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Author Archive

Reflections on a Sourdough Summer

30.Oct.2014 by Caitlin Patterson

Food is an important part of any athlete’s daily routine, and a part that we often overlook sharing much about. There are certainly some pictures we’ve posted of particularly notable edibles on this blog, but in general I don’t believe food has gotten quite its fair share, compared to how much of our daily thoughts and life it occupies.  That’s not to really imply that any of the athletes at Craftsbury take the food for granted – we are extremely lucky to be able to eat at the spectacular Craftsbury dining hall for most of the year. This post, I have to warn you, is going to be all about food, and the process of making one particular kind of it – bread!

While I’ve always considered sourdough bread to be among my favorites – along with crusty European baguettes and German pretzel rolls – I’d never made sourdough myself until this summer. On frequent enough occasions in the last few years, I would make oatmeal whole-wheat sandwich bread, baguettes, and various other types by hand, and I have done some experimentation and made complicated-sounding breads just for the sake of trying something new.  I’m not a bread machine person, or a person who tends to avoid making things that sound complex.  But sourdough… I always stopped before venturing into sourdough… Because even though most of the instructions say “it’s really pretty easy” to create a sourdough starter, and other such reassurances, those statements are usually followed by what seem like long lists of instructions consisting of a different step every day for 4-6 days and then a lot more attention to the sourdough after that.

Note: Before you get too far into this, beware – I am passionate about baking and bread, and cooking explorations in general, and when I’m enthusiastic about something in this way it leads to long descriptions.  Scroll ahead to the pictures or skip to a different blog on our site if you’re impatient, otherwise, carry on reading!

This summer, I suppose you could say that I needed a cooking or baking outlet, preferably one that did not result in a profusion of sugary dessert-snacks to feed my team/housemates and myself. I unquestionably love sweet things (yes, thank you for pointing out Pete H, I have a sweet tooth!), but I’ve gone through a time of giving more thought to nutrition and food choices this year, which leads me to gravitate away from excessive sugars if possible.  Bread was the perfect choice, because the GRP skiers consume a considerable amount of bread for breakfasts and snacks, and bread is a healthy baking result derived from a process that can include creativity and embellishment.  So it was an ideal summer to venture into sourdough bread baking.

Beautiful toasted loaves of cranberry-walnut sourdough!

Beautiful toasted loaves of cranberry-walnut sourdough!


What exactly is sourdough, you might ask?

Well, from the standpoint of the basic grocery-store consumer, sourdough bread is typically a crusty, white bread with a particularly tangy taste.

From the standpoint of the baker, or someone who wants to know what makes this type of bread distinctive, it gets a bit more complex. Sourdough bread is baked from a dough that is made with a sourdough starter. It doesn’t have to be a white bread, sourdough breads cover the spectrum from whole wheat to rye to white to a variety of other grains or mixes.  A sourdough starter is a way of cultivating natural yeast – rather than using store-bought yeast from a jar or packet, the natural yeast contained within the starter leavens the bread, causing it to rise and develop air pockets. This natural or wild yeast can’t be called on at any minute though – while it is in the air around us, it has to be properly cultivated and encouraged in order to be concentrated enough for use in bread.  A starter is typically made from just flour and water, although as I understand it, starters can sometimes contain fruit juice in the early stages. It takes a little while to establish a good population of yeast, but then once the starter is “active” it can be maintained indefinitely for future use, and shared with friends too.

Nice and active starter, see all those big air pockets? From the yeasties!

Nice and active starter, see all those big air pockets? From the yeasties!

A very active starter, and a gamble on container-size, can lead to a mess

A very active starter, and a gamble on container-size, can lead to a mess

Stirring down the starter - a big batch since I'm getting ready to bake something

Stirring down the starter – a big batch since I’m getting ready to bake something

 


Caitlin’s sourdough starter process:

In mid-May of 2014, when I returned to Craftsbury to start the new training year, I knew I would be at the house where I live in Craftsbury with few interruptions until the fall, and it would be a perfect time to start the process of a sourdough starter. On the recommendation of my teammate Emily, who had made sourdough this winter, I looked on the King Arthur Flour website (one of my favorite recipe sources) for guidance about starting sourdough.  Here’s the link to their page about starting sourdough: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/blog/2012/04/05/creating-your-own-sourdough-starter-the-path-to-great-bread/

