60 plus crowd are skiing for Golden Glory at this year's 2011 Canadian Ski Marathon


MONTEBELLO, QC, Feb. 7 /CNW/ - What an example they make! These 60 plus year old men and women skiers have visualized this two day, 160 km Canadian cross country ski tour and are ready to hit the CSM ski trail this weekend.

On February 12 and 13, they will be part of an elite group of 330 skiers who will strap on their skis with the aim of getting their Gold bar. If you haven't skied in the CSM before, to receive a Gold bar, you must first complete the 160 km tour without sleeping overnight and without carrying a backpack (bronze level). Once you get your bronze, you get to go for silver which means you must carry a 10 lbs bag but you don't have to sleep overnight. Then, once you get the silver, you can go for the gold: ski 160 kms (80 kms each day), carry a backpack (which will contain all of your sleeping gear, cooking gear, food, change of clothes), and sleep outside overnight at the Gold Camp.

Overall, Gold Coureurs des Bois registration is up 15% this year. A significant point in itself but the really interesting point is that 10% of the 330 skiers are 60 years old or older. Two impressive Canadians who will be attempting this year's Gold CdB are Ms. Sharon Crawford, who is 66 years old, and Mr. Herve LeBlanc, who is 71 years old.

The CSM isn't just a physical challenge; it is a personal and mental one. This perhaps is where the 60 plus crowd has an advantage.

They know how to focus their minds, enjoy the benefit of each glide, and the support and camaraderie of each other. With years of ski technique under their belts, they seem to conserve energy and become a centred point of balance on their skis.

When asked what the "160 km secret to success was" one gentleman simply replied "badump...badump, badump...badump"..."plant your pole, glide, plant the next one and glide.  Don't over-think it, just enjoy it!"

This veteran group carries more than their big backpacks. They carry warm hearts, smiles and encouraging words.

"Way to go little guy! You can do it" was heard repeatedly as they passed a little six year old skier on the course last year. He did do it ... he skied almost 50 kms, and in part, it was because of their grace and welcoming inclusion into this great Canadian ski adventure.

This year, the CSM wishes to share a warm word of support back to every Coureurs des Bois skier but in particular to the CdB Gold veterans who have set such a wonderful example. Good luck and "you can do it"! This year, you are ski bound for Golden Glory! "See you at the finish line!" said Greg Koegl, President of the Canadian Ski Marathon.

/NOTE TO EDITORS: Media Assets accompanying this story are available as follows:

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SOURCE Canadian Ski Marathon

For further information:

Greg Koegl, President CSM , (514) 951-4650, www.csm-mcs.com

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