It is hard to believe that 2009 is quickly coming to an end!

2009 Highlights!
First and foremost, my family- my husband and my two boys-! We have had some great adventures together this past year in this amazing outdoor playground!

I often have to pinch myself to remind me how lucky I am to be a part of this sport Ski Alpinisme – at such a high international level. It is pretty amazing to share the start line with so many athletes from nations all over the globe. My USA teammate Mona Merrill joined me (all the way from Colorado) for the weekend of fun!
She is helping pave the way for ski mountaineering racing in the USA. I look forward to our USA team of 3, Nina, Lynds and Mona for the famous Patrouille des Glaciers this year as a international World Cup end of April.
The Pila World Cup was the first world cup of the season and early for many but that did not leave it any less exciting. The first day was the first ever ski mountaineering sprint- run much like they are run in the Nordic world cup sprints, with 3-4 rounds of qualifications. It was very exciting and a crowd pleaser. Possibly a great spectator sport for the 2018 Olympics when ski mountaineering hopes to make its debue. Unfortunately in my second heat my boot broke- The Pierre Gignoux carbon boot is definitely the best boot out there in terms of lightness and stiffness but it also is more fragile. Thanks to my husband and my good friend Yuki I managed to get my old skis and boots to ski on the next day. Italian television filmed the whole weekend which is great for the sport. Here is a link for a video that gives a good idea of what the weekend of racing was all about and you can practice your Italian.

Saturday’s race was a night race of 1400 meters in elevation. I had never done such a long night race with ascent and descents other than the Patrouille des Glaciers. My Petzl Ultra came in really handy and worked like a charm in the -22 Celsius temps. It was COLD- and I am from Maine. It was Maine cold and windy. Everyone wore extra layers and wind layers, many wore mittens. It made for much slower transitions. It was definitely survival temps out there and the hot tea tasted really good at the end.

Sunday’s temperatures were equally cold with a little sunshine. I still dressed warmly and enjoyed the race and the amazing views. The Italians sure do know how to put on a good race. It was super well organized the whole weekend and the International Ski Mountaineering Federation also has been making some exceptional contributions to the sport. Aside from the fact that my toes are still dethawing from the cold temps, the weekend of racing was a great kick start to the season ahead. It was good to get in some intensity before a bit of volume training during the Christmas holidays with the family which have been filled with skiing of course!

Happy New Year to you all! My resolutions for 2010: I have many as we all do but the main one is: Continue to be thankful for all we have! LIVESTRONG!
Thanks for reading!