It figures that, with the crazy weather we've had this winter, the last headlamp race of the year would feature gusty pouring rain for the drive up to the pass and 40 degrees and torrential rain and thunder at Cabin Creek at 5:00. By race time at 6:30, however, the weather had mellowed to a lovely soft gray evening with heavy heavy wet snow and the teensiest hint of the fragrance of spring, and the end-of-season relay was on!
Mr Helly Hansen, Brent Turner, picked out two-person teams from the skiers gathered in the stadium area, trying to mix up fast and slow, classic and skating, men and women. It wasn't easy; as has been the case all winter, the participants skewed heavily toward strong fast men, and handsome, too. Didn't matter; we formed up teams the best we could and toed the line for six sprint laps: speedster Brad Bauer linked with two second-grade girls, speedsters Kent Murdoch and Rune Harkestad teamed with two slowpoke classic skiers, father/daughter Jeff and Uhuru Hashimoto, father/son Ian and Kaiam Whyte, husband/wife JeffnJoy, last-minute ringer team Russell Stevenson and John Outterson, and lots more. It was the biggest turnout we've had all year, drawn by the prospect of one last night of headlamp(less) skiing and a party and prizes in the cabin after.
Racing (and I think there were more who didn't put down their names)
Russell Stevenson/John Outterson
Bruce Christopherson/Dale Bohm
Sharon Chen/Jon Fewster
Brad Bauer/Alma Fast/Mimi Koehler
Christopher Fast/Sven Koehler
Rune Harkestad/Debbie Kolp
Ian Whyte/Kaiam Whyte
Robert Hardwick/Jeff McGrew
Jeff Clark/Joy Cordell
Jeff Hashimoto/Uhuru Hashimoto
Max Sevareid/someone else
Many thanks to Jon, who brought a quiver of new Madshus skis for people to test-drive, and to Brent, who brought enough Helly Hansen goodies in his big duffle bag that every single person went home with something new and fun. It was a great evening in the cabin, with stories told of the winter just past and biking and running and roller skiing plans hatched for the summer to come.
And that's it for another fabulous year of headlamp racing! I'll miss you all, but watch for next year's schedule posted here in December, and please make plans to come to our trail work parties in the fall. Until then, train hard, be safe, have fun! See you outside, somewhere ...