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Archive for the ‘Misc’ Category

Craftsbury Academy Mountain Biking

26.May.2016 by Hallie Grossman

 

During the month of May, Ollie spearheaded the inaugural Craftsbury Academy Middle School mountain bike program. Eleven middle schoolers, a CA teacher, Ollie, Sheldon, and several GRP skiers hit the trails twice a week to learn about mountain biking. The middle schoolers learned a wide range of skills from proper helmet adjustment to bunny hopping off jumps to steep descents.

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The whole crew

We kicked off the program in the upper soccer field, where the youngens honed their skills on a variety of obstacles-course-like features created by Anna and Ollie. These included tires, logs, tree stumps, and skinny bridges that are close to the ground as well as the pump track. The features provide a controlled environment to become comfortable with hurdles that are found on the trails. They also learned some bike handling techniques (tricks?!), such as front wheel lifts, rear wheel lifts, bunny hops, and manuals, designed to better clear obstacles, and impress your friends.

Many of the students had come to the Center as part of the school’s gym-class ski program, so they were familiar with the ski trails, but had yet to venture on to the singletrack. They explored the entire singletrack system, including Keith’s newest creations: Frog, Leap Frog, and Northern Borders. It was wonderful to hear the sounds of laughter and cheering echo throughout the woods as the kids ripped around the trails.

Kait and I had the opportunity to bike primarily with two fifth and sixth graders, Verna and Maggie. It was incredible to watch their improvement over two short weeks. During Maggie’s first day, she took a nasty faceplant on Chip Hill and then made it her personal goal to conquer that descent by the end of the program. Verna started biking with little understanding about how to shift gears, and turned into a shifting pro by the next day! Each day, the girls got exponentially more comfortable on their bikes and zooming through the single track. By the end of the program, both girls biked the black diamond trail Disappearances!

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Maggie and Verna master the Chip Hill descent

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Ben coaches Verna over the bridge onto Peanut

 

It was incredible to watch the progress that all of these kids made during only a handful of sessions on the bikes. Though mountain biking is not a primary form of training for us, it is a fun cross training option, and it is great to share this sport with a crew of eager kids.

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Who doesn’t want to stop mid bike ride and play Cat’s Cradle with Pepa?!

The Springtime Blog

19.May.2016 by Liz Guiney

What do skiers do in our one month of “free time”? After the last races at Spring Series, the members of the Green Racing Project scattered to the wind. With the dining hall closed for the month of April and a majority of people gone around the Center, we mostly took the opportunity to either go home or to go on vacation. It’s nice to have a little bit of time to reset before training starts back up, and everyone arrived back on campus with new energy and stories of their adventuring. Here’s the run-down of what everyone did:

Caitlin Patterson-

Caitlin Patterson went to visit her parents in Bozeman, Montana, where they just moved. Here's a photo from biking in to Yellowstone Park, with tons of bison (you can barely see one in the distance beyond her bike)

Caitlin flew out visit her parents in Bozeman, Montana, where they just moved. Here’s a photo from biking in to Yellowstone Park, with tons of bison (you can barely see one in the distance beyond her bike)

 

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She also backcountry skied up to the ridge at Bridger Bowl after they had closed

 

Heather Mooney-

Heather went home (Peru, VT) to spend time with her parents and younger brother. Main activities included hiking, skinning/tele/fishscale skiing (while the snow lasted), drinking coffee, and getting her wisdom teeth removed.

Heather went home (Peru, VT) to spend time with her parents and younger brother. Main activities included hiking, skinning/tele/fishscale skiing (while the snow lasted), drinking coffee, and getting her wisdom teeth removed.

 

Kaitlynn Miller-

Kaitlynn had a sweet adventure in Norway visiting friends and getting in some skiing, running, and fishing.

Kaitlynn had a sweet adventure in Norway visiting friends and getting in some skiing, running, and fishing.

 

Fresh tracks outside of Tromsø, Norway

Fresh tracks outside of Tromsø, Norway

 

Alex Howe and Emily Dreissigacker-

Alex and Emily are getting married in August, so their springtime was full of wedding prep! Here they are under their arbor

Alex and Emily are getting married in August, so their springtime was full of wedding projects! Here they are under their arbor

 

They also made it out for a few adventures in the Northeast Kingdom- hiking Mt. Pisgah with pup Gunnar

They also made it out for a few adventures in the Northeast Kingdom- hiking Mt. Pisgah with pup Gunnar

 

Susan Dunklee-

Susan ventured over to Scotland for a hiking adventure. She's standing in front of the Clava Cairns, prehistoric standing stone circles near Inverness, Scotland (fans of the Outlander series may recognize the impetus for this photo)

Susan ventured over to Scotland for a hiking adventure. She’s standing in front of the Clava Cairns, prehistoric standing stone circles near Inverness, Scotland (fans of the Outlander series may recognize the impetus for this photo)

 

Clare Egan-

Clare made her debut as a trapeze artist at Club Med in the Turks and Caicos (no joke)

Clare made her debut as a trapeze artist at Club Med in the Turks and Caicos (no joke)

 

