Friday, September 10, 2010

World Championships


The 2010 Mountain bike World Championships were in Mount Sainte Anne this year, and they were amazing. The whole event was super cool. The expo was massive with tons of bike teams, countries, and vendors represented, and the race course was very well laid out for spectators and racers alike.

During the week it had been super dry and dusty, and we had good preparation training on it and staying in the condos with the national team. The night before our race it rained quite a bit, and really it just helped the course – knocked the dust down and made it tackier.

The women’s race went off at 11, and I watched the first ½ of it. It was very exciting with Catherine V having a very good ride in the mid 30’s before fading a bit on the last lap to 42nd, and Catharine P having an awesome ride, leading for lap 2 and then fighting back and forth with the top 5 and ending up 4th.

I had to leave from watching their race to get kitted up to race at 2. I had a good warmup and then spun to the starting pens. The fans there were awesome, with tons of friends from NB and all over providing support before the race. Then we were called up individually, and rode up through the crowd, who just loved it and gave huge cheers.

When the gun went off I had a good start and moved up well. There were 3 pileups in the first 1km, and I was able to mostly avoid them and move up. I got into the woods in a pretty good position, and did some running and riding to try and hold my position and move up more. I rode/ran the rocky downhill (there were so many people), and then at the bottom I launched off a rock to pass someone and landed heavily on my back tire and heard a big BRAAAP. I had burped my tire, and it was down to about 10-15psi. There was enough in there that I could ride a bit, so I kept going and rode up the switchback climb. As I was riding I was thinking what I should do, and because it was just burped I figured it should hold air. So I reached back and ripped my CO2 off my seat post, screwed the head on while riding (I had awesome traction at 15psi), and then at the top of the climb I jumped off and put the CO2 on. I didn’t lose much time, but because it was at the start of the race I lost a lot of positions. From them on it was all about being patient and passing when I could. I think it really took me another full lap to clear traffic, and then I felt pretty good and was laying down very competitive lap times.

The most impressive thing about worlds was the crowd. There were so many spectators, I think it was estimated between 40-70 thousand! And the thing about racing in Canada, is that 69,000 of them ALL cheered for the Canadians!!! As Elizabeth put it, you could stand at the bottom of the hill and tell where all 7 of the Canadians were just by listening to the crowd!

It was incredible, there were sections lined 4 deep with spectators, and here I couldn’t make out a single word, it was just a wall of sound. Other sections in the woods I could tell where some of the super fans from NB and the Maritimes were. There was even a section where Jamie Lamb and Barry Carswell had put up a full size bed sheet sign with “GO Allez Hadley Canada” written on it. This definitely brought a grin to my face everytime.

I was definitely motivated by this crowd, and pushed as hard as I could. I steadily moved up all race, and made it onto the last lap without getting pulled. On the last lap I almost caught Raph, and finished 10sec behind him in 45th place and was only 2min back of Derek and Max. Kabush had a very good race and finished 8th.

So now I am back out west and racing the Revelstoke hill climb this Sunday. It is a 27km paved mountain road, with a ton of switchbacks and a very constant 6% grade. Should be fun, I’m trying for the record and to beat Kika by 5min!!!

Many thanks to all the Maritimers who made it up, I heard you out there and pushed harder for it. Thanks also to my parents and Catherine’s parents for your help throughout the season and leading up to the race, and many thanks to everyone at Xprezo for all the support – it has been a great season!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Windham World cup finals

So Catherine and I made the drive down from her cottage in Gatineau in 2 parts. We stopped along the way and tented one night, it was nice and relaxing, although it did rain in the morning and we ate breakfast under a tree. The next day we drove to Windham and did a few laps of the course, it was super muddy and kind of soupy.

That night we camped again at a very sketchy campground, the worst I have ever been at. We ended up just getting a site in the back woods and showering in the creek, and we had steak over the camp fire, so it was fun. Oh, and it rained all night. Then we moved into a motel and it quit raining - ironic hunh?

