Spring Break

I initially began blogging when I was searching for sponsorships and many required an online presence through an athletes blog and social media. They are very common in the ski world as many of my teammates have them too. (linked below if you are interested) I also wanted to connect with my friends and family who I don’t get to catch up with as frequently.

Writing weekly blogs for a school assignment (if you missed this detail you can read about it here) seemed like a chore at first, but I realized I like to tell stories. No wonder I majored in writing! After my class concluded, I took some time off posting because I thought I was doing too much. But I found myself thinking “This would be awesome to write about.” So, I hope at least one person enjoys reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Spring break was too short and I strongly believe it should be two weeks instead of one. With all online classes, I decided to make it two anyway. Feeling a bit homesick, I flew home to the ranch in Wyoming and got to spend quality time with my family. They are busy people so I lent a helping hand where I could. I feed elk with my sister and brother-in-law and vaccinated cows with my dad.

While in town, I had the opportunity to race The Drift 100. I learned this race series was organized by former Alaskans and inspired by the Susitna 100. Skiing is a very small world. The race was in the upper Green River Valley on a trail that is not normally open for skiing, so I had to take advantage of this opportunity. Especially considering I grew up 15 minutes from here and have never skied this trail.

This was the hardest race I have ever done. I felt amazing for the first half then a complete white-out blizzard came in putting 6 inches of heavy snow on the track. Fighting this storm took all the energy out of me. To add to the challenge, the course was at 9,000 feet elevation which is a lot higher than Anchorage at sea level.

I genuinely don’t think I would have made it without the motivation of a burger and my puppy, Ace, waiting for me at the finish line. Of course, the end of the race was a bluebird beautiful day. I somehow pulled off a 3rd place and probably won’t do this again lol. A big thank you to SkinnySkis for the uniform and equipment, and Hestra for the mittens 🙂

To toast my race and a very late celebration of my 21st birthday, my sister, Laura, treated me to a drink. Woohoo, I finally went to a bar! It is silly, but with covid restrictions the last few years, it was nice to enjoy some young adult normalities.

Next, I made my way south to visit my other sister, Andrea. She lives in Steamboat Springs, Colorado so we had to take advantage of the backcountry tree skiing in the good ol Rocky Mountains. But I can’t leave out the last sister! I flew back into Anchorage then drove out to Valdez, Alaska to visit Meredith. Valdez has the most beautiful mountains and glaciers, so I spent our entire ski gawking.

And to cap off the adventure filled few weeks, we had a costume nordic skiing relay with the college ski teams. I am very proud of my teammate bringing us home to 4th place. He is an alpine racer and this was his first time on cross country skis; it was amazing.

Please enjoy this random assortment of photos from all the adventures. And here are a few of my teammates blogs if you are interested in reading them too 🙂

haileyswirbul.com

michaelearnhartski.com

garrettbutts3710.wixsite.com

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