2014 Ken Jones Classic at Lake Louise


KJ14_posterEvents Schedule

  • Saturday, February 8, 2014 at 6.00-7.30 am.
    Registration and Pre-race Course Description Meeting at Lake Louise Resort Ski Area Base Complex, Sitzmark Lounge, upstairs:

    • 6:00-7:00am – competitors register and collect lift tickets, sign waivers
    • 7:00-7:30am – race courses presentation, volunteer briefing, changes, technical questions, upload lift to Whitehorn start (Glacier Lift) for all categories and volunteers.
  • Saturday, February 8, 2014 at 8:30 am
    Race begins for all categories and race courses from Whitehorn start area.
  • Saturday, February 8, 2014 at 1:30 pm
    All racers expected across finish line at Lake Louise frontside base area.
  • Saturday, February 8, 2014 at 3:00 pm
    Podium awards ceremony and prize-giving North Face Bistro, Lake Louise Ski Area Base.

Registration form

SMCC EntryReg Form Ken Jones Classic 2014

Pre-race Meeting

The pre-race meeting is highly recommended for every participant. We hope to have a fair, smooth-running event with as few irregularities as possible. Knowing where you are going and what you are doing during the actual race is critical to your enjoyment of the race. This will be the last chance to register and pay for your entry, sign the appropriate waivers, and receive your lift ticket for the day, since we will be starting ahead of the public that morning.

The meeting will be held in or near the Sitzmark Lounge (look for signs) on Saturday, February 8 starting at 7.00 am. This will be your last chance to register, pay, and to sign all the necessary waivers. Equipment check for skiers should be expected at the finish line. You don’t have to bring your gear.


We are happy to offer athletes the following discounts:

For those skiers unlucky enough not to actually live in Lake Louise, who have to travel the day before, event specific discount accommodation “Group” rates are available at the Great Divide Lodge. Athletes will need to show proof of registration in the event to get the discount. http://www.thegreatdividelodge.com ).

Or the Lake Louise Inn  reservations department (1-800-661-9237) to receive the following rates: $99 for Economy Twin rooms, $119 for Superior Queen, and $159 for Executive Queen/King. (must quote code ”SAP” and “Ken Jones Classic” to receive the rate). Try also the ACC’s partner Canadian Alpine Centre.

The race courses’ details will be presented at the meeting. It is essential that you attend as there will be no further race course explanations on the day of the race, unless we have to change the courses due to unsafe conditions.

Please come on time to avoid traffic and to get the best seat for the course presentation. Thank you.

 Race Courses & Categories

The Ken Jones Classic ski mountaineering race will have three main race categories – males and females – and will be raced over two courses – “ELITE/RACE” (over. 5000 feet of vertical gain and loss, “ENDURO”, and “YOUTH” (approx.. 2000 feet). We reserve the right to change the race courses at any time due to unexpected reasons, weather, incidents, or conditions.

“RACE” Course: – Click the graphic for a full sized image

Frontside Map Backside Map Larch Map
 Ken Jones route Frontside Map  Ken Jones route Backside Map  Ken Jones route Larch Map

This is a longer and a more demanding course with around 1500m of vertical climbing and slightly more than the same amount of skiing elevation loss. It is designed for ski mountaineers that are proficient with their equipment.

The course will very likely be different than the one marked on the maps because of significant snowpack weaknesses in 2014. It may not be quite as ‘technical’ as in past versions. Regardless, you need to be fit and skilled ski mountaineer for this course. The transitions will require you putting on your climbing skins and taking them off. In case of a boot-pack section you will need to strap your skis on your ski pack.

NOTE: Expect 2 to 4 hours to complete this course!

“ENDURO” and “YOUTH” Course:

This course is designed for those that have a more relaxed attitude toward ski mountaineering and backcountry ski competition.

With around 800m of vertical climbing on two uphills and two downhills it should provide you with a great challenge as well as opportunity to have fun. Try it out!

NOTE: Expect up to 2.5 hours for a real novice to complete the “ENDURO” or “YOUTH” course!

