3 Wacky (But Wonderful) Winter Sports To Try Out

Winter Shovel RacingIf you watch the Winter Olympics, you are likely familiar with dozens of the more popular winter sports, including skiing, ice skating, hockey, snowboarding, curling, and speed skating. But have you heard of snow kayaking? What about shovel racing? Neither had we until we read about them in an article in Atlas Obscura.

Below, we’ve provided an overview of these two sports and a few other wacky winter activities, courtesy of Atlas Obscura Enjoy!

Snow Kayaking: Also called snow boating, snow kayaking involves taking a kayak up a mountain and “cruising down soft, powdery waves of snow.” The sport has officially been around since 2002 and is enjoyed recreationally as well as by competitive kayakers who compete in boatercross races. These races take place on a fixed course and involve four kayakers racing against one another.

Skijoring: This sport is similar to water skiing, but instead of water, you ski on snow and instead of a boat, skijorers are pulled by horses, dogs or motor vehicles. The sport has actually been around for hundreds of years and is practiced both recreationally and competitively. The most common type of skijoring is dog skijoring. These races are usually between five and 20 kilometers long. It was introduced as a demonstration sport in the 1928 Winter Olympics but was not picked up. There is, however, a World Skijoring Championship which has been held in Whitefish, Montana every year since 2009.

Shovel Racing: Born at the Angel Fire Ski Resort in New Mexico in the 1970s, the sport involves “tucking your rump in a standard, unmodified steel shovel with the handle between your legs, straightening up your body, leaning back as close to the ground as possible, and then speeding downhill.” From 2005 to 2010, Angel Fire suspended the World Championships due to safety concerns over a new type of modified shovel. Today it is enjoyed by both adults and children.

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