Here you will find the sports programs and activities for the 2016-17 winter season.

Winter Sports Director
Burt Merical   612-810-2588

Liability and Guest Policy
The sports programs are for Vail Club 50 members. A member is welcome to bring a guest, but the guest must sign a Liability Waiver. We limit non-member participation to one sporting event for the season. Click here for the Guest Liability Form.

Email Lists
When a member fills out and submits the annual Membership Registration form, he or she provides an email address, and chooses which sports and activity updates (e.g., Alpine Skiing, Snowshoeing) should be sent to that email address.  If you would like to change your preferences, or if you are having trouble receiving Vail Club 50 emails, click here and follow the instructions.

If you click on a Sport / Activity name in the table below, it will jump you right to the full description.

Winter Sports and ActivitiesDay(s)
Alpine SkiingTuesday, Thursday (Vail)
Saturday (Beaver Creek)
SnowshoeingWednesday, Saturday
Backcountry Ski TouringFriday (and occasional Monday)
Uphill SkinningSaturday
Non-Club Activities

Winter Kick-Off Party

Tuesday, December 6, 3 – 6 pm

Location: Eagle-Vail Pavilion
538 Eagle Drive, Eagle-Vail

Price: $8 Members (if you sign up online); $15 Walk-ins & Guests

Deadline for Sign Up/Payment: Monday, November 28. Click here to sign up.

Linda Lund
Pat Parrish 310-291-6618
Cathy Bethke 253-709-1252

Let’s kick off a new season together. Mingle with your friends, meet new members! Enjoy delicious homemade chili, appetizers, beer, wine and soft drinks – the bargain of the season!!! Get ready for a fabulous sport and social season with Vail Club 50.

Dress: Casual
Option: Your favorite one-piece or jacket from the 80s!

Aside from kicking the social season off for Vail Club 50, please sign up to lead a winter sports activity. We would love to have you get involved in leading Alpine Skiing, Snowshoeing, Backcountry Skiing, Uphill Skinning, etc.

Check out the great sport activities on tap for Winter 2016-2017.



Alpine Skiing

Co-Organizers (Vail 9am Meet):
John Kelleher   806-679-5557
Dick Karlson   303-250-1395

Assistant Organizers (Vail 9am Meet):
Eric Wiseman   303-807-7904
Jeff Halter    734-945-9503
Desi Desmarais   610-655-5221

Organizer (Vail 11am Meet, aka Vail Later Start “Latte” Skiers)
Cathy Conroy    216-272-3325

Co-Organizers needed !!

Organizer (Beaver Creek):
Eric Noreen   206-397­-9559

As described below, Vail Club 50 offers 3 options for your alpine skiing pleasure!

Meeting times and places

Option 1: Vail 9am Meet
Meet at 9:00 in Look Ma restaurant at Mid-Vail on Tuesdays & Thursdays. We depart promptly at 9:30 AM. Meet in the large side room to the right of the entrance.

Apres Ski: we will gather around 2:30 and later for Happy Hour at Sarah’s bar at The Christiana Hotel in Vail Village.

There will be the usual 5 ski groups: Double Black, Single Black, Blue-Black Bumpers, Blue-Black Cruisers and Blue. That means we need A LOT of Day Leaders… 5 groups twice a week = 10 Day Leaders per week for 16 weeks = 160! So please do attend and sign up to lead at the Winter Kick-Off Party on December 6.

Option 2: Vail 11am Meet
Don’t want to face the cold mornings, looking for a laid back group, or just saving yourselves for the evening? Join the Vail Later Start aka “Latte” Skiers. The group will meet in the upper level of Look Ma, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11 am; out the door at 11:15 am. We will break into groups based on the turnout on any given day. The intention is to form three groups: Black, Blue-Black and Blue-Green. Breaking for lunch will be optional and up to the Day Leader/ group on any given day.

After skiing, the group will head to Aprés Ski at Sarah’s Lounge and join the Vail 9am Meet skiers.

