Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Join the club!

In a time before the internet, clubs were the place to meet people, learn about new areas, share stories and improve your skills. Nowadays much of that dialogue happens on Facebook and the forums or in small bubbles. It's one thing to read and watch videos about gear or technique on the internet but another to see it in person. I was at a masters alpine racing club night and I watched some of the better racers carve turns on icy snow around gates that I was having trouble getting an edge in. I know what's possible.

Where would I be if I never showed up to my first Hardcore group rides in high school? It probably would have taken until the introduction of to really learn the trail system in Edmonton. The adventures in this blog would be even less interesting than they already are. I wouldn't know what "fast" really is. I wouldn't know how long a proper ride is. Every day I come across a question on Facebook asked by someone who would benefit from joining a club and have someone take them under their wing.

Group rides. Learn new trails, ride with better riders who will push you to ride faster. Race in midweek and weekend events. Discounts
Hardcore cycling club

Uphill skiing nights at Sunridge on Monday nights. Free rock climbing at Rock Jungle on Wednesday nights. Weekend trips. Discounts
Alpine Club of Canada Edmonton Section

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

2017 Vert 180 report

The warm temperatures and corn snow that greeted us at the Vert180 this year were certainly a welcome alternative to negative temperatures, snowmaking guns, and abrasive snow that have been present in years past. A great track formed throughout the race, though the mellow bootpack seemed more like walking at the beach. I got off to an early lead with Joel from Skiuphill, until Joel abandoned in the first hour. Tyson and Travis were in the Thunderdome battling over 2nd place, but my gap was always at a comfortable level. The last hour never gets any easier, but it seemed everyone suffered the same. I was happy to have a clean race and take the win.

Once again, I was revived by the burger and fries after the race. I now join the exclusive "3 win club" with Travis Brown.While there is certainly a growing number of skiers on lighter skis and boots (and even demo Movement Speed Apple skis from, what I really noticed was a decreasing number of people looking absolutely miserable crawling up the hill on heavy setups. And I saw some blazing fast transitions!