Young racers hone their skills during Christmas Camp

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
Getting tips from Mt. Shasta Ski Team program director Robert Baker during the Christmas camp at the Ski Park are Far West racers Jarrod Althaus-Cressman, Harrison Keane, Elise Balin and Mariah Althaus-Cressman.

The Mt. Shasta Ski Team began gearing up for this year’s race season with a four-day Christmas Ski Camp Dec. 21-24. 

Twelve skiers at various skill levels participated in the camp which focused on basic stance, balance and overall skiing skills.

“The Christmas camp was a great success for MSST and I would like to thank the Mt. Shasta Ski Park for the great snow and support to make this project a success,” said Ski Team program director Robert Baker.

The team’s more advanced Far West racers also started preparing for upcoming races in the new year by training in slalom gates. Several athletes in the J4 division (ages 11-12) will be racing Jan. 2-3 in Northstar, while the J3 racers (ages 13-14) will be heading to Sugarbowl the following weekend, Jan. 9-11. 

Regular training for the Regional Race Program that features races at Mt. Shasta and Ashland, as well as the Freeride Program, is scheduled to begin this Saturday, Jan. 2.

Beginning skiers and snowboarders ages 6 to 12 will begin their six-week season in the Development Ski or Freeride programs on Saturday, Jan. 16.

Registration is still open for all Mt Shasta Ski and Freeride Team programs.

Race Association

While the athletes are beginning their training and getting ready for upcoming races, the Mt Shasta Race Association is also preparing for the season. Members of the Race Association have worked throughout the summer and early winter to get the new Paul Gianera building ready for use. They say the hard work is coming to fruition: the building is nearly finished, with just a few interior details left to be completed.

Race Association staff are also checking timing equipment and getting everything ready to go. The first high school race of the season is scheduled for Jan. 8 and many more races will follow, including a USSA Far West race Jan. 30-31.

The California Nevada Interscholastic Ski and Snowboard Federation  state championships also return to Mt. Shasta this year, March 8-12.

Fundraiser raffle drawing to be held New Year’s Eve

In order to keep training fees for youth racers and race fees for high school races as low as possible, the Mt. Shasta Race Association coordinates several fundraisers each year. The first of the year is a raffle, with prizes including a 2010 season pass for the Mt. Shasta Ski Park, a pair of new skis from the Fifth Season with one hour of private ski coaching from MSST program director Robert Baker, a snowboard from Shasta Base Camp and one hour of private coaching from MSFT coach Ty Parks, two one-day mountaineering classes from Shasta Mountain Guides, complete auto detailing from Parks Offroad, or a free registration for the 2010 season for the MSST Regional Ski or Freeride program.

“What makes this raffle special is entrants can choose which prize drawing they would like to be entered in,” explained Elizabeth Keane, coordinator for the fundraiser.

The drawing will be held at the Mt. Shasta Ski Park Family Friendly New Year’s Eve celebration. “Light Yourself Up” is the theme this year. 

Raffle tickets are $5 and can be purchased from MSST athletes or by calling Elizabeth Keane at 918-9154.

“There will be a contest with prizes to see who can come up with the best display of lights, on themselves.  LED lights, bicycle lights, glow sticks, anything goes.  

The Mt. Shasta Ski Team will be leading the event’s torchlight parade. Everyone is invited to participate. 

More details about the raffle and New Year’s Eve Celebration  can be found at  

Upcoming fundraising events include a ski-a-thon later in the season and a dinner auction to be held Feb. 27. 

For more information on Mt. Shasta Race Association programs and events or to view race schedules and results, visit the MSRA website at