Green Racing Project Blog Header Image
  • Craftsbury Outdoor Center Logo
  • Concept2 SkiErg Logo
  • caldwell.png
  • Craft FS black larger
  • jlracing.png
  • Bliz KeepFocused white

Archive for August, 2012

Back to Alaska

27.Aug.2012 by Patrick O'Brien

Last summer I was able to join APU and Sun Valley skiing at the Thomas training center on Eagle glacier.  (http://greenracingproject.com/blog/?p=1910).  Getting quality on snow time during the summer months  is a huge asset to any nordic racer, and something still quite novel to life long Eastern skier.  This year I was again hoping get to Eagle glacier for some solid training. After a last minute spot opened up, I hopped on a plane and found myself back in Alaska. The weather last year was a pretty mixed bag. A few days of nice sun, some overcast skiing, and some days where you weren’t sure what direction the precipitation was coming from because you were in whiteout conditions and had no idea where on course you were. Fortunately this year the weather was much more cooperative.  Most days were cloud free t-shirt skiing and when the clouds rolled in hard, low overnight temperatures still made for much harder and faster tracks than the year before.  One thing I learned from my previous trip is to put the largest baskets you can find on your poles.  Racing poles are nice and light, but pretty useless when you are pulling them back out of the snow on every pole plant. Last year may have been slow and sloppy skiing, but this year the tracks were firm enough to delay morning training to allow the boiler plate ice to soften. Overall it was a great camp.  Lots of quality kilometers of training, technique tweaks, seeing how other ski programs operate, and getting to mix it up in intervals with a different group of guys than our normal summer group.  So without further ado, some pictures from my week on snow!

Alpine Air's A-Star helicoptor lifting off

Alpine Air's A-Star helicopter lifting off

And headed up towards the glacier

And headed up towards the glacier

View from the cockpit.  Despite being only a 40 minute drive drom Anchorage, and looking down on Girdwood the facility is still remote.  All food, skis, gear, and even the Pisten-Bullys have to be flown in by chopper

View from the cockpit. Despite being only a 40 minute drive from Anchorage, and looking down on the town of Girdwood the facility is still very remote. All food, skis, gear, and even the Pisten-Bullys have to be flown in by chopper

Passing Alyeska Resort on the way up

Passing Alyeska Resort on the way up

A typical scence looking out from the facility. The training ceter sits on the edge of a 1500 ft drop off. The yellow rope is there for a reason... Somewhere under the cloud cover is Girdwood and the Airport

A typical scene looking out from the facility. The training center sits on the edge of a 1500 ft drop off and the clouds often get hung up on the mountains below. The yellow rope is there for a reason... Somewhere under the cloud cover is the town of Girdwood and the Airport

Keith the main pilot "dropping off" the edge going back for another load of skier and gear. The A-Star kicks up some serious rotor wash. 5 minutes up 5000 ft. A few seconds later and he is back out of sight.  (photo: H Mooney)

Keith, Alpine Air's main pilot "dropping off" the edge going back for another load of skier and gear. The A-Star kicks up some serious rotor wash. (photo: H Mooney)

The view into town on a clear day. In the front of the picture are two of four shipping containers for storing all the maintenence gear during the summer and the grooming equipment during the off season. Everything is bedded on concrete and bolted down to withstand the high winds and heavy snowfall.

The view into town on a clear evening. In the front of the picture are two of four shipping containers for storing all the maintenance gear during the summer and the grooming equipment during the off season. Everything is bedded on concrete and bolted down to withstand the high winds and heavy snowfall.

Meltwater pond in the foreground, trails on the glacier way off in the background. All the water for the facility is pumped and filtered from the meltpond. Electricity comes from a diesel generator. The facility uses composting toilets. All trash is sorted into to two catagories. Burnable is disposed on site and the remainder is flown back into to be disposed of.

Meltwater pond in the foreground, trails on the glacier way off in the background. All the water for the facility is pumped and filtered from the meltpond. Electricity comes from a diesel generator. The facility uses composting toilets. All trash is sorted into to two categories. Burnable is disposed on site and the remainder is flown back into town be disposed of.

The loop starts with a fast 1k downhill from the facility

The loop starts with a fast 1k downhill from the facility. Thanks to a good snow year this winter, even the Bergschrund (the head wall) crevasse hadn't opened up like last year so we were able to ski down and back from the loop to training every day.

