Ox Foster, a Kiwi I raced with on Team Hi-Tec in the 1996 Eco-Challenge, wrote me hoping I was getting in some work in between my leisure. Fact of the matter is, yes, busting my butt with four classes and two theses. The theses are super cool -- so are the classes, minus the part about grading weekly quizzes in them all -- and they are keeping me glued to my seat with my 'puter glued to my lap every night.
Anyway, what this means is I am living vicariously through others' adventure and currently following Andy Skurka as he skis along the Iditarod Trail in metal edged skis. Goof ball. I warned him. I even sent him the hot-rod of AK backcountry x-c, Tim Kelley's performance link, but to no avail. Maybe next time ole' Awesome Andy will come around from the (dumb) dark side and see the light of light on the feet. And to think he's like the uber-athlete of going light and long!! And using metal edged skis with big heavy boots, too! Jeesh......
Yep, all that weight and still averaging about 30 miles a day. Imagine if he knew how to skate ski, double pole and make do without waxing and actually followed the advice of Tim Kelley on gear....he'd be to Rohn by now and Forrest McCarthy and that amazingly artistic and young NGS photographer (Mike Brown) who's doing the big story would have to be flying up like a month early -- Tim Kelley and Bob Baker skied the whole Iditarod trail in under three weeks back in the 90s, which to put things in perspective is like twice Skurka's pace, and they of course used skate skiis and sleds rather than pins, metal, and a backpack.
About the time super-hiker's taking off, super-biker's just landed -- Mike Curiak-- in Nome, having ridden and pushed (I doubt he carried it at all) his snow bike the whole length of the Iditarod Trail, self-contained, meaning he had all his food and gear with him for the whole 1000 miles. I am really looking forward to the on-line details of that trip to distract me from grading papers and editing manuscripts.
Let's hope those get posted before the ice goes out and I can get my butt back in its proper place -- a boat.