We are looking for 3-5 Co-Organizers to help Cathy Conroy with this group.  Contact Cathy or sign up at the Winter Kick-Off Party on December 6.

The first day of organized skiing at Vail is planned for December 8 snow conditions permitting. Stay tuned for any change to that date. There will be no organized skiing on these holiday dates: 12/27 and 12/29.

Option 3: Beaver Creek
There is a more informal group meeting on Saturdays at Beaver Creek. They meet at Broken Arrow and select their own Day Leaders. The first day of organized skiing at Beaver Creek will be updated here once we know it depending on snow conditions. There will be no organized skiing on these holiday dates: 12/24 and 12/31.

If you have any questions please contact the appropriate organizer(s) as above…. Thanks and see you on the slopes!

Vail Club 50 Alpine Skiing Guidelines — all skiers must wear a helmet!

1. Show up promptly, listen to Day Leader’s instructions and segregate into groups. Understand that you are out there for enjoyment and safety. First one down is not the winner.
2. Realistically evaluate your ski abilities and choose a compatible group:
Double black diamond: expert skiers, all terrain fast, trees, deep powder.
Black diamond: expert and advanced skiers, similar terrain to above but somewhat slower.
Blue/black bumpers: Intermediate and advanced skiers, moguls, powder optional depending on conditions and Day Leader.
Blue/black cruisers: Intermediate skiers, no moguls, no deep powder.
Blue: Intermediate and advanced beginners, blue and some green runs, mostly groomers.
3. All guests must sign liability waiver! Guest are asked to complete the waiver before arriving to save time. You can  CLICK HERE to complete a waiver.
4. If a particular group is larger than 12 skiers, attempt to choose a second Day Leader and start a new group.
5. Try to stay behind each run’s leader.
6. Try to stay in single file or at least far apart from other skiers. Multiple aggressive skiers using the whole slope tend to ski into each other on open slopes.
7. Try to get the Day Leader’s cell phone number (we will see if it is possible to publish). If you decide to go your own way send him/her a text/call before you leave the group.


Organizer:  Paul Chapman
Co-Organizer is needed!!     


Get away from the crowds. Climb a steep snowy slope. Commune with nature. Admire the gorgeous views. Share the day with the VC50 snowshoers!

The snowshoe group is looking forward to making all of the above and more happen for you with another active season again this winter. We plan to have outings from the beginning of December to mid-April, and  hope to have enough volunteer Day Leaders to offer an outing every Wednesday and Saturday of the season plus some “pop-up” extra  outings  during January, February, and March.

The popular full moon snowshoes will be back this winter. We hope to again have some on-mountain club house dining events (such as a Game Creek snowshoe and GC Club lunch, and Arrowhead Yurt- need a member to again sponsor these). We will surely do some Tennessee Cookhouse shindigs again (we did two last season), and certainly the (nearly) end of season celebration at Gore Creek. We may also try to organize some events in Summit County or a destination weekend farther away (contact me with any proposals !!)

Our volunteer Day Leaders from previous seasons are requested to contact the Organizer early to sign up to lead your favorite adventure again this season. We thank them profusely for donating their time and effort so generously. Nevertheless, we always need new volunteers from the general membership to fill in all the planned outings, or suggest new ones. The Winter Sports Kick-Off Party on December 6 will be a good opportunity for new Day Leaders to sign up for specific snowshoe outings. You can also send us an email NOW expressing your interest  (see draft schedule HERE soon)  and we’ll take it from there.


Backcountry Ski Touring

Nancy Young   970-331-4399
Hap Young   970-470-2409

Opening Day: Friday, January 6, 2017

If gliding through quiet forests on fresh snow is something you yearn for, the club’s backcountry ski program is packed full of weekly opportunities to do just that. Under the leadership of experienced skiers, backcountry participants can look forward to exploring nearby trails and jeep roads in the beautiful mountain environment of Summit, Lake and Eagle Counties. While most outings will take place on Fridays, watch for occasional Monday trips too. For Tortoise and Novice participants, occasional opportunities to increase your skills and confidence will also be offered at local Nordic ski areas.

