering for many people each evening, in some cases up to 70/80 meals per night, 7 days a week, and realistically they cannot produce many different meal options unless the food will result in illness. 

    Water

    The countries we visit all have tap water that is drinkable. If for any reason a particular hotel is having a problem with a remote mountain water supply they will normally post a sign over the tap indicating that you must not drink the water. At all times you are welcome to ask your guide/instructor if the water can be drunk. We would ask, for environmental reasons, that you avoid using single-use plastic bottles, and bring a water bottle that can be used repeatedly. 

  • A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required for visits to countries outside the EU, such as Norway. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice.  

  • We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

    http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

    Note that if your trip involves staying in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut that electric sockets may be in short supply and for that night you may not be able to charge any items. Although the accommodation will have electricity this will often be supplied by solar panels or a generator and limited to use by the staff. For this reason we advise that carrying a small slimline and lightweight 'battery pack' can be very useful for recharging phones which many of you will also use as your camera. 

  • If you wish to add on optional activities these can easily be arranged for you. In winter you could choose to experience a range of other winter sports. Depending on the location you are choosing for your trip these can include trying snow shoeing, dog sledding, ice climbing, glacier walking, or even sleigh rides. We can advise you on what is available in each location. 

  • Before booking consider whether you expect to be in the appropriate physical condition on the date of your  departure to allow you to fully participate in and enjoy your holiday. If you have any doubts because of an illness or injury it would be advisable to check with your doctor.

    UK residents should obtain and bring with them the free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment in certain European countries, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance. We advise that you always carry your insurance documents with details of the Emergency Medical telephone number for your insurance provider, and your policy number. 

  • We feel strongly about protecting the environment and do not encourage the use of single-use plastic items. We would ask that you arrive with a ‘water bottle’ or ‘hydration system’ that can be used repeatedly. We would point out that we operate a ‘zero tolerance’ for rubbish, and would ask you to remove all your rubbish items from the mountain even those you consider to be bio-degradable. In particular we ask that you remove any toilet tissue.

    You can read our full policy here.

  • Working across international boundaries, and with various currencies means that the price of our trips can change overnight. We have, however, undertaken to guarantee that once you have paid your deposit the price of your trip is fixed. In this respect we urge you to book early to ensure that you receive the price advertised on our website. The website price may increase due to currency fluctuations, but we guarantee that the price advertised on the date of your booking will be maintained in your individual case. 


The date range given below indicates the months when the activity can usually be undertaken.  

Pricing The prices below are for a maximum of 4 people for a half day or full day of cross country skiing with a fully qualified professional Instructor. Each additional person, up to a maximum of 8, incurs a supplement. So for 5-8 people for a half day (3 hrs) it is £10 per person on the price given below, and for a full day it is £15 per person. You can also book a 2 hour lesson for up to 4 people for £160, with £5 for each additional person up to a maximum of 8. We also accept Euros by prior arrangement. 

Maximum Numbers To ensure that you make the most of your skiing experience we take a maximum of 8 people per guide. We can, of course, accommodate larger groups but for reasons of safety and enjoyment this would require an additional Instructor or Instructors depending on the group size. 

Equipment Rental We can arrange cross country ski rental for you, either 'classic' or 'skate' skis. To hire 'classic' skis, boots and poles normally costs around 10-12 Euros per day per person, and to hire 'skate' skis, boots and poles, it is approximately 12-15 Euros per day per person. In non-Euro countries the price is approximately the same, but in the local currency. 

The Complete Package We can also quote you an all inclusive price which can include accommodation, luggage transfers if a point to point journey, cross country ski hire, the guides fees and expenses and all logistics. We can also add on other winter activities such as snowshoeing, ice climbing, alpine downhill skiing, dog sledding, etc depending on your chosen location.  If you have a young family you may also like to consider renting a baby sledge or 'pulka' to tow them behind you!

The prices given could vary depending on instructor availability at the time of booking. We recommend booking early to guarantee these rates. 

 

2018

Just want to say what happy memories I have our holiday at the beginning of the year, then to my surprise, Moya said that she has been in touch to say what a positive experience it was for her. Well, there was me feeling guilty for dragging her out on the snow!! I am of course delighted. It was a fantastic holiday and I feel privileged to been in the position of being able to learn so much from you. It will be interesting for me to see how I get on in the snowy wastes of northern Canada.

Thank you to all of you for making every aspect of my recent trips with you a pleasure and absolute joy. The application of your considerable expertise, boundless enthusiasm and attention to detail meant everything ran smoothly especially in the ever changing conditions. We couldn't help but fall in love with cross country skiing.

 

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At a Glance

From Price What's your budget?
Holiday Type Tailormade
Duration How long do you have?
Minimum Age 10
Countries Visited Italy, France, Switzerland, Finland, Norway, Germany, Sweden, Czech Republic
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