18 January 2007

Lander, Knight of Winter

So today was day three of no school for Lander. Despite sledding on Tuesday, skiing on Wednesday and hanging out at the house today, he is getting quite bored. While I was bored riding the trainer and watching 4 episodes of Lost, Lander was left to entertain himself. He scavenged upstairs for a while, I thought he was playing with Legos, until he came downstairs dressed like this. He announced he was a winter knight. This is the best outfit I have ever seen!!!! I especially like the ski socks, thermal underwear and the Little Richard wig, they complement each other nicely. I am sure he can slay dragons with his plastic screwdriver sword. He kind of reminds me of a character from The Princess Bride.

17 January 2007

Snow Day

Growing up in Utah I never understood the concept of a "Snow Day". It snows a lot in Utah, big deal. Up here in the Pacific Northwest, a "Snow Day" is marked by mass confusion and hysteria when 3-5 inches of snow fall and major cities and town shut down completely. It is really amusing. I drove to work yesterday (20 miles) and it took 3 HOURS!!! School was cancelled for two days and there were dozens of sledding related injuries to kids that think that sledding down a street is safe when cars are sliding down the same hill backwards/sideways and doing 360's. It has been chaos. The roads around our house are still snowpacked so I guess I won't be riding my bike outside anytime soon. It's a good thing I have intervals I can do on the trainer tomorrow. At least I can look forward to watching a few more episodes of Lost-Season 2.

The great thing about working part-time in a research lab is that I can pretty much make my own hours. Today Lander and I headed to the mountain to ski rather than battle the mayhem of traffic around town. At least most people that go to the mountain know how to drive in the snow because they do it everytime they go skiing. It was a perfect day. There were a few new inches of snow and it was mostly sunny with no wind. Here are some pics and some more video of Lander skiing. He had a great instructor today, she had him up on the chair lift the whole 2 hours, he did AWESOME!!! Lander had one melt-down when he wanted to go into the terrain park. He flailed on the ground and managed to kick both his skis off. He will probably be rippin' the rails by the time he is 6.

Clouds and inversion layer

Lander and me

Me goofin' around on the ski lift

More video of Lander (some of these aren't that great because I was in the wrong place trying to move around on my skis and film at the same time without falling over. So when you see the camera moving around spastically, that is me trying to stay upright.):

Lander does the splits

16 January 2007

MLsKi Day

No School + No Work=SKIING!!!! Today Bryan, Lander and I packed it up and headed to Meadows for a day of nice sunny Northwest skiing. It was a beautiful day, one of the few times I have actually been able to see where I was going. Here are some pics and video of Lander's ski lesson.

Lander's Ski Lesson Videos:

Lander excited to be skiing

Lander more interested in sampling snow than skiing

Mt. Jefferson

View from the top of Cascade

05 January 2007


Today Lisa T. and I went skiing at Mt. Hood Meadows. When we arrived there was a large section of the bottom part of the resort closed off and patrolers said there was an incident. I thought to myself, it must be really serious, and it was.

05:21 PM PST on Friday, January 5, 2007
By KGW Staff
GOVERNMENT CAMP -- A skier was killed Friday after a collision on a trail at Mt. Hood Meadows.

Mount Hood.
Hood River County deputies said 45-year-old Portlander Geoffrey Scott Bradeen died after a collision around 9:45 a.m.

Officials said it appeared he was skiing on the North Canyon run when someone else crashed into him. Deputies said it appeared Bradeen may have fallen and was hit in the head by a snowboarder while trying to get up. An assistant medical examiner on scene determined the head injuries to be the cause of Bradeen’s death. Police said that the victim was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

"I honestly have not seen a situation like this in 20 years," said Mt. Hood Meadows General Manager Dave Riley, "where there was a fatality and one of the people left the scene."
The area where the death happened was closed for investigation and deputies were trying to interview a snowboarder who may have more information.

No charges were expected, since it was not being investigated as a criminal matter, deputies said.

I am not going to even go into a diatribe about my personal opinions on this situation, those who know me know exactly how I feel (Long Live ALTA!!!). All I can say is that what happened is totally inexcusable, it was on a GREEN RUN which is really wide and mellow. What if that had been a child, what if it had been my child? I realize that there is an inherent risk in skiing. To me that means that I need to be careful of what I am doing and where I am doing it and attentive those around me. It's the same concept as driving a car too fast, I don't care how good you think you are at it, you don't have any control when you have to dodge an obstacle or stop suddenly. Is it that complicated to understand? My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. As for the snowboarder who caused all this, YOU SUCK!!!!

Ironically, I had an altercation earlier today with a snowboarder that almost hit me from behind and he had the nerve to shout obscenities at me when I told him to watch where he was going. Another skier told me on the lift he almost got hit as well by a snowboarder who had to cut across the entire width of a run so he could catch his 1/2 inch of air off his "sweet jump". All I can say is "I MISS ALTA, I LOVE YOU!!!"

02 January 2007

Dropping a Knee at Alta-holics Anonymous

I LOVE ALTA!!!! Tele skiing in Utah over Christmas was awesome. There wasn't a whole lot of new snow, but there was plenty of fun to be had at Alta. Bryan and I found some great spots off trail and even made a few fresh turns in the fluffy pow. The best part was that I got Bryan on tele skis for 2 whole days. The first day was a result of him taking a core sample out of the bottom of his alpine ski on the 2nd run of the day courtesy of a hidden rock. He opted to rent tele gear while his ski was being repaired. Day 2 Phil joined us and I had a lot of laughs watching Phil and Bryan waffle around on tele gear. I think they ultimately deserved this since they drug me through a ton of gated black diamond areas the day before. Phil's famous words were "Come on, it will be great.", only to find moguls the size of VW Beatles. We did find a lot of good snow even though I had to do some survival tele skiing in the huge moguls to get to it. It was anything but graceful. Here are some pics from our trip and a couple of videos of Bryan and I skiing. Bryan makes me jealous, this is only is 4th time on tele and he is linking turns and looking like a pro. He still has some good wrecks though, unfortunately, I didn't get any of them on film.

Awesome sunrise en route to Alta

Bryan tele skiing:

The infamous Utah inversion layer

By the time we left Utah I had tele'd 4 days and went cross country skiing one day, with no rest in between. My legs were shot. I could barely walk by our last day skiing. One byproduct of my 5 consecutive days of skiing was one very swollen right knee. I guess the fact that I have a torn LCL and partial ACL tear really makes it difficult to recover from skiing.

As you can see, my right knee is puffy compared to my left. This picture doesn't do it justice. Also, you will notice a nice yellow/purple bruise above my left knee. This is from my first stint on cross country skis. Bryan and I both had one really great crash on or XC skis. Mental note, if there is any chance you might want to slow down on a downhill, do it before you get going too fast. Obviously, I had some issues. This picture also does not do my contusion justice, it is very bright and colorful and now it is more purple than yellow. I am pretty sure I broke a blood vessel.

Mach 1 Tubing

While we were in Utah we got to go "Extreme Tubing" with my brother and his family at his company party. This was really cool since they had a rope tow up to the top of the hill and then the slope was divided into different lanes. Each person had to be in their own tube, but you could hold each others tubes and go down as a group. Some lanes were faster than others, and some had bumps that you could get airborn on. It was a lot of fun. Lander had a blast. We went so fast I thought he would be scared, but he just had the biggest grin on his face after each run. I am pretty convinced we hit 30 mph at least. He is such an adrenaline junkie. Here are some pics.

Lander with his huge cheesey grin.

Lander waiting for mom to tow him to the rope tow!