Coldest day of the year

Well, thats what the radio said anyway. Joel and I thought it fitting to get out on the course.  I was underdressed.  When he left his office is was -13 F, -34 with wind chill.  When i got home the t.v. pegged it at -21/-41.  Needless to say, i wouldn't be disappointed if it only got warmer from here.....

We planned to do the run section but found slush under a foot of snow at the start of the river crossing, so thought we'd wait until we can check things out more thoroughy and tackled the ski section instead.  The trails hadn't been groomed in a bit and were but faint tracks through a few inches of new snow - slow going.  But we pressed on and found better track once we crossed lincoln drive and headed south from the park.  The off trail section was exciting - having been visited by only a handful of deer since the last few snows.  at times i was pushing through untracked fluffy snow that piled up to midshin - skis invisible to joel behind me.  Joel only had it slightly easier - because my skis were buried, i didn't really pack a trail - the snow filled in behind me to present a similar challenge for him.

we left a few orange flags out on the course - with the description below and a bit of common sense, you may just be able to pre-run the course at this time.  Enjoy!

Ski Course:  starting at the warming house and heading north along the back fence of the dog park, you loop around on the inside of lincoln drive, staying on the tracks that pass the orange flags (2 of them).  near the south side of the park, go off the trail at another flag (our tracks are there) and across the street, behind the big snow mountain to join the groomed trail heading south along the bike path.  follow that until past the pedestrian bridge, then look for another orange flag off to the left (well before the club house) head down a slight hill (again, our tracks are there) to follow a deer trail (the snow was quite deep today) back under the pedestrian bridge and then back further still towards lincoln park.  no flags here but it should be easy to follow our tracks. this is a nice part through the trees.  the trail turns left and climbs a little hill before a short section across the golf course leads back to the trail.  head back to lincoln park, same way you left, and then continuing the same direction you'd been heading when you left the trail to cross the road out of the park.  this trail takes you back to the trail you started on - you've finished the loop. about 3+ miles give or take.

On another matter - I was testing out a new 'goggle' option on the outing today - thin corneas due to eye surgery give me loads of trouble in the cold and wind.  Last year during the arrowhead135 bike race my goggles fogged and iced up early into the race and it took days for my eyes to heal afterwords, not to mention the pain i was in the last 7 hours of pedaling....  as i'm slated to race again this year (10 days away or so) i'm desperate to find a better solution.  I tried using a breathing tube to direct exhale away from my face, but this only slightly postponed the fogging and freezing.  So two nights ago i found an old pair of sunglasses that were misisng their 'arms' and drilled 5 3/16 inch holes through each lens.  My theory was that the glasses would fog and freeze but i'd still be able to see enough out of the holes, which would be small enough to afford decent protection against the wind and potential snow.  So far they seem to work fine - though their first serious biking test won't come until the weekend.  here's a little video of my creation.....


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