Definition of cross-country in US English:



  • 1Across fields or countryside, as opposed to on roads or tracks.

    ‘cross-country walking’
    • ‘The first cousin to the tank: an armed and armoured, wheeled military vehicle, with a good road and limited cross-country ability.’
    • ‘The gearbox also has a low-range function - useful for towing cross-country.’
    • ‘He does considerable cross-country driving, and wants comfort.’
    • ‘Taking a lady's racing bike cross-country over mud-churned cow paddocks is probably not in the manufacturer's recommendations.’
    • ‘It is easier than the showjumping medal event, but tough on a horse that has completed the arduous cross-country section just the day before.’
    • ‘He meets three men during a cross-country hike along a railroad track.’
    • ‘Armies made some use of lorries and staff cars, but practical cross-country vehicles, good roads and an associated infrastructure simply did not exist.’
    • ‘The daily trek was two miles each way and taking the cross-country route they traversed five fields.’
    • ‘Five days of riding, a full day hike, and some short cross-country walks.’
    • ‘For some reason, the first people to start walking towards the centre bypassed the roadblock and headed cross-country, making a beeline for the fence closest to the place where detainees were protesting.’
    • ‘It was like I was walking cross-country with a full glass of water, juggling with the other hand, and on a unicycle.’
    • ‘Hopping over boulders for half-an-hour was a different type of cross-country travel, after re-discovering the leg muscles needed for a prolonged descent.’
    • ‘Around town, the vehicle always feels nippy and there is sufficient in reserve to undertake cross-country journeys without the slightest complaint.’
    • ‘The day began with a short communion service followed by breakfast and a walk down the cross-country bridleway.’
    • ‘One of the unique advantages is its remarkable cross-country capability through its specially designed suspension system.’
    • ‘In the summer, the hills offer a full range of mountain-biking opportunities, from serious alpine to cross-country routes.’
    1. 1.1 Relating to or denoting the sport of running, riding, or driving along a course in the countryside, as opposed to around a track.
      • ‘If he clicked on the sports section of college's website, he would see not aristocratic sons pounding along the cross-country course, but young women jogging on treadmills in a gym.’
      • ‘A cross-country runner, he served as sports editor of his school paper during the past school year.’
      • ‘The cross-country course provided a welcome challenge for riders.’
      • ‘The landscape around the centre provides 13 km of endurance tracks and tracks for cross-country riding.’
      • ‘As an athlete, she participated in track and field, cross-country running, badminton and basketball, giving the latter sport the nod as her favourite.’
      • ‘He is building a reputation as a designer of cross-country courses for eventing testing.’
      • ‘If you intend doing more cross-country driving or competitions involving marathons, then a backstep is a must.’
      • ‘Originating in Scandinavia, the sport involves cross-country running through unfamiliar terrain, while reading a map to find your way.’
      • ‘He's one of the country's top cross-country runners.’
      • ‘This popular event, run over almost four miles, takes place on the cross-country course and comprises a variety of jumps.’
      • ‘The cross-country course at the Olympic Games was not difficult enough.’
      • ‘The fateful riding accident happened in a cross-country event in Virginia in May 1995.’
      • ‘Other popular sports include horse racing, hockey, cross-country running, tennis, swimming, and other water sports.’
      • ‘He competes in three-day eventing, which consists of three different tests: dressage, showjumping and a cross-country course.’
      • ‘She finished the 26-mile cross-country course in St Moritz in six hours 56 minutes.’
      • ‘Ben showed great determination and skill over both courses putting up seven faults in show-jumping and a superb clear over the cross-country course.’
      • ‘They bravely put their pain and discomfort to the back of their minds to complete the tough cross-country course.’
      • ‘The estate also offers a challenging cross-country course, an outdoor arena and show-jumping area.’
      • ‘I haven't had a chance to check the course for my own race, but I know the course for the championships and it's a great cross-country course.’
      • ‘I visited the course some weeks ago and it is a really good cross-country course, with some great hills that are not too steep and underfoot conditions should be good.’
    2. 1.2 Relating to or denoting skiing over relatively flat or mountainous terrain, as opposed to skiing only downhill.
      • ‘He loves Alaska, as do his two children who grew up fishing, snowboarding and cross-country skiing to school.’
      • ‘Although the snow on downhill and cross-country courses can look smooth on television, under the microscope snow crystals are jagged and have varying water contents.’
      • ‘It's best described as cross-country skiing without the skis.’
      • ‘Winter sports include Nordic and cross-country skiing, ice skating, and ice hockey.’
      • ‘Many offer cross-country skiing, snowboarding, ice-skating, sledding, horseback riding, and nature watching.’
      • ‘Getting out onto a well-lit ski trail is one of the most pleasurable additions to cross-country skiing in recent years.’
      • ‘To get a taste of Olympic cross-country skiing, I didn't balk at a longer drive.’
      • ‘You don't need a mountain for cross-country skiing, just a snow covered area.’
      • ‘As in traditional competition, biathlon consists of cross-country skiing and shooting.’
      • ‘She once devoted an article to the pleasures and benefits of cross-country skiing.’
      • ‘Our couples can also try night skiing, cross-country skiing, snow shoeing, sleigh rides, ice climbing and snowboarding.’
      • ‘One of the most exciting events was the biathlon, which combines cross-country skiing with shooting at targets at a range of 50m.’
      • ‘There's no need for bulky ‘ski suits’ and the scenery in which cross-country skiing takes place in is breathtakingly spectacular.’
      • ‘A cross-country skier herself, she advocates massage before hitting the trail.’
      • ‘If you can combine cross-country skiing and target shooting, why not chess and boxing?’
      • ‘The town has been busy this summer making preparations for cross-country skiing.’
      • ‘It would have been enough to send many Finnish boys running to the relative safety of cross-country skiing or even ice-hockey.’
      • ‘And cross-country skiing, or ski du fond, is one of the finest ways ever devised of experiencing that sense of well being only achieved through a good work out amongst sublime scenery.’
      • ‘We'll stay in Oslo for a few days and then head up to a cabin in the mountains to try cross-country skiing.’
      • ‘The aim is to provide novice mountaineers with the basic skills and techniques of cross-country skiing, snow survival, mountaineering, and ice climbing.’
  • 2Not keeping to main or direct roads, routes, or railroad lines.

