Ober Gatlinburg’s Annual Spring Fling!
Ober Gatlinburg’s annual Spring Fling Event is happening on Sunday, March 14, marking 100 days of the snow season … this year including SkiMo*. Returning this year is the crowd favorite event, Pond Skimming, where skiers and snowboarders come down the slope to a pond and attempt to skim across without sinking into icy cold water. There will also be Giant Slalom and High Ollie competitions, as well as some other Terrain Park feature events. Top prizes to be announced. This event is free for spectators and $15 for participants (Valid Lift Ticket & Proper Equipment Required for participants and anyone on the slopes) … same price covers SkiMo (no lift ticket required for SkiMo only) and/or all Spring Fling events (see button below for advance registration). Participants can also register in person the day of the event. Everyone who registers will receive a complimentary “Spring Fling” t-shirt. *Waivers need to be filled out on property for each participant*
Spring Fling Activites
9am-11am: Ski-Mo (Uphill Race)*
2pm-3pm: Pond Skim
4pm-5pm: High Ollie
*What is Skimo?
Ski Mountaineering Racing (skimo) takes the fitness component of cross-country skiing and ski touring and combines it with the downhill strength and technique of alpine skiing. Traditionally participants start in a group using their skins (items temporarily attached to the bottom of their skies to prevent them from sliding back and allow someone to hike uphill on skis) to climb uphill where they switch to ski mode and descend back down.
At this Ober Gatlinburg event, you may use any type of equipment with metal edges and retention devices if applicable. Skis, snowboard (hike up in snowboard boots) split boards are acceptable. On the course, participants make their way top of the course (or mountain) and ski back down to the start/finish line. Ober Gatlinburg reserves the right to regulate what equipment can be used for the SKIMO challenge. Here at Ober Gatlinburg, we want you to walk away with bragging rights by conquering the uphill climb of what our mountain has to offer.
- How does it all work? Where do I start? If you have competed in trail running races before, some of the concepts will be familiar. There are some confusing parts though!
- First, Register for the race! This gets you on our info email list so as the details change you are kept up to date.
- As the race date gets close, we will release a finalized racecourse and schedule. This will be distributed to all registered racers via various channels (the website, social media, email list).
- All racers will attend a mandatory race briefing the morning of the race in front of Ober Gatlinburg Ski School. Here you will be presented with important details on the course and safety information.
- Racers must follow the marked course on all ascents and descents. Transition areas are determined by the racer. Switch from uphill mode to skiing must be to the side of the slope to not block other racers.
- We will try to incorporate a technical ascent section of the race to add to the skimo ambiance.
- After the race is complete, your entry fee will allow access to all the other Spring Fling activities including a downhill race, freestyle jump, and pond skimming. Ski Mo participants do not need a lift ticket but if you want to participate in the rest of the Spring Fling events you must purchase a lift ticket.
- Once the race is over, we will meet at ski school for awards!
- Helmet – must be worn at all times during the event.
- If you don’t have a touring set up (able to hike up on skis or snowboard), you must fix the skis or board to the pack during a boot pack. It is not permitted to carry them in hand
- Racers are also recommended to carry sufficient food/water
- backcountry skis or split board
- ski touring bindings – either a frame or pin-tech binding system that allows the heel to be secured for descent OR Telemark bindings.
- backcountry ski boots or snowboard boots
- ski touring poles
- climbing skins
- Costumes are encouraged