As the experts at King Arthur attest to, creating a sourdough starter is as much art as science – there are many variations and suggestions out there, but there is room for flexibility within a framework of conditions that will enable the growth of the sourdough yeast and bacteria. I started with 1 cup of rye flour and 1/2 a cup of cool water from the tap. After 24 hours, half of the original was discarded, and I added a new 1 cup of King Arthur “Special” bread flour and 1/2 cup of water to what remained, and mixed everything together.  The 3rd day started the twice a day feedings – to add new flour and water is considered “feeding” the starter.  Every 12 hours, I’d check on the starter, which was in our kitchen on a shelf, discard half of it and feed it with a new 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup of water (always “special” bread flour from here out). This is not a process to undertake if you’re particularly short on time, flour, or capacity to remember to do something every 12 hours – luckily I had plenty of everything, with a busy training schedule which fortunately causes me to return to the house frequently.

The starter is supposed to be highly active and ready for baking within about a week.  Mine was only slightly active – swelling a little between feedings, with a few bubbles – after about 1.5 or 2 weeks, and I started to get kind of nervous, afraid I might have to start over. At that point I chatted with Emily again, who recommended putting it in a warmer spot to see if that helped the activity level – for a truly active starter, you should expect that it will double in volume from one feeding to the next. I found a spot out of the way, on top of our freezer, and started leaving the container there.  Vermont in early summer is moderately warm but not at all hot, and it turned out that was exactly the missing piece – heat! With the starter on the warm freezer top, it became much more active and was soon doubling. Time to bake!

 

A dash of honey

A dash of honey to sweeten the dough

All shapes and sizes, and fillings - several of these have cheese, others cranberries, others are plain

All shapes and sizes, and fillings – several of these have cheese, others cranberries, others are plain

Sometimes several batches at once

Sometimes several batches at once

Cranberry walnut loaves rising

Cranberry walnut loaves rising

Thin crispy crust and nice crumb

Thin crispy crust and nice crumb


To make a true sourdough bread, you need an active starter, flour, water, salt, and nothing else (other than time)! It’s also possible to make a bread with store-bought yeast supplemented with sourdough starter to give it flavor.  And, there are a number of other bread-related items that can be made with sourdough starter, much of it as a way to use the otherwise-discarded starter (what you would throw out when the starter is fed).  So I’ve dabbled in many variations, and quite a few shapes too. Below are suggestions based on what I’ve done, and links to the recipes for trying it yourself:

Sourdough bread: in baguette or loaf form, all white flour or 1/6-1/4 whole wheat. It can be “flavored” – mixed with shredded cheddar cheese, mixed with blue cheese and cranberries, with walnuts and cranberries, swirled/wrapped with cheese inside, swirled with apples and cinnamon sugar, and more. See this recipe: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/extra-tangy-sourdough-bread-recipe (I’ve never used the optional sour-salt – if your sourdough is active it should have plenty of sour flavor as is.) Try out the recipe just plain a few times to get acquainted with it, with only white bread flour because it behaves more predictably, and then make additions as desired! Be warned, this bread does basically take two days – it’s not bad, but does require some serious planning ahead to time all the stages to fit within the other constraints of your day.

Sourdough-yeast hybrid: Try it also with rolled oats and whole wheat flour, cinnamon-cranberry swirl bread, cheese swirl bread, etc.  Recipe: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/rustic-sourdough-bread-recipe  (when using rolled oats, I added 1/2 cup of oats per recipe, and 1/2-1 cup of whole wheat flour, each of those in place of the white flour called for. However I also adjust the moisture by adding more flour or water as I knead the bread, since I know approximately what I’m aiming for after having repeated this process a fair number of times.)

With extra starter: sourdough popovers, sourdough waffles or pancakes, both of which are fantastic and quite easy.  Recipes: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/classic-sourdough-waffles-or-pancakes-recipe

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/sourdough-popovers-recipe

In general just check out all of King Arthur Flour’s sourdough recipes here: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/sourdough/view-all

Oh, and if you’re not quite into all the sourdough complexity, but are inspired to make bread anyway, try this excellent sandwich bread, of course from King Arthur again! This was one of my go-to breads before sourdoughs: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/vermont-whole-wheat-oatmeal-honey-bread-recipe


Ready to roll - cranberry cinnamon bread, spread the dough and filling like this, then roll it into a log and put it in the bread pan to rise!

