Saturday, March 27, 2010

Adventure #021- Cross Country Skiing

I love the snow. I love winter because of the snow and winter sports. Or at least because of snowboarding, sledding and snowball fights, etc. Definitely not because of cross country (XC) skiing!

One weekend, shortly after I returned to Prague, I went XC skiing with Martin, Michal and his girlfriend Jana (also a flatmate). We went to Liberec, Michal's home town where we stayed with his parents. I had gone XC skiing several times as a child and once a few years ago when Jamie came to visit (that didn't really count because we spent more time laughing than anything else). The first 3-5 kilometers (I am horrible at km-m conversions!) went pretty well. The weather was beautiful, the snow was great and I was with good friends (the Becherovka shot to start the day helped a lot too, kept me warmer!) Once you got the rhythm it was great, pretty easy going.
We stopped by a frozen lake for a break and took some photos. When we put our skis back on, I started to go down a small bump so I put out my pole to catch myself. CRACK! It broke in half, I fell, and everyone looked at me like I had gone crazy! We looked at my pole and started laughing. I would have to finish the day without a pole. The problem was that this meant it was 2x as difficult to ski because you use your arms as much as your legs. So I started off just 'running' but I soon tired and it was almost impossible to do uphill as I kept sliding back down the hill. I toughed it out and managed to complete 16km before the end of the day. I went home with giant blisters, 1 pole (plus 2 halves because we had to buy them), sore muscles and a bone-deep chill that wouldn't go away.

None of it was impressive enough to make me a very big fan. But the weather was so beautiful, the company so great, I think I could be convinced to go again, with the promise of more Becherovka and 2 poles, of course!

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