Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Viable Skiing

There is snow at the Golf Course to ski on!  We've had it all week, so it's turned into a nice crust, with some deeper soft snow here and there, and bare patches in a few places.  There's not a lot of snow - it doesn't cover everything - but there's enough to get a nice ski in.  No track has been rolled since the snow is too thin to protect the ground beneath, but you can wander all over the place on skate skis or classic skis.  Just watch out for asphalt and rocks (use your rock skis, if you have them).

Saturday, December 9, 2017

New Season 2017: Nordic Ski Club Info

Hi All,
We’re excited for another cross-country ski season.  Since we already have snow, we can start right in on our skis Monday.  If you don’t have skis yet, come anyway and we’ll figure something out.
Remember we ski from 4:15-5:15 Mondays and Thursdays until Feb 15 (unless we run out of snow earlier).  Please have your skis delivered to the Teton Lakes Golf Course Monday between 4-4:15.  We have a ski shed on site that we lock up the gear in so you don’t have to cart it back and forth. However, please note that we cannot guarantee the safety of the equipment.

Some things to know:
First off, NO SKIS or POLES on the buses.

I don’t know which bus runs to Teton Lakes from the High School, but I assume it’s Bus 01-4 (please call the Transportation Department at 208-359-3265 to verify).

If you are coming from the Junior High, the Transportation Department told me that you can hop on Bus 06-3, found in Slot 6.  You will then transfer to Bus 01-4 at Valley Wide.  They suggested that you double check with each bus driver to make sure you’re on the right bus.  Please let them know you need to get off at TETON LAKES GOLF COURSE.  

Dress appropriately - winter can be so much fun if you’re dressed for it.  Gloves or mittens and a hat are highly recommended (I want to say required, but we won’t kick you off if you don’t have them).  Please.  Also, wearing layers with a good coat is necessary.  Warm winter socks are also a must.  Note, though, that if your socks are too thick and make your ski boots fit tightly, that can backfire - if you constrict blood flow in your foot it will be cold.

We hold practice on days when school is in session.  If it’s a school holiday, Christmas Break, or if school is cancelled (like a snow day), then there’s no ski club that day.

I will try to keep the blog updated with additional information in the coming months.   

Also, registration is open through the entire season, so if you know of anyone who would like to join please have them come - the more the merrier!  If they can only come on Mondays or only on Thursdays (instead of both), that’s just fine.  Participants are responsible for finding and bringing their own gear (skis, boots, poles), but you can contact Forrest Southam if you need some help locating equipment at: skirexburg at gmail dot com

See you soon!

Friday, December 1, 2017

Sundby V2 SkiPost

Reposted from SkiPost Newsletter

One principle of skating is that the faster a skier's velocity, the more acute the V of the skis can be. Meanwhile, the slower the velocity, the larger the angle will be. We can see that for ourselves: When we V2 fast, the angle of the skis may be around 30˚; and when we're casually skiing uphill, the V expands to 90˚ or more. There are some laws of physics at play here, but in general, we figure this concept out ourselves - it's really hard to skate up a steep hill with a tight V.
Another concept is not exclusive to skiing: The quicker you try to do something repeatedly, the less time you have between efforts. That is, if you're skiing 40 strokes per minute, you have 1.5 seconds to move from ski to ski, and if you're skiing at 90 strokes per minute, you only have 0.66 seconds to shift your weight.
As you mention, "it seems like the new skate only works at high tempos or going uphill," and I basically agree with that. When the tempo is high, you may not have enough time to shift completely over to each ski (into the "old" toe-knee-nose) - especially if you're going uphill using V1/offset, with a wider V. It's also a safe bet (hope?) that your high tempo is also making your ski speed faster, so the V in V2/one-skate is more narrow; you may actually be getting completely over each ski, but it's a less obvious weight shift.
I'm not sure why there are "new" and "old" skates being taught, as both are valid. There's a continuum of how much weight shift and torso alignment you can effectively achieve in different conditions, and you need to figure out what works best for you. Ski speed and the terrain contribute to making this decision, but so does your strength and balance. If you look at this video, we can see that Sundby (leading, red bib) is able to stay squared up to his skis more effectively than Sveen (bib 17), who is using more of a toe-knee-nose approach - but they're skiing at the same velocity...
-Jason Cork
US XC Ski Team Coach

2017-18 Local Race Schedule (Tentative)

Welcome to a new season!

Anyone interested in some fun Citizen Races, check out these sites for more information or ideas:
Teton Valley, ,
Jackon Hole
West Yellowstone
Sun Valley Boulder Mountain Tour

Races I'm aware of include the following (Note, races are subject to change) -

November 21-25 Yellowstone Ski Festival
December 2 Targhee Tune-up
December 30 Betty Woolsey Trail Creek
January 6 Teton Ridge Classic
January 20 CUPID CUP (this is our Rexburg Race)
January 27 Two Options:  1. Spud Chase (Victor);   2. The  Potato Cup  (Pocatello)
February 3 Boulder Mountain Tour
February 10 Alta Skate Race
February 17 Moose Chase
March 3 Rendezvous Race (West Yellowstone)

This is not an exhaustive list.  You can find a local race pretty much every weekend if you go looking  (local means from West Yellowstone, Teton Valley, Jackson, Pocatello - and Sun Valley or Lone Mountain if you have the time).

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Track Report

Doug groomed as much as he could yesterday, but the wind blew apart the track today.  There are three nearly-equal parts to the "Track":
1. Deep drifts covering the track
2. Some visible groomed track, including both skate and classic, that is actually pretty nice
3. Long patches of wind-swept bare grass

I tried skiing today, and it was nice to get out even in the crazy wind and snow (better than a treadmill), but I wouldn't necessarily call it all skiing.  It was more like just covering the distance as best I could while getting lost every few minutes (easy to lose sight of a track when the track is buried or blown away).  Definitely a mix of skating, double poling, walking, and shuffling.  There's always hope that the wind settles down and we get some snow to work with.

If you're dead set on going out, avoid the east half of the Cow Pasture.  The west half is okay and you can ski a small loop on the north and again on the south side.  The rest of the Perimeter is just hit and miss.  And there's no point trying to do the Boot or Clover Leaf skate tracks.

Good luck, if you go out.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Grooming Report

Doug has been working on the new snow at the golf course (thank you!).  Here's what he reports:

The snow is minimal in enough places that I would not ski the track with new skis.  There is not enough snow to have a classic track set.  I groomed (for skating) as much as I could find snow to drive on.  The Cow Pasture on the east by the Freeway was completely melted off and the wind took care of any new snow, but there are some great areas on the east where the trees shade and protect from wind. Go try it - it'll be a different adventure.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Track Report

The skate track is still skiable, although it is breaking down.  Be especially careful to stop before going down hills to scope out the grassy patches.