It’s been dry out here in California (and Nevada!). Real dry. But the roller skiing weather is excellent. Last week I classic rollerskied up Geiger Grade to the pass and back down. I won’t recommend roller skiing back down (use a shuttle instead) for beginning roller skiers because some of the road has a narrow shoulder and there is a decent amount of tourist traffic going to Virginia City. Maybe next time I’ll hit up the tourism adventures in Virginia City.
Coming home for the holidays always rekindles old friendships, memories, and traditions. After hanging with my family (minus my brother Charlie, who is on duty coaching for the Auburn Ski Club in Truckee!!) in Boise, Idaho, racing the Bogus Challenge 10k skate race is a high priority. I was able to pull of the victory in the mass start race over some speedy Idaho Nordic and Bogus Basin Junior Nordic Team (BBNT) racers. These local races are great chance for juniors to get exposure to racing in a low-key setting, provide master skiers a tuneup opportunity for later season marathons, and all proceeds from the race entry go to BBNT. Prizes? Brownies! Thanks to the volunteers for making it happen!
The next weekend I raced the famous 20km Snowmaker Classic citizens race in the Boulder Mountains north of Ketchum, ID and was able to hold on for the win! No brownies this time…Thanks to Elephant’s Perch in Ketchum for putting it on.
Saturday was the famous Donner Lake Turkey Trot. I was third in the 7-mile running race around Donner Lake, the top skier behind some speedy high school runners. Spencer was the next nordie in 5th, and Anja won the women’s race to claim the huge frozen Turkey for her first place prize! It was a beautiful day and a tough workout for us skiers who, at this time of year, focus more on rollerksiing than running!
Thanks to all who came out to compete in this fun even that’s also an Auburn Ski Club fundraiser. There were 200 or so racers with the Turkey Trot, Mashed potato mile, and walkers divisions This is one of three main fundraisers for Auburn Ski Club, the others being the Squaw Mountain Run and the Firecracker Mile in downtown Truckee.
Specific strength workouts pretty much have to involve either skiing or rollerskiing. That’s why it’s specific. But there’s still plenty of room for diversity in these workouts. Try pulling a tire. Hint: start with the smallest tire you can find (like a honda insight tire) and use a roughly ten’ bungee chord.
We on the Far West Elite Team are committed to getting the job done, at training, at work, or both. Here’s some proof.
Balancing training and work is always a challenge. Sometimes you can do both. Earlier this summer while doing hydrology field-work in Elko, NV, I used an off-day to do a bike ride up the beautiful Lamoille Canyon in the Ruby Mountains. Turns out I should have brought the xc skis as 3/4 to the end of the canyon I was stopped by a couple feet of snow on the road and lots of snow machine fumes. I about froze on the ride back down as a snowstorm rolled in. Luckily, I had a trusty can of sardines in Louisiana hot sauce waiting for me in the truck at the bottom – a great training/field-work food (or just a great food anytime). I got revenge on the next work trip to Elko by classic rollerskiing up to the end of the canyon.
I guess I’m lucky to have a job that includes work in places where potential for mountain biking, running, and rollerskiing adventures make work seem like play.
The Billy Dutton was what it always is: HARD. No getting around that. Ton’s of fun and some interesting techniques employed: skate, classic, running, tandem skiing (2nd annual tandem champs = Gus and Johannes!). I was able to claim the victory by a few minutes over Franz and Spencer. Hard snow this year made it faster than normal. Thanks to Squaw Valley as well for pulling off an improbably clean and well-covered trail with nearly no snow on the lower slopes.
Thanks to all the great Far West volunteers, racers, coaches, and parents for a great event and outstanding support of the Elite Team all season. Next year we will have tons of snow, I promise!
Last weekend was the always-fun Mammoth Marathon. Myself and Spencer represented the Far West Elite Team by placing 1-2. This is an awesome race because it’s super scenic, at super high altitude, has super good food at the awards, and provides super nice race bibs (synthetic not paper).
Check out some pics by Mark Nadell : Photos
Next came came a new challenge: become, in all likelihood, the first person to roller ski at Walker Lake.
Definitely got some interesting looks from RVers and locals. Surprisingly good pavement though.
Way to go Royal Gorge for bringing back the Gold Rushfor the first time in several years, despite the lack of snow. It was shortened from 50 to 36k, but was super fun nonetheless and a great workout for Franz, Patrick, and me.
With the Great Race and Tahoe Rim Tour cancelled this season because of the historic drought, it was awesome to have at least one of the “big three” California races. Next year we can get them all I’m sure!
This photo sums up my birkie:
I got cold again (like two years ago) and had to add some festive attire. I still haven’t learned just how much colder Wisconsin is than California. Still a great trip and tons of fun. Congrats to Matt Gelso and Patrick Johnson on their great finishes!