Oregon Spring XC Ski Camp
April 2021 (exact dates TBD by February 2021)
Mt Bachelor/Bend, Oregon
Created For Adult Skiers & Racers ( Juniors welcome with adult chaperone )
Camp Updates (Latest update -- December 27, 2020):
XC Oregon feels quite positive about the 2021 Spring Camp happening with very few restrictions or caveats. Exact dates are TBD not because of the pandemic per se, but mostly because of potential conflicts in coach schedules on certain April weekends. We are hoping to be able to pin down a long April weekend (probably Thursday - Sunday) latest by early February and post that info here.
We are now focusing all positive energy towards seeing "good trends" in the current pandemic situation as fast as possible. We hope all our past and future Campers will stay safe, be health smart, and keep believing. We'll get through this together and be out on the snow again soon!
For more camp information: Email: [ jd at xcoregon dot org ] or call (541) 317-0217.
What Is Included In Camp Fees
Your Camp Fees include:
-- Morning on-snow ski coaching sessions;
-- Trail passes are included under the non-season pass payment option, but not under season pass options;
-- On-demand options for setting up afternoon drylands activity clinics (Thurs-Sat options only);
-- Our famous Oregon Camp flexible scheduling so you can select any order of Camp days you prefer;
-- Fun, low-key, inclusive atmosphere plus personalized info for every camper!
Camp price does NOT include meals, lodging or transportation. Lab testing is also an added fee.
(optional) PHYSIOLOGY LAB TESTING: Extra cost Please note that campers with 3-5+ day packages will have first priority with regards to scheduling available Fall Camp lab testing slots. Skiers in Central Oregon can easily test before and after camp weeks at the Camp group rate if we schedule your test.
Current members of the American Cross Country Skiers may deduct $10 from any registration price. IMPORTANT: Contact the Camp before paying for this discount via credit card payment -- again, the PayPal system doesn't have a way currently for a discount to be applied.
Schedule (preliminary only, subject to change)
Note: Afternoon and evening events will be scheduled based on enrollment up to the first half of May. The sooner we have a good enrollment number, the sooner we can set a firm schedule.
Daily Mornings -- Ski sessions meet roughly from 8:45am - 11:00am each day at Mt Bachelor. Video review can stretch the total session time until noon.
Afternoons -- (pending demand) 1-2 Dryland Clinics looking at rollerski technique, specific foot drills, and/or XC strength routines. May also include video review (weather pending). Afternoon events are always in Bend. We will select afternoons based on enrollment interest and weather.
Basics About The Camp
The Oregon Spring Camp offers adult skiers a very unique chance to take part in a world-class ski education experience in the late spring. Mt Bachelor typically holds sufficient snow on the Nordic Center trails to allow grooming into June. Our camp dates are set up to take advantage of the most reliable window concurrent with U.S. and Canadian National Ski Team camps. So you'll literally be able to tell your friends you are out ski training in the spring with Olympians & World Cup stars!
Spring is a great time to work on technique and new skills in a low-key setting. For those folks in low elevations with little to no snow from April to November, a Spring Camp gives you a chance to "touch base" with skiing and shorten the length of this on-snow gap. What's even better, our dryland clinics and training plan help (not to mention lab testing for those that choose it) gives you an unbeatable menu of information to plan your best XC ski fitness year ever!
IMPORTANT: Due to the very small size of this camp, participants will need to be at least at the high beginner skill level to take part. Fitness is less of an issue than having decent basic skills to actually ski on flats, uphills, and downhills. We generally will not ski tons of km's each morning, but we absolutely will not be able to offer basic, "never ever" beginner skill sessions for either technique at this camp. Please also remember that ski conditions are also highly variable in the late spring so you also need to be comfortable skiing on anything from fresh powder, to soft spring corn, to occasional very hard "melt/freeze" conditions. If you are worried about your skill level, please contact the Camp before registering so we can help you decide if this event is right for you.
Our camp structure allows most skiers to operate at their own pace 99% of the time, thus eliminating pressure for skiers to either "keep up with the top guys/gals" or waste time waiting for other folks to catch up (both common complaints at other camps/clinics you can find out there). We promise to keep you moving as much as possible while also keeping the information flow -- specific to YOUR needs -- coming in every session. We use video footage & review in several sessions (weather permitting).
All on-snow sessions concentrate on application of specific technical elements combined with real world workout designs used by world-class skiers (of all ages). Individual technical feedback is a huge part of the process rather than concentrated in a traditional, stand around and watch clinic. Past participants really enjoy this approach which allows for both the best of lots of personal ski time AND loads of feedback on how to improve your skiing.
