Friday, January 30, 2009


Here we are living in a small piece of heaven. On Wednesday I was up at Mt Bachelor teaching my last Masters Skate class. It was the all women's skate group and it was a makeup. On one of our classes Mt Bachelor was closed because it was so windy. Today was a perfect day for teaching. It was easy to stay on our skis, so we could practice long glides without the fear of falling. I have to say I was very impressed with this class (my other class also). Ben Husaby changed the way I teach skiing a few years ago and it really works. We work on body position. With a good body position the rest of skating will just come along. Everyone in my class had great body position. Thank you all for making this year very special. I am very sad to have resigned, but I think it will work it self out in the long run.
After skiing it was off to a bike ride with my sweetheart, Kathy. With my new camera I was able to take a photo on the move. The screen is so big you can look and click while riding. I am not sure this is approved by the powers to be but I did get a pretty good photo. It was nice to get out on the road bikes in the sun and no wind. It wasn't warm but the sun felt good on the face. I know we have a couple of more months of snow and cold but I like to take advantage of the warmer calm days and go for a short ride. Kathy prefers it to skiing so off we went. We started at Big Sky Park and did an hour loop. Few cinders and only a little snow on Bear Creek Road. 
Though the news about the economy seems to get worse everyday and I know more and more people who have been laid off, when I get outside and enjoy the snow, the roads and all the reasons I live in Bend I can forget all of that for awhile. I hope you can to.
Take care.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


I am in Chico, California for a musical reason (Kathy is a piano teacher and she is here to see and visit with some piano teachers). I am the driver. I am from a family of drivers (my Dad was a truck driver). I am also a human GPS (according to Brig). Kathy was worried about the snow and I figured California has got to be warmer than Bend. I brought my mountain bike because there is a great park in town called Bidwell Park. It is one of the largest municipal parks in the USA. It is large. I rode over 20 miles from downtown to the end of the park and back with no loops sidetracking or getting lost (human GPS you know). The bad news -the trails were closed to mountain bikes. It had rained all night, I expected that. So up a dirt/gravel road I went. It was misting and looked and smelled like California. Now my secret. I was born in  Montana, I have lived in Central Oregon on and off since 1969, but those years between were spent in California. That is where I learned to ride a bike, where I first raced a bike, where I went on my first bike tour etc. It is a great place to ride a bike. The weather is right, the terrain is right and it even smells right. I have never had any problem with Californians moving to Oregon. Maybe too many off them have, but that is how I got here. But what I am really saying is , if you are in Oregon go to California for a short bike holiday. There are Palm trees in Redding (4 1/2 hours from Bend). Palm trees is a hint. Another great place to visit is Death Valley. That is about an 11 hour drive from Bend. You can actually fly there for $69 (Las Vegas). In March and April it is a great getaway. So instead of complaining about Californians in Oregon go be an Oregonian in California. 

Monday, January 19, 2009


I bought a new camera today. It has a 10X zoom with a 40X digital zoom. It is pretty clear as you can see in those photos above. The one on the left is the 10X zoom the other is the 40X. Oh and that is Mt Jefferson from Horse Ridge. You can see the freezing fog below the mountain. Freezing fog is pretty but it is miserable to do anything in. Yesterday I was above the fog skiing in near 50 degree weather, when I got home it was 22. 
The other photos are of friends and new friends. The one with the car is Matt and Ruth. They are fairly new to Bend and just learning all the cool things we have (Horse Ridge in the winter for example). Both are school teachers and so far love it here. Matt is on our bike race team and we did lots of cross races together.  We left at different times and when I saw them again they were enjoying the trails. It was the best out there today. The other photo is of Aaron and Gavin. We just met today, but their first words were "Are you the guy who writes the blog"? I said I was and took out my new camera and now they are in my blog. They had read my blog about how cool it was out there on New Years day. I write this blog and it pleases me that it is read. 

Monday, January 12, 2009


Last week I went for a great ski in the morning, and then thought wow Horse Ridge might be in good condition so out I went. It was in optimal condition. For those of you who do not know Horse Ridge it is sandy in the summer, can be snowy and icy in the winter. It can also be prime. It has been the last week or so. Anyway I am out there with about 40 others and on the West Side of the mountains I-5 is closed because of flooding. What is it worth living in Bend? I don't really know but I do not want to live anywhere else. These trails were built by enthusiasts (like you and me). The Horse Ridge trails don't take a ton of maintenance, they do not get 12 month use. November to March is about all they see. For it usually December, January and February. If you ride all the options of single track there is about a 2 and 1/2 hour ride. Some of that is out and back. It is rocky. Not impossible (I can clear just about everything , maybe not everytime). If you go in the morning it smells wonderful. Sage Brush warming up. The smile on my face is real. I was having fun seeing all my bike friends. I live in Bend because of the desert, and as a bonus I get the mountains. We have a week of great weather coming up so I will be out there, on my road bike and I will throw some skiing in there also. 
Take care and enjoy.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


The last few weeks have been very difficult for me. I decided when I started this blog not to dwell on negative issues just positive ones. When one's mind is preoccupied with negative it is hard to write a positive blog. So to cheer myself up I am going to write about some great things that have happened the last month. Some of these have been mentioned before. I had great races at the GP cross races in Portland two second places. It finally snowed and I have been skiing every week, with some great days. My ski class is awesome this year. Everyone really listens and the improvement is amazing. Working at Sunnyside is as fun as always.  I won't say the economy hasn't affected us but we had a great year in 2008 and 2009 has started out great. I have made some new friends the last few weeks. In two months I and some friends are going to Mallorca, Spain for around two weeks to ride our bikes. My sweetheart is here everyday and has helped me through these times. I think things will be normal again in a day or so. 
Not to keep you in the  dark the difficulties have to do with the MBSEF. I have coaching masters there for 15 years. It is one of the most rewarding things I do. We have had some political issues there that I have been involved with. In a small town that is a hard thing to do. I hope it passes soon. 
Next week I promise a photo and a very witty, blog. 

Thursday, January 1, 2009


It is January 1 today and I had to decide what to do bike or ski. I picked bike. I don't really like to ski in the rain, and I knew it would be busy with a lot of  skiers. Jim and I went off to Horse Ridge. We weren't sure about how much snow there would be. It was pretty cool. We started at mile post 12 and rode the dirt road on the west side of Horse Ridge for about 20 minutes, and then turned east and went to the top of Horse Ridge. We then hiked up to the main trail system and slipped and slided through the snow back to the normal trail head. Then a huge headwind back to the car using the old highway. Two hours of great riding. Was it windy though. We heard a tree crack at one point and then when we got home we found out a tree had fallen about two blocks from Sunnyside. We were mainly protected from the wind though. I haven't talked to anyone who skied but I think we made  a good choice. It was 54 F when we got to the car. I forgot my camera so no photo, sorry. 
It feels good to ride again though. I have what Kathy and I call Bike Disease. I love to ride my bike. All the time. Every day. I like to ski also, don't get me wrong. I love the motion in skiing. It is like dancing to me. My goal when I ski and when I teach skiing is getting the movement correct. Make it like a dance, make it flow. I like that about skiing. Bike riding (mountain biking especially) is just plain fun. Going over rocks, sliding around corners, whatever. Being careful but still having fun. I will be mainly skiing for the next two months. I got to get that motion right.