Today was race day, I had a decent start and then moved up the whole race. Lap 1 and 2 I didn't feel the best but kept pushing, I had to out sprint riders to get into the singletrack first, so that took a lot of effort and I couldn't ride the top of the descent super well, but by lap 3 I had it figured out and rode the climb really well and then could catch and pass riders on the descent. It was full on NASCAR passing, but super fun. There were 4 sections on the descent I could pass, 3 on small uphills and 1 where I would out sprint someone from singletrack down a grass descent and then nab them into the next corner. Definately did some 2 wheel slides.

There were tons of flat tires. Lots of people were clobbering rocks on the descent and flatting. On Lap 5 Derek came out of the tech zone at the same time as me, and we rode a lap together and did the descent with Mike Broderick, so it was fun because all 3 of us were about the same speed, and we closed a big gap to the rider in front of us and majorly gapped the group behind us. For lap 6 I was able to pass Derek at the top of the climb and get into the singletrack first. I rode it really well and closed the gap to two other riders. I passed one of them on the descent and the 3 of us were in single file with me in the lead coming out of the last corner. I waited a bit and carried more momentum through a ditch and sprinted hard to take 38th place. Definately my best world cup this year, and my best result at a stacked field. For the record I was top Canadian, and 3rd North American!!!

Catherine Vipond ( had a good race for 42, and Catharine Pendrel ( had a great one for 1st, and 1st overall! Good race for team Valleyview house.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bromont Canada Cup

So the Bromont Canada Cup went really well for me. I was feeling good all week and I think racing just the three days at TransRockies did wonders for my legs. I know from racing the 7 day version in the past it was always 3 weeks before I felt good again, but with just 3 days of racing I was ready to go 5 days later.

This year we raced the exact same course at Bromont, however, it felt as far from the same course as imaginable. Where last year there was deep and slow mud everywhere, this year we flew through those sections and pulled off lap times way faster than the World Cup winner. I kind of missed the added technical element of a wet race, but at the same time it is a lot nicer not to have to totally overhaul the my mtb and scrub the mud spots out of all the clothing.

For the race we had an awesome field. There were top racers from Britan, USA, New Zealand, Australia, and of course Canada. I had a great start in the top 10 and moved up to 5th by the top of the climb. We stayed together for the first lap and then up the climb on lap 2 Liam and Derek upped the pace a bit and got away. Watson tried to follow and I wasn’t far behind. On lap 3 I rode by myself and then for lap 4 Cam and Raph caught up to me. Raph put in an attack on the climb and he only got 5sec on me, and by mid way thorough lap 5 I had closed the gap to him by really railing a few sections of singletrack. I was feeling great starting lap 6 and attacked Raph through the start finish and then held the pace up the climb. I had 40 seconds on him by the top and was told Watson wasn’t far ahead. I chased hard but never saw Watson, ... until I came around a corner and saw him lying on the ground where he had crashed at the marshal station. He was in a lot of pain and had brused his quad quite badly. I was sorry to beat him in this way, as he really had a stupid crash on the easiest part of the trail, but I’m not complaining with 3rd.

Big thanks to my parents, Catherine’s parents, and Eric Alain, Terry, Josee, Hugo, Ava, and Luca from Xprezo for all the help on the weekend!

Catherine and I are now at her cottage in Gatineau area, enjoying the bike riding and water sports. Next up is the Windham World Cup on the 28th.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


This year I got to race Transrockies for the Canadian National team, as a project to help Canadians get the most points possible so we can qualify more men for the Olympics. For TR I was working for Max to help him get points, and get a few myself along the way.

Kate Scallion picked me up in Kamloops and we drove the rest of the way to Fernie together. The race started in Fernie and the full 7 day version went clear to Canmore. I only raced the 3 day version, called TR3.
nical singletrack called ‘Hyperventilation’ for 35min. I was quite proud of myself for only dabbing once. It summited at the top of a small mountain and then we dove down the fun decent. I rode as fast as I could and didn’t catch anyone or get caught. I had a pretty good ride and finished 4th.