    ‘mine shafts camouflaged by vegetation have swallowed up more than one cross-country hiker’
    as adverb ‘if you are traveling cross-country, choose where you walk with care’
    • ‘Explore a remote corner of Texas' frontera country via rarely used trails and cross-country routes.’
    • ‘When attacking from the march the troops reach the attack line by roads, cross-country tracks and along the most accessible routes.’
    • ‘He travelled on the motorway rather than taking a cross-country route.’
    • ‘He arrived after a marathon cross-country drive.’
    • ‘To fly to Cuito requires a five-hour cross-country journey to the airport.’
    • ‘Steeple-chasing derived from horses racing each other cross-country to the nearest church steeple.’
    • ‘He persuaded me that we, too, should take in Mt. Whitney while scouting a cross-country route to our next camp.’
    • ‘There is also an attractive cross-country route to the hall.’
    • ‘From there, he'll spend the next week traveling cross-country to Boston.’
    • ‘The last thing I should be doing in my condition is heading cross-country on the back of a donkey.’
    • ‘We follow a cross-country route east, exploring a rarely visited section of the refuge.’
    • ‘From its base we could explore the headwaters of the stream leading back to camp for our cross-country route into Wallace Creek, to the north.’
    • ‘Like someone who has set out to navigate a complicated and dangerous cross-country journey, I was astonished to find the steering wheel moving expertly of its own accord.’
    • ‘Our trip is a combination of trail and cross-country travel through remote backcountry.’
    1. 2.1US Traveling to many different parts of a country.
      ‘a whirlwind cross-country tour’
      • ‘The President was back in the state where he spent that fateful morning, before being flown off on a zig-zag cross-country journey which finally took him back to Washington.’
      • ‘This will give me the perfect excuse to do my cross-country travelling.’
      • ‘The movie's plot involves the cross-country journey that ensues when his bicycle is stolen.’
      • ‘For example, here's a handy little guide I made for you to reference before embarking on any tedious cross-country road trip.’
      • ‘The film catalogues his cross-country journey to confront old flames and discover the truth in a poignantly comedic way.’
      • ‘Today, they embarked on a cross-country tour called ‘Believe In America.’’
      • ‘Get in touch with your inner travel bug - it can be as easy as exploring the next town over from yours or as complicated as convincing the folks that the family should take a cross-country trip.’
      • ‘His cross-country road trip started last Friday am and he's now West of Albequerque heading for Reno.’
      • ‘The daughter accompanies her father on a cross-country journey.’
      • ‘In December she's publishing a 2006 calendar, photographed on a 10-day cross-country road trip.’
      • ‘Whether your adventure is a weekend at the cottage, a camping getaway or a cross-country road trip, be prepared before you buckle up and head out on the highway.’
      • ‘He's in the middle of a cross-country tour, speaking to business leaders.’
      • ‘He will be going on a cross-country tour.’
      • ‘He is taking time off for a cross-country tour with his new stage show.’
      • ‘And polls show the President's cross-country tour has not boosted support for private accounts a bit.’
      • ‘For one thing, cheap travel will become a thing of the past - goodbye backpacking trips to Bali and cross-country road trips.’
      • ‘Later, they embark on a cross-country journey.’
      • ‘He leaves home on his son's third birthday and begins a cross-country road trip to try to answer some of his nagging questions about himself.’
      • ‘It was the unexpected pot of gold at the end of his cross-country journey.’
      • ‘Joining Mark on his cross-country journey are two more DJs.’


