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Winter Sports

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When the snow and holidays arrived my cycling came to an abrupt and well deserved halt. Since then days have passed, cabin fever has subsided, and the “Arctic Blast!” has been shoved aside. I admit that have been tempted to head out into the rain and muck to train but I have been pleasantly distracted by other options winter has to offer, namely skate skiing.

Over X-mas it was off to Bend Oregon to immerse ourselves into this winter wonderland. We (my wife and I) started each day with a back-country snowshoe or cross country ski with the dog on some lower more dog friendly area, typically in close vicinity to the snow mobiles, cough, cough “WHAT DID YOU SAY?!”…. But, thankfully, this did not matter too much because Bend is, as I mentioned, a wonderland of snow and trails for everyone. After the wearing-of-the-dog-out, as well as ourselves a tad, we’d continue up the hill to the Nordic center to learn and practice our skate skiing. By the time we got back to the hotel we’d do nothing but eat, read and nap. A perfect Holiday.

Then today. Teacup had it’s annual teaparty which means lessons and cookies. We’ve done classic that last two years and have always been impressed by the caliber of skiers who come to teach this day. This time we were there for the skate lessons and had Jason Lemieux who used to race with the Subaru team and turns out won the Cross crusade B’s this…last year(08). Watch out single speed seems he may be eying your group in 09.

Skate Skiing is, as I’m learning, a subtle technical sport. Someone like myself can brute force it along the trails but compared to someone with the technique wherewithal it becomes quite graceful and relaxed. Each time go I feel moments of this grace mashed between my stumbling and panting and I want more.

Cycling? Um, I just looked out side and it’s snowing again!

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