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 skiuphill.ca), 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!