Sunday, January 20, 2013

No Repeats

A few times a season I will try to repeat a long section of trail with Max & Zorro. A few times a season I get a mini-mutiny from my Siberian partners...
"Hi! Beautiful, fast conditions today! Did you say 'wait'?" express Max & Zorro as I just called out
to "wait" so we could take our midpoint break of the day.
By "repeat", I mean trying to reuse an extended section of trail 3+ times during the same outing. It is common for us to repeat sections 2 times on trails that are "out & back" in layout - the "out & back" repeat never causes any mutiny. But, try an "out & back" then "out & back" on the same trail (thus, using the same trail 4 times) and my partners really balk at the concept of running on a hamster wheel. They will try to pull rank and refuse; when that does not work they will decide to launch a mutiny and just turn around - again that never works. It takes a lot of talking from me to convince them that restarting down a trail we have already used twice is a good idea!

Even once we resolve the mutiny and get going, it is a skijor pattern of "Trot, trot, trot - peek back at the human and check that he has really lost it and wants to repeat this trail. Then, trot, trot, trot - peek. And so on and so on." Needless to say, our skijoring pace is significantly slower than normal in this "trot trot trot peek - repeat" pattern.

So, why do I even try a "repeat trail"? Well, every once in a while I lose my senses (according to Max & Zorro) and think it sounds fun to extend the day's outing by reusing a section of trail 3+ times. Oh you silly misinformed human - do you not understand anything?!?! I typically end an outing where I tried a "repeat trail" proclaiming, "Well, Max & Zorro still balk at a 'hamster wheel' network of trails; maybe we'll try again next year when they are a year more mature! (hahaha)."

Trying to restart down a trail that we have already done "out & back" once.
Zorro peeking back to say, "Dude - we already did this - next..."
A lot of talking from me about starting down this same trail AGAIN and we are slowly off.
Max glancing back to say, "Hey are you lost? We ALREADY did this!"
We had been going good for a short stretch until Zorro loses his gas pedal and Max
looks back to say, "Boring - we really need some new terrain!"
We just started to hit our normal skijoring speed when Zorro has to peek back just once
more, "Really? The same trail? Are you nuts?"
Luckily, eventually the "will to go" kicks in for Max & Zorro and they abandon the mutiny and decide that running the same trail AGAIN is clearly better than running no trail at all - but it sure takes a lot of convincing from me to reach this point!  :-)

Hitting some nice speeds along a "repeat trail". Notice the trail is barely 2 Siberians wide.
If you step off the packed trail, you will sink into "Siberian chest deep" snow in most places.
So, it is a shoulder-to-shoulder tight team to stay on the trail and get some real speed.
[watch on youtube if no video loads below[

Tally for the day: 8.3 miles, 1000 feet of elevation gain, top speed of 20 MPH and a "human gone loco who forgot we are Siberians, not Hamsters!" (signed Max & Zorro).

No comments:

Post a Comment