For Day 2
For day 1 we did a 31km time trial loop in Fernie. It rained all night and half way through the morning. By the time I started at 1:30 it had stopped raining and the sun was out. The first 5km was a soupy gravel road with a hub deep puddle, so you got good and wet to start. From there we climbed steep, slick, and tech we started as a big pack, and for whatever reason I didn’t have very good legs. We started pretty hard with two old Czech racers pulling us along up the gradual climb at 35km/hr. Eventually I felt that the pace was too high and that I would really pay for it later, so I dropped off and rode my own pace. The lead group opened up quite a gap over the 30km climb. On the last 5km it was a singletrack climb and I was able to catch and pass the Czech guys. On the steep sketchy descent I caught one other guy, but from there I had to ride the whole 40km of rolling logging road by myself. It kind of sucked, but I kept pushing because I didn’t want to have a terrible result on the GC. I lost quite a bit of time in the GC, and finished 6th on the day.

Day 3 we started in Elkford, I felt pretty good and since I was supposed to be working for Max I thought I’d actually do some work. I set the pace and pulled the whole group on the rolling gravel/mud road for 26km. Along the way I chased down a few attacks and eventually Max went with an attack from Corey so then I sat on while Adam Craig pulled trying to chase them down. Just before the check point, Marty’s rear derailleur was making an awful racket, and it looked to me like the chain was off the top pulley by the cassette, so I told Marty to “Pedal backwards” and ‘crunch pop bang”, there went his derailleur. I felt really bad, however I found out later that the cage was probably broken before hand, so it wasn’t actually my bad advice. But, in the future, I won’t tell anyone to pedal backward! They had to make it a singlespeed to run all the steep up hills and ride the gradual stuff.

From checkpoint 2 I still felt pretty good so I pushed hard on the singletrack. I caught Adam Craig and the New Mexican racer who was only 30sec behind me in the GC. For the next 5km we climbed a super steep, somewhat muddy, and REALLY overgrown mining road. I rode maybe 50% and the rest it was so steep and overgrown that I pushed with my head behind my handlebars to protect it from the alders bushes. 40min of this was more than enough, and then we got above the tree line. Form there we kept on climbing, and climbing, and climbed some more. There was another big hike-a-bike section before we arrived on the top of the continental divide. It was a beautiful view looking all around at the tops of barren mountains with a few glaciers.

On the descent I was able to drop the Kona guys and caught Corey when he had a flat. At this point I was the 2nd rider on the trail, with only Max ahead. However I was pretty tired and on one of the 5 creek crossings I wrapped my chain around the pedal axle, so I had to stop and fix that. Shortly afterwards Corey caught and passed me. I finished 3rd on the day, and was very happy with it. I was far enough ahead of Carl Decker that I moved up to 4th overall in the GC.

This Sunday I am racing the Bromont Canada Cup, so hopefully I am recovered by then.

Sunday, July 18, 2010



I had an awesome race at nationals this year! Probably my best race since nationals last year – and probably even better than that.

In the morning both Cathe/arines had good races. Pendrel rode away from the field and won solidly, and Vipond had a very good race to hang onto 4th. It was pretty exciting to watch their races on the live webcast and then I caught the finish in person.

My race I started a bit slower than sometimes – I knew from the Alberta Cup I did here in Canmore last month that I really suffered from starting too hard. This race I was in about 10-15th into the singletrack climb on the first lap, and guys were already starting to pop halfway up the first climb. I got on Craig’s wheel (blue competition cycles) through the road section and we worked together a bit, then on the climb I got ahead and away.

