crucial time

In every race that I have ever run there is a emotional arc that I go through. From the pre-race excitement, to the “Oh shit here we go” and then the ups and downs of the race.

Right now I am sitting at 71.8% done. which seems like a lot until I look more closely at it and realize that it really is only just over 2/3’s done. Meaning that there is still a lot to go. The excitement of crossing the 50% line has come and gone and now I am in the stage of not quite being anywhere. Just needing to dig deep and keep going up. Soon I will be in the last 15%, which is when the end seems tangible. This is maybe the most important part of any race, where you have kept a great pace up till now and its digging deep time. Really believing that I can do this. Everything is tired, my legs, back, neck but most importantly psyche. my inner coach has been screaming himself hoarse for weeks now and his voice is getting a little low. I can’t hear him as well. This stage is just about keeping the desire and shredding.

The last three days were pretty damn fine. I headed up solo to Loop brook, in Rogers Pass, for a great powder session. It was one of those days where the weather was always in and out. A few runs I had some light on others I was skiing by braille. Luckily I know these runs very well and could almost ski them with my eyes closed, except for the pillows and drops, where I would need to peek a little.

The snow was incredible and I ran into a few people I knew. The social part of life that I need, a little bit of change in my otherwise relentless skinning. A great day with many laps and 14 000 feet of powder skiing.

The weather looked better on Friday so I found one of the stronger ski tourers in town and we went on a great mission. It started off with the Mt-Dickie ridge climb. I had forgotten how many little bumps are needed to go up and down before the final push, lots of them. But the ridge leads to the summit and an aesthetic finish.

Tip toeing to the summit on the rocks, weary of the cornice we made it. But as we stepped on the summit the cornice dropped off the north side. A huge mini bus size fell off. Always stick on the rocks if there is a cornice. That way it can’t reach back and pull you over. Eery anyways. The weather was cloudy on the south but clear and sunny on the north; so we went north.

I have skied this line a few times but it is always exciting, a small little couloir over to a huge ramp and then off playfully down the valley. I had to let Andrew go first since it was his first time up here and he had rights to it. Somehow all the new snow had fallen without any wind and was deep light and perfect. Steeper stuff had sloughed off but our line was prime. Andrew tore it up and I followed suit. In previous times after the ramp we skied right and out into some meadows and then 2000 ft later looked back up and realized that we could have continued the line down a couloir. This time I remembered the couloir and skied over to it. A 1300ft couloir finished our line down to the valley. SO psyched to ski somewhere I have never been.

From there we toured up to Coursier mountain and enjoyed our second summit of the day. and off and home we went.

With the family coming home from spring break in Vancouver I headed up West twin, an area I have sled skied in a few times but not often. I snowmobiled in 10 km and followed Andrews skin track from a few days before. I kept wondering if he was going to a good place, finally after 2500ft I had a glimpse and then a few hundred feet later I was pumped. A perfect solo ski area surrounded me. Small couloirs, faces and runs cascaded down to the valley, 800-1200 foot lines, beautiful and covered in light fluffy powder. The skin track wrapped up the back and soon enough I was standing on my first line. Bamm a descent east face shot. Then 30 minutes later I was on top of my next line.

For the next 4 hours I skied five lines in this area, fast and furious runs where my sloughs followed behind. Amazing runs, all different and shreddable.

Then today I had a little ski day with the kids, one run, lunch and then the rec centre. Now at this moment I am lying up at Mica Heliskiing about to fall asleep and wake up with a heli to drop me and Aaron off in the backcountry. No driving, no snowmobiling just easy heli access and then lots of hiking.

  1. Hardy Avery March 25, 2014 at 6:00 am

    Good work Greg! No doubt, you will reach your goal… Those lines look tasty!

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