What is Skimo Racing?

Ski mountaineering racing (commonly shortened to skimo racing and also referred to as randonnée racing) is an exciting, human-powered winter sport that combines skiing uphill and downhill with mountaineering skills.

There are various events and categories that involve skiing as an individual or as a team through a series of check points to the finish line. Some parts of the course require skinning up snowy slopes, some involve bootpacking (hiking) with the skis or board attached on a backpack and most disciplines involve technical downhill skiing. First person or team to the finish line wins!

Skimo racing is widely popular in Europe’s alpine nations, with deep historical roots. The sport is growing rapidly elsewhere, including here in Canada.

Sanctioned skimo races in Canada abide by a series of rules, by discipline, as directed by the International Ski Mountaineering Federation (ISMF). Ski Mountaineering Competition Canada (SMCC) is recognized by the ISMF as the national sport organization for Canada. The sport of skimo has been officially accepted for inclusion in the Milano Cortina 2026 Winter Olympics.

Most races offer recreational and elite level courses so that racers of different skill and fitness levels can compete. Most events welcome skiers, snowboarders and telemark-skiers. If you enjoy wintertime mountain travel, a little bit of competition and a friendly, supportive community, there’s a skimo event for you!

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