Friday, February 7, 2014

Box Out Day

A few inches of fresh snow all over the trails today - wheee! 

"We are having a great time!" say the happy pair at our turnaround point of the day.

Today's outing found Max wanting to run in "solo lead" on many of the fast stretches and he used his superb box out skills to accomplish this desire. For most of the day the packed trail was barely "2 Siberians wide" with a layer of 2-3 inches of fresh snow. Normally Max & Zorro will run shoulder-to-shoulder all day in these conditions. But, today Max declared it "solo lead" day as he frequently boxed Zorro out of the shoulder-to-shoulder position and into second position. The way Max does a "trail box out" is he will slide towards the side of the trail containing Zorro and cause little Zorro to either pop out of the packed trail into deep snow or back off into second slot. Well, as long as they are having fun (and the happy faces tell you they were), Max is welcome to establish his lead position when he declares it a "solo lead" day :-)

Here is a short video demonstrating Max's box out techniques. Watch as Zorro is trying to run dual with Max on the right side of the trail but "box out Max" keeps taking away any space on the right. Zorro eventually peeks to the left but then Max starts drifting left. Solo lead day...
[watch on youtube if no video loads below]

Of course, the entire day was not spent in "solo lead" just a handful of the fast straightaways where Max declared himself in solo lead.
Shoulder-to-shoulder as we crest over Sally Barber Mine. Nobody ever tries "box out" games
on uphill sections as you have to share the chore of carrying the heavy human!
A couple of fast straightaways were shoulder-to-shoulder (but not many).
Even in this clip, though, you can see Max is occupying far more than his half of the trail.
Another incline, another opportunity for Zorro to get up with Max to haul the human up.

A fun day watching Max play "solo lead" with Zorro dipping back & forth, side to side trying to outsmart box out Max. 8.5 miles with 700 feet of elevation climbed and a top speed of 17 MPH.

2013/2014 Season to Date: 85 days on the trails covering 724.4 miles with 84,450 feet of elevation climbed.

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