Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Single Track

Cruising behind Zorro on the Mountain Pride Mine single track skijor trail. Wheeee!
Zoom, zoom, zoom we go...
Single track trails are always fun and challenging to skijor with Zorro. By "single track" I refer to a trail where the set track is only 2 skis (or 2 snowshoes) wide with powder outside of the track on both sides. As a result, the "set trail" is only 1 person wide (aka "single track"). All is fine if you are a solo human and riding in the single track. But, I have the additional engine named Zorro who wants to propel me along the single track much faster than a human was meant to go. How to proceed? Well, I ride with one ski in-track and one ski out-of-track. The in-track ski is the accelerator - shift my weight to this ski and we speed up. The out-of-track ski is the decelerator - shift my weight to this ski to add friction to reduce speeds. Note in the photo above that my left ski is in-track while my right ski is in powder out-of-track.

With that background... On to today's video highlight. Come along as Zorro tows me along the fun single track. If you watch closely you can see me alternating skis in versus out of track as we weave through forest. Wheeee!
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

Zorro is always fascinated by old, abandoned mining cabins we encounter in the forest. They always grab his attention and we joke that he is our realtor looking for a backcountry hut for us to move into. Well, Nancy jokes that she has 4 rules for Zorro's realty hunt and this hut below seems to satisfy them all. (1) Roof - check! (2) Walls - check! (3) Running water - look at all the snow to melt and it will run when melted! (4) Heat - look at all the free firewood around the cabin!!!
"Meets all the requirements, let's move here for 'skijoring out the front door!" declares realtor
Zorro as he gives the property an approving glance as we trot by.
Done with the backcountry single tracks around Mountain Pride Mine and we connected onto the wide and popular Baldy Mountain Trail. Time to really uncork the skijoring engine:
Done with the day's outing as we come back to the trailhead to hook up little Jack for a short sprint to end the day:
All smiles, all speed, all fun!
Skijor outing complete and time for the 'end-of-run pork treats' for the hard working sled dogs. Take a look at the role reversal in the following photo. Zorro, the usually composed adult, getting a little pushy while Jack, the wild puppy, is the composed & patient one! Haha, that was funny to write :)
"Get with it! I've been working hard!" declares pushy Zorro.
"Have you ever seen such patience & composure? I deserve extra!" declares puppy Jack.

Nice day cruising the backcountry around Mountain Pride Mine on Baldy Mountain: 6.1 miles traveled with 800 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 22 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 36 days on the trails covering 263.3 miles with 23,500 feet of elevation climbed.

Saturday, February 17, 2018


Flirting as we run by a paused dog sled team on the trails this morning. "Hi Friends!" says Zorro.
"Look at me, wheeee!" says flirtatious Zorro to the paused team as we pass on by.
Passing and being passed by the dog sled teams from Good Times Adventures on the trails at Swan Valley is one of Zorro's favorite skijoring activities. Typically all the "on by" encounters go perfectly by both us and the dog teams ("on by" is the dog sled term for ignoring & passing other teams). Yet, every once in a rare while, things do not go as planned. Today a team was coming up the trail so Zorro and I pulled to the right to pause and let them pass. But, the team forgot its manners and swerved left to meet & greet with Zorro instead. Oops!!! :)
"Hi fun looking guy! Can we come play with you?!?" say the 2 team lead dogs who have
ignored their "on by" command and decided to get close & flirty with Zorro :)
Close encounter with the flirting team over and back to real action as Zorro hops off trail to pause and watch another team go down a parallel trail:
"Wheeee! Wait for meeeee!" says Zorro :)
Today's video highlight: doing our favorite skijor activity at Swan Valley. Come along and watch as we run & search for dog sled teams then find a team to "flirt on by". Listen closely as we pass the paused team and you can hear all the sled dogs on the team wooing out, "Hey, let us come with you!!!" to Zorro as we go by :)
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

End of the day and we've reconnected with little Jack to celebrate the morning's fun run:
"Smack! I had fun watching you, Zorro and the dog teams run!!!" says affectionate Jack.
"Let's get to the 'end of run' treats!" declares Zorro in the background :)

A flirtatious day skijoring around Swan Valley: 8.1 miles traveled with 600 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 22 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 35 days on the trails covering 257.2 miles with 22,700 feet of elevation climbed.

Thursday, February 15, 2018


Zorro had a blast sprinting and towing me around the fast trails yesterday morning!
"Yes indeed! I am having FUN!!!!" exclaims happy Zorro during a short pause on the trails.
We started on fast & narrow trails sprinting for a couple of miles...
Zooming behind sprinting Zorro on this fun & narrow trail with a high snow wall to
our left and great views in front of us.
After sprinting the narrow trails, we transitioned onto the wide and freshly groomed trails of Gold Run Nordic Center. We were thrilled to be first or second tracks on the fresh groomie zoomies for the entire outing. Zorro was FLYING!!!
See - Zorro was FLYING!!!! :)
Today's video highlight showcases fast Zorro on the groomie zoomie as we top 24 MPH somewhere along this stretch. Watch closely at about 22 seconds into the video. There is a slight dip in the trail which caused me to dip and "catch air" since we are going so fast. You'll then hear me utter a "Woo!" of relief after coming back under control as I am happy to still be upright. The "dip and catch air" is very subtle looking in the video; but, oh boy, did it feel wild in real life!!!
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

Done sprinting with Zorro and we hooked up little Jack for a short wind sprint to end the day. Jack got the most out of his wind sprint and needed to cool off rolling snow angels :)
"Oh boy, must roll and cool my jets!" declares silly puppy Jack.
"Me too, must eat snow to cool my 24 MPH jets!" says snowcone eating Zorro.

A ridiculously fast & fun day on newly groomed trails: 7.8 miles traveled with 500 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 24 MPH.

2017/2018 Season to Date: 34 days on the trails covering 249.1 miles with 22,100 feet of elevation climbed.