Channeling My Inner Camp Counselor

I hear there’s pretty good snow at ASC, and I am going to check it out this weekend, but most of my week has been spent dry-land training in Tahoe City. Both Kara and I have been trying to keep things interesting for our athletes at North Tahoe, with the absence of snow to ski on at Tahoe XC. We run, jump, play games, do strength training, and whatever else we can think of to get our athletes primed for when the snow flies for real.

Today, for something to mix up the dreary dry-land atmosphere, we decided to hold an athletic scavenger hunt. Objectives included running to (and taking pictures at) landmarks on the trail system, doing a certain number of collective push-ups and sit-ups, gathering various items, and my personal favorite: write and perform a song about your coaches. Running a scavenger hunt reminded me of being a camp counselor.

We had several talented wordsmiths for the songs. Here is only one of their creations: Kara And Gus: Best Coaches Ever (I hope that link worked. I don’t know how to embed video here yet)

After practice I hurried down to get pictures of the lake at sunset.

That’s it for now. See you at ASC and the Far West Kickoff Party at Cottonwood this Sunday.


Music: I’m digging This Train. You don’t know how long I searched for a rendition of this song that I liked. I had been hoping to find a Woody Guthrie version, but- to the best of my internet research skills- I don’t know that it exists. There are also pretty sweet versions with Mumford and Sons, Old Crow Medicine Show, and Edward Sharp and The Magnetic Zeros; and a bluesier version by Big Bill Broonzy.

Final Bozeman report….and back to Truckee

As Spencer predicted, the last race in Bozeman was twisty, turny, tough and totally fun. The rain and snow held off until later that afternoon, allowing talented waxing specialist Coach Grassech and guest wax tech/former Bobcat Tim Whiton to deliver us excellent skis. Unfortunately I ended up having my own spontaneous Summit Sunday in the start, when an APU girl in front of me tripped on a pole and went down in front of me with just enough time for my skis to go under her and me to fall directly on top of her. I then got out-summitted by the racer behind me, who ended up right on top of me. Luckily I had my game face on and was able to fight my way back up to 12th place, getting to race briefly with Em and Katrin in the process. Racing with teammates is always fun – as Mr. Filly Hamilton would say, “teamwork makes the dream work”. Kat and Emily proved his point by racing together to a solid 28th and 29th place, scoring SuperTour points in a stacked field. Spence and Patrick had a chance to work together for a while in the men’s race, racing among an equally if not even more stacked field. Patrick managed to beat some pretty speedy elite skiers and finish as the 9th junior. Spencer spicily topped his previous early season racing PR, setting himself up for success as the season continues.

A quick summary of the journey back… Roger and George made a new lady friend on the drive home, spicing up the Far West van dynamics. We decided to get in an extra strength workout en route…

Ben rediscovered the joys of Red Bull. and we rediscovered that 14 hours is too long to spend in a van no matter who you are with….

Last but not least…don’t forget to buy your ticket for the Cottonwood-hosted Far West Nordic Kickoff Party featuring speaker Grant Korgan on Sunday!

best view in bozeman.


Familiar Faces in Canadian Worldcups

The next two weekends there are cross country world cups here in North America, Quebec the 7th and 8th and Canmore the 13th, 15th, and 16th. Having these races on this side of the Atlantic has the added perk of additional athlete spots for the U.S. and Canadian teams. If you weren’t already excited enough, three of these spots have been given to former Truckee locals! Farm team alumni Matt Gelso and Chelsea Holmes, who both now ski with Sun Valley ID, will be racing in the distances races of the Canmore. Truckee local Russel Kennedy will be racing for the Canadians in the sprint races in both Quebec and Canmore. Also the Australians Callum Watson and Paul Kovas who have been training here in the Tahoe area for the last couple months will be at both races.

Results and live timing for these races can be found here:




AND you can watch the races live online here:

Escape to Higher Ground

As the Truckee River rises and basements flood, ASC Comp and Devo Teams headed to higher elevation in search of snow and adventure- we certainly found it! On the road up to Mt. Rose, we came upon about 3-4 feet of fresh powder which made for some pretty sweet backcountry skiing (although I definitely wished I had real backcountry poles instead of race poles…my pole sunk through the snow to the grip a few too many times). There were about 15 hardcore skiers who came out to brave the elements but besides some serious ice chunks to the face, the weather held up and everyone enjoyed breaking trail through the woods. I have always appreciated Nordic Skiers’ adventurous spirit and excitement about character-building workouts- it makes for some pretty sweet people to hang out with!

Hardcore Nordies- Photo credit: Jon Halvorsen

Bozeman Update

With two of the the three races in Bozeman down, here’s an update on how things have gone. On a hilly skate course Thursday the women crushed with all three qualifying for the senior heats in a stacked field, Beth 15th, Katrin 21st, and Emily 28th. Also Patrick qualified 2nd for the junior heats and was the 3rd junior boy overall. Times were really tight for both men and women and despite not qualifying for the rounds thursday was a solid step forward from the races in West Yellowstone.

Saturday was a flat classic course were many of the men choose to double pole it on skate skis. In order to rest up and be ready for the classic 15km Sunday I sat out the race and played coach/wax-tech helping ben with testing skis. Conditions were soft and flat favoring skiers who could ski tall and strong. It initially looked like Beth had made the heats, she was even given a bib, but the correction of a previous timing error bumped her back into the most unfortunate position 31. Katrin saved the team by solidly qualifying in the junior women’s heats and ending up 3rd for junior women. Sunday’s classic race is going to be wild. The course is hilly, twisty, and turny, conditions are supposed to be snow/rainy, and there are over a hundred men in the mass start.

If you didn’t already know, ski coaches work really hard. This morning Ben had the wax table set up and was testing top-coats before the sun was up. So thank you all. As good as I think I am at waxing we would be in a lot of trouble without you. Also during my pretend-to-be-a-coach-day I learned some other tidbits about coaching. . .

As fun and useful as Walkie-Talkies are their harnesses are also pretty rad. They make you feel super important and are surprisingly convenient for carrying things.


Also ski bags are an excellent place to take a nap.

my life be like….

sprints tomorrow, gettin stoked.

Sweet Dreams of Skiing

This weekend we have some pretty rad Supertour races in Bozeman. Skate Sprint on Thursday, Classic Sprint Friday, and a Classic Distance Race Sunday!! Race and shenanigans reports to come!