Well it’s long overdue but I promise it was not laziness that kept me from updating my blog during the holidays. In fact quite the opposite is true. Here is what I did during the holidays in both pictures and words!
To start, I spent the first day back in the USA on my Line Influence 115’s at Deer Valley Resort. It was a pretty decent powder day and I didn’t want to waste any of it. After several hour of “shredding the Gnar” I decided to trade in the fat boards for some skinny sticks and spent the afternoon touring the XC trails at White Pine Touring.
Later that week I was lucky to be in the right place at the right time to watch a couple moose ponder the thought of ski jumping. The spent almost 20 minutes looking down the landing hill trying to decide their next option. Eventually Bull Winkle and Rocky decided to back away from the jump, and leave it to the youngsters.
Following a few days of training I took off for Berlin, Wisconsin to celebrate the holidays. One of my favorite events among dozens was the cookie decorating competition we had. As you can see from the photo below there was some high quality entries that made the judge’s job difficult. Don’t worry though yours truly was on the podium in second place with the high-quality melting snowman. You might also notice Mr. Hanky the Christmas poo there too. He was quite the Christmas hit! Yup although he did not make the podium I am proud of the Mr. Hanky entry.
After bulking up with my fair share of cookie dough I had to burn some calories. I was a sight to see skiing on the snowmobile trails of Green Lake County. But it was worth it because the skiing was endless and I definitely had my fair share of it while I was there. As you can see in the photo it’s endless but flat. However this is not the only skiing in the area. In fact there is quite a few XC centers that have skiing. However the snow was so fresh there was not much groomed during the holidays. I decided it was best to stick to the snowmobile trails.
Other then skiing I thoroughly enjoyed my time with my GF’s family in her hometown. They opened their home to me and made me feel like it was my own family and together we had a blast. The whole week was a nice break from the routine. Now I am back in Utah and taking advantage of the last few days before I take off for the next stretch of the season. The next trip will be a long one so stay tuned for a number of updates throughout the next 5 weeks!
Who is excited to get back to competition? This Guy!
Ramsau am Dachstein is a memorable place. Every year the event stands out compared to some of the other world cups. Several factors contribute to this attribute, everything from the hotel we stay at, to the weather that happens around us, but of course the results help tremendously.
Ramsau was the first place I ever got a top 10, I finished 8th after a solid jump performance and a great race, I will never forget that race. This weekends event stacks right up with that race. I finished 8th again, however this time I got to share the top 10 with my brother Taylor. He finished his career best 10th place. Just like in the team event post I had earlier this year, it's not everyday you get to share results/opportunities like that with family members. In addition to 2 in the top 10 we also had Bill Demong finish 16th, which shows signs that we are starting to come together as a team.
The second day in Ramsau I again was in the fight for the podium. After finishing a disappointing 25th in the jumping, I started the race with some angst and wanted to put myself to the test. Quickly after the start I realized I was going to have a great race and I put my head down and went. I moved up to 2nd at one point and remained in the very large leading pack until the last hill. The pace just picked up a little too much for me and I moved back to 17th place where I finished. However I was happy with this result as that is without a doubt the fastest time I have skied this year. 9th fastest that day and I know that is a sign that more good races are coming.
Truthfully I was very surprised that this weekend went as well as it did. The whole week leading up to the events, I had been sick with a very intense cough. I was very nervous that it was going to drastically affect my racing. Luckily it didn't and I have USANA to thank for that. Their vitamins keep my body running the best it can and even with a cold I was still able to race successfully. I have no doubt the USANA products helped me recover quicker and get back my peak shape! Check out their products at www.usana.com Thank you USANA!
So whats next? Well, I am home for the holidays! I will be around Park City training until the 31st of Dec. In between now and then I will be taking a trip to Wisconsin for Christmas to spend the holidays with my girlfriends family. I am very excited to head back to the midwest for christmas and see what it's all about!
So Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! I will update you again soon!
This past weekend was our second set of World Cup competitions in Kuusamo, Finland. For many of you who follow the tweets and posts on Facebook, much of this is old news. However for those that don’t follow them, here is a little recap of the week in Finland.
Despite rumors of little snow in Kuusamo, by the time we arrived there was plenty of snow, cold conditions and great jumping. The first two days we were there were some of the best I have had on the hill. The week went by rather quickly leading into the competitions and before any of us knew it, it was time to compete. For me this was a blessing, as I hate playing the waiting game. After our second day on the jump hill I knew I was ready for the weekend ahead. I kicked of the weekend by having the longest jump in the first round of official training. I followed that up with two more solid jumps and placed 8th in the provisional comp. This brought my confidence up and I was ready to go for real the next day. Saturday we were fortunate to have decent conditions on the hill and I was able to keep my jumping alive by placing 11th. Going into the XC I was a little nervous seeing as last weekend was not my most spectacular racing by any means. After the first lap I found my self fighting for the podium, feeling good like my normal self. I gave it a valiant effort but was unsuccessful in staying with the group. I finished a respectable 14th place. I had the 13th fastest time though which shows that the shape is coming.
Sunday was a two-man team event. I was stoked to be teamed up with my brother Tay. The snow was a major factor on Sunday, many of the teams struggled with the jumping portion. Tay and I were able to jump into 9th place. Taylor stepped up huge in his jumping and that was a big factor in our placing. In the race we were in the hunt for top 6 until the 4th lap of 5. Once we lost contact with the group 9th place was our clear placement. However both Tay and I came into the day with no expectations and to be honest we were surprised to even be in the hunt. There is still a lot of work to be done but at least we know we are on the right track.
So what's next? Home then Ramsau, currently I am writing this on the plane while flying home. We will spend the week in Park City, training and refreshing before heading back over on Monday to get ready for Ramsau. I am excited to continue the momentum while there. Hopefully combine some solid jump results with races just like the first day in Kuusamo. Till then, stay tuned!