Feel free to reply to my thoughts, experiences, and whatever comes out of this head of mine. blah blah blah

Friday, July 29, 2011

Biking NAPA

Trying to catch up on the blog, going through old pictures. I really enjoyed this trip everyday except for one. Day 1 We started in Napa Valley a headed 110 miles out to the coast. Super fun day, we had a crash 2 minutes into the ride a couple wrong turns and a ton a laughs along the way. By the end of it we were cursing our trainer Alex. The ride didn't feel like 110 miles more like 150.
Not bad early morning scenery.
The big Fish working on his endurance. The kid has power on the flats but rides like he has a parachute on when he hits the mountains.
US Ski Team Train
We had nightly cold baths on the Northern California coast.
After the first night I got sick and couldn't hold down any food. I climbed the first mountain pass then had to hop in the truck go on the saltine diet and sleep it off.
Not a bad place to watch the sunset every night.
We would have a bacchi ball tournament every night.
Followed by Kangroo Court where we would vote on who had to wear the few ridiculous outfits for the next days ride, which included an American flag women's bikini top, ski racing bibs, a horn. The bib smelled pretty bad by the end of the trip.
This was our blind guard dog, Clyde. Yes he was blind and provided much entertainment.
Alex our trainer couldn't get enough of the saddle cream.
The train coming home. We averaged 27 mph during the 100mile ride back! Pretty impressive! The boys definitely improved. We luckily avoided some nasty crashes and finished the trip off with a great dinner at Steven Reads vineyard! Thanks Steven

I forgot why I had to wear this rediciouls bib the last day but I did along with Witt.

Day 1 110miles to the coast
Day 2 (mountains) 50???
Day 3 70
Day 4 50?
Day 5 100 miles back to Napa.
Mileage in question, Alex's mapping???

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Hiking the Streif Part Two

After Ms. Hoch and I didn't make it to the start haus on our first attempt up the Streif we decided to make our way back a week later. This time it was sunny and perfect for a summit attempt!! haha We had a good summit team that joined Me and Julia, meet Phillip and Nathalie. Phillip was up at 4AM on a hunt then joined us for the hike then went back hunting afterwards and got himself a buck. He is a trooper but he kept forgetting his water bottle which Natalie, Julia and I kept picking up so you owe us some of that Deer jerkey Phillip!
Back at the Seidlalm where we left off.
Then we made it to the Aleschnisse (spelling???) and we took a nice look over the valley and the town of Kitzbuhel. Not too shabby!
We still had a ways to go and we were getting super hot so we took a dip in the snowmaking ponds. Julia lost her bracelet but I used my Bear Grils skills and found it. (Brownie Points!)
After the dip we still had to make it up there.
The team at exit Steilhang, ready for the straight up adventure.
Getting steeper, every time i turned around I was wishing we were back at the ponds!
Then to the Mausefalle, Julia once again showing how she would do it! Coach Steven would say to get your chest down, or you wont be that fast!!!
Almost there! Time for a Nature Valley snack
We made it now its time to go back down. But I think the start lady is distracting me.
But instead of hiking down we took the gondola then jumped into another lake!!!


Monday, July 25, 2011

Reality Check FIS

With all the recent talk about the ski regulation changes I want to put my two cents in. I think it is a horrible decision to make these changes and such drastic ones. The FIS needs to have a reality check. The first thing they need to face is that ski racing is dangerous! That is why people get hurt! I accept that I may get hurt every time I push out of the starting gate but I love this sport and that is why I make that push every time I line up to race. I don't know if my Mom likes that I think that way but thats the reality!

I know the intentions of FIS are to make the sport safer but how do you make throwing your body down a steep icy slope filled with jumps and blind turns safe? Yes, control what you can control, but what they are doing to the sport is a huge step backwards. Ski racing has developed technologically over the past few years at a dramatic rate. Look at Michael Von Grunigen in 1996.

Now the current best in the World, Ted Ligety. Tell me which one is more appealing to the eye?

Nothing against Michael, he was one of my childhood heros. My point is FIS rumbles about trying to capture a bigger audience. This move clearly wont attract more people to the sport. The difference in power, athleticism, speed is drastic. This is what people want to see. FIS needs to put their money toward developing our TV portrayal or making the courses safer for us through course prep (jump building, snow consistency...)

Back to the skis, the difference is huge! Current 27m radius minimum length 185cm (i think)? To a 195cm and a 40m radius minimum. What we know as racers is the current desire to carve a clean turn is our main goal. If they place these limits upon us we will find a way to make the carve happen. During that exploration I think people are still going to get hurt trying to adapt to the new regulations. A reason I think racers are getting hurt is because FIS is always changing these regulations and we are figuring out how to use our bodies in a different way, trying to adjust to the new tempo these skis put upon us. With this change the course sets are going to have to be different which will be another adjustment. I feel if the racers will have a few more years to adjust to the equipment the injury rate will decline.

