Race – North American Skimo Championships

This weekend was the 2013 Dogtooth Dash at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in Golden BC. The race was selected as this years Canadian and North American Championships so titles were on the line! My parents and I left Vancouver on Thursday and got in a short ski to stretch the legs at the resort on Friday.

The race starts at the top of the Gondola with a Le Mans style run around the Eagle Restaurant carrying skis. Brad S. took off like he was on fire and set the best time for the loop. Crossing back under the start line you pop your skis on and drop down the first descent. I was with the top 4 guys as we made the first transition and fell into line behind Peter K., Brad, and American Scott S. Nearing the top of the second climb, I pulled into first and made a small gap to give myself more time at the transition.

Race Course Map (Green=Ascent, Red=Descent)

On the big descent to the low point I was leading but got passed by Scott flying on fast skis. My best transition ever put me into the lead for the beginning of the third climb up slippery switchbacks. Halfway up, we came out of the woods onto a steep groomer and Scott put the hammer down while Peter and I ate and took a drink. Scott had a big gap and I managed to eat into it a little but he was moving fast. Even breaking trail on the upper section of the climb he was keeping ahead. We came to the bootpack up CPR ridge and he was plowing a trail with the BIGGEST steps I have seen and I struggled to keep up. Scott and I postholed along the ridge to the start/finish area while Peter and Brad made the right call and put skis back on.


Eric coming to the line

The next few climbs and descents were a bit of a blur with Scott in the lead and Peter and I skiing together trying to stay ahead of Brad. It was hard not to look back for the green helmet coming behind us. My transitions were clean and my last two descents very fast giving me a good gap on Peter as we started up the last climb. I managed to keep ahead and ran to the finish in second place. I am pretty happy with second, sandwiched between the North American (Scott) and Canadian National (Peter) Champions.

Eric Finishing

Pictures posted are from my family. Results are up at the DTD Website. Big thanks to Ian Gale and KHMR for putting on an awesome race!

Photo Sites:



Gear Notes:

  • I raced in my Dynafit Speed Up Racing Suit and Patagonia T-Shirt. I attached my Alpina Goggles to my helmet in the manner described here. This worked really well – my goggles stayed unfogged and attached to my helmet. One tweak I would mention is to have the strap slightly looser than usual to stay cool and make them easy to get on and off.
  • Dynafit Dy.N.A. Boots, PDG Skis, and Plum Race Bindings kept the foot weight light. Leki Cima Ti poles were excellent in the new snow for skinning and bootpacking.
  • GU Chomps, 2 Gels, and a small flask of Q Energy Drink kept me going during the race.
  • I have been experimenting with using a Suunto Footpod to measure cadence while skiing.
Climbing Data:
  1. 93m Gain 10.41 m/min 175 Avg HR
  2. 75m Gain 14.85 m/min 174 Avg HR
  3. 467m Gain 14.95 m/min 173 Avg HR
  4. 305m Gain 12.20 m/min 163 Avg HR
  5. 161m Gain 8.62 m/min 165 Avg HR
  6. 164m Gain 11.70 m/min 161 Avg HR
I think it is interesting that these vertical speed values are not much different from last years race but the HR averages are much lower. Climb #5 was our slowest but this was skewed by a significant flat/slight descent mid-climb. Climbs 4 and 5 had significant bootpack sections. I was definitely struggling to keep my turnover high, especially with the soft snow conditions.

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