January 18, 2012


Following US Nationals, I traveled to Craftsbury, VT where Patrick lives and trains. The Craftsbury Outdoor Center is a really unique place. The racing team based out of here, the Craftsbury Green Racing Project, is a group of post-college kids (many former teammates of mine at Dartmouth) who all live together in a giant farm house on the trail system and do some work for the center in return for training and race support. The Center is very dedicated to making Craftsubury into a world class ski venue and have introduced snow making this year, making it an ideal place to come for some training.

Patrick spent all summer and fall working on widening the trails in order to make them FIS homologated or certified to hold big races. I greatly enjoyed checking out all of his hard work and skiing on the very wide and much more smooth trails. The man made loop here was in excellent condition every day with perfect tracks, but there was also enough snow to venture around some of the other loops without hitting too many rocks. After a week of racing it was so fun to just get out and ski and not think about too much!

Patrick enjoying the fresh snow

Installing solar panels were another big project Patrick helped with

The new snow guns with a large pile that has been slowly moved to the trails. 
Patrick has made a friend "Mo" who is not scared of anything, not even the chain saw

Mo loves to follow patrick around

Fresh groomed tracks right out the front door. 

Gathering wood for the newly installed wood stove. 
Over the weekend, we headed back to Maine, this time a little further northeast to Farmington, ME to race in the Eastern Cup. The first day was a classic sprint and due to lack of snow, it was a pancake flat 700m loop that we had to do twice to make up the sprint. Most of us actually double poled on skate skis rather than bothering with classic wax. As I was waxing for myself, I chose that out of simplicity's sake. Brayton, one of the Dartmouth coaches was kind enough to help me out during the rounds by reapplying flouros to my skis to keep them fast. In the end, I finished in 2nd place. The next day, I was feeling a little under the weather and chose not to race. I have come down with a little cold that I am frantically trying to fight before the next set of races.

In the meantime, Patrick and I took a full tour of New England, spending a night with my Grandparents in NH and a night with Patrick's parents in Putney, VT before heading back to Craftsbury to get some last good skiing in before heading to Minneapolis tomorrow! Saturday marks the start of a 5 day tour that will take place of the next 10 days in the twin cities. Check back for a report on that! Hopefully I can scare this cold right out of me!