A Comparative Analysis Between Skydiving and Bungee Jumping

It didn’t take long after my Tough Mudder shenanigans for my body to start going into adrenaline withdrawal and since the weather was heating up, my plunges into the glacial lakes weren’t cutting it like they used to. There was no more (literal) breath taking and heart stopping excitement and I needed more.

Fortunately, I had already made a pinky-promise serious level commitment to check out Whistler Bungee with a buddy. So I leaped at the chance to take this up and was back again at a point in my life where everyone was constantly telling me that I was crazy (something I’ve kind of grown to enjoy and is probably a sign that I should start attending AA meetings for adrenaline-junkies anonymous).

One thing that confused me a little bit though, was how much more dangerous the world seems to think that bungee jumping is over skydiving. Now, I’ve been skydiving before in Golden 2 years ago, but I’ve always kind of considered it to be scarier than bungee jumping if only because you’re falling from a taller height. Now, since I love comparative tables so much, here’s a full list to compare the dangers between skydives and bungee jumping:

Scary Table A
Skydiving Bungee Jumping
(In my experience, I) fell 3,810m (In my experience, I) fell 49m
Fatality rate of 1 in 100,000 (literally 5x more deadly) Fatality rate of 1 in 500,000 (only 5 people have EVER died bungee jumping)
Possibility of parachute not opening (I know there’s a back up, but really, how often is that going to get checked!?) Possibility of chord breaking (I jumped right after someone who was bigger than me, so I knew if they didn’t break the chord, neither would I)
Trusting a random stranger to open the parachute at the right time (human error is always a possibility) Trusting the chord that didn’t break on the last jump to not break again
Possibility of sprains, bruises or broken bones even if the parachute opens Possibility of whiplash if you start spazzing around excessively
Strong winds could blow you away to kingdom come, you’re in the air for over 10mins, more than enough time for a sudden hurricane to blow in Strong winds could slam you into a rock if you’re with a company silly enough to put a bungee near a ragged cliff face

I don’t know about you, but I still think skydiving is riskier and people just seem to think that you’re guaranteed to get whiplash bungee jumping. The chord is really stretchy everyone, it’s not a sudden car crash stop (which, by the way, makes driving a car far riskier than either of these activities with a fatality rate of 1 in 6,000). Also with bungee, you get a couple separate freefalls because you’re bouncing, but since they keep getting smaller, they actually feel quite calm and enjoyable by the end of it.

Now, since I don’t want the moral of this blog post (if blog posts can even have morals) to be that skydiving and bungee jumping are both scary and dangerous, here’s a bonus table comparing their awesomeness:

This was so awesome, I even made it my Facebook profile pic!

This was so awesome, I even made it my Facebook profile pic!

Super Happy Fun Time Table B
Skydiving Bungee Jumping
(In my experience, I) fell 3,810m (In my experience, I) fell 49m
Bonus scenic airplane ride Bonus scenic canyon views
That feeling of letting go when you jump out of an airplane That feeling of letting go when you jump off a bridge
The fact that you just backflipped out of an airplane The fact that you just backflipped off a bridge
Falling over top of mountains Falling down a canyon
Scenic views and (literally) walking on a cloud while you parachute down Rocketing back up a canyon
Way cooler selfies than your friends in a sweaty club bathroom Way cooler selfies than your friends in a sweaty club bathroom
Being on a massive adrenaline high for the rest of the week Being on a massive adrenaline high for the rest of the week

In conclusion, you should note that Table B has more points than Table A, and therefore everyone should really try both of these activities.

(Also, I set out to make this a post about my actual experience bungee jumping, but got distracted and will now save that for next time.)

Some Tough Mudder Fudders

I have to start this post off by saying that Facebook’s suggested posts are terrible influences that clearly want me to die. (Okay, maybe a tad dramatic, they only wanted me to electrocute myself, sorry.)