I rode a good lap 2 and then on lap 3 Cory Wallace (kona) caught up to me and we worked together a bit – he made me suffer on a few of the false flats but I figured I could suffer though it and stuck on. By the climb I was feeling good again – Cory and I were trying to close the gap to a group of 3 with Marty, Eric, and and Kris – they had been dangling out front at 15-25seconds all race. Lap 4 we caught Marty right near the end of it when he popped off the train, and then starting lap 5 I thought to myself “man do my legs feel good” and that it was the time to go for it – commit 100%. So I cranked those afterburners on and ripped up the climb, I dropped Corey by the “eye dropper”, a drop back into the stadium that I built last year with a pick axe. Then I motored up the dbl track climb and caught Eric at the start of the singletrack climb, he was pretty blown at that point and I was just flying up the climb. I felt really good and could see Kris not that far ahead (maybe 10s at this point), I thought to myself 5th is pretty good, I’ll be happy with that, but I kept chasing hard anyway. I hadn’t closed the gap on the climb and didn’t close it descending the “laundry chutes”, but then climbing the next gradual singletrack Keith yelled to me that it was only 8sec and that I could get him – oh, and I had tons of fans including the super fans from Kamloops, so that was motivating too. So I chased hard and could see Kris before the next corner and thought that he looked like he was hurting, over the top I closed a bit and then along the rooty flat section I closed quite a bit more, by the actual descent into Shorty Chutes I took a few of my sweet lines jumping rocks and roots and just sprinted to get in the draft for the fast ski trail descent, Kris pulled hard in the singletrack hoping I’d make a mistake, but I was on fire at this point, I felt really good and when we hit the final open ski trail to the finish I sat on his wheel and then put out an amazing sprint to take 4th!

Needless to say I am super excited and completely out did my expectations of what I was capable of at nationals this year. Also of note, Catharine Pendrel won the elite women’s making us the Fastest MTB House in Canada, and Catherine Vipond and I were both 4th so we are the Fastest Mtb Couple in Canada!

Many thanks to the good folks at the Nordic centre (Magi in particular) for letting me work here last fall building a lot of the race trails, and for all the support this year.

Next up Keith, Marty and I are doing a sweet road trip including Fernie, Rossland, and Revelstoke, so I might be out of touch for a bit. The girls meanwhile are going to race two world cups in Europe, so we are trying to make them jealous of our sweet riding.

Oh, and at Edmonton last weekend I had a good race finishing 5th - it is a great venue too - being right down town and attracking lots of spectators.

Monday, July 12, 2010


Updates... updates...updates. Well, I’ve had a fantastic few weeks back out west. Catherine and I went on a super cool canoe camping trip to Wells Grey provincial park. We borrowed a canoe from friends Ryan and Tanya, and then were over at a friends place returning a dvd and they suggested we go to Murtle lake, the largest “no- motorized” lake in NA. They also lent us a canoe cart, fishing rod, and some waterproof bags, so we were set.

We loaded up the trusted vibe and with all the gear (of course including bikes) and drove up to Blue River and then 30k in on a dirt road. There we loaded up the canoe on the cart and pushed/pulled it the 2 km into the lake. At this point the skys opened up and we got a bit wet, but it quit raining in time for us to put the canoe in the water and put on a few more layers. We had an excellent paddle out into the “middle” of the lake, and then we started watching the rain clouds move across the mountains, out from the shore, across the water, and finally on us. We got a little wet and were glad for the waterproof bags, and made it to shore without any white caps coming in. We set up camp on a beautiful sandy point with absolutely no one in sight or that we could hear. In fact we couldn’t hear any people noises and with the snow capped mountains around it was super nice. After camp was up and the sun was shining we went out fishing, Catherine got a little bored of me casting and had just fallen asleep when I got a good tug on the line and saw a fish jump, I reeled it in an Catherine woke with a jump to help me land it in the boat. I cleaned the 13” rainbow trout out and we paddled back to the camp site. There we roasted the fish over the camp fire in tinfoil with pesto – it was the BEST EVER!!!.

The next day we had beautiful weather and paddled out, fishing but not catching along the way. We had 3hr road ride to do for training, so we thought we’d go do a nice easy spin on hwy 24 west from Little Fort. Well, were we ever in for a surprise! We had a nice 10 min of flat up the river valley, and then the road veered up the mountain side and we ended up climbing at 8% grade for 17km. It was actually a really nice climb and we quite enjoyed the ride.

