• Normal equipment is provided by the team, however, we strongly encourage athletes to start purchasing their own equipment after their first year so that they can be in a position to continue skiing after leaving school. Coaches are happy to help you look for bargains in good equipment.
  • If you are unsure of anything please ask a coach or an experienced returning athlete before spending money on equipment. All your personal items should have identification on them so that when you misplace them you have a chance of getting them back. Every year athletes end up replacing gloves, over pants, water bottles, sunglasses, and even boots, because they misplace unmarked items.


Skis are provided by the Team.

  1. One or more pair of classic skis -either waxable or no-wax.
  2. One pair of skate skis.

The team has a wide range of skis. We generally can fit each athlete with an appropriate pair of skis. Very competitive athletes may want to consider purchasing their own skis as the top skiers from other schools will be skiing on top of the line equipment.


Poles are provided by the Team.

  1. Nordic Ski Poles for classic technique.  Historically these would approximately come to the athlete’s armpit.  However, as Double Poling has become more common during Classic Races there has been a trend towards longer poles.  In 2016 FIS (and hence USSA) introduced a rule limiting the length of a pole used in Classic Races to less than 83% of the skiers total height (wearing boots).   CNISSF did not adopt this rule for the 2016-17 season but may well enforce in the future.
  2. Nordic Ski Poles for skating technique should approximately come to the athlete’s upper lip.
  3. Nordic Ski Poles for roller skiing. A skate length pole with special carbide road tip.

The team poles are mainly of a fairly robust type to minimize breakage. Competitive athletes may want to consider getting their own racing poles that are lighter and made from more exotic materials.

  • Boots
  • Boots are provided by the Team. If your feet have stopped growing you may want to consider buying boots. Beginning skiers are recommended to purchase combi boots which can be used for striding (classic technique) and skating. Boots must be compatible with the Salomon SNS Profil binding system used on all the team skis. (e.g. Salomon Active/Vitane 8 Combi, Salomon Equipe Team Combi, Hartjes Vario Tech Combi. Beware of recent changes by manufacturers – Atomic bought Salomon and switched their boots from NNN to SNS, Fischer switched its boots from SNS profil/pilot to NNN, make sure you check binding type not just the manufacturer. Beware Salomon race boots are sized in UK sizes – double check if mail ordering.) Returning athletes may wish to consider specialized skating boots and specialized classic boots. Note that most Team skate skis do not have Pilot bindings. If you are getting your own skis and bindings you can consider both the Salomon Pilot and the Rottefella NNN-3 binding system and compatible boots. A good rule of thumb if you have difficult to fit feet, is to find the boot that is most comfortable, and then get the bindings to match.


  • Athletes must provide their own gloves. Nordic Racing gloves are very different from downhill skiing gloves. Having a back-up pair of woollen mittens is often a good idea as wet racing gloves can be very cold. e.g. Swix, Salomon or Toko bottom end or better, naturally the higher the price the better the glove. If you are a new skier, just trying it out to see if you like it, you can get by for the first month or so with a good pair of woollen mittens. We normally arrange to visit one of the specialist Nordic Skiing retailers  in Truckee where the team members can get a discount on equipment.

Ski Bag

  • A ski bag is needed to transport the skis and poles to and from training and races. Loose skis get damaged easily and all athletes will be provided with a bag to hold the team skis. Some athletes prefer to purchase their own ski bags to hold their own skis.

Water Bottle

  • Good hydration is essential for health and performance. Water bottles and holsters are available at Swensons the local surplus store or ski specific holsters from Swix or Salomon can be used. Athletes must provide their own water bottle and holster. NEVER share your water bottle with other athletes (it is not nice to give the whole team your cold). Some athletes prefer the slightly more expensive camelback type of system that can carry a lot more fluid. Bottles should preferably hold a liter for longer practices.


  • Athletes race in Team provided lycra race suits. A nylon windbreaker in Team colors is also provided. Additional clothing for practices and pre/post races should be chosen so that it is layered to allow easy adjustment to conditions. In particularly cold conditions, or when it is raining, a layer of polypropylene worn under the Lycra can be useful. Socks should be either wool or synthetic, never cotton. A hat is a very good way to adjust body temperature. If you have doubts about whether an item of clothing is appropriate, talk to coaches or experienced team members.

Roller Skis

  • For dry-land training athletes will have use of Team provided roller skis, boots and poles. The athlete will be provided with a visibility vest for any training conducted on public roads. The athlete must provide a suitable safety helmet, gloves and any other padding that they wish to use. The use of a helmet is mandatory when roller skiing.