Thursday, December 22, 2011

WHITE CHRISTMAS = Ramsau!!!!!!!!!

I really don't mean to rub it in, but we will be having a white Christmas here in Ramsau, Austria! If I could share some of this snow with all of you back in the States who are snowless, I for sure would. But as I can't, I have been doing my absolute best to enjoy every ounce of it. Last night we went to the second run of the Men's World Cup Slalom race in Flachau, Austria, just a quick 30 minute drive away. It was a snowy night and the crowds were huge. What a show to be a part of. A World Cup night slalom in Austria, yeah, there were some people there. The day before was the Women's race and Kikkan, Jeff and I caught the first run, which was really cool.
Now we are all settling in for Christmas together. There haven't been many times in my life when I have been happier than I am right now. We have an unbelievable team of people who train together and sit at meals longer than necessary because we are just chatting. We share ideas, thoughts, watch movies, play music, share really embarrassing things about ourselves like the fact I have listened to the complete Harry Potter series at least 8 times over again and can pretty much quote all 7 books. And now you all know that too, but my point is, we are all friends, not just teammates, who share a common interest that we get to try and perfect every day and are psyched to help one another get better too. There have been days and weeks that have been hard for one of us or another, and the group has held these people up. We are a unit, not just a bunch of individuals who happen to all be good at the same thing and are forced to be together and get along. We have gotten past that and are a genuine team, and it is this simple change in the way we think of one another and the way we think of the group as a whole that has been the change we needed to make to become faster. I am this happy because I am surrounded by people who I care about and who care about me. I am surrounded by people who I am working together with to try and be great, and there is nothing that I can think of that is more inspiring to be a part of than that. I don't want to be anywhere else but right here, where I am now. I love ski racing, I love my team, I love snow. I will be very happy to make a snow angel for all of you who are praying for snow. Just let me know. Until Christmas....

Sarah Schleper and Kikkan right after Sarah gave Kik her coat in the finish zone because she said it matched her hair!

Day 1 of National Team's Christmas Vacation. Yahtzee.

Holly cutting some perfect Tele turns in the fresh powder on the most perfect day of skiing there is. I can't help it, I'm totally addicted to this life.

Holly smiling big. Andy, Holly and I went classic touring day 1 here and our faces hurt because we smiled so big the whole ski. The whole team was like a bunch of giddy kids on Christmas morning. Skiing really doesn't get better than this.

More from Day 1 skiing. Since then we have gotten about 2 feet of fresh snow and it is now officially a winter wonderland here.

The first morning I woke up and opened my curtains this is what I saw. Crescent moon, white snow everywhere and fresh ski tracks. I really don't mean to be rubbing this in to all of you stuck somewhere this time of year with no snow and freezing rain, but I recognize I kind of am:)


Rogla got a bunch of snow the night before the classic race and then even more the night before the Sprint day, so it really made it look extremely pretty everywhere.

Speaking of pretty! Here she is! The star of the day! Chandra Crawford, on her first World Cup individual podium since Lahti in 2008. She is a star in every way. She supports her teammates to all ends and is the most positive, outgoing, champion of a person you could ever hope to meet. She is a girl you should all root for, cheer for, and watch closely because she is just gaining momentum.

Women's podium on Sunday.

That's the smile that seems to never leave Chandra's face. It's like a sunny day.

Noah and Sim after Simi's Semifinal. Congrats to Sim for his first World Cup top 10!

Ida sprinting it out in her first World Cup quarterfinal! YEAH!

This was our hotel in Rogla. It was some sort of hotel/PT center/Spa/Rehab facility/waterpark/nursing home. It was tough to tell, but the Christmas crew did go check out this outdoor pool on our last night just to do a few cannonballs, you know, they just make you feel good.

Complete with bathrobes.

The Christmas Crew our last night in Rogla. Pizza. Yum.

Me and my new guitar!!! Andy Newell bought a new one and I got his "Washburn Rover" travel guitar! So, I am trying to learn a new skill, opening up the artsy section of my brain. I'm still working out how to unlock the door, but it's been really fun to try.

Red sky at night, skiers delight. Beautiful sunset in Rogla.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Disjointed Post about Winter and other Excitement!!!

