Friday, November 28, 2014

Gunning for a Big December

Dorothy Stewart Trail and the Sangres in morning light
Strava tells me that my running mileage for the year is at a disappointing 409mi. The good news is that I have five weeks to adjust this total. I've come up just short of 500mi in both of the last two years. This is humiliating enough to admit without adding a third year and 50% more failure to the total. Gotta bring it home with 20mi weeks in December. A pathetic goal but every journey begins with the first step.

Mini-Dirt running with Waltz and

I opted toward a long mtb ride yesterday morning rather than the annual Turkey Trot, but later I brought the little one out to the race (Atalaya) thinking he'd enjoy all the activity. Well, mini-me went crazy with the running. I'd peg his morning running at close to 2mi in random loops, back-and-forths, and roughly half of the Kids 1K race. He got away from me once so that he could run through the finishing chute. He got away from me a second time which prompted an abrupt announcement to my friends, "Shit, I lost the 2-year old". I found him though. He was running. The little fella actually cried later on our walk to the truck because 'I wouldn't let him run'.

Related Posts:
 - Mileage: How Much is Not Enough
 - Year in Review 2010

Friday, November 21, 2014

Trading the Downhill Skis for Nordic

Setting down tracks in Pagosa
The nordic/cross-country ski scene in New Mexico is not well established. Trails are sparse, the knowledge base is sparse, ski partners are few. For these reasons there's a frustrating dynamic in that decent and affordable used gear is simply not available for a newbie looking for an inexpensive entry to the trails. Alpine Sports or NM Bike N' Sport are great places to pickup a nice starter nordic setup for $400 and up, but there aren't many that will make this leap when you can flip that same coin for a seasons pass at the local mountain. A serious economic barrier to entry.

There is however one fine resource in town to bridge this cost/knowledge gap - Mr. Kelly Kellstedt. A one man outdoors shop with loads of used gear, personal tech services to swap out bindings or boot pairings, and the occasional buyer for un-used equipment laying around in storage. If you've ever browsed the nordic selection at the annual Santa Fe Ski Swap, Kelly's the guy selling 90% of what's available. He's an annual fixture there and he'll gladly talk you up and give you one of his cards because selling directly is better business than working the Swap. The man's also got a wealth of stories about river trips and general adventuring. I've prodded him in hopes of learning of unknown 'secret spots' in the backcountry. He offered several superlatives for the Colorado River. Not so secret, but hard to disagree with.

I think this season is going to have solid snow cover up here in the sierra norte, and I think I'll be out on my skinny boards quite a bit. I think other outdoorsy types want to be out there too if only they had the beta to make it work. I think this will help.

Related Posts:
 - Cross Country Skiing Santa Fe
 - Enchanted Forest Ski Trails
 - Ski Season Cometh - Santa Fe Ski Swap
 - Area Nordic Trails Listing

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Ski Season Cometh - Santa Fe Ski Swap

New terrain at Taos Ski Valley
Stopped by the ski swap this morning. I love the swap if only just to get fired-up for the coming winter wonderland. Chatted with friends, mostly loads of unsupported speculation on this season’s snow estimates; quick conversations about yurt trips and Colorado trips that may not happen and general super-psychedness… Good stuff. Picked up a helmet for the two year old. He now looks like a two year old astronaut. His helmet already flashing a fresh new decal for Crested Butte. The ambition appears to be high with that one.

Lots of New Mexico ski news this off-season including new lifts at Wolf Creek and Taos (Kachina Ridge!), and the change of ownership at Purgatory which was bought by the ownership group that owns/manages Sipapu, Pajarito, and Sunbowl in AZ. Their marketing team was at the swap giving out vouchers for a free day at Sipapu in exchange for email and contact info. SOLD! Worth the price of admission.

Also scooped up something called the New Mexico Extreme Ski Card. It offers buy-one-get-one lift passes at Taos, Pajarito, Sipapu, Angel Fire, Purg, Crested Butte, and a free pass at Enchanted Forest, all for $89. A spot-on deal for a guy that can only get out for a few days of downhill each season and likes to hit the xc trails. Plus, the card’s transferable to my dirtbag friends. SOLD!

Related Posts:
- Taos Ski Valley Bought up by Wall St. Financier
- Colorado Yurt Trip - Neff Mountain
- New Mexico Ski Season Arrives Early (2013)


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