Winner & Draw Prizes

There will be gear prizes for the top three competitors in CITIZENS and YOUTH categories.
There will be cash prizes for the fastest four Males and Females over the ELITE/RACE course:

  1. $200 in cash
  2. $150
  3. $100
  4. $50
  5. …other goodies

Total value of all prizes will be more than $2000.
Keep your bib numbers as there will be draw prizes at the awards ceremony party that will take place few hours after the race.

Race Rules & Mandatory Equipment

RACE BRIEFINGS: There will be two Race Course and Weather/Snow conditions briefings, one before the event at final registration / technical meeting, and one just before the start.
SUMMARY RULES: based on ISMF rules for International Ski Mountaineering Competition

  1. The listed mandatory gear must be carried by the racer throughout the entire race and be available for inspection at any time.
  2. Competitors must arrive at the starting area at the time set.
  3. The Race Director reserves the right to modify the event and race course at any time for safety reasons.
  4. The route passes Sequence points (unoccupied) and Checkpoints (w/ course official).
  5. The track is marked with green flags on the ascents, and red flags on the descents.
  6. Sequence points (generally changes in course direction) are marked as square flags or banners on bamboo poles on the course. Sequence points must be passed by within 2 meters.
  7. Control Points (transitions to or from skinning or skiing) are marked with square flags or banners on bamboo poles, have a course marshal present, and must also be passed within 2 meters.
  8. At each manned gate or checkpoint, the Racer must shout their number.
  9. A GPS can be carried and may be used on the course.
  10. Cellular telephones may be carried for emergency use, but must be off during racing so as not to interfere with transceiver signals.
  11. In case of withdrawal during the race, the competitor must notify the Race Organizers (via the closest checkpoint) by any means and in the shortest time possible.
  12. The Organizers reserve the right to force a competitor to withdraw for health or safety reasons.
  13. The bib numbers are exclusively reserved for the markings printed by the Organization. They must be worn on the right thigh over all other clothing.
  14. Waivers must be signed by all racers at the pre-race meeting.


  1. Any competitor who is caught up to, must obligatorily and immediately yield the trail to the competitor who says ‘’TRACK’’.
  2. Any competitor in difficulty may abandon the race at his own initiative or be taken out of the race  by decision of the Race Director, Race Coordinator, Ski Patrol, or the Race Doctor.
  3. Abandoning or being taken out of the race should take place at a checkpoint except in extreme circumstances.
  4. All racers are obligated to come to the aid of a person in danger. The Race Director will take into account the time spent providing assistance.
  5. Any failure to obey the regulations of conduct which is reported to or viewed by the Race Director must be dealt with according to the ISMF regulations and will be examined by the Race Director. This may result in a disciplinary council.
  6. No external material assistance is permitted.
  7. For those Competitors awarded in any category at SMCC events, it is mandatory to attend the award presentation. Otherwise, they will receive a penalization.


  1. If a competition must be suspended owing to circumstances beyond the control of the organizer, ranking will be determined on the basis of time points obtained at last checkpoint.
  2. If there are some racers having crossed that checkpoint and conditions are good enough for competition:
  3. They will be neutralised at next checkpoint (or at finish line if there is no other intermediate checkpoint). Ranking will be determined on the basis of, firstly, arrival order at that checkpoint and, secondly, racers at the previous checkpoint.
  4. If, even though there are racers who crossed that checkpoint, conditions are not good for competition (avalanches, bad weather, missing land marking) ranking will be determined on the basis of time and points obtained at last checkpoint.


All disputes will be follow the rules of the ISMF Sport Regulations for Ski Mountaineering Competitions, which can be found under the “Regulations” button at:  http://ismf-ski.org/ and be ruled on by the Race Dispute Committee.


For safety reasons, extreme weather conditions or other exceptional factors, the race director is authorized to make any decision he deems appropriate if the proper safety conditions can no longer be met.