What About A Choice Of Techniques?
Since our core audience is adult skiers & racers that often ski in both techniques, we organize all sessions with a theme of either skating or classic technique as much as possible. If there are enough skiers in the same boat (i.e. classic only at a designated skate session), we simply create a separate group for that technique. But please note that we can't promise separate groups each day. Sometimes our coaches will need to split techniques in the same group. Being small we have a lot of flexibility and are used to adjusting to all needs.
An incredibly unique element to the Oregon Spring Camp is the chance to get a complete ski-specific physiology testing at the Central Oregon Community College lab. The testing includes lactate zones, body comp, and VO2max values.
Even very casual adult skiers have been blown away by the information for basic health and fitness they have gotten out of this very simple testing procedure. For serious racers, the lab values give you precise heart rate zones (no more guessing!) just as you enter your on-snow training season. More than once, skiers have told us that coming away equipped with the specific training zone information provided by the lab is worth the cost of the camp by itself!
The ski specific lab test involves skiwalking on a treadmill at progressively higher speeds with special poles provided by the lab. Tiny blood samples are gathered about a half dozen times from the tips of a couple fingers. You use normal dryland clothing for this test and are not required to bring anything special or make any special preparations except being well-rested. The lab staff is very used to guiding novice folks thru the test and the whole thing is over with in about a half hour. A cycling-specific test can also be arranged for campers that would rather test on a bike (you will need to bring or rent a performance bike). When possible, it is very much recommended that skiers try and get to Bend such that you can test the day before your actual camp format begins (example: arrive on Monday or Tuesday for a Weds-Sun camp). Having fresh legs gives you the most accurate test results.
Evening and Afternoon Sessions
Evening workshop sessions will be held on Bend's westside. These workshops are specifically designed to help adult skiers with jobs, kids, limited snowtime, etc. juggle all the challenges in your life and still get outstanding results out of your skiing. We focus on the wintertime needs of the XC racer, but the workshops are perfectly applicable to a non-racing health/fitness program based around XC skiing. We also schedule no-host social events at westside Bend establishments to interact socially with campers often bringing along special video footage to view at the same time.
The Camp Director and Founder is J.D. (John) Downing, Coach/Director of the XC Oregon elite development program based in Bend, American XC Skiers (US masters association/American Ski Marathon Series National Director, and founder/editor of xcskiworld.com website. Additional coaches are enlisted to help with coaching on various workouts. Every year our campers tell us how pleased they were with the coaches and consistent help they received at the Spring Camp.
Additional Stuff To Know
The outdoor recreation capital of the Pacific Northwest...Bend is located on the east side of the Cascade mountain range in very nearly the center of Oregon. The mountains above Bend, Oregon typically offer one of the earliest, longest, and most consistent ski seasons in North America with Mt. Bachelor's Nordic Center typically opening the week before Thanksgiving weekend and snow lasting thru June in most years. We anticipate 8-20km of trails will be available at Mt. Bachelor, groomed daily by snowcat at the 5900-6300ft. elevation.
Within a few hours of Bend are many other popular visitor destinations including Smith Rocks, Crater Lake National Park, Mt. Hood, Mt. Jefferson, the Columbia River Gorge, Steens Mountain, and the Oregon Coast.
GETTING TO THE CAMP
Transportation is not included in the camp package.
Flying to the camp?
Flying direct to Bend?
The Redmond/Bend Airport (RDM) is located 15-20 minutes from downtown Bend and serves Central Oregon with daily direct connections from Portland, Salt Lake City, Denver, San Francisco, and Seattle with three carriers...Delta, United Airlines, and Horizon/Alaska Airlines (Delta partner). Folks from the northeast and midwest can get to Redmond/Bend in as little as two flights and in as little as a half day of travel time. Returning home takes a bit longer on the clock due to losing 2-3 hours due to various time zones. RDM is a reliable regional airport with weather very rarely impacting spring flights. Budget, Hertz, National, and Avis all have offices in the Redmond/Bend airport.
Flying into Portland?
The Portland (PDX) airport has loads of daily connections from throughout North America and is a 3+ hour drive from Bend. Flights can be cheaper into PDX or not much different than Redmond/Bend -- it just depends on when you buy and from whom. Portland is very reliable in spring weather for flying. However, the drive time plus driving conditions is something you need to keep in mind as you will have to cross a 4000ft mountain pass to get to Bend and spring storms can sometimes make things a little bit snowy (but very rarely bad in the late spring).
What about driving to Bend?