The next weekend I drove down to the Bear Mountain BC cup race with Pete, and we stayed with retired racer Ricky Federau. He is now full into chicken farming (for a few hrs a day) and the rest of the time he is just loving life. He mixes it up with kayaking, skiing, mtb and road riding, running, and just about anything else you can think of that is fun outdoors. He also coined the phrase ”best ever”. Anyone that knew Ricky from the race scene would know something awesome was “money”, “cash money”, or maybe even “the best ever”.

Saturday morning we got up bright and early and headed out to the race. There was a pretty good group of us there for the elite field, and Daniel Sessford led the charge up the hill the first time. I was able to get into the singletrack first and got a decent gap on the BC style descent. Then we had a 10min climb and Dan almost caught back up to me but I held him off, rode the descent pretty well lap 2,3, and at the start of lap 4 I saw Ricky was close at the bottom of the descent. I turned the afterburners on and ripped up the climb and shredded the descent to stay ahead for the win. Ricky came in 2nd, with his baggy shorts flying, and the biggest grin on his face possible – exclaiming “it was THE BEST RACE EVER!!!”

Speaking of best ever – I’ve been eating fresh carrots from our garden, and I got my new Xprezo SUB 5 with XX – both of which are the best ever!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Iron Lung and Test of Metal

From Hardwood Catherine and I flew to Kamloops and spent a few days at home before packing up AGAIN and heading to Canmore. I owed the Nordic centre 2 days of work because last fall the weather flipped and went to -27deg C, so there was no point in trying to trail build then. At Canmore we stayed with Magi and Steff and had lots of fun hanging out with them.

There was the “Iron Lung” mtb race happening that weekend on the race course that I designed and helped build. I started a bit hard and had an absolute sufferfest of a race, finishing 2nd to Steff. It was awesome to hear from all the racers how much they loved the race course and neat to see over 375 racers out all having a good time. Unfortunately due to a short sighted matter of pride by a member of the club in charge of national championships, the race course will not be on the course I designed. This is particularly too bad for all the non-elite level racers – those in it just for fun- who had so much fun at the Iron lung and were inspired to bring their friends back for the next race there.

Here's a picture of a rider going off the "eye dropper" into the stadium at Canmore, I build this section with a pick axe.

Check out this post for a shout out on the race course at Canmore.

From Canmore we drove back to the loops for a few days, and then on down to Squamish where we stayed with Olivier (a fellow Xprezo racer) and Melanie for the Test of Metal. The Test is a super cool event because everyone from the community gets interested and behind it. This year the 800 spots sold out in 24minutes!!! As an elite I was able to register day of because they want my high profile figure there...

Anyway, I had a decent start and felt pretty good, but going through one dip in the trail my chain somehow jammed with my front derailleur and twisted the derailleur. I rode it for a while and then realized that it was stupid and I was going to catastrophically break my bike, so I stopped and fixed it. It took forever to fix because with the full suspension linkage on my frame it is hard to get an allen key in there, so after 3min or so I was able to go again. I was back in about 35th at this time, and had lots of fun blowing by racers and weaving in and out on the double and singletrack. By the “9 mile” a good climb, I had caught back up to 10-17th place, and then by the top of it I pushed really hard and was up to 6th. I rode the plunge a bit slow as I was starting to get tired but then got it back together and finished strong through crumpet woods to the finish. I ended up 5th in 2:41, not a bad race for 3 min on the side of the trail and then not being able to draft anyone for the race.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

An Update....

So It's been a while and I know I should have updated long ago... but here is a bit of a recap for the last while...

The Houffalize, Belgium World cup was actually a pretty good race. It was somewhat muddy, and had good steep climbs and descents, I had fun and raced hard. We then flew to Oshawa Ontario and spent a few days with Catherine's folks before heading up to their cottage near Gatineau.

From there we went to Baie Saint Paul for the first Canada Cup, I had an ok race, not the best or worst, I cranked the turbos on for the last lap and was able to get ahead of Peter - so that was fun as we had been battling it out all race.

The race at Tremblant was pretty good, every year they make it smoother and easier (which I don't like), and this year it was even dry. We were able to race pretty much the whole thing in Big ring except a climb in the middle. I had lots of fun and used my technical abilities to make up for short falls in fitness and reeled in a few racers by the bottom of the long downhill. At the end I was able to out sprint Peter on the line to take 5th.

