Blog: Nordic Skiing
New York’s Central Park is a quintessential city experience, delighting tourists and locals alike. I’ll never forget my forays with friends; playing pickup soccer on the great lawn, my near misses on the bike path, and most recently bouldering all within sight of the gleaming rooftops, and ancient obelisks.
Much like the vaunted reservoir system, the foresight of city planners setting aside resources for future generations and developing them properly had unimaginable value.
While I still consider the crown jewel of New York’s park system to be without peer, Frederick Olmstead, co-architect with Calvert Vaux, also made his mark planning Montreal’s eponymous parc. At nearly the same size and about 20 years younger, Mont Royal presents year round activities and views, some of which exceed the possibilities in Manhattan. Fortunately, one thing I can say about both, is that neither is taken for granted.
I was in denial last week. As always I followed the weather closely and I knew the storm was coming. But as late as Wednesday I was holding out hope that storm would track west and deliver the goods to the mountains. Heaven knows we need it.
But as the week wore on, the forecast pushed the storm track even farther south and east, and by Friday even the Catskills were getting skunked.
Still, foolishly I clung to my plan: I’d stay home Saturday, weather the storm and if the power stayed on, I get up even earlier than usual, shovel out, and daytrip Plattekill.
Taking a whole weekend off to ski this year was a rarity. I have a job that requires working on Saturdays, and you gotta take care of business. So when the opportunity came at mid-winter break, my family repaired to Lake Placid to ski Mount van Hoevenberg.
In 1982, I skied Mount van Hoevenberg for the first time. Still a novice, my friends were extolling the virtues of this place and we came up on a chilly January weekend.
The first trail we skied then was the Ladies 5k, so named because it was the route for the women’s 5 km relay event in the 1980 Olympics. Only one of the most difficult trails in the place. The lower part of the loop I managed without incident. But from the height of land, I basically fell all the way back down to the stadium. I was still figuring out how to turn going downhill.