By car, Bend is 3+ hours from Portland....7-9 hours from Tahoe/Sacramento/Bay Area in California...5-7 hours from the Seattle area...5-6 hours from Boise...10-12 hours from the Salt Lake City area.
What about getting to skiing?
Drive time from westside Bend lodging locations to skiing will vary from 15-30 minutes, one way. Having a car or carpool with other campers is pretty much a necessity. The Spring Camp does not provide ground transportation. The schedule for all on-snow sessions are always subject to change due to weather and snow conditions.
Lodging is not included in the camp package
The west side of Bend features several lodging options to suit any budget. NOTE: If researching your own lodging options not shown here, be aware that the shortest access to skiing is via the west side of Bend. Make sure to ask any reservation desks not on this list exactly how long it takes to drive to Mt. Bachelor as well as the intersection of Colorado and 14th/Century to get an idea of how long it will take you to reach ski and evening sessions.
A ton of additional lodging options plus loads of other visitor info for the Bend area is found on the Visit Bend website.
TownePlace Suites located at the Century Drive (14th Street) and Colorado roundabout. Kichenettes are available with two major grocery stores a short walk away. Breakfast is complimentary each morning with warm cookies and milk in the early evening.
Hampton Inn Mill District located across the river from the Mill District retail/dining/entertainment area. Easy walking to tons of shops, a half dozen eating locations, and a movie complex. About a mile to a grocery store. Quick access to mountain highway. Breakfast is complimentary.
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott. This hotel is very close to the north side of downtown Bend so an additional 5-10 minutes drive than the Townplace up to the mountain (the trade-off being easy walking distance into downtown). Breakfast is complimentary each morning. Warm cookies with milk in the early evening. Call 800-257-3000 for Central Reservations or 541-318-1747 for Hotel Front Desk Reservations.
Hilton Garden Inn... 541-617-6111 ...very nice hotel overlooking the popular Mill District retail/dining/entertainment area in Bend along the river just south of the downtown core. Easy walking to tons of shops, a half dozen eating locations, and a movie complex. About a mile to a grocery store. Quick access to mountain highway.
Best Western Premier Peppertree Inn at Bend... 541-389-8800 ... a brand new large hotel located at the last west Bend roundabout (Mt Washington Drive) before you head up to Mt Bachelor. Short drive or walking distance from grocery, restaurants, Mill District entertainment.
The Oxford Hotel ... (877) 440-8436 ...located in the heart of downtown Bend Oregon. Bend's only boutique hotel, offering amenities and luxuries you simply won't find anywhere else in town. Easy walking to loads of shopping, restaurants, brew pubs, art galleries.
DoubleTree by Hilton ... 541-317-9292...located in the heart of downtown Bend Oregon. All-suite hotel offers a complimentary breakfast buffet & complimentary wireless internet access throughout the Hotel. Easy walking to loads of shopping, restaurants, brew pubs, art galleries.
The Seventh Mountain Resort... 541-306-7433...closest location to skiing, located roughly 4 miles from the main edge of westside Bend up the Cascade Lakes Highway; various sizes of suites and condos; on-site resaurant; the trade-off is the location requires a 5-10 minute drive into town for grocery trips, downtown fun, evening sessions, etc..
Loge Entrada ... 541.382.4080...clean, quiet, totally remodeled lodge and hostel located one mile from Bend's western edge on the way up to Mt. Bachelor (cuts a few minutes off your drive up/down); 5 minute drive to grocery store or Mill District, 8 mins to downtown Bend.
A Stone's Throw Bungalow Vacation Rentals ... 541-241-6676 ... Features a mix of modern and historic homes of all sizes in downtown and westside Bend. All homes are within 10 blocks of downtown. Great last minute rates. email: Reservations@AStonesThrowBungalow.com
Bend Vacation Rentals... 541-385-9492... features great deals on rental homes for several skiers traveling together and all of our rentals are on the West Side of Bend with one house on the SE side.
Lavabelles Vacation Rentals... 541.497.3242 or 888.820.5084...features a unique collection of historic homes located in Downtown Bend, across from McMenamins, and the near Westside.
Mt. Bachelor Village Resort ... condos and suites (all sizes), 800.452.9846... located above Deschutes River on Bend's west side... quick access to Bend Athletic Club, Mill District, grocery stores.
Rainbow Motel... 888.529.2877 ...clean, quiet motel located in the "midtown" area; not in the fanciest area of town, but very affordable and safe; short walk to grocery or downtown.
For more camp information: Email: [ jd at xcoregon dot org ] or call (541) 317-0217.