Ready to roll – cranberry cinnamon swirl bread, spread the dough and filling like this, then roll it into a log and put it in the bread pan to rise!

The swirl bread after baking...

The swirl bread after baking…

Cranberry-cinnamon swirl

Cranberry-cinnamon swirl snack

Waffles!

Waffles!

Summer breakfast, on the relaxed days when we can linger instead of rushing out the door to train

Summer breakfast, on the relaxed days when we can linger instead of rushing out the door to train immediately

I used to think popovers were something to be afraid of, in case they came out flat, but these turn out perfectly every time!

I used to think popovers were something to be afraid of, in case they came out flat, but these turn out perfectly every time!

Throughout the summer I’ve been quite pleased with the flavor and texture of my sourdough breads, and my housemates surely enjoy them too, as the bread has seemed to disappear about as quickly as I can make it.  Particularly if it’s full of melted shreds of Cabot cheddar cheese! I actually really like the opportunity to experiment on flavors and additions, which is facilitated by how quickly each batch gets consumed.  And, a side benefit of making all these batches of bread… hand-kneading… when I was younger my mom always tried to convince me that I should knead more bread to make my arms stronger. They’re stronger this year, which happens to be a good thing for ski racing! Whether from kneading or from an improved strength training program, who knows, maybe some of both!

When I left for fall training camps these past few months, I put my sourdough in a jar with a lid, gave it one last feeding, then popped it straight into the refrigerator. It actually keeps for a while, and just needs to be taken out and fed a few times before it’s nicely active again – I took out the jar 4 days ago, having just returned from Park City (see Liz’s previous post for tales of our training activities there) and it’s definitely active and ready for bread-making by now.  In fact last night I made sourdough popovers to go with dinner, and don’t tell my housemates, or else there could be a stampede, but there may be fresh bread this evening.

Thanks for reading!!

~Caitlin

Austria, at first glance

8.Sep.2014 by Caitlin Patterson

The skiers arrived in Austria this afternoon, Monday September 8th, after leaving Craftsbury on the morning of the 7th.  While we’re undoubtedly jet-lagged, sunshine and astoundingly beautiful scenery helped keep our spirits high throughout the day and helped us fight the temptation to nap.  Everyone headed out for a jog at some point during the afternoon, and here are a few photos from the first glance at the town and area.  More to come soon – tomorrow morning we head to the Dachstein glacier for our first on-snow session of the season!

Ramsau below and looking down the valley

Ramsau below and looking down the valley

Overlooking the town of Ramsau

Overlooking the town of Ramsau

Kate Miller and Liz Guiney

Kate Miller and Liz Guiney

Past a snowmaking pond

Past a snowmaking pond

A quick run through town brought us to this church, but there is much more to explore in the coming days

A quick run through town brought us to this church, but there is much more to explore in the coming days

Waxing skis in the most idyllic setting, tomorrow it's glacier time!

Waxing skis in the most idyllic setting, tomorrow it’s glacier time!

Chickies

2.Jul.2014 by Caitlin Patterson

This is the second year we’ve had chickens at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, raised by the GRP for their eggs.  Most athletes are known for eating rather large quantities of eggs, an easy and tasty source of protein, but not everyone is as intimately involved in the egg-making process as we are here.  For quite a few people, especially in rural VT like we are, raising chickens isn’t particularly unusual; however I know that not everyone is lucky enough to have the facilities to raise chickens, and to know so conclusively where their eggs come from.

New this year, the chickens are in residence in a field at Elinor’s, the skier house.  I can’t say I saw much of the chickens last year, when they lived near one of the rower houses, but I’m getting well acquainted with this year’s chickens as one of their caretakers. It’s fun, I like chickens! They’re pretty silly, sometimes annoying, often voraciously hungry and thirsty, but friendly and talk(sqawk)ative.  And softly feathery – I’ve been trying to help them acclimate to people, which will make them easier to be around and handle, so I pet them every day! Don’t worry, you can laugh, my teammates have been laughing and giving me a hard time about petting the chickens too…

Posing with a chicken post-workout.  Thanks to Andrew for the photo, and for coercing me into posing for it.

