Krasnogorsk Ski Stadium – That’s How We All Going To Ski Soon Enough

Cross country skiing is not for everyone. It’s for people who are blessed (cursed) to live in the areas with more or less guaranteed snow at least a few weeks / year.

It is so happens that those are the most heavily urbanized places on Earth: Northern America and Europe nowadays sport quite astonishing 80% plus urbanization rates, about double from what was the case in 1950s.

Add Covid mayhem and Covid travel restrictions – we might never thought about them but they are here and who knows for how long!

Long story short: absolutely new variety of ski tracks ” station” a.k.a ski stadium is suddenly needed. The one where pros could compete a few times a year, kids & committed amateurs train the rest of the winter – and the general public enjoy an occasional spot on narrow skis when they so inclined.

It also needs to be located close by and linked to the rest of the city by eco-friendly transportation links.

We found one:

This is Krasnogorsk Zorkiy ski stadium, Moscow region only venue featuring FIS tracks homologation
Once upon a time Krasnogorsk stadium was a fairly remote place featuring 15k loop through the forest. Those days are gone: it’s now from 2 to 5k – and the city crawled close by, just look at those high rises on the background
State-of-the-art new stadium building featuring anything &everything: from multiple wax cabins to conference rooms and TV commentator booths. The Russian ski federation uses it as a venue to hold seminars and master-classes for young coaches
In urban areas ski tracks are always under threat from people who like to walk, bike, ride or whatever else but ski. That fence is meant ( and does ) to keep all ” intruders” out. No skis – no entry. At least in theory
That’s Lidia Durkina from the Russian national team. We suspect she’s thrilled because she didn’t have to endure a customary long car ride to her race but took a metro train instead. Cheap, eco-friendly and cheerful
Anastasia Kuleshova (Sedova) says she’s totally on board with the fact that all those high-rise buildings are full of apartments to rent to suit any budget/ need and that’s what she and her husband did when they came to their race – bringing along 6 month old daughter
Vistas? They are somewhat peculiar compared to what the crowds are used to in , say, Lillehammer or Toblach, “urban chic” you may call it
To sum it up: Krasnogorsk-type skiing IS the future, unless we all switch to rollerskis. You lose long tracks (15k F on 2k lap was fun to watch but not necessarily to partake in) and you lose that “nature feel” – Krasnogorsk shan’t let you forget you are in the city, not for a second. What you gain is proximity, convenience, comfort and good ski tracks , protected from feet-stomping “invaders”. Not a bad bargain. More to the point, it’s not a bargain we get to make – the cities keep on expanding and the skiing would have to adopt or die out
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