Judy and I have been Nordic skiing since 1976. For a long time, we used waxless "fish-scale" skis. They were perfect for the coastal areas and islands of Prince William Sound, where we lived when we started skiing. When our son started competing for the Nordic Ski Team at Colony High School, we began to appreciate how graceful and fast skate skis are.
Judy got set up for skate skiing last winter, and I got a hand-me-down set from my son. Good equipment.
I've ice skated since high school. I ice skate a lot on Neklason Lake, where we live. I also skate on in-line skates in the summer. So I thought I'd pick right up on skate skiing. Today was my first lesson.
I felt totally helpless for the first half hour of skiing. I couldn't get the skis to grab when I tried to push back in the skating motion, and kept on using my poles one at a time, like in the Nordic classic style.
After the first half hour, I got a little better, receiving compliments from Barb, my instructor, who was skiing circles around me. But I still felt totally hapless, as I watched other skiers zip on by. We had to quit, to go to Eagle River and watch Charlie Wilson's War. I'll get it, eventually.
This was my first time at the facilities at Beach Lake, across from Chugiak High School. The area has a big set of trails and a wonderful chalet for warming and changing clothes.
ice frost on birches above Neklason Lake