Sunday, 27 January 2013

All the fun of the fair

It's taken some time but I've finally had a proper XC session on my skis this winter. I'd been hoping to get out over the past few weeks but snow has been scarce and reports coming back from the trails and resorts were of puddles of ice, wind-blown crust and manufactured snow on the slopes. I kept an eye on the snow info app on my phone and waited for fresh snowfall.

My hopes were fulfilled this weekend as fresh snow fell in the mountains, adding a few inches of skiable to the nasty old base. A short ride on the ski bus and I was finally out in the white stuff. Not so much kick-and-glide straight away however as the freshly falling snow was sticky and prone to clumping in the morning. The temperature hovered around freezing and the resort experienced every kind of precipitation from lazy white candy-floss flakes, through graupel, hail and even some rain. Later in the afternoon the snow relented and the trails remained quiet but the earlier traffic has slicked up the løype a treat. Kick-and-glide, double pole and even some skating, it felt great to be running through my rusty repertoire. The roller-coaster downhills were a blast in the flat light, bumps and dips appearing out of nowhere. By the time the ski bus rolled into the car park in the late afternoon I was feeling a little beat up but grateful I hadn't lost too much of my meagre skill. The drone of the bus's snow-chains lulled me to sleep as we left the snow behind and headed for the city.

No doubt I'll pay for it in the next few days with some aches and pains but the cost of entry was well worth it.

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