Former biathlete, current coach….all round nordic enthusiast!

An elite athlete competing in the sport of biathlon: nordic ski racing combined with marksmanship

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Final Climb: Nationals, Marathons, and Mammoth

Now that it's March the final push toward the end of race season has begun. This coming weekend (March 8-10) we host US Biathlon Nationals right here in Fort Kent. The following weekend the Nordic Heritage Center in Presque Isle hosts Eastern High School Championships. I'm not in high school so I won't be racing but I'll be there in some sort of volunteering capacity. Sunday of that same weekend is also a marathon (40k) in Madawaska that the current plan includes followed closely by the long drive home (3/20) to NH before flying to Mammoth Lake, CA (3/21) for the final event of my season, the Mammoth Biathlon.

Mammoth puts on a huge event for the general public but has an elite race on the final day featuring invited athletes flown in from all over the place. It's been happening for a few years now but every time I've been too blown out to be tempted so late in the winter. I've heard it's fun so this year I put it on the calendar and I'm going...hope there's snow and lots of sun!

My last couple of weeks have been action packed with volunteering, spectating, training, some racing, shoveling, and snowblowing. Oh, and quite a bit of knitting and sewing too!

Climbing my way up in the Aroostook Cup standings, taking two wins over two weekends. Somehow racing against boys (and men) can make even the smaller races more exciting! The turnout at the Himie Towle this past weekend was great....most kids ever and 51 entries in the distance events! 

Most of the school kids that I've been visiting this year (9 elementary classes) are coming to 10th Mountain this Friday to watch the races. Hopefully the forecast holds strong for them and we get 40 degrees and better weather than that for spectating a ski race! On that note, yesterday's big accomplishment was a team effort to clear the 10th Mountain bleachers of almost 2 feet of heavy, wet snow. Strangely enough, I'm not as sore from so much shoveling as I had expected. 

Helping a 3 year-old up the hill on his first day skiing at Aroostook Youth Ski Day (that's me in the tutu). We had about 75 kiddos show up this year and ended up with perfect weather for an awesome morning of skiing!

If you need something entertaining to watch at some point, check this youtube video out and watch the masses fail to ski a (maybe slightly icy) classic-tracked downhill: 

With all the snow that's been falling of late we have been spoiled with great conditions. 

A perfect afternoon ski on a rest day because I just couldn't help it. The sun was out, I knew conditions were absolutely perfect and nothing could keep me inside. 

A look over my shoulder at the twisting snowshoe track that Seth and I left behind on a fresh-powder morning adventure in the 10th Mountain/Lonesome Pines woods. Wonder if anyone followed us...

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