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Ice Badgers Nordic Ski Team

Wed January 3 - Mon March 4 Missoula, MT 59801 US
Ice Badgers is full for 2024. We are offering Ice Badger Beginner Skate Clinics through Parks and Recreation. Click on the left hand menu to signup.


Ice Badgers 2024 is now Full

4:30PM MST
Teams: Ice Badgers Ski Team 2024


The focus is on fun, adventure, skill development, and building confidence through ski.


Welcome to the Ice Badgers Nordic Ski Team! 

We are a youth ski team based in Missoula, MT.  The season runs January 3rd - March 4th.  We practice two times a week, Mondays and Wednesdays.  We travel, we race, and we support up to 7 races on the MT Cup Nordic Circuit. 

New for this year, you can register for Monday practice sessions only.  Use coupon code "mondayonly" at checkout.  Also, new for this year, Ice Badger Juniors ages 7-8 skate and classic skiing, Mondays only.








Mondays = UM Golf Course - 4:30pm - skills & fun

Wednesdays = Lubrecht/9 Mile/UM Golf Course - 4:30pm - adventure ski



We practice twice a week.  Practice will always have a group chat and game and snack, followed by getting with your smaller animal groups and working on the skill of the practice or getting after the adventure ski!  We will always end with a chat and coco.  Teams are important, they keep athletes engaged.  We will continue to push the team while working on individual skier development within their smaller groups.




Sunday, December 3rd, Parents Call - 8pm

Monday, December 4th, Pre Season Meetup, Pineview Park, 4:30pm - Parents Call, 8pm

Wednesday, January 3rd, First Practice, UM Golf Course, 4:30pm

Sunday, January 21st, Nordic Dance Invitational (Ski Race), 9 Mile Ranger Station, 8:00am

Wednesday, January 24th, Lubrecht Epic

Wednesday, February 7th, Lubrecht epic, did you get better?

Wednesday, February 14th, Follow Your Heart Skiathlon (Ski Race), UM Golf Course, 4:30pm

Saturday, Feburary 17th, Ice Badgers Loppet (Ski Race), UM Golf Course, 8:00am

Wednesday, February 21st,  9 Mile - Ice Badger Olympics

Monday, March 4th, Last Practice and team party, UM Golf Course, 4:30pm



Ice Badger Junior (7-8) - Head Coach = Jess Larson

  • Learn how to skate and classic ski
  • Attend 1 race
  • Can continuous skate one champions loop
  • Mondays only


Snow Owl (8-10) - Head Coach = Savanna Fassio

  • Learn to V1 and the differences between 1 and V2
  • Attend 2 races
  • Can continuous skate for 2k, non stop
  • Can skate to the first flat on Lubrecht epic
  • Classic kick and glide rhythm
  • Proper double pole without hurting back
  • Proper DH cornering technique
  • Stopping from a fast DH
  • Can start proper
  • Successful nutrition for practice and event day


Artic Fox (8-10) - Head Coach - Meghann Shraeder & Jenny Helm

  • V1, V2, and V2 alternate all mastered, intro situational on these
  • V1 poling on both sides
  • Lubrecht epic to the otter slide junction past the first
  • Classic kick and glide rhythm
  • 1 classic, 1 skate event
  • Pacing at and event and nutrition at an event
  • Double pole without hurting back
  • Fast cornering
  • Flat ski, long glide master


Swift Fox (10-11) - Head Coach - Abby Wiggin

  • V1, V2, and V2 alternate all mastered, intro situational on these
  • V1 poling on both sides
  • Lubrecht epic full
  • Classic kick and glide rhythm
  • 1 classic, 1 skate event
  • Pacing at and event and nutrition at an event
  • Double pole without hurting back
  • Fast cornering
  • Flat ski, long glide master


Polar Bear (Middle School) - Head Coach = Mike Kernan & Joe Petrili

  • 2 skate races, 1 classic race
  • Can sprint for 30s
  • Proper double poll and starts
  • DH without limits
  • Flat ski glide challenge
  • V1 on both sides
  • Master V1, V2 and V2 alternate, start to know when to use them
  • Nutrition for practice and racing
  • All the way to the top Lubrecht Epic


Snow Leopard (Middle School) - Head Coach = Emma Swartz

  • 2 skate races, 1 classic race
  • One event 10k in length
  • V1, V2, and V2 alternate master
  • Situational skiing technique, when to use and demonstrate
  • True kick and glide rhythm achieved
  • Double pole dialed and when to use it
  • Downhill limitless, can follow Coach Abby down Lubrecht
  • How to start in a pack
  • Fast cornering on flat and dh
  • Can ski backwards
  • How to pace for a long ski
  • Lubrecht epic = top


