Monday, February 15, 2010

Training in Mt. Washington

Who says there's no snow in Vancouver?

Well we’re not in Vancouver city as such; but close enough. Two days ago we took the ferry across to Vancouver Island. By the time we arrived at Mt. Washington, a two hour’s drive from Nanaimo, there was a blistering snow storm. I felt like we were in the middle of the Arctic Circle!

By morning, things luckily cleared up and we had a fantastic day training. There is so much snow here! It is hard to believe that Cypress Mountain, where there is not one natural snow flake in site, is less than 200km away! There seems to be a completely different weather system here on the Island, with over 400cm of snow as a base!

(Fresh snow at Mt. Washington)

Mt. Washington has very kindly built us a ski cross course to train on for the next four days. Training with us are the Swedes and the Finnish. The course is great. The start is basically a complete replica of the Olympic course we will be racing on in a week. It starts with a 3-step drop down (something a little awkward and not seen often in ski cross) followed by two massive wu-tangs (halfpipe-like features- see picture). We worked a lot on starts, trying to figure out what is fastest way to ski these features.

(The 3-metre we-tangs at the beginning of the course)

(Me in my green and gold Olympic Aussie goggles)

Today the weather is not so great. We headed out at 9am but the fog was so dense we couldn’t see a thing. It reminded me a little of skiing back at home! So today we’re having a much needed rest day (plus gym and physio, of course). The past few days have been so chaotic in the village; I’m pretty happy to just chill out and watch some of the Olympic events. Today is a huge day for the Aussies. On the schedule is the men’s boarder cross (Alex Pullin and Damon Hayer), plus the men’s downhill (Craig Branch and Jono Brauer), and the women’s luge (Hannah Campbell-Pegg). Hopefully a few more medals to add to Dale Begg-Smith’s silver in the moguls last night!

If all goes to plan with weather and schedules, my event will be broadcasted at the following date and time…

Olympic Time Table - Ski Cross

Vancouver time:

23 Feb 2010

Women's Ski Cross event

Qualifying - 10:30am

Finals - 13:00


Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST)24 Feb 2010

Qualifying - 5:00am

Finals - 8:00am