We’ll start the season on Friday, January 6 and continue into March. The full schedule with Day Leaders, locations and level of difficulty will be posted on the Vail Club 50 website once it is complete. During the season, specifics of each trip will be emailed regularly to interested members with details about signing up for the outing. The emails will describe the trip, degree of difficulty and approximate distance. Please review trip descriptions carefully and assess your ability to participate.

Be aware that backcountry ski outings require good physical conditioning (similar to conditioning needed for Marmot and sometimes Hare level hiking), the appropriate equipment, and former XC ski experience. While the trails are usually packed out, conditions vary with the weather, thus trails may be icy and hard packed or covered in fresh powder requiring breaking trail. The terrain is better suited to wider cross-country skis with metal edges/and textured bottoms and not the narrower skis appropriate for “track” skiing at Nordic Centers. Telemark and AT (all-terrain) skis can also be used although necessitate the use of skins for uphill trekking. If you are considering buying equipment for the first time or upgrading your equipment, we urge you to speak to an experienced backcountry skier before purchasing. The skis available at the local golf course Nordic center are NOT appropriate for Vail Club 50 backcountry outings.

Following are guidelines for evaluating your level of expertise:

HARE Extensive back country touring experience and excellent physical conditioning; strong kick and glide skier; ability to negotiate icy trails and/or break trail in deep snow; ability to control skis going downhill; has appropriate equipment and ability to climb/descend steeper terrain as well as stamina for long distance ski.

MARMOT Some back country touring experience and good physical condition; ability to kick and glide on skis; comfortable following in tracks that are broken through snow; has appropriate equipment; ability to stop and turn on skis; stamina to ski 4-5 miles.

TORTOISE Some experience on touring skis and physically fit; desire to strengthen kick and glide skills; comfortable following in tracks that are broken.

NOVICE New to the sport of ski touring with desire to learn; has appropriate equipment.

Day Leaders are needed for each outing. An opportunity to sign up to lead a trip will be available at the Winter Kick-Off Party on December 6 or contact Nancy/Hap with your interest in advance.

If you are not receiving emails with trip dates and detailed information once the season is underway and/or you would like to be added to the list, please update your profile under “Change My Info” on the Vail Club 50 website where you can check-off interest in receiving Backcountry email info.

Questions? Contact Nancy Young ( or 970-331-4399).

We look forward to seeing you on the trail this winter!

—Nancy and Hap Young

Uphill Skinning

Organizer: Burt Merical    612-810-2588

uphillskinning1Try something new: go UP the hill on skis and THEN ski down. That is what makes this discipline unique and worthwhile.

Last season participants described it as “fun”, “exhilarating”, “goal fulfilling”, “heart pumping but worth it”. You can go as fast or as slow as you wish; the goal is to make it to the top and, more importantly, to have fun doing it.

Special equipment is required – skins on the bottom of your skis and bindings that release at the heel. This equipment can be rented.

We will meet every Saturday at 7:30 at Arrowhead. Parking is free. Once we have reached the top of the Arrowhead lift, we can ski down or take the lift down.

Stay tuned for the starting date.

We hope you join us.


Non-Club Activities

The following activities are not officially sponsored by Vail Club 50 or limited to Vail Club 50 members.  If you would like to list another non-club activity, please contact Only social or sports activities open to new participants will be included.

If you are willing to coordinate a new Vail Club 50 winter activity, contact the Winter Sports Coordinator Burt Merical at

Town of Avon Adult Sports and Senior Programs
The Town of Avon offers a number of adult sports and senior programs including Pickleball, H20 Cardio + Yoga, Aquacise, Tai Chi, etc.  Click here for more information about the adult sports programs.  Click here for more information about the senior programs.