Bend, Oregon is a pretty neat town. We have come here for the past 3 years for an on snow camp and this year, as with the other years, we have incredible snow and so far, the weather has been unbeatable. It is the typical ski in the morning and drive down the hill to sunbathe in shorts in the afternoon. We are getting in a pretty big training week, around 20 hours, which is my biggest of the training year so far, and what a great place to do it. Great people to train with, both my teammates and XC Oregon, members of the CXC team, Sun Valley and others, so the living is really good. Kikkan was here until this morning when she took off for Croatia. She is one of two nordic athlete representatives for the coming year, a really important job, and so she will be in FIS meetings, giving input for our sport for the next 2 days. Croatia shouldn't be a bad place to be!! Taz is also here which is great, as we don't see our Alaskan teammates as much as we would all like to, so it is great to get a little training in with them before our Whistler camp in September. I only have these two pictures, both taken by Pete Vordenberg, but there are a few more on teamtoday.org if you want to check them out. Carina Hamel, my idol and the person who I followed around for my entire first year on skis came by for a ski on our first morning here. It was great to see her again and to click her heels a bit as well, just for old time sake! Carina is now working in Portland, Oregon in production for Keen Shoes parent company! In the next few years there may be a shoe line out called the "Carinas". If you see them, she is the designer, and I promise you they will be amazing!
Carina Hamel and I skiing on our first day of snow in a month!
This spring has been a time of real adventure for me. As athletes, we are "on" from the middle of November through the end of March and so when April rolls around, we are ready for a bit of a break. This year, Noah Hoffman, Sarah MacCarthy, Zoe Roy, Mikey Sinnot and I set out for a 5 day backpacking trip in Escalante, a part of the southern Utah desert. Here is a snapshot of our trip.
This is a gas station. The store is actually inside a mountain,
and they have awesome ice cream sandwiches!
As we got closer and closer to our camp site for the night the temperature kept dropping...
What is Mikey thinking about right now? Arizona.
But, the snow disappeared for our sleeping, and though the temps were not
what we had hoped for yet, we were still smiling in the morning.
But the weather warmed up and we found this guy sunbathing on the rocks.
Sarah and Mikey psyched about the warm sand.
On one of our days we climbed up and over this arch (Jacob Hamblin Arch). It required a bit of a repel, and conquering a few of my fears, but we made it. Our campsite for the night was actually in those green trees that you can see through the arch. Beautiful mornings!
The five of us (Noah, Sarah, me, Mikey and Zoe) standing at the edge of the Escalante river.
And back to the snow...Last tuesday and again this Saturday a few of us SLC/PC folks set off to find some powder at the end of April. As you can see, we found some, and it was perfect.
Pete Vordenberg loving the day, as usual.
I have to admit, it's hard not to smile on days like these.
I grew up in Vermont and attended Burke Mountain Academy in high school. I am now a member of the US Cross Country Ski Team and get to travel around the world to race in the sport that I love....pretty lucky.