JOSIE!!!! Congratulations for making it into this world and for picking such incredible parents to be raised by! I can't wait to meet you. Congratulations parents:)

This blog goes out to my teammate and friend, Sadie Bjornsen, as she got on her first World Cup podium in the team sprint this weekend in Dusseldorf, Germany. Congrats Sades!! Kik, you did ok too:)

My second favorite car ever, topped only by the Panda Fiat. This thing is a three wheeler!

Newell and I skiing our first day in Davos last week. 1.4 Kilometer loop, which had been the standard this year before the snow storm that dropped 1.5 feet on us the last 4 days.

We headed to Pontresina, Switzerland for a training day last week, 1 hour from Davos over a twisty pass, but it was worth it to get a little sun and 4K of skiing.

Coffee post ski in Pontresina. Sweet.

Ladies Sprint Podium yesterday!!

Mens Sprint Podium. It was so great to see Emil on the podium again, as he has had a slow start with a nagging hamstring injury and this was his first race back!

It really couldn't have been a more perfect day to ski race yesterday. Sun was out, tracks were firm, course was in great condition.

My good good friends from East Montpelier came all the way to Davos from visiting their daughter Maia (who has been my friend since kindergarten!) in Germany to watch me race. It was so amazing to have people I consider family in Europe. We had an evening together in their cute little apartment where they cooked me a delicious home cooked meal and the company makes you feel like you are all back home in Vermont. It was such a nice, refreshing break from the norm. Thanks for making the trek guys. You rock:)

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Ruka Triple

The World Cup has officially begun again and we have just finished our second weekend of racing with the second annual Ruka Triple, otherwise known as the Kuusamo mini tour. It is a stage race, three races in three days, all accumulative on one another. The first day this year was a classic sprint, the second, a 5K skate race, and yesterday, the final day, a 10K classic. The last day is a pursuit start, meaning they start the person leading the race from the previous two days first and the send the rest of the field respectively, based on how far back they are to the leader. So, for example, I started 48th, 2 minutes and 18 seconds behind Marit Bjorgen, the leader from the previous two days. It makes the whole race really exciting, not matter where you start, as if you start first you have the whole field chasing you and if you start last, you have the whole field to chase! It is like the best game of tag that I can imagine, so, as I had some chasing to do, I thought of myself as the “IT” person and went to work. At the end of the day I ended up 35th, just out of the points (top 30) and with the 36th best classic leg of the day, which is my best classic result on the World Cup ever, so I was satisfied and really proud of my teammates who all had great races at some point over the weekend.

Last weekend we opened the World Cup season with two races in Sjuesen, Norway. The first was a 10K skate race, in which I tied my best ever World Cup result with an 18th, and then we had an awesome relay the next day finishing in a pack of 5 teams, but ending up 9th. It is really fun to be able to see some real improvements as a country and team on the World Cup, and the stoke is high, momentum is building and we’re fired up for the rest of the season.

As for the rest of my life besides racing, I am doing really well. I am traveling with a great group of people and I am stoked to be in Europe for the whole season this year. It has been really fun getting to see all of our Swedish friends from this summer, especially Anna Haag and Charlotte Kalla. We have actually been going on team jogs with our two girls teams! I cooled down with some of the Italians after the race yesterday as well and am really enjoying getting to know people on other teams, which I hadn’t taken advantage of in past years on the World Cup. So, that’s been a highlight of the season so far.

Today we leave Kuusamo to go to Davos, Switzerland, probably the most relaxing and one of the most beautiful stops on the World Cup. This year, however, we will be leaving a 5K manmade loop here for a 1.4K manmade loop in Davos! Hopefully it will snow next week so I can ski some of my favorite trails! Mary, Chris and Maia Stone will be at the World Cup that will be held there in 2 weeks, so I will get to see some really good friends and am really hoping to be able to take them on a long ski up one of the pretty valley’s here! SNOW DANCE!!!

Below are a few pictures from our travels, but there are not as many as I was envisioning! Guess I need to actually get the camera out a bit more often instead of just taking mental images! More soon.

Guys relay team in Sjuesen

Girls on relay day!

We have had a lot of Birthdays this trip and here is Sadie on her night

I got to sit in the leaders chair for a while in the first race of the year, as I had an early bib number, so that was really fun. I can see why people want to win, they hook you up with furs and a comfy chair to sit in, it's pretty awesome!

A photo Max Cobb (USA Biathlon) sent me from the Sjuesen weekend.

