Kids both big and small and one adult gathered on Fridays after school during January and February of 2005 and 2006 to try their hands at learning the art of cross-country skiing. This activity proved to be a fun, educational activity that also provided some physical fitness elements as well.
Kris Robertson and June Booth provided the instruction for ten beginning skiers teaching them the basics of cross-country skiing. Carolyn Alm from Paintrock Enterprises graciously donated the use of a field near the Hyattville Community Center for the two months both years. Kris made arrangements with Sunlight Sports in Cody to rent skis at a reduced rate, which allowed everyone the opportunity to learn cross-country skiing without having to make a large investment in equipment. (Photo above-right: Carly Jeffers and June Booth)
Most of the participants had never skied before so instructions started with the very basics of how to get the skis attached to the boots and how to hold the ski poles. Prior to the first class each season, Kris and June prepared a trail around the field that started at the HCC and headed out over the irrigation ditches that were partially covered with snow. As the trail progressed skiers were able to follow the wandering Medicine Lodge Creek through the field. Students even got to practice learning how to position their skis to bring themselves up a small incline before allowing them to return to the HCC. As the skill levels increased, the skiers took turns learning to ski down the incline.
One day after the skiers got tired of skiing, off came the skis and they rallied together to construct a snowman. In order to learn even more skills, Kris and June picked one afternoon both years and took everyone to Ten Sleep to Willow Park. There the beginners learned more about skiing up and down steeper slopes. The first year the kids ended the day doing a little snow sledding while at Willow Park. The second year the kids were treated to a marshmallow roast and the making of Smores before heading back to Hyattville.
Each week volunteers provided treats for the hungry skiing crew once the skiing lessons were completed. Ann Joyce helped serve the treats.
Catlin Caines Colter Bulow Royce Mercer leads the pack
Asa Mercer and Kris Marshmallow roast at Willow Park Brody Tharp
Carly Jeffers and Michelle Shirran Emma Mercer Jordan Herman and Catlin Caines