Chad McGrath

Fe University will be offering cross country ski instruction for five students, with veteran instructor Chad McGrath teaching the class Mondays and Wednesdays, Jan 11, 13, 18, 20 from 1-2:30 p.m. at MECCA Trails in Mercer.

At the conclusion of this course, students will understand the basics of both diagonal stride and skate style skiing, regarding both technique and equipment. They will be able to stand comfortably on skis, compress each ski and grip the snow, kick off and then repeat with the opposite leg. They will be able to glide forward on the gliding ski after their kick, maintaining balance, as they shift their weight forward over the gliding ski. They will be able to engage their poles at the proper time and push, assisting forward movement and learn how to stop, slow down and get back up after falling.

Students should have the basic ability to balance, be able to stand on one foot for at least five seconds. They should also be able to fall onto snow from a standing still position without undue worry about injury. Previous experience on skis is not required but welcomed, and instruction can be tailored to each individual skier’s ability. Because classes will begin in the warming cabin, masks are required.

McGrath has taught cross-country skiing for over 25 years to well over 500 individuals. He has led groups of skiers on treks through the Porcupine Mountains, has skied the SISU race several times and the American Birkebeiner 14 times.

The fee for the class is $30. Skis, boots and poles are available for rent for $5 per session. Suggested trail donation is $5 per day or $30 for season pass. Scholarships are available. To register, download a registration form from the website,, or pick one up at the Mercer Library. Drop off completed forms at the library or mail them to Fe University, PO Box 63, Hurley, WI 54534. Payment may also be made via Paypal from the website.

The class is subsidized by the MECCA Experience, a community outreach program that provides funding to encourage all age groups to get out and use the MECCA Trails year round. The fund has subsidized Fe University cross country ski classes for three years. For more information about MECCA visit

For more information about Fe University or details on the ski class, visit or call 715-476-2881 or 715-561-3098.

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