Showing posts from February, 2023

A Very Long, Very Hard Day -- Jim's Birkie Report

  We don't always (ever?) fly to the finish line with a fist pump and a glowing smile of triumph.  Sometimes a race is just a very long, very hard day, and all we can do is try to muster up every single ounce of mental toughness and fortitude we can find.  That's what happened to Jim Felty at this year's American Birkie; after a skater crashed into him in his last Birkie, injuring him and knocking him out of the race, it was important to him to finish this year, and by golly, he did.  His experience is inspiring to all of us who struggle -- thank you for letting me share your story, Jim! UFF DA! Well, that was awful, ugly, tough, challenging, over-whelming and very disappointing.  Yesterday was my 9th American Birkie (18th overall) and I set a new personal worst.  In fact, had Jeremy [his son] not been along for this trip, I would have called it a day at the first aid was just one of those days.  So here is my sort of recap. It was freaking cold at 2 degrees at

Teacup Classic for the Smiles -- Joy's Race Report

  [ed. note: For those who haven't yet found this wonderful race, Teacup Snow-Park is on the sunny side of Mount Hood, 30 minutes south of Hood River, and the trails are expertly groomed (follow Teacup Nordic on Instagram for the descriptive, envy-inducing grooming reports!), wide and open and gorgeous and fun and full of surprising, in-your-face views of Mount Hood around almost every corner.  The Teacup Classic is two races, 5k and 15k; the 15k race is a big scenic rolling 10k loop followed by the 5k loop, so there isn't a lot of repetition.  The race timers hand you a printout of your results (the "pink slip" in Joy's report) literally as soon as you cross the finish line, which is awesome, and after the race there is delicious soup and bread and goodies and awards.  This race is SO worth the trip, plus ... Hood River!] (first photo is Debbie's; the other two are Joy's) Teacup Classic -- Joy's Race Report The race started with an ankle bracelet and