Posing with a chicken, post-workout. Thanks to Andrew for the photo, and for coercing me into posing for it.

Alex Howe, who’s had significant experience with animals and crops at his family’s farm, and a few other of the athletes got the chicken coop all set up last year.  That was the hard part of the process – the feeding, watering, and daily egg collecting is pretty straightforward.  The coop is right next to the ski trails and the main route between our house and the Center, so I can check on them as I run or bike past for workouts and commutes to the Center.  As long as I keep them well supplied with water and food, the chickens are pretty content and the number of eggs keeps going up.  Right now we’re getting 42-48 eggs a day, which should go up to closer to 65 soon, equal to the number of chickens.

The chickens are always eager to see me walking up to their coop, and they gather inside the solar-powered electric fence expectantly.  One of my favorite parts of the process right now is walking up to the chicken coop at twilight to shut them inside for the night – the fireflies are out in great numbers, adding their sparkle to the fields, and the chickens are softly clucking and settling down for the night.

 

Looking back towards Elinor's from the coop

Looking back towards Elinor’s from the coop

Gathered at the water dish

Chickens excited at fresh water and an empty bucket, with the solar electric fence in the background

Waiting inside the fence

Waiting inside the fence

I bring the chickens fresh water a few times a day, especially if it's hot like the current heat wave

I bring the chickens fresh water a few times a day, especially if it’s hot like the current heat wave

Entrance to the coop

Entrance to the coop

Inside the coop, with food buckets

Inside the coop, with food buckets

Egg boxes

Egg boxes

Eggs!

Eggs!

The day's collection

The day’s collection

Chicken feed + water + happy chickens + VT grassy pasture + attentive caretaker  = tasty eggs!

Chicken feed + water + happy chickens + VT grassy pasture + attentive caretaker = tasty eggs!

Once the eggs are in the kitchen, more fun begins, as we turn them into breakfasts, or snacks.  I have pictures of a few egg-creations, but not nearly all of them, because it’s often hard to remember to take pictures before something is devoured, by myself or others.  We eat lunch and dinner at the Outdoor Center dining hall, but breakfast at Elinor’s is a good opportunity to cook whatever we’d like. Recent favorites include: fried eggs on toast with jam and melted cheddar cheese (several of my skier teammates eat this often, and it’s great! I hadn’t tried the combo until a few weeks ago and it’s now solidly in my repertoire of breakfast options – highly recommended!), scrambled eggs, waffles, egg-banana pancakes and more.  A few nights ago we had an evening gathering and invited the rowers to our house, and I made deviled eggs for a snack.

Eggs, ready for consumption

Eggs, ready for consumption

Big eggs and little eggs, choose your portion

Big eggs and little eggs, choose your portion

Have you ever heard of egg-banana pancakes? I discovered them this spring and now I make them about once a week.  1 mashed banana, 2-3 eggs, dash of vanilla, dash of cinnamon -- yum!

Have you ever heard of egg-banana pancakes? I discovered them this spring and now I make them about once a week. 1 mashed banana, 2-3 eggs, dash of vanilla, dash of cinnamon yields a crepe-like not-too-sweet pancake ideal for topping with berries or peanut butter, and syrup.

Egg and banana pancake operation in progress, with blueberries, peaches, yogurt and VT maple syrup of course!

Egg and banana pancake operation in progress, with blueberries, peaches, yogurt and VT maple syrup of course!

Deviled eggs, garnished with paprika and chives.

Deviled eggs, garnished with paprika and chives.

Fueled by all of these nutritious eggs, and the rest of the fabulous food at the COC dining hall, we skiers are deep into summer training, with lots of running, rollerskiing, strength, etc.

One token training photo - track speeds a few weeks ago with the girls' team.  Left to right, Ida, Liz, Caitlin, Kaitlynn. More training photos coming soon, hopefully...

One token training photo – track speeds a few weeks ago with the girls’ team.  Left to right, Ida, Liz, Caitlin, Kaitlynn. More training photos coming soon, hopefully…

Spring skiing in the Arctic: NANANordic summary

7.May.2014 by Caitlin Patterson

NANANordic is an amazing program that brings skiing to remote villages in Alaska, with volunteer coaches from among the ranks of elite athletes, coaches from all levels, and essentially anyone who skis and wants to share their passion for the sport.  Last year I visited the village of Selawik, and based on the positive experiences I had there, I decided to sign up for a 2-village segment this year.  It’s exhausting, often trying, and very-little-down-time experience, but completely worth it for the chance to share skiing with so many enthusiastic young people and bring them outside to play on the snow.  I also find that the outlook of being a coach – being the one in charge, who people come to with problems, or who the 5-year-olds want to hold the hand of when they’re scared of the downhills – is a refreshing change in perspective after being the “athlete” all year.

