Simi Hamilton

 
Yeah, pretty nice, right?

We’re Therrrre

Topic: General News

Well, in the spirit of the newest Dumb and Dumber having just come out, I thought I’d title this post as a bit of homage to that exquisite piece of cinematic work. And although I don’t feel exactly like Harry or Lloyd having just arrived in Asssssssspen, I do feel like we’ve finally touched down in a place where we can get back to what we’re supposed to be doing this time of year.

Our 30-hour travel day across the pond from Vermont to the far reaches of Northern Finland ensued without too much drama. My bags actually got spit out of the luggage carousel this time when we landed in Rovaniemi (actual home to Santa Clause), which definitely did not happen the first two times I made this trip. It’s always a humorous affair to listen to how cold the pilot says the outside air temperature is when you land in the small city on the Arctic Circle, and then actually step outside. You’d think that since we are, in fact, professional SKI racers, we wouldn’t have a problem when it’s 25 degrees out. I mean, that should be downright balmy compared to 95% of the places we usually race in the winter. But I guess summer makes us all soft because no matter how warm it is when you step off that first race-season flight, if it’s below 50 you’re gonna be cringing like you would if you were out for a 3 hour ski in January in Russia and you forgot your wind briefs. But you never complain because you know that coldness=snow and snow=skiing and skiing is a good thing.

The conditions are pretty darn nice up here in the north country. Not the best we’ve ever seen, but what they do have open, which is about 6 or 7 km, has great coverage and the cold temps means that the classic skiing especially is top notch. Great kick, firm tracks, and as long as you don’t get tangled up with one of the 4,000 Russians doing an hour of race-pace every single session, you’re bound to have a great ski. Even though we’re pretty far up here, it always surprises me how long it is actually light(ish) during the day. I mean, I’m pretty sure you could ski to the north pole in about a day if you wanted to, but it really isn’t all that bad. By about 8 o’clock you don’t need a headlamp to walk to breakfast, and as long as you leave lunch to walk home by about 1:30, you still don’t need a headlamp! Cool! I actually really dig those afternoon skis under the lights when it’s pitch black at 3 p.m. You feel like you’re nuking when in reality you’re probably going slower than that first race you did as an 11 year old.

We’ll be here through the weekend, just getting some final quality training in, before we make the windy 4 hour drive to Kuusamo for the World Cup kickoff party. Then it’s game on until mid-March. So check back in for some more reports from the way way out there. Because I may run into a bear. Or eat a snowshoe hair.

Landing in Newark, we flew right over a Giant's game. They looked small. They didn't look Giant.

 

Getting caught up with life in Rovaniemi... "Ahhh, we haven't seen our Instagram feeds for, like, an hour!" Just kidding. I took this pic on my phone. Right after I had checked my Instagram feed.

 

Noon, twilight ski. Cold here, but the kind of cold that makes you feel good and wakes you up like a strong cup of coffee.

Yeah, pretty nice, right?

2 Responses

  1. Lolly says:

    So glad that you have arrived and found enough snow to get back into “the rhythm” of life on skis. Thx for updating your blog because us mere mortals LOVE to know what is happening for you and the team… xox

  2. Boots Brown says:

    dido Lolly’s post. Ski hard & fast. BB

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11.19

2014

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