The Trofeo Mezzalama or ‘Glacier Marathon’ was the final event in this season’s Grande Course series of races. Three races of great prestige, always longer in length and duration than a standard World Cup, and open to hundreds or thousands of entrants. After racing the Pierra Menta with Nick and performing beyond our expectations. I was quite excited because, while Nick had headed home and wouldn’t be racing, my team of three included Pascal Egli, a Swiss skier who had spent the previous season in Canada giving us all a run for our money, and Lars Erik Skjverheim, a Norwegian who had become a friend throughout the season and routinely skied to high finish places. I knew we had a good shot at a decent placing and even more important, both my teammates were cool dudes and we would have a blast.
After returning to Chamonix from Slovakia, the main events of the season really got rolling. First up was the Pierra Menta. Andrea had already joined me in Chamonix and my UVM Nordic teammate Jennie came to Cham and stayed with us as well. Along with Nick, we drove to Beaufort for the four day Pierra Menta. I wrote a rather detailed report for skintrack.com that can be found HERE.
After World Championships, we took two days of train and car travel to get to Slovakia. I’ll be honest and say that I was a bit skeptical about leaving the Alps, mecca of all things ski mountaineering, in the middle of the season to visit a tiny country in Eastern Europe. We came to visit Andrea’s family. Her parents immigrated to Canada before she was born and her extended family – grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and family friends – are all still there.
Typically communication is an important part of the team event in skimo racing. Racing the Puchar Pilska Teams race in Poland over the weekend, the only common language between my partner and I was ‘go’ and ‘dobre’ (‘good’ in Slovak). Luckily these were really all that was necessary.