Increasingly popular weird winter sports

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Sydney Odman - Staff Writer, Photo courtesy of Google Images

Southern California is famous for many things, but snowy winters are not one of them. Many residents resort to traveling to winter wonderlands, such as Big Bear Lake or Mammoth Mountain, for holiday vacation to partake in some classic winter sports, like skiing, snowboarding and ice skating. However, new and quirky snow activities that are increasing in popularity, such as skijoring, fat biking and snow scooting, could add a different twist to your typical holiday vacation schedule.

Skijoring, Norwegian for ‘ski driving’, is a winter activity that does not require much work. Skijoring involves being towed on skis across the snow most commonly by dogs, but different variations of the sport use horses or even cars. Skijoring first became popular in Scandinavian countries throughout the early 20th century and was originally used to transport army dispatches. Later, skijoring developed into a recreational activity, and was even included in the Winter Olympics of 1928 at Saint Moritz.

Another new recreational activity growing in popularity at many ski areas across the country, specifically in the Midwest where the terrain does not allow for much skiing, is fat biking. Fat bikes are mountain bicycles with large forks and huge, wide tires built specifically to withstand snow and ice. Although they are most commonly used in the snow, fat bikes are also sometimes utilized to travel across rough or wet areas of terrain.

Snow scooting is another new popular sport and is the perfect combination of snowboarding and scootering. A snow scooter consists of a slim snowboard with handlebars attached to the front, so instead of facing sideways, riders stand facing forward which proves to be a much easier way to balance. For those who struggle to stay properly balanced when snowboarding or skiing, snow scooting is a much more stable alternative.  

        Whether you scooter over icy hills or sled across the snow with your dog, find a way to get active during this holiday season, even in freezing temperatures. The best way to spice up your holiday agenda is by trying something new. So if you find yourself away from sunny Southern California and in the snow this winter, expand your horizons and try out some obscure winter sports.