To start the trip, I flew from Anchorage to Kotzebue, spent a few hours in Kotzebue, and then continued on a small airplane to Noatak.  See the map below for the location of Noatak and Kivalina.

regionmap

Noatak is inland, surrounded by lakes and small rivers, with a population of 514.  The school principal picked us up at the airstrip, drove us to the school, and showed us our accommodations for the next 5 days – the Napaaqtugmiut school library! We spent the afternoon organizing equipment, and then took an evening loop around town on skis to check out our surroundings and figure out where we’d be taking the kids to ski the next day.

I’m going to try not to swamp this post with too many photos, but here are a few.  (Additional photos from my trip can be found at my just-released personal blog www.caitlinpatterson.blogspot.com.)

My fellow coaches in Noatak, from left Libby, Sam, and Tyler

My fellow coaches in Noatak, from left Libby, Sam, and Tyler

Expectant skiers, with basketball in the background

Expectant skiers, with basketball in the background

Coach Libby playing games with kindergarteners

Coach Libby playing games with kindergarteners

Coaches Tyler and Sam pulling trains of kids

Coaches Tyler and Sam pulling trains of kids

Tyler was a favorite playmate when we walked around the village one evening

Tyler was a favorite playmate when we walked around the village one evening

The following morning, after a brief scheduling meeting with the teachers, it was time to ski! Each class rotated through to ski once during the day, from kindergarten to high school, and we usually had two classes at once, sometimes such diverse groups as 1st graders with 11th graders.  The older students are actually great with helping the little ones, plus they could go off on longer skis with their teachers or play games. On one of the last days all of us coaches played basketball on skis with some of the high-schoolers and it was extremely fun – the high-schoolers playing had gotten good enough at skiing, and they’re extremely good at basketball, so that the coaches could go all-out and not hold back any speed or agility during the game.  Needless to say we were pretty tired after 45 minutes of intense games…

Each day we skied with the kids for anywhere between 4 and 8 hours, and on a few of the mornings a few of us coaches went for pre-sunrise crust skis too.  The kids of all ages were great, and our most difficult times during the day were always when it was time to get everyone back inside, because they wanted to keep skiing!

Looking back at the school on a pre-sunrise ski

Looking back at the school on a pre-sunrise ski

Arctic light before sunrise

Arctic light before sunrise

Sketchy bridge, which Tyler and I had to cross for one of the pre-sunrise crust skis

Sketchy bridge, which Tyler and I had to cross for one of the pre-sunrise crust skis

Happy faces after skiing!

Happy faces after skiing!

Tyler and the girls

Tyler and the girls

A group of very proficient skiers by the last day in Noatak

A group of very proficient skiers by the last day in Noatak

After 5 days in Noatak, when our coaching there wrapped up, a group of three of us – Sam, Marcus, and myself – chose to ski from Noatak to Kivalina.  The ski was 50 miles along a snow-machine trail between the villages, which is called the “stake trail” because of the wooden stakes posted every 50-100 feet marking the route.  Marcus chose to take the trip through an NNF auction and he was a great addition to our group for coaching the kids as well as our village-to-village ski.  The ski started off with gradually rolling terrain, soon becoming larger hills as we climbed up towards a pass over low hills (by Alaska standards, hardly even a pass, in not-really-mountains).  From mile 20 through 45, the terrain was close to entirely flat, with very gently rolling hills of tundra grasses.  The last few miles were along riverbanks and over a frozen marshland to the peninsula where the village of Kivalina is built.  While the first half of the ski had good snow coverage, the 2nd half involved some pretty low snow, including one short section where we just walked across the grass on our skis, and many miles of stepping around grass tussocks, unavoidable agility training.  Luckily the weather was fairly mild, other than a bit of wind on the higher terrain, and it was sunny and nice all day.  We carried all of our own food and water, and did not have any snowmachine support, which is not exactly ideal, but the person we had hoped could follow us was not available that day.