  • 1A cross-country race or competition.

    • ‘The final mandatory jog would take place 45 minutes after a given horse had finished the cross-country.’
    • ‘Three weeks ago he was fifth, and the top-placed Briton, at the Great North cross-country in Newcastle.’
    • ‘It was after the world junior cross-country in 1991.’
    • ‘They staged the final cross-country of the season.’
    • ‘His next race is the world junior cross-country in France in two weeks time.’
    • ‘Many thanks to everyone who turned out to give them complete teams - this was the first cross-country for many of them.’
    • ‘In between is the most gruelling test, the cross-country.’
    • ‘There is a 5k fun run/walk, a 3k junior run/walk, a wheelchair race and a kids' mini cross-country.’
    • ‘The cross-country saw the main Irish challenger in the six-country competition come into sharp focus as the time played the major factor.’
    • ‘She was 50th in her first cross-country for the club.’
    • ‘He also finished 3rd in the cross-country in Cardiff on Sunday, 14th January.’
    • ‘Years later I would use this advice down a snowy hill in Boston to win the world junior cross-country.’
    • ‘He has won numerous titles at cross-country, road and track.’
    • ‘The following day, Ian ran in another cross-country.’
    • ‘Looking back on the last year, I have run for England and won the North cross-country, so things are moving forward.’
    • ‘For the first time a human has won the annual 22-mile Man versus Horse cross-country held in Mid-Wales each year.’
    • ‘He won the under-18 cross-country in a new record time.’
    • ‘He ran the cross-country, with more than 120 participating.’
    • ‘A teenage boy happily wins both the horse sprint and cross-country, gladly collecting his monetary prize.’
    • ‘It was more of a trail race rather then a cross-country.’
    1. 1.1 The sport of cross-country running, riding, skiing, or driving.
      ‘skiing in the Rockies is a pleasant mix of downhill and cross-country’
      • ‘It's not seen as a punishment in the same way that cross-country is.’
      • ‘I know that much of my own coaching time is absorbed in training youths for cross-country, fell-racing and middle distance track.’
      • ‘The former cross-country champion has created quite a stir since she began training for a marathon debut.’
      • ‘In the meantime, cross-country is her main focus.’
      • ‘The students have an aptitude for all sporting activities including athletics, football, basketball and cross-country.’
      • ‘This year, he helped usher in girls' ninth grade basketball and cross-country.’
      • ‘‘Our dressage and cross-country was good, but our show jumping was not so hot,’ she said.’
      • ‘Most noticeable were the cross-country and track and field team.’
      • ‘There's downhill, slalom, cross-country and so forth.’
      • ‘If your horse's long, flowing mane gets in the way when you're doing dressage or cross-country, try a running plait.’
      • ‘His least favourite sport is cross-country and I must admit I share his opinion on this.’
      • ‘He ran cross-country for Lancashire, but although he was a good standard he didn't enjoy it and his heart really wasn't in it.’
      • ‘He has showed great ability on roads, cross-country and track.’
      • ‘This event, unusually, also included two outdoor events javelin and cross-country.’
      • ‘There are many elements that make team sports like cross-country fun.’
      • ‘It is also important for schools to offer a wide range of sports, not just the traditional football, rugby, hockey, netball, cross-country and cricket.’
      • ‘The entire team starts training in September, while the distance runners compete in cross-country.’
      • ‘The Harriers welcomes new members of all ages and abilities and caters for road, cross-country and track and field, as well as providing a full social programme.’
      • ‘An Olympic cross-country track is also a long-term plan, as are mounted patrols.’
      • ‘But world cross-country champion Radcliffe says she has learnt from those experiences and has come back a better athlete.’



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