View from our hotel here in Gallivare. It is a really beautiful scene here, with the trees covered in snow and the trails in perfect condition. Plus, with such short daylight hours you are pretty sure to catch either the pinks of a sunrise or the reds of a sunset!
Happy Monday! Our Monday today consists mostly of a long drive from Gallivare, Sweden to Ruka, Finland, where the start of the World Cup season begins! We had our opening FIS races this weekend in Gallivare and had some really good success, with Jessie sweeping both races (a classic sprint and a skate distance, so about as opposite as you can get which bodes well for all the Tour racing this year!) and Sophie and Caitlin on the podium as well in the sprint and distance respectively.
As for me, I dove into some classic sprinting, and due to the small fields on the day, every woman qualified, so I was able to get some practice racing both the quarters and the semis, which was pretty fun. The following day was the 10k skate, which is one of my favorite races, so it was good to get one of those under my belt before the first one on the World Cup. I have some things to take away from it, things I want to improve, but the goal of remembering what it feels like to put a race bib on in the winter was one of the accomplishments of the day. This ski racing thing on snow is actually pretty different from the summer training modes of running and rollerskiing, so the transition is always a bit of a learning curve it seems.
Kuusamo hosts the Ruka Triple as the World Cup season opener each year. We start on Friday with a classic sprint, Saturday's race is a 5k skate and Sunday is a 10k pursuit start classic, which is based off the other two days results. Pursuit starts are some of my favorites because you get entered in a huge game of tag on skis.
Our first day on snow. Sophie, Sadie and me.
Jessie putting in some striding work.
So much snow. It is really nice to be engulfed in winter here.
Our new incredibly warm puffy coats from L.L. Bean. Wow. I have never owned a nicer coat. Thank you L.L. Bean!
Jessie, Sadie, and Noah on a night walk.
Ida and Jessie (who is feeling pretty pumped it seems!)
Me on a night ski with Sophie.
Thanks for all who took these pictures and shared them with me, as I have not taken a single picture so far. Oops. Remedies for that are on the way.
Happy Thanksgiving! I am really thankful for a lot of things, but this team is really high up on my list.