Monday, December 15, 2014

And So It Begins...

It has been a pretty crazy couple of weeks here in Williamstown.  When the team got back from Craftsbury, they had one week of classes before a week of final exams.  Nonetheless, most of them have been in "I'm-really-smart-so-I'm-going-to-do-nothing-but-study-for-the-ten-exams/projects-I-have-despite-only-taking-four-classes" mode...?!...Seriously, they've been working real hard to finish the semester strong.  Despite all this "studying" they claim to have been doing, most have been able to enjoy the awesome snow Prospect has right now.  Prospect is notorious for getting good snow.  If Williamstown gets rain, Prospect gets snow.  If Williamstown gets four inches, Prospect gets a foot.  Such was the case last week, and the skiing has been awesome!

The team had it's annual Holiday party at the Lemieux's.  When I was in college (at a school that will not be named...) we would have a holiday party.  Everyone would dress up, eat a lot of food, laugh, and participate in a Yankee Swap.  Well apparently every ski team does this, because I felt like I was back in College.  Though the Yankee Swap gifts were less inappropriate than what I remember.  I suppose that's a good thing, especially considering ALL the Lemieux's were in attendance:
Baby Rogan! Just chillin among the gifts!
Caitlyn and Jayvin also participated in the Yankee swap!
Good Times.  Enough said.

Everyone looked really good, the food was delicious, and the hospitality was gracious!

Chatting with Hannah^2 on a Sunday distance ski.

Found the Hobbit house! My new apartment!

Found these two (Jack and Josh) crushing some speeds the other day!
Campus is pretty quiet right now.  Most everyone has gone home for the Holidays.  Jason and I will be holding down the fort before heading up to Ripton, VT for the Rikert Eastern Cup this weekend.  I'm really excited for an awesome weekend of racing - looks like there's going to be some stiff competition!  Less than two weeks until we are in Quebec!


Thursday, December 11, 2014


Prospect was awesome today thanks to the large amount of snow that has fallen since Monday. After a few quirks were worked out Steve and the P100 did some amazing work!

Perry took this picture looking down 1/3 from the top of
the A Climb
Something new in front of the groomer barn!


Monday, December 1, 2014

Craftsbury Camp Recap/Back In Williamstown

The team made it back to Williamstown all in one piece last night.  Craftsbury camp was a huge success, and a whole lot of fun!  In the five days that we were in northern Vermont, I estimate that we skied a total of 14 to 17 hours.  Two sessions a day, classic in the morning, skate in the afternoon, and accompanied with a decent snow storm Wednesday night, we were able to get in some spectacular skiing.  It felt like mid-winter for most of the week.  We only had one day of klister skiing; the other three days we were on hard wax.  The skate skiing was even better, as Craftsbury was able to roll out many of their outer trails for some rock-ski adventures.

The new Activity Center and lodge at Craftsbury was impressive.  We mostly spent time in the wax room, which is just below the Activity Center.  However, we did scope out the facilities and test out some of the new SkiErgs.  Right next to the Activity Center is a huge lodge with a ski rental shop and cafe.  This was also the location of our Thanksgiving feast.  Speaking of which, the food at Craftsbury was delicious (as always)!  The majority of what we ate was local and organic.  Needless to say, we ate healthily, and we ate a lot.  A couple of the guys put down two+ plates of food and several desserts at our Thanksgiving feast.

It was great having Harvard and UNH at Craftsbury as everyone was able to reconnect with old friends and ski around with each other.  It also provided some steep competition for Sunday's race.  With that being said, yesterday's 10k skate races were really exciting, and I couldn't be more proud of our team for giving it a good effort after a long week of training.  The men went off first at 9:30.  Jordan and Will took fourth and fifth place, respectively.  Only two seconds separated the two, and they were 17 and 19 seconds out of the win.  A few "safety school" kids took first through third.  Eli was 13th, Vanya 16th, Luke 18th, Ben 25th, and Josh 27th.  The women followed the men at 10:30.  Hannah Benson and Hannah Cole were 4th and 8th respectively.  They were 49 seconds and 1:21 out of the win.  Sarah Abramson followed up with 12th, Jenna 14th, Rebecca 17th, Tsaina 19th, Sarah Becker 21st, and Olivia was 24th.

