All winter long (so from November to April) you can find me up on Casper Mountain tramping around in the snow. I began as a snowshoer hitting the back trails and am now a huge fan of cross country skiing.

Every once in a while I see someone doing something that makes me cringe AND there have been times when people have taken time to comment negatively about something I'm doing.

So, I decided to take a look at the actual rules and regulations (you can find the section that applies to the Nordic Ski Trails in section 22) and called one of our local winter sports stores to learn what the REAL dos and don'ts are. There might still be some room for debate on a few of them (specifically the rules about dogs) so feel free to correct me if you think I'm wrong.

DO: Buy your Trail Pass. You can get a single pass or a family pass from pretty much any local sports store. The money goes towards maintaining the trails and keeping them safe for us to use.

DON'T: Be a freeloader. I don't think it's a problem to bring a guest with you occasionally or to wait until you've used the trails once before investing in a pass. But, if you're a frequent trail user buy your Trail Pass.

Cathy Holman: Townsquare Media
Cathy Holman: Townsquare Media

DO: Feel free to snowshoe on the Nordic Ski Trails, not just the single track that's specifically designated for snowshoers.

DON'T: Walk in the middle of the Ski Trail, try and keep off to the sides. There are two reasons for this. First, the snowshoes can cause divots and cuts in the groomed ski trails that make it harder for skiers. Second, it's a safety thing! Skiers gather a lot of speed on those hills and less experienced ones may not be able to move to the side or navigate around a large group of people.

DO: Fat Bike on either the Ski Trail or the Single Track.

DON'T: Leave tracks in the snow on the Ski Trail. If you can see tracks being made by your bike, it's probably too powdery for you to be up Fat Biking. It turns out icy packed snow is the best snow for fat bikers!

DO: Pay attention to your surroundings and it's generally understood that the slower person should move out of the way for whoever is going faster. An example: A leisurely snowshoer should move to the side for someone running with snowshoes, or a snowshoer should move aside for a skier.

Cathy Holman: Townsquare Media
Cathy Holman: Townsquare Media

DON'T: Have your music up so loud that you can't hear what's going on around you. Often skiers and far bikers will let out a warning when they are passing, you may become irritated or even get hurt if you don't hear them over your tunes.

This is the rule I think causes the most confusion...

According to the rules and regulations "No animals or pets are allowed on the ski trails."

DON'T: Allow your dog on the groomed Nordic Ski Trails. me, this means it is OK to have your leashed dog (with bags to pick up any messes) with you on the back snowshoe trail.

DO: Enjoy the mountain, find your zen while getting a good workout and when in doubt error on the side of being polite!

I would love to hear your thoughts, do you agree with these Casper Mountain Nordic Ski Trails rules?

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