During the week we did some intervals on roads near the cottage, it was 35deg and humid, and I was dying in between my 10min intervals so I jumped in the nearby lakes each time for the recovery.

From there it was off to Hardwood, it was pretty hot and I had a decent race but not the best, I ended up 11th, and this time Peter got me...

Monday, April 26, 2010

UK world cup

So I raced the Dalby forest world cup yesterday. It was the first world cup of the year, so everybody is keen to test their form.

I had great preperation, with lots of time on the course during the week. We have been staying with the Myers in Guisborough, and having a great time learning lots about the UK from them.

Race day dawned with a light rain shower, enough to make Catherine worried but the track didn't actually get wet. Catherine had a great race - she started on the 2nd last row and finished 42 out of 90 or so. Kika had a slow start but moved back up through the field for 6th, so I guess she has good legs too.

My race was a bit crazy. I was on the 8th row or so, and there were another 8 rows of guys packed in behind me. When the gun went there was a crash in the first 50m, I avoided that, and then we hammered at 50km/hr on the flat to a 90deg corner, there was another crash there and I just avoided running over the guy's head with my chainrings, then back up to speed, 90deg left, avoid another crash, and then stand in line to get into the singletrack. All in all it was actually a pretty good start as I avoided the crashes and was just a bit ahead of where you really had to stop and wait.

From there I had a decent first 2 laps with a bit of waiting here and there. By the 3rd lap I was ready to crank it up and actually race, but it was super frustrating because the only places to really pass were on the flats and 2 uphills, and on the flats I just got out gunned by some of the euros - then we would ride the descents slower than I wanted to - and they would sprint up the next climb and I just didn't have the legs to sprint on every open section (like driving a car behind a Saskatchewaner, everytime you get to a passing section it is 140km/hr, and when you are twisting through the mtns it is 60km/hr - ARRRGGGHHH!!) Anyway, I found it hard to race my best, or the fastest way to get around the course. By the end of the 6th lap I was quite tired and faded a bit. I ended up finishing 101st out of 160, so not what I was hoping for but decent none the less.

We are heading to Belgium tomorrow for Houffalize WC next weekend.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


So, Catherine and I got lucky on this one. We decided to skip Sea Otter and fly to the UK a bit early to do a local race there and get used to the time change. We left Tuesday and got in Wed, and merrily went on our way - oblivious to the fact that volcanic ash was spewing into the sky and flights were getting cancelled.

We hired a car from the manchester airport and they handed us the keys. With a measly 4hrs sleep in me I hopped in and took off on the left side of the road, shifting with my left hand. We quickly got the roundabouts figured out, and headed towards Caistor. We got part way there and had to pull over and sleep for a while, but finally arrived to visit and stay with friends of Catherine's Peter and Mary. She knew them from a year long exchange she did at age 7, so we got to check out where she lived and all the neat little places around her town.

From Caistor we drove to Stoke-On-Trent, and did the Midlands XC race. It was a brilliant course and very well put on. I had some good competition with 2 other world cup racers there, but I managed to drop them on the Canadian style rooty section and get enough of a gap to win. Catherine had a little less competition and won by 12 mins, so she worked on how many guys she could pass, and I think she was at about 120 by the end of it.

From Stoke we drove to Guisborough to stay with Rob, Ruth, and Tom. From here it is about 1h to the race site at Dalby, but we have a brilliant set up with Tom being a registered mechanic at a local shop.

We have seen some beautiful countryside - with daffodils lining the road sides in the country, and lots of ancient, as in 1300 castles and a prior. Oh, and I got a Phesant for dinner when I was out on a bike ride.

Yesterday we pre-rode the course at Dalby. There were 7 people riding on the track. It was very quiet and we are super glad that we avoided the 5+day travel fiasco many of our racing friends have and are going through. The course is 100% man made, with every obstical placed just so, and the rest of it quite buff. It will be hard to drop other racers based on technical skills, but it is a lot better than most european courses I have ridden. I think the start will be absoutley chaotic, as it is flat and we will go into singletrack fairly quickly.

