The Cross Country Skier Podcast

The Cross Country Skier Magazine podcast is an extension of stories from the Nordic skiing world that go beyond our print and web features. In this new medium, we’ll continue our conversations with athletes, coaches, touring center operators and other experts in the field, bringing fresh material to our audience.

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LATEST EPISODE

The Adirondacks’ New Nordic Hope

There’s a lot happening at Paul Smith’s College in the Adirondacks. With new trails designed by John Morton and programs sanctioned by both USA Nordic and U.S. Biathlon, the future looks bright for athletes looking for a training base. To learn what’s afoot in the Adirondacks, we speak with John Morgan, a former National Team bobsledder who is overseeing the program at Paul Smith’s; Tim Burke, who’s competed in four Olympic Winter Games and is the director of athlete development for U.S. Biathlon; and Bill Demong, Vermontville, New York’s five-time Olympian who won a gold medal in Nordic combined at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and serves as executive director of USA Nordic.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Hotel Saranac. It’s also possible thanks to support from our listeners—if you like what you hear and would like to hear more, please make a contribution.

PREVIOUS EPISODES

Tom Kelly’s 50-year cross country legacy

Tom Kelly’s career is rooted in cross country skiing. After covering ski jumping, Kelly found himself working for entrepreneur Tony Wise in the mid ’70s, promoting the American Birkebeiner and World Cup cross country races in Telemark, Wisconsin. Kelly’s 30-plus year tenure as vice president of communications with the U.S. Ski Team culminated trackside with the historic Olympic gold medal of Jessie Diggins and Kikkan Randall at the PyeongChang Olympic Games. That year, he retired from the U.S. Ski Team and was recognized by the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee with its Building Dreams Award before being inducted into the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame in 2019. Even in retirement, he’s remained active in Olympic sport and as one of the U.S. Cross Country Ski Team’s biggest fans.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Madshus Nordic Skis. It’s also possible thanks to support from our listeners—if you like what you hear and would like to hear more, please make a contribution.

Gus Schumacher and Ben Ogden: Champions of 2020

Fresh off their 2020 FIS Junior World Championships gold medal relay, Ben Ogden and Gus Schumacher join Peter to talk about their standout winter and what’s next for them and America’s other rising stars. Anchorage, Alaska’s Schumacher, from the Alaska Winter Stars program and a Service High School graduate, anchored the gold-medal-winning World Juniors’ relay and also captured a win in the men’s 10km classic. Vermonter Ben Ogden, Schumacher’s World Juniors teammate, closed out his season with a victory for the University of Vermont in the 2020 NCAA Championship men’s 10km. 

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Craft.

Vegard Ulvang: Fluoros, COVID and a Remarkable Career

Peter talks with chairman of the FIS Cross Country Committee and multi-Olympic medalist Vegard Ulvang. Recognized around the world for his athletic accomplishments, the native Norwegian maintains a thoughtful, humble style that is widely respected. Ulvang goes deep on his remarkable career, the status of cross country in Norway, fluorocarbon waxes and how COVID-19 will affect this year’s World Cup.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Craft.

Chris Grover on Covid, Funding and Selects for the 2021 U.S. Cross Country Team

Chris Grover, Head Coach; Julia Kern, Simi Hamilton, Rosie Brennan, Tyler Kornfield, Sadie Maubet Bjornsen, Matt Whitcomb, World Cup Coach; Sophie Caldwell, Noell Keeffe, Caitlin Patterson, Andy Newell, Jessie Diggins, David Norris, Alayna Sonnesyn, Ian Torchia.
2020 U.S. Cross Country Ski Team. [Photo] U.S. Ski & Snowboard.

In early May, U.S. Ski & Snowboard announced its nominations for the 2021 Cross Country Ski Team. As always, we found the selections notable for many reasons. Hot on the heels of some great finishes at Junior Worlds, next year’s team is fat with young talent, including the biggest D team ever. But the team is equally notable for the absence of some great veteran skiers who didn’t meet the criteria. And some may have noticed these selections were announced as the “Davis U.S. National Cross Country Team Program.” Did the team pick up a new sponsor? In this episode, Cross Country Skier’s Adam Howard is joined by Chris Grover, longtime U.S. Cross Country Ski Team head coach, to talk about all of these developments.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is made possible by you. If you like what you hear and would like to hear more, please consider making a contribution above.

Bill McKibben: The Future of Winter

Thirty years ago, environmentalist Bill McKibben wrote “The End of Nature,” the first book for a general audience on climate change. And while disappearing snows are a concern of any cross country skier, they perhaps best know McKibben’s name for another one of his titles, “Long Distance: A Year of Living Strenuously,” in which he explores the limits of endurance over a year of dedicated ski training. McKibben, a longtime scholar in residence at Vermont’s Middlebury College, reflects on what he learned in writing “Long Distance,” why intellectual types gravitate to Nordic skiing and the future of cross country in a warming world.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Trapp Family Lodge.

Fifty Years of Coaching with Marty Hall


When Bill Koch won the first-ever U.S. Olympic medal in Nordic skiing at the 1976 Innsbruck Games, Marty Hall was the coach behind the athlete. But Hall’s successes extend well before and long after Kochie’s silver medal, including having built the U.S. women’s team from the ground up beginning in 1969 with athletes like Allison Owens and Martha Rockwell and coaching the Canadian National Team. A recent Ski Hall of Fame inductee in both the U.S. and Canada, Marty Hall reflects on the pivotal changes across 50 years of coaching, the controversy he caused by speaking out about doping in the ’80s and his predictions for the future of U.S. women’s team.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Trapp Family Lodge.

Katharine Ogden’s Highs and Lows


In spring 2017, the same year Katharine Ogden anchored the bronze-medal-winning Junior World Championships relay and became the first American to podium in an individual Junior World Championships race, she was diagnosed with a near-crippling anxiety disorder that threatened to derail her racing career. But two years later, she’s skiing for Dartmouth College, recently won her third NCAA title and is balancing a school schedule with racing nationally and abroad. Fresh back from the Colby Carnival, Ogden talks about how she’s dealt with her anxiety, the nuances of racing on the Tour de Ski and what it feels like to compete alongside her heroes.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of Trapp Family Lodge.

Digging Deep: How Life Has Changed for Olympic Gold Medalist Jessie Diggins

When Jessie Diggins crossed the finish line during the team sprint at the PyeongChang Olympic Games she, along with teammate Kikkan Randall, became the first U.S. cross country skier to win a medal at that level since 1976. In this episode we sit down with Jessie to hear how her life has changed since that day, how it has affected her perspective on skiing and what she’s looking ahead to in the coming season.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of  Skida Headwear & Accessories.


Racing in a Post-Fluorinated Wax World

Fasterskier.com journalist Jason Albert covers everything about the World Cup cross country scene, from FIS and WADA politics to wax. For the past year, he’s undertaken unprecedented research on the long-term effects of our use of short and long chain fluorinated wax both on the environment and on human health. With the recent EPA crackdown on wax manufacturers and importers is the end near? And, how accountable should our sport’s governing bodies be?

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of  Skida Headwear & Accessories.


Coach’s Corner: Previewing the 2019-2020 World Cup

Chris Grover joins us to preview the upcoming international racing season. Find out what to look forward to, and what he’s most excited for in the months ahead. Topics include team rosters, which athletes to watch for, main events, the first World Cup on U.S. soil in 19 years and how fandom around the U.S. team has grown post Gold Medal.

This episode of the Cross Country Skier Podcast is possible thanks to the support of  Skida Headwear & Accessories.