Thursday, January 18, 2018

Flying

Zooming along the trails behind Zorro the Flying Z - Wheeee!
I love this section of trail as the morning sun is at the perfect angle to showcase Flying Z!
Out-stretched & airborne flying sled dog!
It was an interesting start to the day as the trail had been groomed by a skinny groomer. A skinny groomer is a heavy sled with a groomer platform on the bottom that gets towed by a snowmobile. The groom track it lays is only as wide as a snowmobile - that is a skinny groom track. Here is my slight problem with a skinny track behind a fast sled dog... If I put both skis in the track, then they have to be parallel and there is no room for either ski to move and provide any braking or friction. Now, I have taught Zorro that if you feel no friction from me, then you can go as fast as you want.

Now, let's think about this. If I put both skis together in the skinny track then I provide no friction. So, if I provide no friction then Zorro uncorks it to full throttle. But, if I am trapped in a skinny track then I cannot provide any friction to keep us (okay, ME) safe. See the problem? :)

So, what you get instead is the photo below. I have one ski (right leg) in the groomed track and the other ski (left leg) out of track and in side powder. If I shift weight to the right leg then Zorro gets the frictionless feel and floors it. But, if I shift weight to the left leg, then Zorro feels friction and slows to my pace. Needless to say, my legs were quite sore after today's fast & furious skijor :)
Weight to the right = Zorro flying.
But, notice the left leg hanging out in the powder as the "emergency brake" should I need it.
After a few miles on the skinny groomer trail and we transitioned onto your typical "widely groomed" nordic track. From this point on, Zorro was flying around the trails as we hit 24 MPH as a top speed for the day. Zoom!
In the morning shade on super fast groomed terrain!
Eventually we transitioned out of the heavily shaded forest you see above and into the morning sun. Once into the sun, you get great flying and shadow shots like the top of today's blog. Come along for the video counterpart of this intro photo as Zorro kicks into high gear as we fly along in morning sun. Wheeee!
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

End of the day's run and here comes today's comical Jack entry. We did not hook Jack up to run along Zorro; but did hook him up for a gentle "walk" to end the outing. We always end a fun day of skijoring with "pork treats" for the hard working sled dogs:
"Such a fun day, ready for end-of-run treats!" declares super happy Zorro.
"I may not have run; but I can taste the treats already! Yum!" demonstrates silly Jack who is
very ready to receive his treats :)
Fun day on fast trails:
"Zoom - I had a blast!" declares happy Zorro at a turnaround point on the trails.

Zooming Zorro Day: 7.9 miles traveled with 450 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 24 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 26 days on the trail covering 186.3 miles with 16,050 feet of elevation climbed.


Sunday, January 14, 2018

Hi Friends

"Hi Friends!!!" says Zorro as we pass by a paused team of 8 sled dogs from Good Times Adventures on the trails at Swan Valley.
Happy Siberian Huskies as excited to see and greet Zorro as Zorro is to
see and flirt back :)
Zorro loves getting on the trails at Swan Valley as that means we get to cruise around the fast trails looking for dog sled teams to run with, flirt with and have a great time with. Here we come flying along the trail as an 8 dog team crosses in front of us and little Jack (with Nancy) watch from the right. Fun for all!
Zooming Zorro with an 8 dog team going perpendicular in the foreground.
Little Jack and Nancy are just off the trail to our front right as well.
A meeting of the sled dogs :)
Today's video highlight goes along with the first photo above. Come along as Zorro and I are flying along the fast trails until we come upon the team paused. The trail is a bit narrow, so I shorten the gangline, give Zorro a little verbal instruction and we perfectly pass on-by before restarting our skijor sprint. Such a good Zorro!!!
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

End of the day's run and look who needs to cool off (not the one who did all the skijoring work :)
"Oh man, so hot - must roll to cool off!!!" demonstrates silly Jack.
"Hey, watching & cheerleading is exhausting too!!!!" adds funny Jack.
Sometimes we encounter many sled dog teams on these trails; but this morning's outing only had two fun encounters. Oh well, it was still a blast flying around the trails and 2 meetings is better than none!
"Yes, yes indeed! 2 is way better than 0 and going fast is a blast!" declares happy Zorro.

A zooming day with the occasional encounter with dog teams on the trails: 8.3 miles traveled with 600 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 20 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 25 days on the trails covering 178.4 miles with 15,600 feet of elevation climbed.


Friday, January 12, 2018

First Tracks

First Tracks on the freshly groomed trails of Breckenridge Nordic Center.
A perfect "fast & fun" day flying with Zorro!
Perfect trail as we are first tracks on the newly groomed zoom track!
We got up early yesterday morning to enjoy the nordic trails before they got tracked up for the day. To our surprise, though, we were actually First Tracks on the newly groomed trails! Wow, what a fun day Zorro and I had. The only tracks we encountered all day were our own tracks on sections of trails we repeated. A whole nordic center all to ourselves! Zorro was in top form enjoying this fast terrain. If he was not flying as you see above, he was hovering over the trail instead:
Zorro the skijoring hovercraft zooming along the trails.
This area of nordic trails has some nice weaving trails that wind you through the forest. Zorro loves to cut the corners tight and hug the inside shoulder...
Zorro starting a nice lean into a right corner. Notice that polite Zorro stays just outside the
"classic ski track" to our right. He will cut the corners as tight as possible without hurting
the classic track. What a polite trail user!
Today's video highlight is an extended clip (1+ minute) showcasing many of the fun corners along the trail. Come along as Zorro "cuts the corners tight" while I have to use all my ski skills to swing wide and then cut tight to keep up with fast & flying Z! What a fun & winding trail.
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

Done setting first tracks all over the trails and time to hook up little Jack for a fast & furious sprint to the finish:
"Wheeee, come with meeee little bro!" says happy Zorro towing me fast.
"I'm coming, I'm coming!!!" says happy Jack giving it all he has to keep pace with Zorro.

First tracks on groomed nordic trail all day - fun!
"Fun and FAST!!! Keep up if you can!" declares happy Zorro at a turnaround point on the trails.

A fun "groomie zoomie" day on nordic trails: 9.1 miles traveled with 750 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 23 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 24 days on the trails covering 170.1 miles with 15,000 feet of elevation climbed.