This week I was able to splice together an outdoor ride and a short ski. So in that regard I have completed the Hampsten.
Over the previous weekend I tried to recruit some folks to do a ride up to Bolton, then a short ski after. With Spinney out coaching at camp I was without my usual winter partner-in-crime and that added a layer of complexity to the whole thing. Part of the reason to do this workout with somebody else is so you can stage a car at the ski hill without having to start your ride with a big descent.
I’d thought through any number of possible approaches to do the ride solo and after I failed to get it together over the weekend I arranged to take Wednesday afternoon off so I could give it a run. Wednesday looked to be the best day of the week, and with camp starting Monday I needed to get my hard workouts out of the way so I could be fully recovered. Wednesday rolled around and it was a beautifully sunny and cloudless day, though the overnight low of -10 meant that it was chilly for sure. By around 2 PM it had warmed to 20 degrees and with no wind I decided to kit up and head out.
The new approach for foot warmth is to run three layers of Craft shoe covers- the lightweight sock-type, a neoprene toe cover, and the full-on heavy duty winter-weight bootie; as long as I stayed moving I was fine- which was pretty awesome considering that was far and away the coldest conditions I’ve ridden through in a very long time.
I decided to give the Richmond loop a shot since it’s mostly in the sun and when it isn’t windy can even be warm.
Although I stopped only once I started to get cold pretty fast so I put my phone away, put my gloves back on and took off again.
I got home too late to really drive anywhere to ski and considering I hadn’t done anything to my skis since last winter and hadn’t even skied once yet it made sense to just go to the local loop in town. As darkness set in I took off for some very slow, rough, and uncoordinated minutes of skiing. And yes, that is a belt sander in the trunk next to my skis.
I should have given my skis a little more attention, and I definitely should have worn warmer gloves. Maybe it was fatigue or just getting cold, but my right hand got so cold I couldn’t even hold onto the pole, and it took a long time to warm up.
Next time I think the right approach is riding right up the hill to the lodge to warm, dry clothes and ski gear as Andy did. When Spinney’s back I’m hoping I can coerce him into coming along. It does certainly make for an epic day out.