Bergschrund from last year

Bergschrund from last year

It was pretty nice some days at the end of the long ski to catch a ride back up the big hill on the back of the PB last year...

It was pretty nice some days at the end of the long ski to catch a ride back up the big hill on the back of the PB last year though...

Great tracks and great skiing

Great tracks and great skiing

Pete moments after some impressive klister grab had him doing a superman across the trail

Pete moments after some impressive klister grab had him doing a superman across the trail

Lots of skiing means big meals!

Lots of skiing means big meals!

A huge thanks to Erik Flora of APU and Craftsbury for making this trip happen! Only a few more months and we will be back on snow gearing up for the race season. Summer has really flown by!

August BKL Camp – Success!

21.Aug.2012 by Gordon Vermeer

Last week was the second week-long BKL camp of the summer, and I’m happy to announce we escaped without any casualties. In fact, one of the rollerski groups completed their session without any bloodshed! — a landmark accomplishment. Add to that the good weather, enthusiastic campers, and fun activities, and you can imagine that we all finished the week tired but happy.

Throughout the week, GRP skiers and rowers, coaches from the Center, and other Craftsbury athletes led about 20 BKL-ers on half-day sporting adventures. Like the first camp back in July, the first four days included mountain biking, canoeing, biathlon, soccer & games, bounding & agility, sculling, and rollerskiing. There was also lots of swimming, multiple times a day in fact. Pretty astonishing how much entertainment kids can draw from jumping off the dock into the lake.

I helped out with a few different sessions myself, including one rollerski morning where I got a glimpse of the East’s next wave of skiing talent! Some of those little rippers ride a better gliding ski than me, I swear. I also worked with Jeremy Nellis to do a morning of agility exercises.

Bounding exercises on the Upper Soccer Field. Photo: Gordon Vermeer

Bounding exercises on the Upper Soccer Field. Photo: Gordon Vermeer

The ladder hones agility, coordination, and speed. Photo: Gordon Vermeer

The ladder hones agility, coordination, and speed. Photo: Gordon Vermeer

The full photo album from that morning is posted on the GRP’s facebook page.

Friday, in a sort of culminating adventure, Dylan and Nils organized a multi-stage adventure race where the campers got to run around the Center doing all sorts of crazy things. It started off pretty tame with a swimming portion and a team log carry, but things started to get exciting when they reached the log bridge — attempting to walk across “Frog Pond” on a bridge of logs tethered to shore and to one another. It was extremely popular, so I imagine the log bridge will feature in future BKL camps. I tried the log bridge myself and fell in the swampy pond shortly after everyone started chanting “fall! fall! fall!” at me.

Rivaling the log bridge in popularity was the tire roll, where teams got to (safely, I assure you) roll tractor tires down a big hill. “Wait, we actually get to roll it down there?!” they exclaimed when instructed to do so.

I filmed the whole morning! There’s a highlight video of the race online — lots of good footage of falls into the swamp.

We capped off the week with a bike trip to the Dreissigacker’s camp and an afternoon of pizza-making and rope-swinging. Judy Geer took a bunch of pictures including the ones below, but check out the whole album here.

Watermelon and pizza with dough from the Center's kitchen. What more could you want? Photo: Judy Geer

Watermelon and pizza with dough from the Center's kitchen. What more could you want? Photo: Judy Geer

One of countless trips out over Hosmer. Photo: Judy Geer

One of countless trips out over Hosmer. Photo: Judy Geer

I look forward to seeing all these BKL athletes tearing up the trails this winter!

Pictures from Canadian Henley

16.Aug.2012 by phil.henson
SBTC on Front Page!

Maddie waves to the camera on her way to the dock

Twins

Astrid and Molley show off the guns

Josh Wins Henley Gold

First win of the regatta for Craftsbury's SBTC!

SBTC Dash

Emily and Erin duke it out over 500m in the dash

Craftsbury finishes second in the mixed 500m dash

Craftsbury finishes second in the mixed 500m dash

Henry and Ricky win Henley Gold!

Henry and Ricky win Henley Gold!

