We came out with a new Structurite last year. Click here to see the guidelines for its use.
West Yellowstone: After the Ski Festival
Every year in November, the North American Nordic world converges in Montana for the annual West Yellowstone Ski Festival. It is a week full of training, waxing, racing, clinics, expos, and friends. But what happens after the festival is over? The CXC Team spent another week in town after the festival to find out.
First, we traded in our hotel keys for a small condo on the edge of town. Living in a house, as opposed to a hotel room, makes life on the road go from bearable to enjoyable. While the festival week was spent getting to know CXC Masters and Junior team skiers, the post-festival week was a time to enjoy home-cooked meals and team camaraderie. My favorite meal was elk burgers courtesy of BSF skier Leif Zimmermann and some Jessie Diggins home-made pumpkin pies. It was quite possibly better than Thanksgiving.
On the trail, we had to share the perfect corduroy with only a handful of other teams, including GMVS, UNM, and a group of friends from Iowa. One key workout was head-to-head team sprints against the GMVS juniors who threw in some impressive moves-no doubt taught to them by their expert sprint coaches Justin Beckwith and Tim Weston.
Why were the trails in such good shape? The Rendezvous Trails groomer, Doug Edgerton, has been in the business since the first Yellowstone Ski Festival over 30 years ago and even groomed at the 2002 and 2010 Olympics. I had the opportunity to meet with Doug and get some of his behind-the-scenes stories from Whistler and check out some spectacular photos from the Games. Thanks to Doug for the great trails all week here in West.
With the consistent track, we were able to do some methodical ski and wax testing. Our coaches, Jason Cork and Gus Kaeding, also spent time honing our classic technique and the whole crew made some solid improvements. My technique breakthrough: planting my pole an instant earlier to initiate a quicker kick and get better balance while striding.
What was the biggest disappointment of the week? Getting left off the bracket for the West Yellowstone Dodgeball Tournament because we signed up too late. We will be honing our skills throughout the winter in preparation for next year. Watch out!
After over three weeks in West Yellowstone, we are packing up our bags and heading north. We will be competing in the Canadian Nor/Am races in Silver Star and the new Mini-Tour at Blackjack in Rossland. Stay tuned. . .
Garrott Kuzzy (you can keep in touch with Garrott by following his blog www.garrottkuzzy.com)