Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Northwest Campus

Pati, Mario and Andrew have been trying for the past couple of days to travel across the state to go skiing with the locals in Brevig Mission, on the Bering Sea coast.  They're participating in the Skiku program, volunteering their time to teach schoolchildren in small rural Alaska villages how to ski.

Problem is, Mt. Pavlof has been erupting and spewing a cloud of volcanic ash from its location on the end of the Alaska Peninsula all across the state, cancelling most flights to western Alaska. (I myself had been planning to travel to Dillingham in Bristol Bay this week but unlike our three friends, I have the luxury of being able to tell my clients I'll just wait until the volcano calms down and try again in a couple weeks.) Our three UAAers have made several fruitless trips to the Anchorage International Airport this week. But this afternoon, they finally made it out of Anchorage, to Nome. Tomorrow morning, they plan to take a short flight northwest from Nome to Brevig Mission.  From the pictures I received this evening, it looks like they're hitting all the must-see attractions.

I've spent many an evening in this place myself, and nothing good ever came of it.

NCAA's 2016

I had to miss NCAA's in Steamboat because I was in Greenland.  But I received this behind-the-scenes spy camera footage documenting the inner workings of the team that week. 

Friday, March 25, 2016

Han Vet Inte Hvordan...

Former Seawolf Viktor  continues to improve and to surprise himself. Last week, he managed to get himself a win in a sprint race. After a 115th place in the previous weekend's sprint race, Viktor seemed stunned by the result, as you can see in this classic post-race interview.

Friday, March 11, 2016


Today was our last day in Greenland. A day for sprint racing.

The volunteer course workers were great.

This was my favorite performance of the day from one of our skiers.  Eli stabbed himself in the leg and broke his pole near the start of the semifinal. Nevertheless, he kept after it and managed to win the battle for fifth place in the heat with a lunge at the finish line.  That's the kind of effort and persistence that I really like to see in sport.
After the race, Eli told me he had a good race despite the broken pole and was satisfied with his effort and his battle for fifth.
We are scheduled to leave for the airport at 3:15am! The boys are watching a movie while they wait.

The Relay

Yesterday was a blustery day here in Greenland.
It was also a relay day.

It was a good day to wear some kind of eye protection.
And there was no shame in using the handrails.
I found the team hanging out in a storage van.

Then they made their own structure.

Awards were held in the tent.
Galen shoveling spindrift out of the waxing room. The day had the feel of a mountaineering trip in the St. Elias Range.
But there were breaks in the weather now and then.
Skiers who were not on their delegation's "A-team" were assigned mixed teams. Noah Ravens and Putalik from Nunavik needed a third skier for their relay team, so I joined them.  Galen joined another team. This is Putalik from Nunavik.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Get Your Podium Photos Here!

Mass start skating yesterday.
We're all having fun.
I'm too exhausted to write more.
Here are some photos.

It was Noah's birthday. Everyone sang to him. Then the locals sang the Greenlandic version for him.

Our ski stadium (Ravnedalen) in the evening. We are staying in the neighborhood in the background.