Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fall Camp – The Ski Visits the Birkie Trail

Dave writes:

We took The Ski up to the Birkie trail recently as part of Vakava’s annual fall training camp – we figured that it deserved a trip to the Holy Land after being liberated from the dark clutches of Peter’s Cheaters. (For those of you who aren’t quite up to date on this, The Ski is the trophy from the team competition of the Minnesota Skinnyski Series – it’s been going back and forth between Vakava and Peter’s collection of mercenaries, and the 2010 competition saw The Ski come back to its rightful owners, namely us.)

Vakava has been doing a fall camp in the Hayward area since 2004, and we’ve done it in the sun, the rain, and even a dusting of snow, with weather ranging from lousy to beautiful. This one would have to be rated spectacular – gorgeous fall foliage, sunny, no wind, and perfect roller ski temperatures. The cold weather can hold off for another month – I’m still enjoying the Indian summer.

We pole-hiked the Birkie trail Friday afternoon, roller skied (classic intervals and video-recording) near OO Saturday morning, roller skied some more (including a bunch of specific strength and sprints) Saturday afternoon, and then did our 50K skate (with fast pickups) Sunday morning. The 50K in particular was under perfect conditions – roller skiing from Cable to Drummond and back on beautiful, winding, rolling roads through the north woods – kind of like the Birkie trail but on roller skis.

Then after the hard work, it was time to relax, watch ski videos, eat great food (thanks again, Michele), drink great beer (including home-brew from Angie and Kevin), and, of course, enjoy great company with the Vakava Team. All together, a big, excellent weekend, with lots of good training and lots of fun.

Now, we have our next set of roller ski time trials this coming week; we’re gradually bumping up the intensity and specificity of our training; and it won’t be long before the snow flies and we’re out skiing on the real stuff.

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