We can 'talk the talk', and we can show you lots of great photos, but sometimes a short film clip taken during a trip can provide you with something a little different in terms of forming an impression. There's nothing quite like seeing moving images of the landscape, the guide, or surroundings to gain useful insight of what might be involved in one of our journeys. Here we have a few films which range from the guide or instructor talking about the trip, to a short clip of the terrain or of a 'moment' which occurred. We hope you enjoy this 'window' into our world in the mountains. If you create a film while on one of our trips and you would like to share it with a wider audience then please get in touch with us and we can feature it here.
We are often asked by our guests if their own cross-country ski boots will fit the hire skis and can they bring them on the trip. Essentially it is not so much about which brand, but rather about the 'profile' on the sole of the boot and the need to match the boot 'profile' to the ski binding 'profile'. If you have a boot with NNN (New Nordic Norm) profile then you require a hire ski that is also NNN. The same applies to the other system which is SNS (Salomon Nordic System). The added ingredient is whether your boot is BC (Backcountry) in which case both systems come with a heavier duty metal bar on the toe which is wider and more robust. Paul and Graham have just finished the 165 km (103 miles) Trolls Trail in Norway, and their ski guide Lindsay Cannon (still looking slightly wind battered) is helping them understand the different types of boot as they are now considering buying their own.
We love this film by Claire Maxted. Claire co-founded Trail Running magazine in 2010, and then in 2017 she set up Wild Ginger Running, an advice and inspiration channel for trail and ultra runners. She joined the Tracks and Trails Team in summer 2019 to check out the fabulous routes available in Chamonix, the French Alps. In 2020 she will be joining us on a UK Trail Running Camp and a Chamonix Trail Camp to help her reach her ultimate goal, a 6-day point to point UTMB that she will run with Tracks and Trails.
"The trail running above Chamonix is GLORIOUS! Fantastic trail runs and races for all experience and fitness levels. Here's all you need to know. " Claire
At Tracks and Trails we love our work and to have one of our guests wax lyrical about why they continue to join us each year is a wonderful testament to the effort put in by all the Tracks and Trails team. We do our utmost to ensure that your holiday is well organised to the highest standard, and that you leave our trips already planning your return. Like Niamh Mangan you may have joined us as a hiker, and then moved on to our winter trips and learned to cross country ski, or snowshoe in the mountains. We would be delighted if you would like to become one of the Tracks and Trails 'family'. Thank you to all of you who continue to support our small team of enthusiasts. It is a pleasure to know you!
The Hallingdal Track at 138km is a stunning trip which was new in winter 2019. Researching and skiing the route was a challenge as it soon became clear that no one else was offering this trip as a guided cross country adventure. However, as soon as we set off it became clear that it was a brilliant journey in terrain that offers amazing views and mountain scenery. Our first two trips were fully booked and everyone agreed it was 'brilliant'. This film was provided by the local Tourist Office as a wonderful way of viewing the landscape along the route. It is a trip for 'advanced' nordic skiers, but even if you are 'advanced' we do not expect you to perform like the very talented Norwegian skiers who put together this film. Enjoy it, and don't worry we do not expect this level of skiing!
A glorious morning on the Trans Jura Swiss when conditions really could not have been better. It is wonderful to cruise along on cross country skis and just take in the blue skies, crisp air, and the amazing views. This six day journey on skis is 154 km along the length of the Jura mountain range between Switzerland and France. On this trip we ski on the Swiss side of the frontier and it complements very nicely our Grand Traverse of the Jura which completes a point-to-point journey of 142 km on the French side. We often find that our guests choose to complete both versions of the trip as it is a great excuse to return to the Jura.
This was our new ski trip for winter 2018 and we had a flurry of bookings as it seemed to appeal to the adventurous! It is a fabulous cross country ski trip along the Finnish Russian frontier. A landscape which feels wild and remote, with cosy cabins and saunas in the woods! Visit a reindeer farm, and watch the Aurora Borealis. We cannot promise the Northern Lights, but last year we saw an amazing display. As well as a professional BASI Nordic Ski Instructor, the trip also has the services of a qualified Arctic Wilderness Guide who is full of information about the flora and fauna and the Northern Lights!
Niamh is a wonderful example of someone who joined us just a year ago to learn to cross country ski, and who is already completing major ski journeys. Niamh was a guest on our 'Traverse of the Black Forest' cross country ski trip in 2018. We had amazing snow conditions and skied every one of the 100km of the route through the beautiful villages and, of course, the forest! When Niamh started the Black Forest trip it was just her fourth time on 'skinny' skis.
A best selling cross country ski trip - The Peer Gynt Trail! This was our first long distance ski trip in Norway, and it remains one of our most popular. A stunning introduction to Nordic ski touring with views to some of Norway's most famous mountain ranges, excellent hotel accommodation with spas, and your luggage transferred each day.The Peer Gynt Løype, loipe or trail is named after a local Norwegian hero, who was characterised into fiction by author Henrik Ibsen. Our 120 km tour, which beings north west of the Winter Olympic town of Lillehammer, skis the entire route in what is known as 'Peer Gynt Country'. We love it!
It's exciting and exhilarating to learn a new winter activity, or at least that is what we find when we introduce our guests to cross country skiing. This type of skiing is also referred to as nordic, langlauf, and ski de fond, depending on which country you are visiting. Julia Tregaskis-Allen has taught all ages; from youngsters of 8 years old, to mature guests of up to 75 years of age. The main thing is a reasonable level of fitness and a good attitude to acquiring new skills. An ability to drink lots of delicious Italian coffee, and wine, and eat a lot of fabulous pasta, and cakes is also a pre-requisite! This is not a boot camp, but an excellent three days of discovering the joys of cross country skiing.
We are often asked what it is like to run in the mountains. The easiest way to explain this is to suggest you watch this film which encapsulates the experience of running along stunning mountain trails high above the valley of Chamonix, France. Chamonix is often referred to as the world capital of 'alpine mountaineering', but is fast gaining a reputation as a major trail running destination. The sensation of running through alpine meadows, taking in stunning views, while enjoying the physical sensation of running 'free' is not to be missed.
Lindsay Cannon was the guide on our Verdon Gorge trip in May 2018 and benefitted from glorious weather. She stopped high above the blue green waters of the Lac de St Croix to tell us a little about what it is like to hike in Provence. Basically a walkers paradise of poppy and lavender fields, excellent local wines, fabulous food, characterful accommodation and the chance to take in the magnificent limestone cliffs of Europe's Grand Canyon as we walk along the floor of the Verdon Gorge.