God finally provided all of the ingredients I needed to get out and spend some time XC Skiing on skinny skis. What ingredients did I need? First off, an at home weekend, next good snow cover, and good health. I was all fired up to do this last year but we did not have much in the way of snow cover. I was going to do this during the holidays but I got the crud. Of course, other weekends are out-of-bounds because I am downhill skiing, which will always win.
XC Skiing — Not so Easy
In the past I have XC-skied, but this was probably 30 years or so ago. Of course I downhill ski regularly and I figured my downhill skills would transfer over. Not really, both in terms of my fitness and the skills needed.
My fitness and strength is definitely improved over the last couple of years but I found the XC-skiing recruiting different muscles than downhill skiing. The muscles I felt the most are those in my upper-inner thighs. My legs are feeling it and I suppose they will be tomorrow too.
Also, I had overdressed. The temperatures were hovering from 9° F to 12° F (-12° C through -11° C) and I had my usual Under Armour base layer, a turtelneck, a flannel shirt, a wool sweater, topped off by a fleece. Down below I simply had my Obermeyer bibs over my base layer. Socks were two layers a thin pair of nylon socks and a pair of technical socks. I started off and it did not take too long before I was warm. The skiing soaked my flannel shirt and turtleneck with sweat. I could have went with one or two layers less.
XC Skiing — The Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve
The setting for my skiing was at the Gordon Bubloz Nature Preserve (beware the sight plays cloying music, Gordon Bubloz webmaster please stop it) which is on the North edge of Appleton on Outagamie County HWY A (aka Lynndale Dr). I arrived and went to the rental center and they set me up with the boots and cross-country skis, that went smoothly and I took my rental gear outside, went to my truck and got my gloves and camera.
Clicking into the skis was not as easy as it is with my K2 skis, but eventually I did and started out. My skiing was not so smooth, as I said my downhill skiing skills did not transfer, but I was able to move along okay. I fell down once and quickly discovered the XC-ski poles are not as stout as my downhill poles, but I got up.
I also stopped to take some photos.
XC Skiing — The Skinny on Skinny Skis
Another activity that gets me outside in the winter and one that probably provides more health benefit than many other of my winter time activities. Sign me up!
Do you XC-ski?
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