Week 1 On the Road

One week has already flown by of this 2014-2015 season on the road. You know what that means?? Time to start racing!!

We spent the past week living and skiing in Munio, Finland- approximately 300 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle. That means many things.

1) It takes 30 hours of travel to get from Anchorage, Alaska to here!

2) It doesn’t get light until 9:30, and it begins to get dark at 2:30PM

3) I haven’t gotten to say hello to the sunshine since I got here. It is almost like a constant sunset/sunrise all day, which is actually really neat and pretty!

One of the sunrises that goes all day (Sophie photo)

4) BRRRR, it is cold here! We are staying right on the ski trails, which means we walk to training every day, and we can escape to our cabin pretty easily if we underdressed or just need a little break to warm up!

Doing some testing with my new tech, JP. Chilly times! (Reese Hanneman photo)

5) Snow! There is snow, and plenty of it! There is a great little 5 kilometer loop groomed that has provided for some awesome training and interval sessions as we prepare for the World Cup next weekend in Kuusamo, Finland.

Enjoying some snow! (Sophie photo)

6) We are surrounded by other skiers. It has been fun to have some other teams here including the Estonian’s, the Polish, the Finnish, and many younger training groups from Norway, Sweden, and Finland.

Following Justyna during intervals one day.

It has made for a great week. Early on, I got to celebrate my birthday, which is always really fun on the road. My teammates are always incredible at making me feel special all day, surprising me with gifts, nice cards, and cakes! Not only that, I get a second birthday when everyone in the US wakes up 10 hours later and sends me many wishes! It is the best! Thanks everyone.

Some amazing Northern Lights (Reese Hanneman photo)
The older you get- the larger the birthday candles! 

I was so excited to have the best Norther Lights show ever the night of my birthday. It was a cold, clear night- so they were really popping! Reese caught some really awesome photos on his camera, I am not sure how, but it was pretty amazing!

We found some time to go visit the local Middle School in town to tell the kids about what we do. It was amazing how well most of them spoke English! (Caitlin photo)
Making strength a little more exciting adding the danger factor. (Sophie photo)

Today we take a 5-6 hour road trip south and towards Russia landing in Kuusamo- the venue for the opening World Cup’s. Can’t wait to get started!!