April is the only month of the year that Nordic skiers get to do pretty much what we feel like, every day, with no regrets! If that involves sitting in my pj’s until someone shows up at the house at 4 pm, well, so be it. But I also like to take advantage of my off season by doing some fun stuff that doesn’t necessarily fit into a normal training routine. After Spring Series in Anchorage the GRP dispersed, many to the East and some to Alaska, while I headed back home to Utah. I was determined to fit in as much powder skiing, camping, biking, and hiking as I could in my short time there.
Luckily, the weather cooperated and I had some awesome blower days at Deer Valley and Snowbird before heading down to the desert in Moab for sunshine and a little mountain biking. Southern Utah is one of my favorite places on earth, call me crazy but I’d take the dry desert and incredible red sandstone formations over a beach any day. I’ll let the pictures show the rest! It was the perfect month for recharging mentally and physically and getting psyched up for a new training season. At today’s practice we had most of the team back in Craftsbury and the rest will trickle in during the next few weeks. It’s great to catch up with everybody and we’re all looking forward to the start of a new training season.
Love this picture of Corona Arch in Moab, photo from Hannah. Also the site of this crazy video, which you should check out if you haven’t seen it yet
Arches National Park in Moab, Fiery Furnace in the front with the La Sal Mountains in the back
An endless playground of slickrock. It was my first time riding the smooth sandstone and it was really fun learning to trust the rock to grip your tires, even on steep sidehills
The crew in front of Delicate Arch (aka the Utah license plate)
After the Moab trip I headed down to Southern Utah one more time with my Dad to Grand Staircase/Escalante National Monument. It’s way off the beaten track compared to Moab, and really cool because there are Anasazi ruins tucked into some of the canyon walls. We checked out this slot canyon called Little Death Hollow, a fitting name considering that 3 years ago a few cows wandered up the canyon and got stuck, and their bones are still in the bottom. Also not a place you want to be in a flash flood. The slot canyons and washes in this area are seemingly endless, you could pick one to hike every day for years and never run out.
Slot canyon stretching for miles. Skinny people only!
Adventuring with my pup
In between adventures, I volunteered with an organization called Girls on the Run twice a week in Park City. The girls were in elementary school, between 3rd and 5th grade. We would meet, teach the girls short lessons about being healthy and confident in themselves, and then we would run! I was so proud the day all of the girls finished their practice 5k, battling tired legs and sore feet.
I had some amazing role models when I was their age in growing Park City, and I hope that I can share some inspiration and motivation with them. They’re running their final 5k on May 30th, and while I can’t be there in person I’ll definitely be thinking about them.
Girls on the Run is so much fun! My girls were the goofiest, most energetic bunch around
I did train a little bit too…mountain biking in Park City never gets old when it looks like this!
I even got in a few skinny skis after the lifts closed. That’s Jupiter Peak, the top of Park City Mountain Resort behind my head. It was a hairy descent on fish scales!
I always think that it’s really important to take some time in the spring to focus on something besides skiing, and to appreciate getting outside without a heart rate monitor or an exact plan for how things will turn out. Most skiers I know are adventurous at heart, but that sometimes gets lost beneath a strict training plan, so it’s good to switch it up now and again. Now that May is here, it’s time to bust out the strength workouts and rollerskis, and I know I’m ready for a change of pace and to settle into a training routine, but I’m sure we’ll get in some adventures too.
Thanks for reading, check in later for updates from the team about spring training, sure to feature lots of sore muscles!