Ski Touring and Nordic Skiing

Ski touring and nordic skiing covers a broad range of trips ranging from park and ski to backcountry ski mountaineering. We use several criteria in our trip descriptions to classify our various types of trips, focusing on round-trip mileage and total elevation gain. No classification system is perfect, and trip difficulties can vary greatly depending on the season and other factors. If after reading the trip description you have any questions about a trip's difficulty, contact the trip leader.

If you are unsure whether your skiing abilities (especially turning and stopping skills) are suitable for a trip, please contact the trip leader.

Ski Touring and Nordic Skiing Trip Classifications

  • Easy I: 1 to 3 miles round trip on generally flat terrain. Suitable for beginners.
  • Easy II: 3 to 6 miles round trip and up to 600 ft. elevation gain.
  • Easy III: 6 to 8 miles round trip or 600 ft. to 800 ft. elevation gain.
  • Moderate I: 800 ft. to 1100 ft. elevation gain.
  • Moderate II: 1100 ft. to 1500 ft. elevation gain.
  • Moderate III: 1500 ft. to 1800 ft. elevation gain.
  • Advanced I: 1800 ft. to 2500 ft. elevation gain, 15-20 miles.
  • Advanced II: Over 2500 ft. elevation gain.

Advanced ski tours are generally over 10 miles on difficult terrain and at a fast pace. To go on an Advanced ski trip, you must be able to break trail for three miles and must have excellent Nordic downhill ability. In addition to the IMR essentials, you should carry a shovel, avalanche beacon, and any extra items required by the leader.


Ski Touring and Nordic Skiing Trips

Seeking Gluttons for Punishment

Join us in a semi-exploratory ski tour in the Boise Mountains near Idaho City. We will be breaking trail on old logging roads and through the forest, up to about 10 miles round trip with about 1,700 foot cumulative elevation gain. This tour is not part of the Idaho City Park-n-Ski system and passes are not needed.

Ski conditions should be good with ankle-deep powder on a firm base. Nonetheless, this will be a strenuous tour.

Off-Trail Ski Tour

Escape the inauguration hoopla with an off-trail ski tour. Wider track skis or backcountry telemark skis are appropriate for this trip, as will be gaiters and your usual winter day pack with water in insulated containers, snacks and extra layers. We'll head out into the Boise Mountains for a 5 to 6 hour tour, exact location TBD depending on where we think the best snow conditions will be.

Avalanche Level One Refresher and Companion Rescue Clinic

Keep your skills up to date, the 705 Backcountry Ski Patrol is having two, almost free, classes this weekend. Both classes are this weekend at Soldier Mountain and if you have a Bogus Basin pass you can ski for free on Friday at Soldier Mountain.

Avalanche Level One refresher, $15 for NSP members. If you are not an NSP member you can obtain an Associate Membership for $60. A link to sign up and get more info can be found on our Facebook events page.

Winter Weekend in McCall

Have you ever been playing in the snow near McCall and wished you could stay another day? This is your chance! We have reserved a heated bunkhouse on the shores of Payette Lake. The rustic log structure is adjacent to plowed parking and will cost about $30 per person for both nights with full occupancy.

Because we purchase liability insurance and pay a non-refundable deposit for the cabin, payment must be made in advance by Monday, January 30th - contact us for details.

Spring Conditions Ski Tour

Plan A: Ski tour at the Park-n-Ski trails north of Idaho City or at the Bogus Nordic area, depending on where we think conditions will be the most enjoyable.

Plan B: If we think that ski conditions won't shape up to our expectations, then we'll opt instead for a hike on the Snake River plain, 8 - 10 miles with less than 2,000 feet cumulative elevation gain, and search for signs of spring.

Winter Ranger Program at Bogus Basin

Winter Ranger Programs will be led by Boise National Forest specialists and will focus on forest health, habitats, and winter ecology.

Meet in front of the Frontier Point Nordic Center at Bogus Basin. Tours will last approximately 2 hours.

No pre-registration necessary. The tours will be on moderate terrain. Be prepared for the weather and make sure your equipment is in good working condition.