Friday the 13th was looking like it was going to be a very unlucky day for everyone on the UAA Ski Team. This was the day for the annual Skiwolf Challenge - a "skimeister" event to find out once and for all who is the best all-around skier on the team. The "uphillers" would have to figure out how to get down a slalom course at Alyeska, and the alpine skiers would need to strap on the cross-country skis and drag themselves two laps around Moose Meadows. The cross-country pursuit start format was calculated based on time behind the leader in the alpine race. It was clear the chairlift-riders were going to have a big lead going into the cross-country portion, but how big would it be?
Nevio arriving in style:
Somehow, Galen doesn't look so tall and thin when wearing his xc gear...
You could tell Lukas wanted to race, but the doctor who fixed his broken wrist said, "No skiing!"
Here's Ida, showing how it's supposed to be done:
Can you tell which Seawolves are the XC skiers?
Nordic skiers don't feel at home unless they can walk up the hill before coming back down:
Wait a sec... which side of the gates are we supposed to ski???
It was established on the alpine hill that the chairlift riders were a lot faster at getting down a slalom course than us Nordic skiers, but we also found out something else. Among the cross-country skiers, our fastest athlete in the day's slalom grew up on a pancake-flat island in the Baltic Sea, in a city that gets more rain than snow during the winter. I don't remember hearing anything about alpine skiing dream-vacations in Copenhagen. Then again, Lindsey Vonn grew up in Minnesota...
So we went across the street to Moose Meadows for the pursuit-start cross-country race. Several of the alpine skiers would be starting minutes ahead of the cross-country skiers, but the sense of trepidation among the alpiners was palpable when they realized there is no chairlift at Moose Meadows. (to be continued...)
(And by the way, thank you to Taylor for all the great pictures!!!)