Atop a mountain, in a country known by the native Maori as Aotearoa — land of the long white cloud — weather moves in and weather moves out. One day to the next can make all the difference. On Friday morning the U.S. team ran for 2 Â½ hours up the Matukituki Valley in t-shirts, then put in a distance and on-snow specific strength session in the half-light of the evening sky. The nighttime brought heavy winds and precipitation, a mishmash of snow too sticky to groom. Instead of slogging through snow so heavy only a coastal skier with a pair of hairy skis ready to roll could love, the U.S. men’s team put in their 3 Â½ hour classic rollerski and run combo in the valley below. What follow are pictures from the two day’s events.
The American contingent currently down in the Southern Hemisphere. From left: Andrew Newell,
then after nightfall the cold, clear weather gives way to a solid winter storm of 50cm of snowfall, a helping of rain, and a driving easterly wind.
From the valley floor, a dirt road switchbacks 14 kilometers over old mountainous sheep herding terrain to the cross-country ski resort. On days like this you just hope two sets of eyes are good enough to get you back home.
Torin Koos is a member of the National A Team for the United States. A World Cup, World Championship and Olympic competitor, Koos brings this experience to the FasterSkier sportscasting arena for the 2007/2008 season.
Equipment: Rossignol Skis, Boots and Bindings, Toko gloves and wax, Marwe, Exel poles, Rudy Project Eyewear, Powerbar
Home Ski Club: Leavenworth Winter Sports Club (www.skileavenworth.com)
Headgear Sponsor: USA Pears (www.usapears.com)
Best Western Icicle Inn (www.icicleinn.com)
BioSports NorthWest Physical Therapy (www.biosports.net)