Thursday, December 27, 2007

snow report

For anyone in this wet gray city:

Harriet is skiable. Its icy, and not bad but not great, but the guy on the snowmobile has been out with a tiller. Lots of debris down, though.

Mendon Ponds at Quaker Pond area: skiable, as in, there is full snow cover. Icy under some wet slush. No major rocks that I could see. I don't speak for the ski trails, though.

Mt Pittsford: icy, very icy in places, but full coverage around the loop. Some places were actually good (the top of the hill). Avoid the horseshoe turn... its sheet ice.

I've gotten to ski with some Pittsford kids the past two days, and it makes me feel like I'm actually useful. They are so full of questions, and I don't always have the answers, but I try. Am I good enough to ski in college? Should I do JOs? How good were you in highschool? Why can't I kick up hills? Do I really have to classic if its a skate year? Can you give me technique tips? How do I improve my endurance? How did you decide on a school? Is it possible to have a long distance relationship in college? Do the college teams have to wax their own skis? What happens if you can't make the carnival team? Do all the schools have development teams? Did you have friends outside the ski team? Are there a lot of parties at college? Where do you ski when you're at college? Do you train on the race courses? How much do you have to travel? How often do you get to come home? Are you still in touch with your friends from highschool? If I'm not that good at skiing yet will the coach help me out or just kick me off the team? So-and-so is skiing at X school and I'm faster than her, does that mean I can automatically ski at that school? Should I do ski camps over the summer? Do I need rollerskis?

I was thinking about CSU, and the quality coaching that those kids get. Two to three to four practices a week, with a coach, often many coaches, getting technique work and drills and waxing tips and training tips from people who've been doing this sport for a long time, no wonder we turn out some pretty good skiers. I wish there were something equivalent in the Rochester area. If I had any desire whatsoever to live here, I would start a club, for kids from any highschool, of any ability, the only requirement is that they really want to become the best skiers they possibly can be. I want to start a club where eventually all the skiers are faster than me. If only there were something like that in this area; there are so many talented kids whose highschool coaches just don't have time for them, who are just dying for more information on how to become a faster skier. Pittsford has 103 skiers this year. Three coaches. All with a real job outside of coaching. How is that even supposed to be possible!??!

Section V turns out the best skiers in the state, aside from NYSEF. Is it any wonder that the Mid Atlantic Team is always last or second-to-last at JOs?? Every other region has clubs for juniors who want to become good skiers, so that they at least have the tools to take it to the next level. It burns me that there is nothing like that in this area. So much talent! So much potential! I know we don't have much snow, but hell, Boston gets less snow than Rochester and CSU turns out some damn good skiers! There is no reason that Rochester can't compete at that level! People say that the competition level in NYS is lower than New England--it is lower--but we can raise it. There is some good racing up in Lake Placid, the powerhouses of the D3 schools are in NY, and the numbers at the highschools are more than enough to foster some really quality skiing, if only someone were there to teach them. Sure, XCRochester has to work on the master and senior contingent, but why not have a junior club too? So that the kids who DO want to become superstars in this sport at least know what it takes? arrgh.


Anonymous said...

Alex- Get in touch with Eric Metzler, coaching at Fairport. . .and harass Jon and Tovah-they're moving to Pittsford some of that passion has got to lite a fire under someone's butt!

Alex said...

I should harass Jon and Tovah; I know that Eric is pretty much as swamped as he can possibly be. Its not easy running a highschool ski team with a real job--it would be pretty unfair to ask anything more of him.