Jordan cruising to 4th place.

Will skied with a solid group of guys to take 5th.

Benson hammers to 4th place.
Hannah Cole powered through to 8th.
This past week was so much fun!  Too bad all of the snow in Williamstown is now gone.  It would have been pretty awesome to come back to some snow to ski on.  The team has one more week of classes, followed by final exams, so they're working hard on finishing strong for the end of the semester.  Hopefully we get snow soon!

Rock the cow!


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Pushing The Pace

Friday, November 28, 2014.  Craftsbury, Vermont.  We are on day three of our five day Thanksgiving training camp.  With double sessions on snow each day, the team is looking more and more like all their hard work during the summer and fall has paid off.  This morning we did some threshold classic intervals to get in a good effort before Sunday's race.

Jordan Fields powering up the hill.
Rebecca Smith - Looking solid...despite the odd suit combination...
Luke Costley with the textbook technique.

Found Eli!

Tsaina, Sarah A., and Olivia in a winter November?!
Saturday, November 29, 2014.  Today is our last day to classic ski in Craftsbury as tomorrow is a skate race, and we will depart for Williamstown soon after.  Therefore, on Extra Blue kick wax, solid tracks, and beautiful weather, we traversed around the trails for an awesome classic ski.

Morning sunrise as I walked to breakfast.
Blowing snow.
Women's team stridin'
Coach explaining the technique drills.

Tomorrow is the Craftsbury opener.  Both men and women are doing a 10k skate.  The team is psyched and ready to rip!  This week has been so much fun, and I am really excited to see everyone finish strong!


Thursday, November 27, 2014

Skiing All Day, Every Day

Our arrival at the Craftsbury Outdoor Century was that of sheer exuberance.  The vans rolled down the farm roads and into the Craftsbury parking lot around 8:30pm Tuesday.  Everyone was excited to begin our training camp despite there being no snow on the ground.  The workers at Craftsbury lived up to their reputations, and we were greeted with a 1.5k of manmade snow - anything is better than roller skiing at this point.

Wednesday morning, we awoke to the groomers hitting the trail, providing us with some firm tracks.  Given that it was klister skiing, it seemed only fitting that I cover my hands and clothes with it, as well as the team's skis.  Mmmmm I missed the feeling of a klister covered hand inside a ski glove.  With that being said, our klister kick was pretty phenomenal for our morning 2 hour ski.

Coach and Vanya - Damn, that suit looks good!

Tsaina, Sarah A., and Jenna - Everyone is really jealous of our new suits!

It started snowing pretty hard during our afternoon skate ski on Wednesday.

Will, Ben, and Luke enjoying the fresh snow this morning - we got about 8 inches of snow overnight, so in addition to the 1.5k loop of manmade snow, Craftsbury was also able to roll out another 20k of decent skiing.

The ladies enjoying the corduroy!

Gathering for the technique session.

Everyone enjoyed an amazing Thanksgiving dinner in the brand new lodge tonight.  The food was delicious, the athletes were happy, and bellies were full! Can't wait to hit the trails again tomorrow!

Happy Thanksgiving,


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Rollerski TT and Adventure Run

This past Saturday, the team hammered a pretty challenging classic rollerski time trial.  It was great to see everyone put in a solid effort before getting on snow in Craftsbury.

Wicherski (skated) at the start.
Jordan (Left) and Eli went 1st and 2nd for the men!

Hannah Benson (R) won for the women, followed by Tsaina (L) in second!

Jason found a new trail that connects to the Taconic Crest trail, which we ventured up on Sunday morning.  

How I felt right before destroying my ankle.

Looking down the old Alpine race course that Jason and I hiked up to meet the team.
Happy Women's team!!

The girl's dared me to eat some moldy dog food I found...or maybe it was dog poop...
Jason decided to take me bush whacking at the end of our run.  We had to fjord a couple streams and cross over a ridge or two before getting a little lost (OK, I got a little lost).  This was the scene we came back to...just chillin' on the vans with their shirts off - classic.

Stayed tuned for a Craftsbury update soon...