Okay, after that dramatic introduction, I’m going to back things up a little and explain my actual story. Basically last year, a friend of mine posted something like “OMG, that sh*t be cray” with a link to Tough Mudder and my curiosity got the best of me and I did the unthinkable and CLICKED IT. It took me to an intense looking page filled with photos of people scaling walls and jumping through fire. Needless to say, my only thought before closing the tab was “OMG, that sh*t be cray”. However, since Facebook has a crazy amount of cookies that go into generating the suggested posts that spam your newsfeed, ever since then, I’ve been getting hundreds of Tough Mudder updates.

Loo

Spoiler Alert! Looking back, Tough Mudder is just far too up on this Facebook thing, they even sent me an exclusive cover photo I could use after finishing!

Eventually, my brain got tired of processing an infinite amount of ads as “cray” (because let’s face it, it’s a terrible word) and started turning them into “if that random person can crawl 19km through mud carrying massive logs while smiling like its no big deal, so can I”! Things escalated quickly from there when I clicked a link about Whistler after getting a job out there, as Facebook put two and two together and started subliminal messaging me to sign up for the Whistler Tough Mudder and at that point, I started casually mentioning that I was thinking about doing Tough Mudder. Soon enough, my cry for insanity was answered by a friend of mine in Vancouver who was putting a team together and next thing I knew, I had a ticket.

While the physical process of getting the ticket was easy enough (I did it lying in bed in my PJs, like a true Tough Mudder), the emotional process was quite the ride, taking me through 20 frames of mind from purchase to race date, as outlined below:

1)    Haha, just kidding, I’m not actually going to sign up for this, it’s insane and I’m nowhere near close enough to being in Tough Mudder-shape

2)    Yarg, I need to stop being a wimp, I still have time to train, plus, it will be so awesome to say I’ve done Tough Mudder

3)    Okay, I’m actually going to do it, CLICK

4)    OMG, why did I just pay to kill myself!? Nope, not going to do it, I just won’t show up, this was a mistake

5)    Gawd, I paid $185, I can’t just waste it, might as well step up my running routine for training

6)    Why did I even start running, this is painful, my legs hurt

7)    Wait, now I’m feeling better, this is really fun, bring it on Tough Mudder, I will DESTROY you

8)    Waitaminute, I’m barely strong enough to move my bed across the room and not even tall enough to reach the top shelf of my kitchen, how am I supposed to climb solid walls?

9)    Well, I’ve already climbed walls of ice, if anything, wooden walls will actually be easier

10)I’m so ready for this, just gotta make sure I get some rest and a good night’s sleep

11)Why did I let myself get called into work the night before the race!?

12)Oh well, TOUGH MUDDER TOUGH MUDDER TOUGH MUDDER!!

13)Why did I get too excited to sleep, I’m going to pass out

14)Oh wait, coffee is the answer to everything! Coffee coffee coffee!!

15)Wow, everyone doing the race looks really intense – is that guy wearing an army shirt? Does that girl have a headband saying she’s done this 6 times!?

16)Okay, getting close to the starting line, need a photo, it might be the last one of me ever

17)Wow, I look tough, I can TOTALLY do this

18)Is that the electroshock therapy obstacle in the distance!? Looks scary, maybe I can’t do this

19)Wait, I’m right at the starting line, no turning back now (like seriously, there’s too many people around me, I can’t get out)

20)LET’S GOOOOOOO!!

#beastmode

#beastmode

From that point on, (as I’m assuming you can imagine), things got even more insane. There were way.too.many obstacles that either required me to lift something atrociously heavy (*cough Hold Your Wood and Warrior Carry *cough) or climb over an overly high wall (I’m looking at you Glory Blades, Berlin Walls and Everest). Now, as someone who named their blog Travvelsized because she’s a short, tiny girl, these obstacles were kind of hard..! Lucky for me though, the name of the game at Tough Mudder is “teamwork” and I had some pretty stellar teammates to help boost and pull me up and over the walls. 10462689_10204214858794118_3206102964491589114_n

None of this is to say that I was an un-tough Mudder though! I breezed through the water obstacles jumping 12ft into freezing water in Walk The Plank and Arctic Enema and flew through mud pits, under barbed wire and through pitch-black tunnels in Kiss Of Mud, Mud Mile, Trench Warfare and Prairie Dog. These obstacles are the reason I wanted to do Tough Mudder, this is the kind of thing I do for fun!