Another reason for the injuries is the last changes FIS placed upon us. They said wider skis will lower the injury rate. COME ON!!! That move was absurd. All the racers said this wouldn't be the case yet FIS still pushed these changes through. A wider ski will put so much more torque on the knee than a skinnier one. It is pushing so much more pressure to the outside of the ski when on edge.

The last change also put a huge strain on the ski manufacturers by requiring them to reproduce skis for all the World Cup racers in one year and then everyone in two years. This really really put a huge financial strain upon the companies as well as a quality control issue. We were going out there testing all these new skis seeing if which was best and which even worked on a course. Sometimes it was scary because you push out of a starting gate not knowing how the skis are even going to react and then they don't. Some react too much, some too little!!! Now these new changes are requiring the companies produce skis for everyone in one years time for the whole world! I don't know if the companies can even handle this. If FIS keeps these moves up they are going to kill themselves (maybe for the better) but they are also going to kill our sport!

On the speed side I think some of the changes are for the better. In DH they went back to a skinnier ski but raised the length up from 215 to 218 and are making the women ski on 215, the radius went up as well. And SG doesn't change much aside from the width issue and radius. We are currently skiing on skis within the regulations with Fischer and winning. So I guess thats good!

I will stop my rant now. I know these rules aren't solidified yet and I hope FIS reconsiders some of their proposed changes. The proposal is ridiculous!

My Recommendations
Reduce ski width and keep the same radius and length in DH and SG
GS reduce width and raise the radius to 30m
These were the old regulations and FIS wont go back to them because they aren't willing to admit their last mistake. I am just fearful they we aren't going anywhere with these new changes, all it creates are more blind changes.

I take that back.....

I think Bode made a good point. Take all regulations off of the ski companies. Allow them to develop what they want to develop. I feel like these regulations are making the companies create skis that nobody is going to want to buy. Who's going to buy a 40m radius GS ski? And what 16 year old is going to be able to ski on a pair of them? If we can create whatever we want to create we will make the fastest best stuff possible and it will be the safest. These companies aren't going to want to put us on some unsafe product. We are an investment to them. It will also allow the companies to push technology and push the skiing industry.

FIS is killing our sport. We need to start our own tour.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Hiking the Streif First Attempt

Recently I made my way to Innsbruck. I had never been to Europe in the summer and I have to say it is paradise! Sooooo green everywhere, there is so much going on and you are surrounded by tons of history. I really enjoyed my time there and while I was there we decided to try and hike the Hahnenkamm.......TRIED
After roaming around the finish area for a while we finally found the trail, but we didn't like the trail because it didn't go up the DH course. So Julia and I decided to bushwack.
The town of Kitzbuhel and the Red Bull awards building.
The Kitz
Zielschuss-this is where we decided to break off the trail and go straight up the mountain.
This is going across the Lower Hausberg
Lost in the grass
The Hausberg-This was pretty steep, we were grabbing onto weeds and trying not to slip on the muddy ground.
We made it

And these folks were waiting at the top of the Hausberg laughing at us, thinking we were crazy. We thought they were crazy for hiking in traditional Austrian attire probably wirth a few thousand $$$$
There is usually a Red Bull arch over this turn. My nemesis on this course. I had a good talk with this jump and turn. She said she will treat me well this winter.
Julia practicing for her forerunning attempt this year.
Me dragging Julia up the hill. She was actually a trooper and had no problems.
The Seidlalm-This is as far as we got because it started to rain. But we made another attempt a week later. Did we make it to the Starthaus or not?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Double the Digital Goodness

So I arrived back from Europe (first time ever in the summer...I recommend) and can't sleep. The 3 AM natural wakeup call isn't doing it for me so I have been hitting the emails and internet hard!

My broski Blake has been killing it the past few weeks and so I will dedicate the past two blogs to him because he has provided me with this great content.

I hope to go on some more adventures with him this summer. Speaking of adventures, I went on several while in Europe so stay tuned. I will do my darnedest to keep you people entertained.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Teva Games

My brother threw this film together from the Teva games this spring. It was a ton of fun to go down there and shred with my brothers and friends. My arch nemesis, Ken Hoeve still came out the victor but I was closer this year and will vow he will never beat me again. Michael and Blake my brothers had a very close race with Michael coming out on top by just 30 sec over a 20 minute corse. Then we headed to Glenwood for a litte surf time.

Enjoy the film