Hope all is well across the pond. Theoretically I should be updating quite frequently now as I've got a lot of races lined up in the next month and a bit.

Ox tongue for dinner anyone?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Crazy carpets

So I've been having a blast this winter. It's not really winter here in Kamloops, with the average temp for the last 3 weeks at +3 deg or so, and all the snow melted from the valley. We are road riding down low and xc skiing up high, so it is an ideal combination. I mean, we have about 10 activities to choose from each day with the trainer rusting in the basement!

The biggest news by far this year is that I got engaged to Catherine Elizabeth Vipond. Yep, that was crazy carpet adventure # 1. Just before Christmas we went for a hike up a local mountain in the Kamloops area, and built a snowman at the top. I wrote the words in the snow (it covered about 75m square), and she said yes! Then we crazy carpeted back down parts of the way, where it was steep enough and didn’t have too many rocks. Definitely got a few bruises on the hips from the rocks.

For Christmas we drove down to Corvallis Oregon and visited with my brother Adam and his girlfriend Sarah and my parents who flew out. We did a sweet road ride up Marry’s peak until we hit snow, and some good mtb rides both there and in Bend. The xc skiing at Mt Bachelor in Bend was awesome, with berms and tabletop jumps built into one of the trails, you could ski it like a bike trail.

Then when we got back home I worked a bit more, (as a finish carpenter = doors, trim, cabinets etc), and looked for the next adventure.

Crazy carpet adventure # 2 originated from xc skiing 80km/week at the Stake Lake ski area. At one point (the absolute furthest from the parking lot), I saw where a large spruce tree had broken off and split length-wise right around a growth ring, forming a piece of wood about 12 feet long and shaped like a canoe or a C. Anyway, I thought it was really cool, and decided to get it to make a vertical display shelving unit for something cool like rocks and bike parts or whatever. So first off I had to build a sled, which involved at least 5 power tools, some scrap wood, and 2 crazy carpets.

Then we drove up to the ski area and parked as close as we could (6km away). Next we skate skied in pulling the sled (it was faster than me on the downhills). When we got to the tree I nailed some wood onto the trunk as lader rungs, and climbed up in my slippery ski boots to cut the piece of wood off. Only part way through my sawblade broke. Then we threw a rope over the top and Catherine was able to break it off and pull the tree down. I trimmed it to length with an axe, and loaded it onto the sled with a 3rd crazy carpet attached to the back because it was so long.

Then picture a very out of control transport truck on icy roads, and that was what I was like pulling it. Very slow pulling 100lbs up hill, and then it would try and pass me on either side on the way down hills, and try and run me over too. Luckily Catherine was able to ski behind holding a rope and snowplow on the downhills so we had a bit of control. It fit in the car from on top of the dash to the back of the trunk. Now we have peeled it and it is drying in the basement.

CC adventure # 3 was just yesterday. Catherine and I drove up near sun peaks, and took a back road, that lead to another back road, and then up a logging road. We drove up 3km in the trusty 2wd vibe, and then we put the chains on and went another 1km up. It was pretty impressive driving up a 20% grade logging road that had snow over ice. Eventually when we got to where it was 10 cm deep snow and 25% we spun out.

From there we snowshoed 5km up the road, and then another 4km with some bushwacking (in 1m deep snow then) to the top of a mountain by Tod mountain. We snowshoe ran back down, and when we got to steep enough parts of the logging road we crazy carpeted. The last section was by far the best (the one we couldn’t make up in the car). It was about 500m at 20-25%, with a fresh 4X4 tire track (they only made it 500m farther than us). For this pitch I dove on the crazy carpet and got up to 35km/hr! Now that doesn’t sound fast for people who ride bikes, but when your face is 5cm off the ground and your ribs and hips are bouncing along with snow flying into your face it’s fast. We both had headaches afterwards, and I have a stiff neck today. There aren't any crazy carpet pictures because how do you hold a camera let alone take a picture in that position at speed.

Hope you’re all having great adventures!