Travel: Ski Joring Weekend in Leadville

February 2013

Colorado quiz: Do you know what ski joring is?

Answer: The winter sport entails using an animal (or, in some cases, a snowmobile) to pull a skier down a snow-packed road using tow ropes (think: water skiing on snow). Ski joring is usually done with dogs, but in Leadville this weekend, skiers will be pulled by powerful horses. The towed skier must complete several obstacles, such as jumps and spearing rings, in a timed competition.

Ski joring—which means "ski driving" in Norwegian—began hundreds of years ago in Scandanavian countries when travelers would Nordic ski behind reindeer in order to maintain mobility during the snowy winter months. The sport found its way to Leadville in the 1940s, and soon the town sanctioned its own competition. This weekend, the sport is part of Leadville's Crystal Carnival, which features Nordic sprint races, a winter mountain bike race, and a paintball biathlon. All of which means that you have even more reasons to brave what is sure to be epic traffic on I-70 this weekend. 

Image courtesy of Peak Communications.

Follow digital assistant editor Davina van Buren on Twitter at @davinavanburen or on Pinterest