Friday, September 30, 2011


Make sure to share this info with all your athletes!
Park City, UT / Canmore, AB (September 1, 2011) - A dynamic and inspiring group of world-class female athletes is preparing to host a once-in-a-lifetime Fast and Female event in Park City on October 8, 2011 at the USSA's Center of Excellence.

Held in partnership with the U. S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) and open to girls ages 9 to 19 practicing all sports, the event will feature an afternoon of fun and non-competitive dryland training followed by a motivational presentation. The activity will conclude with a yoga segment and an autograph signing session.

The highlight of the Fast and Female Park City event will be the presence of the following 25 world-class female athletes representing the sports of Alpine Skiing, Biathlon, Cross-Country Skiing, Freestyle Skiing, Snowboard, and Speed Skating:

- Shannon Bahrke (Moguls)
- Erin Bartlett (Short Track Skating)
- Sadie Bjornsen (XC Skiing)
- Brittany Bowe (Long Track Skating)
- Holly Brooks (XC Skiing)
- Sarah Chen (Short Track Skating)
- Callan Chythlook-Sifsof (Snowboardcross)
- Annelies Cook (USA Biathlete)
- Emily Cook (Aerials)
- Alexa Devereaux (Aerials)
- Jessie Diggins (XC Skiing)
- Alyson Dudek (Short Track Skating)
- Kaitlyn Farrington (Halfpipe)
- Faye Gulini (Snowboardcross)
- Morgan Izykowski (Short Track Skating)
- Zina Kocher (Canadian Biathlete)
- Jana Lindsey (Aerials)
- Chelsea Marshall (Alpine)
- Andrea Mayo (Biathlete)
- Netanya Mintz (Long Track Skating)
- Kikkan Randall (XC Skiing)
- Melanie Shultz (Canadian Biathlete)
- Jessica Smith (Short Track Skating)
- Kathryn Stone (Biathlete)
- Liz Stephen (XC Skiing)

On this special occasion, more than 150 aspiring female athletes will get first-hand experience from this select group of athletes - all of which are active World Cup/Europa Cup competitors and the majority of which are Olympians.

"Sports have taught me so many important life lessons and have made me the person I am today," said Shannon Bahrke silver medalist in moguls at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, bronze medalist at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and 2003 World Cup Champion.

"Setting lofty goals, working hard to achieve them, and never giving up when things get hard are just a few of those lessons that I want to instill in young female athletes. I know they can do anything because girl athletes are awesome and we rule," concluded Bahrke who became the first US women's freestyle skier to win multiple Olympic medals with her bronze medal in 2010.

The key objective for the afternoon will be to motivate girls to stick to sports by exposing them to inspiring and positive female role models. It is said that girls are six times more likely to drop out of sports than boys.

"I chose to be a part of 'Fast and Female' because I know the difference it has made for me to live a fun and active lifestyle," said Emily Cook, a two-time Olympian with five career World Cup podiums. "I am really excited to help pass on the lessons that I have learned through sport like teamwork, leadership, being confident and having fun to young women in our community and to have some time to play and sweat with these amazing ladies," she added.

As a non-profit and North-America-wide program started in 2005 by Chandra Crawford - Canada's 2006 Olympic gold medalist in cross country - Fast and Female is intensely focused on delivering effective programming to keep girls in sports. So far in 2011, Fast and Female has hosted a total of 10 events, reaching 1,030 girls. The Park City event marks the fourth event held on U.S. soil this year and also the first U.S. event ever held with ambassadors from sports other than cross country skiing. Past Fast and Female events held in the U.S. in 2011 took place in Maine, Alaska, and Sun Valley - all on snow.

"It's been a fun journey bringing Fast and Female to the US in cross-country," said Kikkan Randall, lead Fast and Female ambassador in the US and double World Cup winner on the Cross-country circuit in 2011. "I'm really excited for the opportunity to expand into more disciplines with this Park City event," added the full-time athlete who has held three Fast and Female events in her hometown of Anchorage since 2009.

To complement the youth programming, parents and coaches are invited to join the "Amazing Tips Seminar". While the girls will be taking part in the dryland stations, adults will have the opportunity to attend three insightful presentations on Sport Psychology/Mental Toughness with Dr. Lauren Loberg, NCC, CC-AASP (Director of Athlete Career and Education), on Nutrition/Fueling the Fast Female with Adam Korzun (High Performance Dietician) and on Injury Prevention and Body Maintenance with Jess Tidswell, PT. DPT, ATC (Medical Resident Physical Therapist/Athletic Trainer). All three guest speakers are experts in their respective fields and employees of USSA.