Throwback to jumping into the glacier-fed Lake Louise

Throwback to jumping into the glacier-fed Lake Louise

Finally, after 19km of running and 18 obstacles, it was time for the grand finale, Electroshock Therapy. Despite the fact that you needed to sign an extra waiver for this obstacle because it’s literally just you running through a field of electrical wires, I knew they couldn’t make the shocks strong enough to kill / maim anyone without getting into some serious legal troubles, so I decided to just sprint it through and hope to weave through as many of the wires as I could.

"Please don't die, please don't die, please don't die!"

“Please don’t die, please don’t die, please don’t die!”

This worked for about half the course, until I heard a less-than-Rice-Krispies-friendly snap, crackle, pop of a wire hitting my arm. The shock stung, but I made my way through avoiding further harm (although wincing quite a bit). I was about to reach the finish, when I looked back to see that one of my teammates had disappeared! Looking around, she was facedown in the mud of Electroshock Therapy! I sprinted back through the obstacle (wincing even more this time) and luckily, she was able to get up and meet me halfway, explaining that she had passed out, but wasn’t in any pain.

Needless to say, by the end of the course, we, along with all the other Mudders, had definitely earned our headbands and finisher shirts! Also, Facebook is now suggesting I sign up for the Vancouver Triathalon, go base jumping and sign up for the Spartan Race!

Is it bad that I want to sign up just so that I can scream SPARTAAAAAAAAAA

Is it bad that I want to sign up just so that I can scream THIS! IS! SPARTAAAAAA!!

The Quest for Ogopogo

Like for any budding crypto-zoologist, my arrival in Kelowna meant a lot more than just delectable food and drinks. It meant I would have the unique opportunity to hunt for the infamous seamonster, Ogopogo.

In case you’re one of those rare people who aren’t up on their knowledge of dinosaurs and Canadian folklore, I’ll explain that Ogopogo is said to be a 50ft long Basilosaurus.

Interpretive drawing of a Basilosaurus

Interpretive drawing of a Basilosaurus

With this, Ogopogo specifically was said to have frozen in Lake Okanagan until the 1800s when it was first spotted again by a group of first nations. From there, it was not seen again until 1926 (during a 30 car pile up nonetheless). Since it was the 1920s and all anyone did was hangout in speakeasies listening to foxtrots, it was decided that the beast would be named after Ogo-pogo, the Funny Fox-Trot.

During my quest, I decided to document the details of my experience in a daily diary:

Day 1

As this marked the first day of my first excursion tracking down mythical creatures, I decided to try to seek the aid of an accomplis for my mission, a dive operator called Serpentine Aquatics. However, after a brief inquisition, I found they were not true to their serpentine name and that I would have to continue my quest for the beast on my own.

After our interaction, I decided to extend my research to determine where and when the best places to look for Ogopogo would be and determined that City Park in downtown Kelowna was said to have various attributes to the mythical being.

Day 2

I embarked on a brave journey to City Park, evading perils such as oncoming traffic and the intense heat of the sun (by Canadian standards). After an intense excursion, I reached my destination, but the elusive Ogopogo was nowhere to be found. I passed countless wild shops and restaurants, but there was no sign of the beast itself.

While the lakefront was beautiful, I was looking for something more!

While the lakefront was beautiful, I was looking for something more!

After much searching, I was prepared to adjourn my quest for the day when I saw a distinctive shadow in the distance. Although I was filled with excitement, I approached with caution, fearful that this would be a false sighting. As I approached however, it became clear that this was indeed the creature I was searching for! Ogopgo had revealed itself to me!

