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Let's Embrace Winter Together!

Explore a world of snowy trails and serene landscapes on skis. With our free lessons you'll be gliding along trails in tranquil forests in no time.

Cross-Country Ski School

Why learn to cross-country ski with HPSC?

Our certified instructors offer cross-country ski lessons on most bus trips (except the very start and very end of the season).

  1. Lessons are free with your membership.
  2. No limits: you can take a lesson every time you come on a day trip.
  3. Instructors are all certified by the Canadian Association of Nordic Ski Instructors (CANSI) and participate in professional development opportunities every winter.
  4. Lessons are in small groups with individualized attention (we aim for no more than 6 people in a lesson).
  5. It’s social! You meet fellow skiers at your level to ski with in the afternoon, and on future day trips.
Note that cross-country does not allow driving up to lessons. All members must take the bus.
HPSC Cross Country Instructors

Cross-Country Ski Lesson Levels

Classic and Skate Ski Levels

There are 5 levels for classic and skate. Below you will find explanations of each level to help you decide which level you should be in. Don't worry too much about it; when we see you ski, we can place you in the right group. All members who sign up in advance will receive lessons; we may not be able to accommodate those who do not register in advance.

For more information on lessons, see the FAQ page first. If your question is not answered, you can email

Classic 1/Skate 1

  • I am brand new to skiing or have only been on skis once or twice.
  • I feel uncomfortable on skis – my balance is very unsteady. I fall often.
  • I don’t even want to think about hills!
  • Usually people spend one or two lessons at this level.

Classic 2/Skate 2

  • I have been on skis before (including a Level 1 class), but still feel uncomfortable or unsteady at times.
  • I don’t think I understand the basic techniques.
  • I feel more like I am shuffling or walking on skis rather than gliding.
  • I am still hesitant on gentle hills.

Classic 3/Skate 3

  • I understand the basic techniques.
  • I feel comfortable moving on skis, but my skiing still feels choppy.
  • I get some glide (rather than shuffling or walking on skis). On classic, I hear my skis slapping behind me on the snow. On skate, I feel like I am on my inside edges most of the time.
  • I can get myself up and down gentle to moderate hills.

Classic 4/Skate 4

  • My skiing feels more fluid.
  • I can confidently glide with all my weight on one ski some of the time. On classic, I don't hear my ski slapping behind me as much (although it still happens). On skate, I can land on a flat ski and glide most of the time.
  • I feel comfortable on intermediate trails.
  • I can get myself up and down most hills, although still hesitant on the steep ones.

Classic 5/Skate 5

  • My skiing feels fluid.
  • I can glide with all my weight on one ski most of the time for both classic and skate. My classic skiing is quiet (i.e., I don't hear my skis slapping behind me) and I can glide with solid balance in skate skiing.
  • I am comfortable on all the trails and cool with most hills I encounter on advanced trails.
  • I think I’m ready to learn more advanced techniques.

Special Programming

In addition to regular lessons, we offer special clinics or programs through the season, including hill clinics, trail handling clinics, and tips and tricks sessions (15 minute sessions with an instructor to work on a particular skill). There is no additional cost for these programs. If we offer them, you can find the dates in our schedule. You register for them online when you register for the trip (except the beginners series - see below).There is no guarantee that we will offer special programs every the season; it depends on the number of instructors available.

We are bringing back our classic beginners series for 2024! This popular program is three sessions with the same instructor and classmates (Jan. 7, 14, 21) and is designed for new skiers. You must be available all three dates to participate (that's the point of it being a series!). If you are interested, please email If you can't commit to three dates, there are always other beginner lessons offered.

We also offer opportunities to train to become an instructor with the club. This is a great way to give back to the club and share your love of skiing and it is a great way to improve your own skiing. Email us to find out more!

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