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2009 Sierra Avalanche Ski-O Champs, Day 3

Northstar Cross Country

Date: (Thu.) Jan. 29, 2009
Location: Truckee, CA
Event Director: - 650.793.8764
Course Setters: Chuck Lyda, Carol Schick-Lyda
Type: Ski-O; Classic Courses

Please note that fees and time limits apply, unless otherwise mentioned below. Events are typically not canceled due to bad weather.

Note: If you are sending a minor to this event, a waiver must be signed by a parent or court-appointed legal guardian of the minor. If you are not attending with the minor, you can get the form here, sign it, and send it with your minor.

This is a new venue with a new ski-O map!

The Day-3 event is "point-to-point" format for all courses. That means each course is a series of flags that you find in the order shown on the map. From the time that you start, you get as much time as you like to finish the course, until 2:30 when all of the courses close and you must be checked in.


E-punching will be used for all courses. You must have an E-punch SI card ("finger stick") to compete in this event. If you do not have an SI card, you can rent one for $3 for the event.

You can learn how to use E-punch by reading our User's Guide.


The terrain at Tahoe Donner is hilly. You will need to take a chair lift to the main staging area. From the staging area, you ski to the cross country building where you check in or register. From there you ski to the Start area.

Off-Trail Skiing

You can ski off trail at this venue, but you do so at your own risk. Typically, it is fastest to stay on the groomed trails, but sometimes it is useful to go off trail to take a short cut in a relatively flat area between two established trails. If the snow is fresh, going off trail can be extremely time consuming. If the snow is old and icy, this can be fast but slipping can be dangerous.

If a trail with a control is not plowed and not recognizeable, especially after a huge snow storm, we recommend skipping the control—we will ignore such controls in the results. If the trail is still there, and we're talking about a couple inches of snow, the control will be counted and you should go after it.

Courses and Classes

The following courses and competitive classes will be offered (updated 1/28/09):

  Course Direct Optimal Climb Competitive Classes     Less Competitive
  White   3.2km  4.5km  60m   (None)                  F-White, M-White
  Orange  3.6km  6.0km  95m   F-16, F55+              F-Orange, M-Orange
  Green   4.2km  9.0km 155m   F-20, F40+, M-16, M55+  F-Green, M-Green
  Red     7.5km 13.0km 235m   F-21+, M-20, M40+       M-Red
  Blue   10.5km 17.0km 280m   Amazon, M-21+

The competitive classes are based on your "USOF age": 2009 minus your birth year. A minus sign means the stated age "and younger". A plus sign means the stated age "and older".

The Amazon class is for women who want to compete against other women on the hardest course. Women are always free to compete in the male classes but males cannot compete in the female classes.

Groups get a time recorded for their course but are not included in class competitions. Parents who shadow youngsters (typically under 10 years of age) are not considered to be part of a group and are not charged an orienteering fee (but they must have a trail pass to ski the trails).

Trail-Pass Fees

If you already have a season or multi-day trail pass for this event day, you do not need to purchase a trail pass.

                Preregistration   Registration
  Super Senior (70+)  TBD             TBD
  Senior (60-69)      TBD             TBD
  Adult  (13-59)      $21             $21
  Child  (0-12)       TBD             TBD

Pass fees are based on your actual age on the day of the event.

Orienteering Fees

All competitors pay one of the following orienteering fees (which are based on your actual age on the day of the event).

                Preregistration   Registration
  Adult  (21+)        $10             $15
  Junior (8-20)       $ 5             $ 8
  Child  (0-7)        Free            Free

Compass and E-stick Rentals

These rental items are optional. If you need a compass (most people do not need these on ski trails), you can rent one for $1.

If you do not own an E-punch SI card, you can rent one for $3. Please note that there is a significant charge for a lost SI card.

Event Schedule

   9:00  Registration opens
  10:00  Starts begin (first come, first serve) (might start as early as 9:30)
  12:00  Registration ends
  12:30  Last start (later starts by approval of course setter only)
   2:30  Courses close, cleanup begins
   5:00  Cleanup ends

Event Cancellation

We have yet to cancel an event or close our courses early, but we've come close to doing that. In the event that the resort closes, we automatically have to cancel our event and remove it from our championship series. Also, if we are not able to set up the equipment or safely have people ski, we automatically cancel or close the event.

Last year, we endured four blizzards with a total of eight feet of snow dropped over six days, but we didn't close one event. At times, the highway was closed, but the resort was open and we were in place ready to start people when they were able to arrive. Of course, when there are horrendous conditions, we cannot always guarantee that all trails will be groomed. If you encounter an ungroomed trail, we will ignore that control in the results—feel free to continue to the next control. There is no point in going after a control that is not on a trail, because we will exclude it from the competition.

If the resort is open, but snow conditions don't warrant a point-to-point event, we will automatically change the course to score-O format. This typically happens if too many trails remain ungroomed to run a point-to-point event.

If an event is canceled, we automatically refund your orienteering fee, and we will do whatever we can to refund your trail pass as well. Refunds might be mailed out after the event.

Driving Directions

From all points East and West take Interstate 80 to Exit 188B (Highway 267) just east of Truckee. Take Highway 267 in the direction of King's Beach for about 5.5 miles. Northstar Resort will be on your right. Follow the signs to the free parking (Village Overlook parking). If you end up in the Red or Blue parking, take the free bus to the resort.

At the resort, go to the Starbucks cafe and look for our registration at the back of the cafe. All competitors must either check in (if pre-registered) or register to get the required ski trail pass that works as a lift ticket. You must also sign a waiver for Northstar at this desk. When done, walk to the southern end of the village and take the gondola up the mountain. When you get off the gondola, ski about 0.2 or 0.3 km east to the Nordic Center (if lost, ask for the Nordic Center). From the Nordic Center, ski up the cross country trail about 1.0 to 1.5 km to the starts.

CAUTION: Just before you reach the starts area, you will have to cross a downhill run. Stop and look uphill before crossing. DOWNHILL SKIERS/SNOWBOARDERS HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY. When you finish your course, you will have to cross this run before finishing, so be prepared to stop again to let others go by on the downhill run.