The annual Bear Valley Telemark Festival has evolved into one of the most popular gatherings of its kind in the Sierra, with some 300 free-heelers expected to attend the Feb. 8-10 event. The festival kicks off with instruction and workshops all day Friday on lift-services slopes of Mt. Reba, followed by an All-U-Can-Stuff burrito binge and mini film fest at Basecamp in the evening. Saturday is another full day of clinics, races, and fun on the ski hill, capped off by a banquet with live music, dancing, and giveaways, at the Bear Valley Village. Sunday's activities will center on back-country techniques and tours. The festival package, which includes all Saturday and some Sunday events, is $160 (excluding lift ticket). Telemarkers also can sign up for individual events. Log on to for complete details and pricing.