The competitors commit themselves to conform to these regulations by their registration alone, and accept the exploitation by Lake Louise and The Alpine Club of Canada, and their partners to broadcasters, of photos and filming done during the events without any restrictions in time, type of medium or quantity or means of distribution. This includes the copyrights, free of charge, of all photos and video footage taken during the race for all types of commercial, promotional or advertising purposes in all types of media. (including Internet). All rights are reserved concerning the use of images from the Ken Jones Classic.


All races and competitor categories have the following MANDATORY GEAR LIST (per ISMF Sport Regulations for Ski Mountaineering Competitions). We reserve the right to check this equipment in detail before, during, and after the scheduled race.  In order to do this we need the understanding and cooperation of the participants. The better prepared you are, the more quickly the process will be finished. You are required to have all of your mandatory equipment at the gear check immediately after the race finish.


*SKI MOUNTAINEERING COMPETITION CANADA / COMPÉTITION DU SKI RANDONNÉE CANADA are allowing Telemark and Splitboard setups to be a part of their races. To be allowed, skis, boots, bindings, and poles must be a Telemark or Splitboard set-up in the eyes of the equipment judges – cross country ski equipment will not be accepted.

Otherwise, all competitors must observe mandatory ski equipment items required by the ISMC rules for official races, as follows:

Skis will be equipped with metallic edges on at least 90% of their length, and with a width of at least 60 mm beneath the foot. The skis must be at least 160 cm long for men and 150 cm long for women. The bindings must allow heel movement when ascending or descending and be equipped with security straps or ski brakes as a requirement of the hosting resort. Front and rear binding devices must have lateral and frontal release safety systems. Cross-Country ski bindings and boots or their derivatives are strictly forbidden. The skis and bindings must have a minimal weight :

  • Men’s Skis: Minimal weight (ski + binding) = 750 grams (without tolerance) (1500 grams total per pair at minimum)
  • Women’s Skis: Minimal weight (ski + binding) = 700 grams (without tolerance) (pair 1400 grams total per pair at minimum)

Boots must be high enough to cover the ankles and have notched soles of Vibram or similar mountaineering type (soles must cover at least 75% of the surface of the foot with 4 mm minimum depth of notches, minimum 8 notches on the heel and 15 notches on the forefoot with the minimum surface of the notches being 1 cm.2). Boots must be adaptable to metal crampons, and have at least Two buckles. The boots must have a minimal weight:

  • Men’s Boots: Minimal weight boot = 500 grams (without tolerance) (1000 grams total per pair at minimum)
  • Women’s Boots: Minimal weight boots: 450 grams (without tolerance) (900 grams total per pair at minimum)

Ski Poles: A pair of alpine or cross-country poles with a maximum diameter of 25 mm, and with non-metallic baskets. Use of carbon ski poles is not advised.

Skins: The use of devices as scotch-cote or tape or similar in order to enhance the gliding are strictly forbidden (for environmental reasons).

Clothing: minimum required to carry:

  • Two Layers for Lower body: 1. insulating  2. waterproof /breathable.
  • Three Layers for Upper body: 1. insulating  2. Insulating  3. waterproof breathable.
    (Extra clothing may be specified at the time of the race. All clothing must be full length, i.e. have long sleeves and legs, and fit the competitor)
  • Gloves: must cover the whole hand
  • Warm Hat: covering whole head
  • Sunglasses

Avalanche Beacon: Beacons must operate on the 457kHz frequency, and be worn, turned on, at all times.

Avalanche Shovel: Commercially made “snow shovel” as defined by the manufacturer –not modified after purchase. ‘Snow Claws’ not permitted.

Avalanche Probe: Minimum of 240 centimeters x 10mm diameter.

Bivi Sac or Survival Blanket: Must be large enough to provide complete protection from the elements and be waterproof, at least 1.8 square meters.

Backpack: 20 liter minimum, of standard manufacture.

Helmet: Compulsory. Climbing, bicycling, or other lightweight sport-specific headgear allowed. Must be unaltered from manufacturer’s specifications. Must be worn on all descending portions of the course.


