Ski Mountaineering National team selection taking place at A-Basin Dec. 10-12 |

Ski Mountaineering National team selection taking place at A-Basin Dec. 10-12

The ski mountaineering national team will be decided this weekend at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area in two qualifying races.

The vertical competition took place Friday, Dec. 10, and the individual long course competition will take place at 7 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 11.

The vertical competition will be a 1.5-mile race course with 1,600 feet of elevation gain. Vertical races consist of a single ascent completed entirely on skis using skins. No boot packing or downhill skiing is involved, and it is a race to the top of the mountain.

The individual race format is the most popular race in the U.S. and consists of a long course of 8 miles with over 4,600 feet of elevation gain. A short course will also be offered for those racing recreationally that will be 4.8 miles and 2,900 feet of elevation gain.

The individual race format usually has a minimum of three ascents and descents for the men’s and women’s divisions.

The races will determine the national teams for four age divisions including U18, U20, U23 and Senior classifications for each race discipline.

In order to be eligible to qualify to the team, all candidates are required to be a U.S. citizen during the selection races and the duration of the 2021-22 national team term. They must also be current members and in good standing with the U.S. Ski Mountaineering Association.

The top three in the U18-U23 categories and the top five in the Senior classification will be named to the national team in either the vertical or individual races.

There are also Euro Tour trip spots on the line, which is available only to a limited number of top qualifying U.S. national team athletes in the Senior, U23, U20 and U18 age categories.

The races bring the promise of a wide array of local athletes competing, with some racing to make the national team while others will race as part of the general public. There will be racers from Team Summit, Summit Endurance Academy and the Summit Skimo Club.

All the races are open to the public.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.

Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.

Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.