XC Ski Fest, Shuffle this weekend 

Cross-country relay, solo race on Sunday

There is still time to enter your family or team of three in the annual Lost Lake Shuffle this Sunday, or to race this event as a solo skier.

In the Shuffle, competitors see how many laps they can complete of the Lost Lake course in four hours. There are categories for families, which race a shorter course, male and female solo skiers, and teams of three in the co-ed, male, female and junior categories. You can either race with skate skis or in the classic style.

The event is capped at 100 entries and pre-registration at press time was already ahead of last year’s race, so organizers are asking people to register in advance to be sure of getting in and to avoid a last-minute surcharge. If there are any spots left on race day, you can also register until the 11 a.m. start for an extra fee.

The top solo competitors in the race completed 26 laps of a 3.5 km course last year, 91 km, and one highly motivated team completed 29 laps.

The base of operations is the Lost Lake Warming Hut, which will feature a DJ during the Shuffle, and an apres chili dinner for participants.

You can register in advance at the Cross Country Connection, the Lost Lake ticket booth, or the Meadow Park Sports Centre. All proceeds from the event will go to the Whistler Jackrabbits, a children’s cross-country program.

Because the Shuffle is part of Ski Fest, a national celebration of cross-country skiing, participants will be able to rent equipment for half price at participating stores, including the Cross Country Connection, Sports Stop, Whistler X Country Ski and Hike, and Wild Willies.

Ski Fest deals aren’t just available to Shuffle racers, either, but to anyone who comes out. There will be complimentary hot chocolate and the trails are free for the day. Free beginner lessons will also be offered.

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