The Lake Louise Ken Jones Classic is a backcountry ski race with limited support along parts of its route. The equipment you carry may become crucial under certain circumstances. Organizers and officials reserve the right to include extra items in the list of required equipment if they feel it is warranted by the course or conditions, including extra clothing, headlamp, whistle, climbing harness, carabiners, etc. Food and water will be available only before the start, at a drink station 2/3 of the way along the course at Temple Lodge, and after the finish of the race. Each competitor will have to carry what they feel they will need.

Results & Report: Castle Mountain Resort Ski Mountaineering Race – January 11, 2014

The 2nd annual Castle Mountain Resort (CMR) Ski Mountaineering Race (Skimo) is in the books. 29 racers joined in the fun with 14 volunteers in support. The representation in all divisions (Recreational & Competitive, Junior & Masters) was a particularly positive outcome.

The recurring theme for the pre-race track setting and Skimo race was wind.  Of significance in relation to the wind is the hard work of CMR’s Mountain Safety Operations (MSO). These professionals had a mountain(s) to keep operational and they managed that plus, they were oh so accommodating in support of the Skimo event! Huge kudos to the MSO group and CMR Management for their support throughout the weekend.

The Skimo route as depicted on the race poster morphed four times between Friday afternoon and the eventual start of the race at 11:00AM Saturday.

Track setting on Friday by volunteers was obliterated likely as soon as the track was put in. A volunteer was blown over on Friday in the alpine. A snowmobile reconnaissance into the alpine early on Saturday morning returned with a very white and windy report. A key takeaway for race organizers of future Skimo events with high wind is that route pin flags should be zip-tied to tree branches, bushes, boulders, and snags. That way they won’t blow away to Lethbridge and Skimo won’t be seen to litter.

CMR’s MSO staff and Skimo organizers met a number of times to discuss what effect the wind was having on their operations and the Skimo route(s).

By 10:00AM (the race was only delayed an hour) it was decided to do two laps on the Huckleberry and Haigh Ridge terrain, with the competitive division doing two laps and the recreational division one full and one shorter lap. The competitive division racers ascended/descended approximately 4168’ while the recreational division racers ascended/descended approximately 3168’.

The skiing and boarding public witnessed the race start. Racers skated right by the day lodge in front of the Blue Chair. It was cool to field inquiries from the public during the race start and from the Huckleberry terrain enthusiasts. Everyone wanted to know what was going on! Some folks thought this was a great idea and others were dumb-founded that people would climb when there are lifts.

During the awards ceremonies racers and volunteers alike reported that the event was a good one despite some minor delays and route changes. Divisional 1st, 2nd & 3rd place male and female finishers jumped up and stomped on the new Ski Mountaineering Competition Canada Podium.

FULL RESULTS: 2014CastleMtnResults

The Castle Skimo organizers, racers, and volunteers gratefully acknowledge the support (in cash and/or in product) of the following sponsors;

  • Secure Energy Services,
  • MEC
  • Ortovox Canada,
  • Voile.

Thanks to all racers, parents, partners, spectators, media, and volunteers. Thanks again to CMR management, mountain safety operations and to the entire Castle community for embracing Skimo.

Respectfully submitted 2014-01-13
Castle Skimo Volunteer Race Director
Brent Harris

2014 Castle Mountain Resort Ski Mountaineering Race

castle-mountain-2014-280x210Date: Saturday January 11, 2014.

Location/Venue: Castle Mountain Resort, SW of Pincher Creek Alberta.

Event page or website:

Registration page: www.alpineclubofcanada.ca/skimo/index

Race type: Individual

Categories: Men’s and Women’s Recreational and Competitive. We may add a Junior (13 – 17) category and a Masters (+50) category depending on registration #’s.

Competitive Race course:

  • Vertical: Ascend 4617’, descend 4584’
  • Length: 14 Kms.
  • Number of ascents and descents: 3 and 3.
  • Good to know: No special equipment requirements. Castle Mountain has a reputation for high winds. Choose your race clothing and layers appropriately. Great views of surrounding area once North Ridge is attained on first skin section. From North Peak summit an interesting boot pack descent. A 2000’ straight fall line descent on Lone Star.
  • Ascent of Haig Ridge to access Powder Stage Coach cat skiing terrain prior to final descent back to village and finish.

