First, let’s go over some statistics from yesterday’s hour and a half ski:
Number of Moose seen: 5
Number of FedEx planes on approach: 7
Average temperature at venue: -4 degrees Celsius
Number of Alaska Winter Stars, and other volunteers preparing the course with shovels: 153
If that temperature statistic threw you off, I’m not surprised. The location is Anchorage, and I have been here since the 26th getting ready for the upcoming US National Championships after the New Year. After last year’s disappointing weather at this event, Mother Nature has turned up the heat, and it seems that we will be seeing the races go off without a hitch in the upcoming week. To ensure that this is true, a large force of AWS athletes and event staff have been on the trail with “children at play” signs, shoveling, raking, and pulling additional snow onto the race course. The thrown snow supplements a base of about 5 inches, and has made all trails race ready. I have been skiing on race skis without any problems.
As more athletes arrive, I encourage everyone to thank the many volunteers that have been on the trails and behind the scenes making sure the event a possibility!