Ogopogo lives on!!

Ogopogo lives on!!

Once Ogopogo had revealed itself, it seemed to lose its shy demeanour altogether, and I made 2 additional sightings that very day at a nearby water park.

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It appears to have a playful nature!

It appears to have a playful nature!

Day 3

Still high on the success of the previous day, I expanded my search out of the downtown core and found that Ogopgo inhabited a diverse range of habitats from mosaic walls to children’s playgrounds and laundromats. It was beginning to become clear that Ogopogo is not a shy beast, but really a bit of an attention whore who loved the spotlight and had become a type of unofficial mascot for the town of Kelowna.

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Day 4 (Concluding Remarks)

While Ogopogo is said to be an ancient being, it is very much a symbol of the present, bringing forth the spirit of Kelowna and the Okanagan as a whole with its fun attitude and aquatic nature.

I would encourage anyone who visits its natural habitat to seek out this fine creature and get to know it and its culture.

Dining Around The Culinary Capital of Kelowna (A Travvelsized Odyssey)

Despite the amount of time I spent at Kelowna General Hospital around my pie-baking adventure, I quickly came to realize that hospital food wasn’t exactly giving me the full taste of what the city had to offer.

The food gods demanded salmon!

The food gods demanded salmon!

But I was only providing offerings of strangely coloured mush with a side of strangely colourless mush!

But I was only providing offerings of strangely coloured mush with a side of strangely colourless mush!

I mean, the almighty food gods would definitely smite me for eating nothing but mush in the home of the culinary champions of 2011 – 2015.

 According to the “Welcome to Kelowna” sign, anyhow

According to the “Welcome to Kelowna” sign, anyhow

In order to appease the wise and powerful food gods, I decided to show my devotion (read: eat) at a variety of their temples (read: restaurants) – a brave and honourable task, I know!

Since I starting out in such an unfavourable position in the eyes of the gods, I needed to start my path to salvation in their mecca: RauDZ.

One of the most sacred temples of food god worship

One of the most sacred temples of food god worship

As the top rated restaurant in Kelowna, the gods were certain to appreciate my prayers for Ken’s mushrooms, the ‘RJB’ and the daily salmon special.

From the name and the delicious taste, I can only presume the “Ken” for whom this plate is named is one of the higher food gods

From the name and the delicious taste, I can only presume the “Ken” for whom this plate is named is one of the higher food gods

Grilled beef tenderloin, poached crab AND cured bacon, all in one burger! (The gods were quite pleased!)

Grilled beef tenderloin, poached crab AND cured bacon, all in one burger! (The gods were quite pleased!)

The gods would finally receive what they truly desired!

The gods would finally receive what they truly desired!

With all of this love for the food gods, it would have been rude to completely ignore the drink gods now! To keep them appeased (as if my last post wasn’t enough), offerings of Lavender Bees Knees and Rose Coloured Glasses were made.

You know the drinks are going to be a sugar-coma of deliciousness because they have names that don’t really have anything to do with what’s actually in them

You know the drinks are going to be a sugar-coma of deliciousness because they have names that don’t really have anything to do with what’s actually in them

While this level of devoted worship is usually enough to appease even the snobbiest foodie food god, I was digging my way out of a mushy trench (see the first photo of the post) and would need a Crazy Good act of devotion to prove my loyalty, so I decided to head to Smack Dab (which I was a bit dubious about, considering their slogan was “Crazy Good Food”, I mean, McDonald’s slogan is I’m Lovin’ It and they’re definitely no where near my most beloved restaurant).

However, there was no room for doubt as the food gods commanded my worship and attention. I began with an offering of Spinach & Artichoke Dip For Two and must say this was a bit of mis-nomer, it should really be called Spinach & Artichoke Dip For Two Snorlaxes Or Two Hundred People.