Yeti (MS/HS) - Head Coach = Shaun Radley

  • V1, V2, V2 alternate within a race, muscle memory
  • 1 classic, 4 skate races
  • 1 race of 20k
  • Flat ski, glide challenge
  • V1 both sides, almost equal power
  • Mentor another group, be a leader
  • Nutrition and fueling, one body feeling great race
  • Interval training
  • Waxing your own skis
  • Ski fit, ski temps, ski grinds
  • Sprints and how to sprint, win one sprint during the year any place
  • Starts and tactics for you


Badger (MS/HS elite) - Head Coach = Orion Berryman & Mike Lessard

  • Work towards the Junior National Qualifier Races
  • Attend 2 JNQ races
  • Attend a 3rd practice during the week
  • V1, V2, V2 alternate within a race, muscle memory
  • 1 classic, 4 skate races
  • V1 both sides, almost equal power
  • Interval training
  • Waxing your own skis
  • Ski fit, ski temps, ski grinds
  • Sprints and how to sprint, win one sprint during the year any place
  • Starts and race tactics


*All Ice Badgers Coaches have current safesport training

Shaun Radley - I will return as the Team Director and Head Coach of the Ice Badgers.  My dad taught me from a young age about the peace, serenity, and adventure that xc skiing brings to your life.  In college I taught myself how to skate ski in Missoula and Badwax was invented.  I own MTCX Ski, a retail shop and my whole career is based around biking and skiing.  I have 3 kids.  Logan 12, Henry 9, and Freya 7.  Best recent results were 16th Boulder Mountain Tour and 22nd West Yellowstone.


Abby Wiggin - Abby will return as a Co-Team Director.  She grew up skiing in Vermont.  From an early age she raced skis and found it a bit miserable.  That experience ingrained toughness and grit especially for the winter months.  She brings a passion for fun, skill development, and figuring out your own racing voice.  Abby is also the head of ZANY, our youth partner program with MIssoula Nordic Ski Club.  She works at MTCX Ski as a tech and sales person and can help folks with fit and things.  Abby is part of the 9 person Badwax, 7 year club, and also won her age group in the 25k classic at West last year.  Abby has two kids Georgia, 13 and Eli, 10 on the Badgers.


Orion Berryman - Orion is our co Head Coach and is an amazing resource for youth and adult skiing.  He will return as the Head Coach of the Badger Elite Group.  New name, but it's our advanced middle school and high school group.  They race 5-7 times a year and Orion does an amazing job with them.  Orion skied collegiately for APU and is the best skier in Missoula.  I'm saying it not him.  He represents our town on the biggest stages.  Masters National champion, and multiple OSCR 50k winner and annual top 5 50k West skier, Badwax golden shirt 3x.  What people don't know about OB is his passion for coaching and youth sports.  He is the best.  Orion has Lark 9, Ender 12, and Odin 14 as Badgers.



Jeff Bookwalter - Jeff is the Head Coach of the Polar Bear team.  Jeff is a life long skier and in the last 10 years has really seen his personal racing take off.  Jeff is a continuous learner and that has shown with his family and himself.  He will ask the right questions and then teach future generations.  He is also in charge of the Badger Coaches retreat and education.  As a masters racer and also a dad of racers he brings a good perspective on events and skiing.  Jeff has Wren 10 and Willa 13 as Badgers.


Mike Lessard - Mike is a legend of nordic skiing in Missoula and will return as the Co-Head Coach of the Badger Elite Group Head.  He can teach anyone how to ski.  He was the ZANY coordinator for 5+ seasons and also coached the ZANY HS program.  We are incredibly lucky to have him.  Mike skied collegiately and was really good.  He's taken that approach to his passion for community.  He has grown our Missoula nordic community through teaching youth how to ski.  We still get him to jump in and race, including a top 12 at the OSCR 50k and top 3 at Ice Badger Loppet.





- Jenna Tomiello - Jenna is on of the best athletes in Missoula.  She brings a unique perspective from being a Palates instructor and lifelong educator.  It's a mix that we are so fortunate to have.  Activities, skills, team development and reaching goals all mean the world to Jenna.  She has picked up nordic skiing and biking in the last 10 years and is a leader in our community.  Jenna is the Executive Director of MT Alpha a female cycling team in Missoula.  


- Savanna Fassio - Savanna grew up skiing in Park City, Utah, and attended the Winter Sports School.  School allowed her the time off in the winter to travel to races, however her favorite races were local Wasatch citizen races. Savanna loved racing with the community, grilling out and hopefully pulling a prize in the post race raffle.  Savanna raced for Norther Michigan University, graduating in 2022 with a BA in exercise science.  Since coming to Missoula Savanna has won our hearts.  Not only does she ski fast and beautiful, but she coaches for ZDT Rangers biking team, Mammoths, and is an uber volunteers when time allows.  Savanna kicks butt, and we are so glad she has joined the Badgers.


