Oregon Kamp 2011 by Ben Grasseschi

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. Who is “they” and what do “they” know?
If it is true that one picture is worth that much then by looking at the pics on the Far West website, one might conclude that the recent Pacific Northwest/Far West Junior Training Camp up on the coast of Oregon (near Port Orford) had very little ‘training’ in it and lots of fun. Well, these so-called experts; “they”, are only partially right.
While we did have an enormous amount of beach/play time, the camp was quite arduous if each athletes made it so. What “they” also do not know is that the cameraman was often “working out” with the teams and not talented enough to do both camera and rollerski, or he got left behind (actually, physically, and, emotionally!) while rollerskiing and his camera was in the van, or he just ran out of camera battery, or just plain forgot about the camera because he did.
But, meanwhile, the athletes were training. Twice-a-day workouts were scheduled but many athletes went surfing, kayaking, running, sun catching, skim-boarding, blackberry picking, and eating, lots of eating, in between.
We rollerskied every day and had a 5k and 8km Skate Rollerski Time Trial on Saturday. We did a hard level 4 ski walking and bounding session on excellent uphill terrain on Friday. I am proud to say that the Far West girls, and the girls in general, out lasted all the boys and put in an extra tough set of 5x1min, hard, hard, intervals. Way to go Gurls!
We hiked/ran/ski walked up Humbug Mountain, 1700ft in 3 miles direct from our campsite. The trail was awesome, the views up top were not- we couldn’t see the ocean for the trees.
We hiked Fern Canyon, kissed slugs, skied over snakes, and drove through the redwoods. We rollerskied along the Elk River, the Rogue River, and the Sixes River. We found amazing emerald pools and rocks and cliffs and trees to jump off of cooling down after each workout. We did core strength, yoga, and plyos on the beach in front of the whole town of Port Orford, so, say; about 5 people…, but the views were amazing. Then, as the setting sun breached the World Cup Soccer Stadium in downtown Port Orford, Far West scored the winning goal to finally beat PNSA in our annual grudge match.
All-in-all it was an amazing camp. And those that were there, had a great time, pushed themselves, made some new friends, re-kindled acquaintances, and sparked motivating rivalries. And all are better skiers for it.
So, for now, I will let the pictures speak for themselves. And, for all those who look at the pics and think we did not workout up there, “they” can stuff it.

Many Thanks! to Ben Husaby from Bend Endurance Academy/PNSA and Jeff Schloss from Sugar Bowl Academy for their coaching and energy, and to Branden Deeter for remembering Alex Kopytco and I, otherwise we would still be waiting for the van in front of the Sixes Post Office while talking to the crazy “Foxy Lady”…