Here’s a comparative size chart for the dip, keeping in mind that Snorlax weighs 1014lbs

Here’s a comparative size chart for the dip, keeping in mind that Snorlax weighs 1014lbs

After persevering through, mains were ordered, stomachs were filled (to bursting) and the food gods were finally appeased.

Can't say no to some good ol' Crispy Steelhead Trout!

Can’t say no to some good ol’ Crispy Steelhead Trout!

... or some Prosciutto Di Parma Pizza

… or some Prosciutto Di Parma Pizza

My long and rigorous odyssey had finally come to a successful closing and while the food gods had permitted me to go back to munching on mush, the adventure proved to be enough to keep my foodie levels peaked for the remainder of the trip.

Wine-ing Around Kelowna’s Vineyards

It’s a well-known rule that anyone who takes a trip to Kelowna has to visit at least 4 wineries before they’re allowed to leave. Since I had plans to move out to (spoiler alert:) Whistler, I was faced with the difficult task of choosing which of Kelowna’s 30 wineries I wanted to tour. Luckily, I made my decision by teaming up with HelloBC again to write an article about sustainable wineries, which led me to Kalala Organic Estate WineryTantalus Vineyards and Summerhill Pyramid Winery.

To match with the “sustainability” theme, I also decided that I would cycle to each of these locations.

 A decision I made before putting 2 and 2 together to realize that while mountain slopes are pretty, they also make for an intense workout

A decision I made before putting 2 and 2 together to realize that while mountain slopes are pretty, they also make for an intense workout

Panting my way up and down rolling hillsides only made views (and tastes) at each destination all the more sweet (or savoury, depending on the type of wine) though.

As the only LEED-certified winery building in the Okanagan, I didn’t want to dishonour Tantalus’ wine shop by showing up in a hummer or something crazy

As the only LEED-certified winery building in the Okanagan, I didn’t want to dishonour Tantalus’ wine shop by showing up in a hummer or something crazy

In addition to getting to taste some great wines, I also learned a thing or two about the stuff to help me pretend like I know what I’m talking about when wine comes up in conversation. Since I’m such a nice person, I’ll help you pretend you know all about sustainable Okanagan wine with these 3 quick facts:

1)    If grapes are grown organically, the soil around the vines will be covered with weeds (If they’re not organic and sprayed with pesticides, nothing will be able to grow there)

IMG_1243

2)    Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir will typically be the best types of wines to order from the Okanagan

If that can help lower down the selection at all

If that can help lower down the selection at all

3)    Organic wines can only have 100 sulphur dioxide (SO2) parts per million, instead of 350, like in non-organic wines

Since that was a lot of learning, I decided I’d finish up with a nice tour and tasting at Quail’s Gate and lunch at the restaurant, Old Vines. Coming in, I was pretty sure the wine was going to be fantastic.

Which was confirmed by a taste-test

Which was confirmed by a taste-test

However, I was completely blown away by the food at Old Vines and decided to take photos of all of my party’s courses:

To start: Dungeness crab cakes, warm beets and buffalo mozzarella salad & green apple, orange and arugula salad

To start: Dungeness crab cakes, warm beets and buffalo mozzarella salad & green apple, orange and arugula salad

For mains: grilled wild BC salmon, prosciutto wrapped Maple hills chicken breast and Cache creek natural beef butchers’ cut

For mains: grilled wild BC salmon, prosciutto wrapped Maple hills chicken breast and Cache creek natural beef butchers’ cut

To finish off: salted caramel budino and chocolate crèmeux

To finish off: salted caramel budino and chocolate crèmeux

Broken Bones, Mexican Drug Cartels and Key Lime Pie (AKA My Welcome to Kelowna)

To bring the ski season to a crashing halt, my (older but neither wiser nor more mature) boyfriend decided to attempt an XL jump in the park of Big White Ski Resort. Without looking back, he punted himself off the jump, realized he had been going at a breakneck speed, flipped out and landed flat on his back.

