Sunday, September 23, 2012

Big Foot

The smoke continues to haunt the Valley so we took Highway 20 about 40 miles west this morning.  When we leave Mazama and head up the Pass in to the Mountains there is a good 70 miles before the next town or services.  This area is pretty much all National Forest, National Park or National Recreation Area.  I remember reading Pete Vordenberg's book growing up and he talked about a crazy friend of his who spent his summers scouring the Pacific Northwest for the elusive Big Foot.  Those guys were training further south in Trout Lake, WA and I wonder if he ever made it North in search of the big hairy guy.

Ready to Roll
Almost every long ski we have done this year we have had the good fortune of vehicle support for dry clothes, spare gear and ride back down the mountain.  Thank you to everyone who has supported our skis over the years.  Today was an early morning and we were self supported.  I brought my bike to set up a shuttle, but we decided to take our chances with hitch hiking from the top.  Many times this has worked quite well, but every so often drivers just think you are an Alien with sticks and drive on by.  The unknown at the end of the ski can lead to some poor recovery.  We made sure to ski with plenty of water, clothes and food to make the wait as comfortable as possible.  Days like today really help make me appreciate the countless times: Scott, Igor, Andy, Mom, Dad, Chad, Alieta and others have run support. The pack wasn't too heavy though and I think the extra training weight is good for us.  Some day we will race the Norweigian Birkebeiner and be ready to roll.  Plus, I have found that Solomon makes a fantastic ultra light backpack.  The pack is made for running so it is ergonomically designed for activity and adjustable it almost every way imaginable.  I have used it with a CamelBak for most of the summer because it allows me the luxury of drinking without having to stop.

Caitlin heading up the North Cascades Scenic Highway
We skied the first kilometer together because we thought we might have seen some strange tracks crossing the road while we were driving.

Big Foot?

Kuzzy often recommended to visualize  'skiing like Big Foot' while working on classic technique.  It works particularly well while tracking him.

Caitlin enjoying a good homemade turkey sandwich and dry clothes after a great ski.

Sometimes things really work out well and as I reached Rainy Pass I took my skis off as a train of cars approached from the other side and stuck my thumb out.  They all drove right on by.  A bit further down the road a car  near one of the trailheads a car did pull off the side of the road.  I walked towards it knowing that once I expained my situation surely I could get a ride back down the mountain.  As I got closer I recognized that the person was my good childhood friend Leah.  She was heading up to run the Maple/Heather Pass loop but offered us to use her car for the shuttle.  Huge thanks to you Leah.  We had to be a bit creative because of the smoke in the Valley, but the day worked out pretty well.  Now it is time for a little strength session indoors.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

CXC September Man Camp

September Camp at Telemark started with a huge bowl of fresh blueberries, oatmeal, hard boiled eggs, coffee, juice and just the boys.

Eric, Karl and Adam and I haven been enjoying a small camp here at Telemark Lodge this week with Igor, Andy, and Kyle (Team Physio).  We have had some pretty large camps this year which have been great, but it is nice to have a small group.  It is also great to have almost a 1:1 coach to athlete ratio.

Cool weather has allowed for great training and recovery.

Classic Speed Session- few skiers in the country have the double pole finishing speed of Karl and it was great to try and hang on to him during our classic speed session.  Igor had us do the majority of the speeds with weights on our write.  They didn't feel like much when you put them on, but you felt like a rockstar when you took them off for the final few of the set.
note: Video plays on Eric's new blog

Skate Intervals- I have logged a lot of time climbing up OO in the past 6 years.  I would even wager that I have gone up and down it on roller skis more than anyone else (although I believe the Team FAST skiers should hold that honor soon).   The pavement was getting pretty bad and this summer the county repaved it.  Sadly the shoulder is even smaller than before, but it is one smooth ride which is nice.  The pavement made a one minute difference in interval speed according to my training logs.

 Mt. Telemark Bounding Intervals-  Igor mowed out a loop on Mt. Telemark which makes you wonder if you really are in the Midwest.  With a wonderful mix of steep and gradual ups you are either climbing or descending the entire 20 minute loop.

My Roomate is pretty chill, although he needs to pick up his boots and helmet. (yeah he is a boy dog so he can come to Man Camp).

Video Review
Man Camp has been fun and we have two more days to go.  I enjoy hanging with the boys but I am looking forward to seeing the Mrs. on Wednesday.