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The first weekend back for Christmas break had many of the Alaskan crew from the MSU Nordic team racing in the first two Besh cups, held in Chugiak and Anchorage. Many of the Bobcats had decent races and placed well against the other collegiate racers. It is highly recommended to never use your warm-up skis in a classic race. Especially when your race skis have been waxed very nicely, let’s just say I won’t be  making that mistake again any time soon.

After Christmas while many were prepping themselves for Nationals, I headed 90 minutes North of Anchorage to Hatcher Pass with fellow collegiate skier Cole Talbot (UVM), his brother Silas (2011-2012 Dartmouth freshman), and friend Dakota to complete an Avalanche safety course. Hatacher Pass is the destination for many Nordic skiers in Alaska for early on-snow training. This was my first trip to Hatcher Pass in January. Mother Nature graced us with three days of nice weather and relatively warm temps. The first two days of the course focused on rescue techniques and snow stability. Our last day of the course focused on terrain, we got the opportunity to use our knowledge from the two previous days to  pick a safe peak to hike up and ski down. During my avalanche course many of my fellow MSU teammates headed to Rumford Maine to Senior Nationals.

I spent a relaxing New Year’s at my cabin with my parents, fellow MSUer Heidi Rogers, and family friend Laura Gardner. We went on several nice long skis to welcome in the New Year.

~By: Rachelle Kanady