(Sidenote: I’m not apologizing for or taking back ANY puns – it’s taken me everything to not break down and crack them in front of my boyfriend, so I’m using this post to do so behind his back instead.)

(Continuing with the story…) after a laughing gas-induced trip down the mountain to Kelowna General Hospital, the doctors had determined he fractured his lumbar 2 vertebrate and would need an operation to put the fractured pieces back together and get his spine screwed back into place.

Fortunately, the Canadian surgeons proved they’re all their cracked up to be and my boyfriend is now back up and walking his way to a complete recovery in less than half a year’s time!

To celebrate his recent release from the hospital, I decided to find a way of giving him a taste of the surf culture he’s realized he’ll have to miss out on while he’s still in recovery. I knew there had to be a way that wouldn’t involve either of us having to bend over backwards and a lucky connection with SoBo (the Sophisticated Bohemian), made the search pretty easy!

SoBo began as a food truck in Tofino, BC in 2003, serving fresh, locally sourced meals and evolved into a delicious full-scale restaurant 4 years later. Their recipes have been so popular, they’re about to release their own cookbook (which I was able to get my hands on early) – you can check it out here!

Delicious recipes await!!

Flipping through the book, I found a recipe for Key Lime Pie, fell head over heels in love at first sight and found myself racing to the grocery store.

I was bribed with photos like this!! Come on, I had no choice but to try it for myself!

I was bribed with photos like this!! Come on, I had no choice but to try it for myself!

Since I also love all you beautiful followers so much, I’ll give you the full play-by-play of how I assembled the pie (which I had FAR too much fun doing, just to warn you):

1) Start off by assembling a simple enough grocery list:

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(Sidenote: my shopping was unfortunately complicated slightly by Mexican drug cartels. They’ve recently become unhappy with all the farmers they’ve been sourcing their limes from and have stopped the exportation of virtually all of Mexico’s limes. Personally, I think they realized that the profit margin of exporting illegal drugs is much higher than that of limes and that it simply wasn’t worth their while to continue.)

2) Now it’s time to preheat the oven to 250F

3) From there, use a touch of the butter to grease the sides of a 9 inch pie dish and draw a smiley face in the middle

;) - totally necessary part of the process!

Yes, the smiley face IS necessary, smiley faces are ALWAYS necessary!

4) Next, mix the graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar together

They should be more than willing to mix together!

Look how excited they are to be together! (Butter’s a bit of a party pooper on this one though..)

5) Once mixed, the recipe says the ingredients should “resemble wet sand”

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A good way to test the sandy consistency is to build a sand cottage in the bowl

6) Demolish your newly constructed dream home and repurpose it into a pie crust by packing it into the sides of your pie dish (you won’t need to make it too thick)

Something that's as painful for the crust as it will be for you

Demolishing your dream is unfortunately as painful for the crust as it will be for you

7) Stop being sad about the dream home by remembering that you will soon have a delicious pie

8) Stick the pie in the oven for 8 minutes

9) While it’s baking, separate the the egg yolks from the egg whites. I found the best way it to crack the egg in half and transfer the yolk back and forth between the two half shells. Each time you move it, more of the whites will slip out

Not going to lie, I may have just gotten my hair cut and was looking for an excuse to take selfies

Cracking eggs with my TEETH! (Not going to lie, I may have just gotten my hair cut and was looking for an excuse to take selfies.. Also, if you’re in Kelowna, Fringe is a great salon)

10) Whisk the eggs up with the condensed milk

The milk cans may be sad about getting emptied, but show no mercy, you need their deliciousness!

The milk cans may be sad about getting emptied, but show no mercy, you need their deliciousness!

11) By now (or maybe sooner, depending on how long you spend taking selfies of your egg-cracking), the pie crust should resemble Mickey Mouse and be ready to take out of the oven

Yes, the pie SHOULD come out with a cartoonized face!

Yes, the pie SHOULD come out with a cartoonized face!

