A new snowcat on the mountain

Kimberley Nordic Club takes possession of $260,000 groomer

The Kimberley Nordic Club took possession of a snowcat trail groomer this week

The Kimberley Nordic Club took possession of a snowcat trail groomer this week

The Kimberley Nordic Club is thriving and growing, producing some high profile racing talent and attracting new recreational members each year.

With 36 kilometres of groomed trails, night skiing, a public ski lodge and ski waxing facilities, the Kimberley Nordic Club (KNC) is a destination for over 5,800 members and visitors annually. The 2015/16 season saw over 130 memberships from folks based outside Kimberley/Cranbrook and over 4,700 day visitors, an increase of more than 30% over the previous season, reports Kimberley’s Director of Economic Development Kevin Wilson.

This year, cross country skiers can expect to ski on excellent trails, as the Club took possession of a new to them, 2013 snowcat groomer this week. The snowcat replaces the Club’s well-used 1997 model.

The snowcat cost $260,000 and the KNC was able to raise $200,000 themselves, an impressive feat says Mayor Don McCormick.

“When a small group shows that kind of initiative and are able to raise that kind of money, funders are happy to help,” he said.

Giving the Club the extra boost to purchase the groomer was the Columbia Basin Trust, who contributed $36,000 and 24,000 from the BC Resort Municipality Initiative administered by the City of Kimberley.

“We are excited about this critical infrastructure investment through which we will continue to offer excellent Nordic skiing,” said Nordic Club Treasurer Ross Banner. “And we appreciate the support of the community and our funding partnership with the City, the Province of BC, and the Columbia Basin Trust.”

“The Nordic Centre is an awesome asset with the trails providing a premium experience,” said McCormick.

“It is no surprise that visits are growing. This is exactly what the RMI fund is in place to support.”

““Over two million international visitors have come to B.C. in the first six months of 2016, a 12 per cent growth over the same period in 2015,” said Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour. “Kimberley is clearly part of that success with a 30 per cent increase in day visits over the previous season. Investing Resort Municipality Initiative funding into a new snowcat machine will encourage even more skiers to visit Kimberley, supporting jobs and keeping the local economy growing.”

In addition to the new snowcat groomer, the Nordic Centre parking lot is being improved with the potholes being filled asphalt grindings from the Gerry Sorensen Way repaving.

For more information on the Kimberley Nordic Club see www.kimberleynordic.org