The registration fee for the youth segment is $20 per participant and includes a Fast and Female t-shirt, a Buff, a snack, an autograph poster. Parents and coaches can also secure a seat by purchasing a ticket for $20 which includes access to the seminar and a Fast and Female t-shirt valued at $20.

All registrations are compiled online at Please note that financial assistance is available for participants in need. Please contact to inquire.

The deadline to register online is October 6, 2011. On-site registrations will be at a rate of $25 per participant.
This activity is made possible thanks to valuable local partners such as USSA, US Bank, Einstein's Bagels, and Knead a Massage. Fast and Female's national sponsors - including Best Buy, Buff Multifunctional Headwear, Cold-FX, LUNA Bars, and LIT Glitter - are also providing key resources to make this event possible. For a complete list of Fast and Female national program supporters and sponsors, please visit: /default.asp?lang=&mode=webpage&id=89.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Lake Placid to VT to PC

Pete, my newest second cousin and his mom Kate and One-Way bear!


Racing the annual Climb to the Castle race up Whiteface. This year was the best weather we have ever had, for sure. No winds, no snow, and sun!

Men's Climb to the Castle podium. Left to right: Noah Hoffman, Kris Freeman, Tim Burke

I gave a quick bounding clinic and slideshow to the Ford Sayre Ski Club which is always really fun because of what an awesome group of kids they are. They are always excited to learn and improve and their excitement is infectious. I always leave with more energy than I came with. Thanks for hosting me!

Dinner with good friends following the clinic.

Hello everyone! Been a while since I touched base, eh? My travels have been continuous, but in the best way, as I have been in all my favorite places in the last 6 weeks. I spent a good 3 weeks in Park City after returning from Alaska and then hit the road to Lake Placid, New York for our annual camp there. This year was the first year it has been in September instead of October, and we benefited from incredibly nice weather, both warmer and dryer than in past years. Lake Placid serves as one of our first real intensity blocks of the summer, doing 2 speed sessions and 2 hard interval sessions and 3 time trials in 12 days, so needless to say, I needed a bit of a break all after the camp. So, I headed to my favorite place in the world to do a little R and R; home to Vermont! My parents took great care of me, though we were all disappointed that my brother, who had planned to come home as well was unable to make it at the last minute, so it was a bit quieter than we had all hoped, but nice all the same. For someone who spends so much of the time on the road, being able to spend a few weeks a year in the house and community you grew up in is really special. I can’t emphasize enough how incredible it is to be supported by the Central Vermont community. It’s remarkable how much people care in this community. Businesses are interested in doing whatever they can to support me athletically and I can’t walk down the street without seeing someone who knows me and asks how skiing is going. It’s something that’s impossible to take for granted, as it is made so obvious by so many. So, I just want to say thank you to everyone who supports me and what I’m trying to accomplish, but also how much the community does for one another too. It is the strongest community I have ever been a part of and I feel extremely lucky, so thank you.

I am now on a plane on my way back to Park City after spending the afternoon in the North End of Boston yesterday with my parents. I am pretty sure if I lived anywhere near there I would have to work out twice as much just to be able to eat twice as much. What incredible food everywhere you go. Coffee shops, pastry shops, bread shops, tea shops, Italian restaurants on ever side street, gelato, specialty food shops, it’s amazing and delicious and I can’t wait to go back. I am firing myself up to do an off-road half marathon at Snowbasin tomorrow, so that should be fun, mostly because I get to see Morgan Arritola, who I haven’t seen all summer. Then I will have a week in Utah before our camp starts on October 1st. I have been busy for the last 6 weeks setting up a Fast and Female event (for those of you who don’t know what this organization is, check it out at on October 8th, for hopefully 150 girls ages 9-19. They will get a chance to meet over 20 Female National Team members and Olympians from 7 different sports and will be playing all afternoon with these women. It should be an amazing day, so I am really looking forward to the event.

I will be home again on October 29th and staying until November 6th, when I will leave for the entire winter in Europe! For people who may be interested in coming to a dinner to support an organization called the National Nordic Foundation (NNF), Gus Kaeding and his family will be hosting a dinner on October 30th, where all proceeds will go to NNF. For more information see the poster below. Until next time….