The most memorable experience of the ski involved a bit of a mix-up with the GPS distance measurements from Marcus’s watch.  We knew we had about 50 miles, which is 80 kilometers, to ski.  Throughout most of the ski it seemed like we were making slow progress, and after 5 hours of skiing, the watch told us we had reached 40 kilometers (we believed), so the halfway point. We tried to keep our outlooks positive, but 5 more hours of skiing sounded brutal, having calculated before leaving that it ought to take 7-8 hours to ski the trail.  A little while further along, we saw a plane landing in the distance, which gave us a spark of hope, and then about 30 minutes of skiing later, we could just make out a few buildings on the horizon.  Kivalina!  And thus Marcus realized that his watch distance units must have been in miles, not kilometers, so at the 40 mark we had been 4/5ths of the way through our ski instead of half. You have no idea how easy a 7 hr 20 minute ski (start to stop, including short breaks) feels after believing from about hour 4 through hour 6 that it would be a 10-11 hr day!

Starting the ski at 6:30am meant that we were out in time to see the sunrise

Starting the ski at 6:30am meant that we were out in time to see the sunrise

Marcus (left) and Sam climbing towards the pass on our 50 mile ski

Marcus (left) and Sam climbing towards the pass on our 50 mile ski

Kivalina was my next village for coach-volunteering, so after the long ski I stayed in Kivalina for another 6 days and met another set of awesome young skiers.  Kivalina was in the mainstream news a few years ago because it is a village that is at risk from rising sea levels, and there is a relocation project under study.  It’s a small town of 374 people, and the entire town is built compactly on a small section of a spit on the edge of the ocean.  The first 24 hours in Kivalina we had some down time to recover, as we waited for the rest of the Kivalina coaches to arrive.  It was Easter weekend, and the community of Kivalina welcomed many visitors to join their Easter celebrations, which included “singspirations”, church services, and community meals and pot-lucks.  We visited the community center and joined several of the meals, in which our hosts supplied us with muktuk (uncooked whale blubber) to try, as well as delicious caribou stew, cranberry sauce, and several more mainstream foods like potato salad and chicken soup.  An elder by the name of Joe regaled us with whaling stories during one of the meals, and then our coaching group was lucky enough to be able to watch two whaling boats getting launched later in the week.

Everyone was extremely friendly and inviting, and the kids especially in Kivalina loved to climb all over us, hold hands while skiing, watch Reese Hanneman and anyone else doing tricks, and have us watch them skiing down the hills or trying tricks.

Waiting for the first ski session in Kivalina

Waiting for the first ski session in Kivalina

This fast group made it all the way to the river one day after school, a considerable ski

This fast group made it all the way to the river one day after school, a considerable ski

"Junior" preferred to play on the slide rather than let me help him ski, but he wanted to wear those ski boots!

“Junior” preferred to play on the slide rather than let me help him ski, but he wanted to wear those ski boots!

Skiers heading back towards Kivalina

Skiers heading back towards Kivalina

Playing on a hill next to the runway

Playing on a hill next to the runway

Coach Megan dumping colored pins to get ready for the next round of "biathlon" games

Coach Megan dumping colored pins to get ready for the next round of “biathlon” games

Reese watching the whalers prepare to launch, after helping them push the boat off the ice into the water.

Reese watching the whalers prepare to launch, after helping them push the boat off the ice into the water.

Me and my friend Geraine "Rainey"

Me and my friend Geraine “Rainey”

Rainey taking a break from skiing

Rainey taking a break from skiing

Katie and one of the kids making faces!

Katie and one of the kids making faces!

Lily borrowed my phone to take pictures while skiing

Lily borrowed my phone to take pictures while skiing

Shannon, Lena, and Tasha demonstrating one of the Alaska Native pulling games played in the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics

Shannon, Lena, and Tasha demonstrating one of the Alaska Native pulling games played in the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics

Coach Reese and an elementary class after they delivered thank-you cards to us on the last day

Coach Reese and an elementary class after they delivered thank-you cards to us on the last day

These trips are experiences I’ll never forget, and I’m very happy to have had the opportunity to share my enthusiasm for skiing with so many inspiring kids and to take a little peak at life in the Arctic.