Recreational Race course:

  • Vertical: Ascend 3617’, descend 3584’
  • Length: 11 Kms.
  • Number of ascents and descents: 3 and 3.
  • Good to know:  No special equipment requirements. Castle Mountain has a reputation for high winds. Choose your race clothing and layers appropriately. Great views of surrounding area once North Ridge is attained on first skin section. From North Peak summit an interesting boot pack descent. A 2000’ straight fall line descent on Lone Star.
  • Ascent of Huckleberry chair terrain and final descent of Sidewinder back to village and finish.


Friday January 10/14 course setting during the day. 8:00PM – racer registration and technical briefing in boardroom of day lodge (basement).

Saturday January 11/14 RACE DAY! 08:00 racer registration. 08:30 – technical briefing. 09:45 Racers to start area for beacon check. 10:00AM – Race starts.

Competitive Race course description, see also Castle Skimo Map:

Competitive racers start out at the Castle Mountain base area with good opportunities to jockey for position and pass others before the skin track becomes single and goes into the forest. Numerous switchbacks are negotiated before popping out on to North Ridge. From North Ridge peak, a boot pack descent along a rocky and exposed ridge before boot packing up to top of the Red chair. Racers follow flagging pins to the chutes area for a 2000’ descent on Lone Star. Ascend to the top of the Huckleberry chair and beyond to top of cat skiing terrain on Haig ridge. Final descent down Fist Full of Turns or Roll your own (TBD on race day) back to finish and village base area.

Recreational Race course description, see Castle Skimo Map:

Recreational racers start out at the Castle Mountain base area with good opportunities to jockey for position and pass others before the skin track becomes single and goes into the forest. Numerous switchbacks are negotiated before popping out on to North Ridge. From North Ridge peak, a boot pack descent along a rocky and exposed ridge before boot packing up to top of the Red chair. Racers follow flagging pins to the chutes area for a 2000’ descent on Lone Star. Ascend to the top of the Huckleberry chair. Final descent via Sidewinder to finish and village base area.

Special equipment required: ISMF required gear. No special equipment needs.


Cash prizes for 1st ($250.00), 2nd ($150.00), & 3rd ($100.00) place podium finishes in Men’s and Women’s Competitive category.

Draw prizes from our sponsors. Prizes for Recreational, Junior and Masters categories will be equipment/gear (donated by our sponsors).

National Team training camp at Asulkan Hut, Rogers Pass – Nov 22-25, 2013

Words by Peter Knight – 2013 Canadian SkiMo Champ (his blog is here)

With a high pressure system locked in, we were certainly not expecting the daily refills we enjoyed last year in the Tree Triangle. A warm summer leaving the glaciers full of poorly bridged crevasses and a recent avalanche cycle led to a slight change in ambitions. But any reservations regarding ski quality vanished with the first descent down from the hut where we enjoyed some fast skiing in settled powder from snowfall earlier in the week. We then climbed up an efficiently-angled skintrack that Brad and Igor had put in the day before and skied multiple laps there until the slopes above started to warm up. Then we headed to the other side of the valley and proceeded to put more tracks down a moraine feature.


After hauling our carcasses slowly back up to the hut, it was time to begin the recovery process so that we could go just as hard the next day. Fortunately there was lots of food to eat and we enjoyed excellent sleep, going to bed early in the cozy Asulkan Cabin generously provided by the Alpine Club of Canada. We would need to bring our A-games as Melanie had just rolled up sporting her race gear.

rogers-pass-camp-3Sunday began as expected: with the boys chasing Melanie. I think everyone was able to exhibit some of their strengths. Melanie, Brad, Steve, and I were all skiing fast for the first half of the day. Marg skied up at the front during a midday lap, while Michelle, revived after a brief stop at the hut, was able to put in some additional laps above the hut to add to her impressive vertical total.