12) Time to juice up those drug cartel-limes! I actually bought a cheap manual juicer, but actually found that squeezing them with my bare hands worked better

I also felt like more of a badass for destroying limes this way as well!

I also felt like more of a badass for destroying limes this way as well!

13) Almost done! Mix the juice in with the eggs and milk, then pour it into the pie crust

14) Zip that pie back in the oven for 6 minutes

15) While the pie’s back in the oven, blend the whipping cream and vanilla together until it starts to form fluffy peaks (yes, you’ll need a blender, trust me, I tried hand-whipping and it’s not something you want to do)

16) Throw the pie out of the oven and let it set in the fridge for 4 hours

It was a very painful 4 hours of waiting, not going to lie

It was a very painful 4 hours of waiting, not going to lie

17) OM NOM NOM it to delicious pieces!

18) Check out more recipes from The Sobo Cookbook!

When Alpine Hipsters go Nordic: Adventure (Park) Time Part 3

As a skier and a hipster, I pride myself on the fact that I am not a snowboarder for several reasons (to keep things short and sweet, I’ve cut it down to just 6 for you – which is waaaaay less than “several”):

1)    2 legs –> 2 skis = sensible BUT 2 legs –> 1 board = nonsensical; my legs are (also) hipsters, they don’t like to conform to what the other one is doing

2)    Skiers are faster than snowboarders

  1. Fastest downhill ski speed = 156mph
  2. Fastest downhill snowboard speed = 126mph

3)    Skiers were bombing down hills way before boarders thought it was cool

4)    It doesn’t take me 5,000,000hours to clip into my skis every time I get to the top of a lift

5)    I don’t have to hop around like a crippled bunny every time I get to a flat section of the mountain (hooray poles)

6)    I get to lecture snowboarders about all of the above reasons whenever they take 5,000,000hours to clip into their board or stuck on a flat section of the hill

Basically, I really enjoy skiing and how far my ski-bility has come over the course of the season. This means that when I discovered Big White’s Adventure Park had a bunch of Nordic ski trails, I was ready to show off my skills**.

** I had never actually been cross-country skiing before, but it pretty much looked like a flatter and easier version of downhill skiing, so I decided not to bother with lessons or anything silly like that.

I marched up to the rental shop with my boarder buddy and tried to disguise my confusion as nonchalance when I was handed a pair of “boots” that were shorter and thinner than some of my shoes (high-top shoes, but shoes nonetheless)! The rental attendant then asked if I wanted instructions on how to clip the boots, but I gave him a big “pffffffffft, nah, I got this,” and marched onwards with (misplaced) confidence to the start of the trail and got ready to start this cross country adventure.

Unfortunately, the “official” start was delayed by about 10mins of hopelessly attempting to stomp my boots into the skis, but after that small hiccup, I was ready to go!

Mini boot wearing CHAMP!

Mini boot wearing CHAMP!

By “go”, I of course mean, “flip head over heels every couple of centimetres because balancing on super-skinny Nordic skis turns out to be a lot more difficult than balancing on fatty downhill powder skis”. Seriously, I felt like I was learning to skate for the first time wearing skates with blades that were a metre long! After my buddy and I (along with several small but very talented Nordic ski-children) laughed at some of the most spastics falls known to man, we finally started making progress along the trail…somehow.

It turns out that there’s a technique to Nordic skiing. Something that to this day, I do not fully understand. I tried to swish around like I would with regular skis on flat ground but eventually realized that moving with more of a skating motion seemed to make more sense.

With that, I ski-skated my way across a couple different routes, all of which seemed to lead to intersections where Lower Copper Kettle crossed with Lower Copper Kettle in 4 directions.

While it was a bit of a labyrinth, it was a very pretty labyrinth!

While it was a bit of a labyrinth, it was a very pretty labyrinth!

Altogether, Nordic skiing was definitely a fun experience, but still has nothing on its alpine cousin!

Don't worry mountains, you're still my number one!

Don’t worry mountains, you’re still my number one!