Spring Skiing

Sometimes spring skiing is great: warm temperatures, sunshine, interesting and fun snow. Today was not that day here in Northfield, but goddamn if I didn’t have One Last Ski™ – a solid and sweaty hour in conditions that included foot-deep slush, inch-thick ice, and various obstacles. I prefer to think of these obstacles as increasing the technical difficulty of the course. And thank god for “rock skis”!

Bare Ground
Ten feet further, I had to ski over a foot-wide isthmus of ice between two open expanses of ski-eating gravel.
Spring Skiing: Bare Ground

Deer Crap
Perhaps the fiftieth collection of deer crap on the trail.
Spring Skiing: Deer Poop

Standing Water
You can’t really see it, but there are numerous inch-deep puddles of water here on this “snow.”
Spring Skiing: Standing Water

Springing Forward, or Okay, Start the Off-Season

I guess winter is well and truly over. Yeah, we might get one last storm, but even a colossal one won’t save the skiing, which is now finished until December – November if I’m really lucky.

This isn’t all bad. The snow looks horrible right now – brown, filthy, icy junk – so it definitely needs to go. We could use a few solid rainfalls to wash the grit off the pavement, cleaning it up for rollerskiing. I think my skiing improved quite a bit this winter, which encourages me to try to use RS’ing and other “ski specific” workouts to maintain some of my form and strength. I don’t want to start from scratch next winter.

Though this week has been gray and damp, I hope we get a string of warm, sunny days to dry off the Arb trails and the gravel roads. I haven’t run since November, but I can’t wait to get back into the Arb for some nice muddy runs. And a few long bike rides on the endless gravel roads would be an even better way to welcome spring.