According to my legs, the end of the camp came at the perfect time after a tiring ski down the Asulkan drainage under the weight of a big backpack. I was content to simply drive away from the best skiing that I have had so far this year, while Melanie, Brad, and Michelle pushed on for another day.

Fracture line on the slope leading up to Youngs Peak.

Announcing the Canadian National Ski Mountaineering Team 2014!


The Canadian National Ski Mountaineering Competition Team was selected for 2014 based on interest, potential, and ranking over 2013 races at home and abroad, they are:

Men’s A                                                               Women’s A

Stano Faban                                                       Martha Burley

Peter Knight                                                       Melanie Bernier

Brad Schalles                                                     Michelle Roberts

Steve Sellers                                                      Women’s B

Reiner Thoni                                                      Marg Fedyna

Andrew McNab                                                 Sheri Foster

Last winter Stano, Peter, Brad, and Steve fought it out on the male side for the Canada Cup, and Martha dominated the females while Melanie was on the European circuit with Reiner and Andrew.  All the athletes’ investment and effort paid off, with personal-best results moving into the realm of international recognition. Track them this season via www.skimocanada.org, Twitter, or the good gossip on www.skintrack.com

Stano Faban (left) and Peter Knight during their one-day Wapta Icefield Traverse in April 2013.
Stano Faban (left) and Peter Knight during their one-day Wapta Icefield Traverse in April 2013.

Overall Canada Cup Championship for 2013 went to Stano Faban, who brought peak conditioning to exactly the right events to deliver a narrow win over resident  American Eric Carter. A man who has grown up walking his talk, Faban also leads as a consistent mentor to Junior competitors, a race organizer and official, and as the wrangler of the leading English language website for our sport – Skintrack.com.

Young and promising Peter Knight became the Canadian National Ski Mountaineering Champion in March where he was able to use newly picked up skills from just a month before during the 2013 World Championships.

For 2014, National Team selection policy has been reviewed and fine-tuned, and those with ambition can find details here: http://www.skimocanada.org/national-team-members Cheer them on! Join them!

Thanks and eternal gratitude to Niall Gleeson and Ian Gale, retiring from team efforts, but never from mountain skiing and their commitment to adventure. Ian is handing over leadership of the Dogtooth Dash to focus on new family. Niall will push the Vert 180 SkiMo race for one more year, and continues in a committee position, managing national rankings.

Thanks as well to Rab, and The Alpine Club of Canada for their help and donations to the cause.

9 – 15 February 2013 – ISMF World Ski Mountaineering Championships

Carla McKirdy, Melanie Bernier, and Martha Burley at the 2013 Worlds.
Carla McKirdy, Melanie Bernier, and Martha Burley at the 2013 Worlds.

Canada took a team of 8 to Pelvoux, France and turned in its best results ever. We finished 12th in the nations rankings (of 22 or 23 countries, many with many more athletes entered). Particularly strong performances were witnessed in Sprint, Relay, and Individual races.

Reiner Thoni, Andrew McNab, Brad Schalles, and Peter Knight during the same event. Missing on the photo is Steve Sellers.
Reiner Thoni, Andrew McNab, Brad Schalles, and Peter Knight during the same event. Missing on the photo is Steve Sellers.

Detailed results and rankings at http://ismf-ski.org/www/?q=node/185 Next World Championships will be in another two years, but there will of course be a complete World Cup calendar to contend in the 2014 winter. Expect more! Our team will outdo itself.

Sponsors and Links:

2013_ACC_Logo_Web_ColourThe Alpine Club of Canada (the SkiMo National Sport Federation for Canada) http://www.alpineclubofcanada.ca/skimo and www.skimocanada.org

mec-small-logowww.mec.ca  Our most generous and consistent event sponsor has always been Mountain Equipment Co-op. Good regional source for skimo gear.

rab-small-logo Rab kits our National Skimo Team with both warm and breathable jackets. http://us.rab.uk.com