Ida Sargent-

Ida spent 10 days in Southern Utah biking with Pat, Elsa, and Linden and friends and then was in Vermont for the rest of the spring. This photo is from Gooseberry Mesa, outside of Hurricane, Utah

Ida spent 10 days in Southern Utah biking with Pat, Elsa, and Linden and friends and then was in Vermont for the rest of the spring. This photo is from Gooseberry Mesa, outside of Hurricane, Utah

 

Hallie Grossman-

Hallie ventured out to California for Mammoth Lakes Marathon (and won it!), but she also spent a lot of time at home in South Burlington, VT, helping with projects around the house

Hallie ventured out to California for Mammoth Lakes Marathon (and won it!), but she also spent a lot of time at home in South Burlington, VT, helping with projects around the house

 

Mike Gibson-

Mike's parents live in Australia, so springtime is the only time he really gets to see them. Here's the selfie of the year, Mike on the water with his mom and dad

Mike’s parents live in Australia, so springtime is the only time he really gets to see them. Here’s the selfie of the year, Mike on the water with his mom and dad

 

Rainbows! Another shot from Mike's trip, motoring through the Doubtful Sound to spend the night sailing on the Tasman Sea

Rainbows! Another shot from Mike’s trip, motoring through the Doubtful Sound to spend the night sailing on the Tasman Sea

 

Ethan Dreissigacker-

Ethan spent the first spring in a while not at Dartmouth, after he graduated with his engineering degree last spring. Back home in the Northeast Kingdom, he fired up his homemade smoker

Ethan spent the first spring in a while not at Dartmouth, after he graduated with his engineering degree last spring. Back home in the Northeast Kingdom, he fired up his homemade smoker

 

He also got to work at Lost Nation Research and Development- new biathlon stock work here

He also got to work at Lost Nation Research and Development- new biathlon stock work here

 

Liz Guiney (me)-

Among other Western adventures, I found my way up to Bozeman to play with some college friends. There was still quite a bit of snow in the mountains there!

Among other Western adventures, I found my way up to Bozeman to play with some college friends. There was still quite a bit of snow in the mountains there!

 

Mary O’Connell

Finally, we have two new members of our team this year. Mary O'Connell is in her final semester at Dartmouth, working on graduating, but found some time to explore iced over waterfalls in Franconia, NH

Finally, we have two new members of our team this year. Mary O’Connell is in her final semester at Dartmouth, working on graduating, but found some time to explore iced over waterfalls in Franconia, NH

 

Ben Lustgarten-

Finally, Ben Lustgarten is also new this year after spending two years skiing with the Sun Valley Gold Team. He found some powder this spring while backcountry skiing in Estes Park, Colorado with his brother

Finally, Ben Lustgarten is also new this year after spending two years skiing with the Sun Valley Gold Team. He found some powder this spring while backcountry skiing in Estes Park, Colorado with his brother

 

Almost the entire team has been back to Craftsbury and started up full-time training, and we’ll be in Vermont for most of the summer getting to work on the roads, trails, and gym. Between getting sore and busting out the rollerskis, we’re also getting back to work in the gardens and around the Center. We also had our first testing week, so stay tuned for an update on that from Ben!

Cedar is Fossil Fuel Free*!!

12.May.2016 by Heather Mooney

For the past two years, Cedar has not used any oil for heating, although oil burners still remained installed in the building. Last week, the final oil burning furnaces were removed, as well as all of the plumbing, a symbolic marker along the path to carbon neutrality at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center.

Cedar has been heated by the central heating system–fueled by wood, solar hot water, and waste heat from the snow making generator–but until last week, the three oil burning furnaces still were hooked up, such that they could be turned on as back up (although they never were). Two pipes fed Cedar’s heat system, one from the central heating system, and one from the oil furnaces, with a valve that recently has remained turned off. Now without the oil furnaces, all of the distribution remains the same, just without that input to the system.

Last week, Eric, Lucas, and Ethan pulled all of this out,  leaving an empty room in the basement that used to be devoted to the oil heat operation. The plumbing will be given away, and some of the tanks will be repurposed for solar hot water at Elinor’s House.

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“The grey thing in the front is one of three big oil burners that provided the heat and hot water for Cedar. The round tanks behind it were used to store heat from the oil furnaces, some of these tanks are what we will reuse for solar.”-Ethan

*When we make snow, we do use fossil fuels to run the generators. So by using waste heat from the generators, it does still have a slight “fossil trail”.

(Ethan contributed reporting and photo).

A Green day on the GRP

7.May.2016 by Heather Mooney

Like the summer training we do, a lot of the work we put in now towards Outdoor Center projects will pay off in later seasons. As we finish up our first week of “official” training, we’ve gotten going again on a few of these tasks, such as the raspberry fences that Caitlin, Emily and Alex put up this afternoon!

 

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This morning, not pictured, but also in the vein of spring time work for later-date benefits, we helped with a community work day, mulching blueberry bushes at our neighbors’ farm, Browns, followed by collecting trash for Green Up Day on one of our rollerski roads in Greensboro.

Along with trees finally starting to bud, and the grass beginning to grow again, it was a very “green” day in Craftsbury. Tomorrow we’ll round out the week of training with a running time trial up Mt. Elmore.

“Alex Howe contributed reporting, and pictures”