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It’s holiday shopping, Adirondack style

Around 50 cross-country ski shoppers pack into the Dewey Mountain lodge Saturday morning for the annual ski and snowshoe swap. (Enterprise photo — Aaron Cerbone)

SARANAC LAKE — When the doors to the Dewey Mountain Recreation Center lodge swung open at 9 a.m. Saturday, around 50 cross-country ski shoppers swarmed in, rushing over to racks of skis and tables of boots to find the best deals before they were gone.

This was holiday shopping, Adirondack style.

With a layer of snow on the ground several inches thick, the cross-country ski season has already begun in November, and Zoe Smith, who was volunteering to run the cash register at the ski and snowshoe swap event, said the early winter has people excited and ready to get out in the snow.

The annual ski swap always attracts a crowd, as it gives bargain-shoppers the chance to find used cross-country ski equipment at dirt-cheap prices, but Smith said this year seemed extra busy, with the line of shoppers stretching into the parking lot by 8:45 a.m.

One of these shoppers was Angela Durant, who was looking for a pair of cross-country skis for her son Aidan, 14, who started on the Lake Placid High School Nordic team last week. Durant said Aidan has competed through the New York Ski Educational Foundation before but wanted to be on a school team now.

He outgrew his last pair and she was looking around for a size that would match his height.

On Friday people brought by their old equipment to donate or sell to the ski center, and Smith said the selection this year was better than most.

“We’ve got a lot of parents of young kids who outgrow this stuff,” Smith said. “We have got a lot of the old-time skiers who are just cleaning out their garages or their attics.”

They were also selling some of Dewey Mountain’s old rental equipment.

Jason Smith, Zoe’s husband and the owner of Adirondack Lakes and Trails Outfitters, which manages the mountain, said he has held the event every year since 2013. It started in coordination with the Friends of Mt. Pisgah’s alpine and skate ski swap, but he split it off into its own event.

Jason said the cheap prices lets people ease into cross-country skiing, without having to make too big a financial investment.

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