Fundraising Dinner


Olympians Andy Newell and Liz Stephen plus NNF Director Dave Knoop

in support of the

National Nordic Foundation

Oct 30, 2011 4 P.M.

Meet, listen to, and share a gourmet meal with

Andy, Liz and Dave as they share their life enriching lessons of the trail.

“For the Lessons of the Trail Are the Lessons of Life”

Dinner at

The Kaeding Household

55 Kaeding Road

Worcester, VT


Suggested Minimum Donation

Benefits the NNF

Dinner Limited to 30 Lucky Guests

RSVP to 802-249-8345 or

Support Tomorrow’s Stars Today

The National Nordic Foundation exists to help America’s young, dedicated, and driven Nordic talent realize their, and America’s, long term potential in sport and in life. The biggest hurdle facing American Nordic racers is gaining consistent access to international quality coaching, training, and racing experiences from ages 15 through 25. Providing future generations of U.S. Nordic athletes earned access to a progression of international quality competitive experiences, and there life enriching lessons, represents this nation’s greatest Nordic development opportunity and funding need. The National Nordic Foundation exists to fulfill this need. Please donate to the National Nordic Foundation and support tomorrow’s stars today as their quest for athletic accomplishment on the trails prepares them to achieve their potential in life while inspiring others to do the same.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pretty Good Inspiration

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Alaska Glacier Camp and Camping Trip

There are so many pictures from our camp, I can't possibly post them all, but I need to start somewhere. Below are some pictures from our week at Eagle Glacier and Chandra and my post Glacier camping trip in Seward. We had an awesome camp, the first Women's Training Camp I have ever been a part of, and the skiing on the glacier was great. Thanks to the USST Coaches who were a part of making this happen and to APU and Eric Flora for hosting it! More photos coming, but here is installment #1.

It's a girls camp, so yeah, we got along pretty well!

Skiing on the glacier was incredible. The grooming was bomber every day thanks to the endless work of Casey and Mike.

HELICOPTER!!!! Thats the beauty that flew us up to the glacier. Keith and Deb, the owners of Alpine Air and their employees are so friendly and are an incredibly amazing group of people. Chandra and I actually got stranded in Girdwood, AK on our way back from camping in Seward the following week and ended up spending a night in the hangar! So cool! Keith even took us out to Sushi! Talk about hospitality!

Corey and I really enjoying our first helicopter ride!!!

And Sadie, really enjoying some chocolate bread pudding!

Hard not to smile on a sunny day up here. It is really, really beautiful.

Dance party lead by Jessie Digging and Chandra Crawford. Kikkan won the award for most into it, though, I'd have to say. I mean, look at that party outfit you see all the way at the end of the line! DAMN GIRL!

Chandra and Matt putting on a little sing-a-long for us non musicians.

A bit hard to see, but the glacier is pretty big. There are about 8K of trails with good climbs and fun downhills.

After the glacier, most of the group headed down the next night to camp on a gravel bar at the bottom of a glacier in Seward. We checked out Mt. Marathon with the champion from this year, our very own Kikkan Randall, and oh how I wish I had pictures to show you all. It was the craziest uphill scramble I have ever been on and an even crazier decent. I would try to describe it, but I will have to just post a video when I get one, because you wont understand the amount of crazy you have to be to race this race. No offense Kik, but seriously. After a great night of camping with the team and checking out the glacier in the morning, Chandra and I headed out on a rainy run called Lost Lake. It was beautiful, despite the cold drizzle and at times downpour, and we even made it back a minute before the gym showers closed!!! YES!!!

Chandra and I stayed a night at a place called Kayakers Cove, which was a 45 minute ferry ride off the coast of Seward. It was one of the most relaxing days I have spent anywhere in a long time. We arrived in the pouring rain to these cute little cabins and after meeting the other guests and caretakers, decided a short lay down would be good. We ended up taking a 2 hour nap, which is basically unheard of from me, but rain on a tin roof is the ticket to relaxation, for sure. When we woke, we decided to fire up the wood fired sauna with the caretakers and ran back and forth from the ocean to the sauna for the better part of an hour. It was amazing.

We did a cool Kayak tour of the shoreline the next morning, and it actually stopped raining for most of the time we were out, which was a nice bonus. Such beautiful sights, the water was tropical blue colored and the cliff walls were enormous, not to mention the waterfalls. I'd come back here in a heartbeat, but next time with a fishing pole, as our caretaker showed us how easy it was to catch a salmon from her kayak!