Another shot of the mixed 8+ for the Da$h for Ca$h

Another shot of the mixed 8+ for the Da$h for Ca$h

Craftsbury qualifies for the final at the finish line in the Men's Champ 8+

Craftsbury qualifies for the final at the finish line in the Men's Champ 8+

Another win for Craftsbury!

Another win for Craftsbury!

The lovely ladies of SBTC 2012 (plus Dan!)

The lovely ladies of SBTC 2012 (plus Dan!)

Salen Sweden

11.Aug.2012 by Ida Sargent

Today is a well appreciated rest day halfway through our camp with the Swedes and we’re all enjoying the time to relax and recover from a few big days of training in Salen, Sweden.  The breakfast buffet, laundry, and some yoga are on the schedule for the morning and then this afternoon we will drive back to Torsby for the second half of our camp.  Tunnel skiing again tomorrow morning!

The first part of the camp has been AWESOME!  Our Swedish hosts have been wonderful and it has been lots of fun having new friends and training partners.  A year ago I would never have imagined myself feeling  comfortable enough to laugh and joke or run and ski alongside these girls, many of whom are my idols on the the World Cup circuit.  The training has been tough and exciting.  Every day has totaled between four and five hours and included a sprint race, intervals, double pole speeds, specific strength, and long runs in the mountains and bogs.  The training plan for the week looked very complicated (partly because it was written in Swedish) but there hasn’t been anything noticeably crazy or different between their training and what I’m used to.  Many of the workouts are exactly the same as what we do at home and these girls laugh and have just as much fun while training.  It’s just hours and hours of hard work!  Here are some pictures of the Salen portion of our camp.

Salen is the start of the Vasaloppet, a 90km ski race to Mora, Sweden.   Salen is a small town but it's obvious that skiing is a big part of this community.

Salen is the start of the Vasaloppet, a 90km ski race to Mora, Sweden. Salen is a small town but it's obvious that skiing is a big part of this community.

We stopped at the stadium on our way into town.  It's a huge open field with enough space for the 40,000 competitors to toe the line.

We stopped at the stadium on our way into town. It's a huge open field with enough space for the 40,000 competitors to toe the line.

We stayed in cabins in Lindvallen, a resort just outside of Salen.  Gunde Svan spent many years training here.  It's the perfect location in the mountains with rollerskiing and running out our front door.

We stayed in cabins in Lindvallen, a resort just outside of Salen. Gunde Svan spent many years training here. It's the perfect location in the mountains with rollerskiing and running out our front door.

Every day started with an awesome breakfast buffet with tons of options to keep us fueled through all the hours of training.

Every day started with an awesome breakfast buffet with tons of options to keep us fueled through all the hours of training.

The camp started with an OD run in a bog on the top of the mountain.  It was soft footing but with some rainy weather, there were lots of muddy feet and legs at the end!

The camp started with an OD run in a bog on the top of the mountain. It was soft footing but with some rainy weather, there were lots of muddy feet and legs at the end!

There are lots of great roads for rollerskiing and all the cars are very tolerant to rollerskiers.  Here Kikkan and Anna Hag lead a train of skiers.

There are lots of great roads for rollerskiing and all the cars are very tolerant to rollerskiers. Here Kikkan and Anna Hag lead a train of skiers.

Following different skiers and mimicking technique has been very helpful.

Following different skiers and mimicking technique has been very helpful.

We had a skate sprint time trial and the local club skiers cheered us on.  Check out the bike which they found in the bushes!

We had a skate sprint time trial and the local club skiers cheered us on. Check out the bike which they found in the bushes!

The Swedish coaches have been awesome and very welcoming to our team.  They said we added "spice" to their camp

The Swedish coaches have been awesome and very welcoming to our team. They said we added "spice" to their camp

Another morning we ran across the mossy high tundra off the trails for a few hours.  Running through knee deep vegetation is great for the legs!

Another morning we ran across the mossy high tundra off the trails for a few hours. Running through knee deep vegetation is great for the legs!

Cloudberries for snacking!  There were also little blueberries hidden in the bushes.

Cloudberries for snacking! There were also little blueberries hidden in the bushes.

Lots of new Swedish friends!

Lots of new Swedish friends!

Thanks Marwe for new rollerskis which are closely matched in speed to the Swedes' rollers!

Thanks Marwe for new rollerskis which are closely matched in speed to the Swedes' rollers!