At L.L.Bean, we’ve been telling people for years how easy it is to learn to cross-country ski. Still, some folks remain skeptical. So we thought we’d see if a 7-year-old – fresh off his first-ever cross-country skiing excursion – might be able to convince our readers to give it a try.
Guest blogger Derek Chase is a second grader who loves writing and spending time outdoors. His favorite subjects at school are math and American history. Derek also volunteers at Our Neighbor’s Table. He lives in Massachusetts with his family (including his father, Justin, who writes his own blog, Outdoors, by Cracky!).
We recently sent Derek an L.L.Bean Youth’s Discovery Ski Set – our bestselling kids’ ski package – and asked him to write about his experience.
I was so happy and excited to see my new cross-country skis, I just can’t describe it. I couldn’t wait for snow to try them out!
My skis are red, white and black. They aren’t like the grown-up kind where you snap the boot in – instead, you slide your boot and bend the clip to lock them, which is much cooler.
The first time, we skied on thick, powdery snow over Lake Atittash, where we live. We – me, my dad, mom, brother Brad and dog Gauge – skied from our dock to our neighbor’s dock. Once I got the hang of it, skiing was fast and smooth. I thought it would take days and days to learn, but it was easy and I felt really confident. It only took me about a half hour. Even when I fell, I still thought it was fun. I really like winter sports, like snowshoeing, hiking and playing in the snow, so cross-country skiing just felt right.
The next day, we decided to ski again, all the way across the lake to the ice fishermen [1.5 miles away]. We had been watching them fish through our window, so it seemed like a good idea to check them out. When we got to them, I was surprised that their ice houses weren’t made of wood. Instead, their house was just like a fabric tent. We stopped at a red one and the only thing they had inside was a couple of jackets and a bucket. All the holes they made for fishing were outside. Gauge ran from hole to hole checking for fish, stepping in them, and mostly destroying their flags. After that, we skied back.
The way back was tiring and hard. It seemed 800 miles longer, but I knew it couldn’t be that far. We hadn’t really gone double-digit miles yet, so no way were we triple-digit miles away. We won’t be ready for that for a long time.
Our next plan is to go to my grandpa’s farm, where there are a few hills and lots of flat space to ski around. I definitely want to ski some more!
As you can see, cross-country skiing is not only easy to learn, it’s also lots of fun! We’re glad Derek had such a great time and know he’ll have many more cross-country adventures with his new Discovery Ski Set.
How do you think Derek did with his first L.L.Bean blog post? Let him know in the comments!