- Emma Swartz - Committed to coaching, Emma, is smart, informed, motivated, and super fun. Emma has experience with high level racing at a young age and shares that wisdom with her athletes. Whether she is jumping into a nordic race or crushing it at bike team, she is just happy to be there. New to town, Emma works in education and saving the planet. You want to recreate, take Emma with you. 


- Taylor Tewksbury - Another one of our new Ice Badger coaches, Taylor has a real kindness in her manner of coaching and a calmness with her athletes. Taylor is happy to be grinding it out up front or enjoying a nice easy pace in the back of the pack. 


- Brian Bohnam - Great skier and communicator, Brian is a natural coach. Brian recently retired from the National Guard, works at Adventure Cycling, and is about to have a whole lot more love in his life.   Ask him about it. Bonhammer is your guru. 


- Joe Petrili - Badwax Commissioner, father of two boys, Vinny and Marco, and husband to the one and only Coach Mere.  Joe works for Big Sky Brewery and loves nordic skiing. Joe is in his second year coaching badgers after showing real style and confidence coaching the Yeti group. Joe will jump in a nordic race from time to time and grooms for the Missoula Nordic Club. Wondering where the best skiing is around Missoula, Joe knows.


- Heidi Meierbachtol - Needs no introduction. 


- Garret Alderman - Ski regalia aficionado. We will let the tutus speak for themselves. Growing up in Alaska, Garrett can ski and ski and ski.


- Landen Beckner - Soul Skier. Landon is a new father, bakes your daily bread at Grist, and is a life long skier. Landon is also a really nice guy. 


- Meredith Ruland - ZANY Coach, top masters skier, and a great friend.  Meredith is a PA in town and loves to pop into community bike and ski races when time allows.  She is a blast to ski with regardless of the grooming conditions.  Always striving to be better, Meredith loves a good ski clinic.  Always improving, meredith is your guru.


- Sarah Millar - Teenager whisper. Raising two teenage girls, Sarah finds the time and energy to help out with Badgers.  A coach at heart, Sarah has such a great attitude while working with young people.  A leader in the Missoula Mammoths mountain biking team, Sarah also owns The Dram Shop along with her husband, that Dram Guy.


- Scott Lenaburg - Great energy, great leader, tough act to follow. Scott signed up to coach ZDT Rangers this year and he may never look back. A coach with enough energy and dad jokes to go around, Scott is a ton of fun. Hang on to your hats.


- Mike Kernan - Wax tech, awesome skier, old fashion good guy.  Mike moonlights at the MTCX bike shop, but his day job is at the Poverello.  Kind hearted and out to do good, we value Mike's role in the community.  Coaching has been a natural fit for Mike and we are so glad he is becoming a part of the Badgers this season.  


Race expectations and attendance will be different for every practice group.  I would like to see everyone at least attend one event as a fan or participant.  Ice Badgers puts on three events, the Ice Badger Loppet, Nordic Dance Invitational, and Follow Your Heart Skiathlon.  These will be free for Badger team members, but you must register with a coupon code.  All other races listed in the schedule will have Coach support.  This means a warmup, race plan, recovery, fun, and celebration.  There are two optional Badger weekend retreats this year where we will reserve accommodations and parents can decide to book or not.


Race Schedule (subject to change)

12/16/23 - Chief Joseph

1/6/24 Glacier Glide - Whitefish, MT

1/20/24 Skiesta - Seeley Lake

1/21/24  Nordic Dance Invitational - UM Golf Course- 1k s/c, 3.5k s, 7k s/c, 14k s  - free entry to all badger and coaches

1/27/24 OSCR - Seeley Lake

2/3-4/24 Seeley Lake Biathlon - Seeley Lake

2/14/24 Follow Your Heart Skiathlon - UM Golf Course - Youth 7k, Adult 14k - night race

2/18/24  Ice Badger Loppet - UM Golf Course - 1k s/c, 4k s, 8k s, 40k s - free entry to all badgers and coaches. 

3/2/24 West Yellowstone - MTCX reserves lodging, explorer cabin colda sac, parents pay and opt in



  • Ice Badger Top
  • IB elite group get spandex two piece suit for the season
  • 2 practices a week
  • Race support, and 3 free entries to Loppet and Dance and Skiathlon
  • Coco and snacks at practices
  • Use coupon code "mysiblingisagoodskier" to get $50 off registering multiple kids

Optional Add Ons at the shop:

  • Rental poles $50
  • Rental skate skis $75
  • Rental skate boots $75
  • Team spandex suit and warmup pants (purchase to be sent in a separate link to the team)


Race Contact Info

If you have any questions about this race, click the button below.


UM Golf Course
515 South Ave E
Missoula, MT US 59801

Race Website

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