Thursday, April 14, 2016

Recovery in the rain

The day after we finished Jotunheimen Haute Route, I felt fresh and raring to go. I wanted to continue skiing, taking down peak after peak, forever. I resented having to take a rest day to drive all day, around Jotunheimen to pick up the car at the beginning of the route and then to Audun’s family in Sunnmøre. I thought a lot about cool things that we could do with the remainder of Easter vacation, but the weather forecast was calling for rain, rain, rain.

The next morning, the fatigue hit me like a train. All I wanted to do was sit still. After sitting still for the better part of a day, sucked into the vortex that is the internet, I dragged myself outdoors for a short run. I felt awful for the entire time. At least Sunnmøre is a beautiful place to be running!

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Running past Dyrdalsfossen in Norddal

In the evening, Audun and I skied up to his family's cabin in the mountains about Norddal village by headlamp. A local farmer had let his horses out to wander up the valley. The horses were suspicious of us, but didn’t seem to realize that we were following the same steep road that they were. The last time we saw them it was so dark out I only saw their eyes glittering by the light of a headlamp. My rampant imagination turned the glittering eyes into wolves, even though I knew it had to be the horses.

The ski in took us much longer than I anticipated, but as soon as I relaxed and forgot about the time passing I felt better. It was a starry night and we were the only people in Herdalen valley, which is seldom traveled during the winter.

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The world rendered in greyscale by starlight. Here, Kallskaregga above Herdalsvatnet from Audun’s cabin.

The next morning we lounged for a long time, enjoying the quiet that comes without the vortex that is the internet. We finally decided that we had to go for a ski to deserve a sauna though, so we toured the flat 4 K into Herddalsetra, a seter at the end of the valley.

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Following animal tracks on the snowed in road to Herdalseter. Herdalsegga is the magnificent peak in the background.

After an excellent sauna, we skied back down to the village to eat Easter dinner with Audun’s family. The ski down was absolutely treacherous. The trail was pitted by the horses, and the snow was rotten and collapsed spontaneously outside the tracks. Normally I’m not adverse to falling, but there was also horse poop everywhere. It was a steep, horse poop obstacle course! We both made it down alive, but discovered large amounts of horse hair in our wax afterwards.

The next day was Easter Sunday and it was still raining, so we decided to make the long drive back to Oslo. It basically took all day, because everyone and their mothers had decided to drive back to Oslo that day.

Naturally, I was feeling antsy and decided that the last day of vacation was best spent running. Surely the dirt road around Maridalsvann will have thawed! I thought. But, as is usual when I think things like that, it was not.

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Audun joined me for the first half of my run, and he put the icy conditions to good use, sliding down the hills with effortless control. Due to the variable conditions, it took just under 3 hours to complete my 27K route. But I was feeling good again. I had recovered from Jotunheimen Haute Route, and was ready to continue my training.

- The Wild Bazilchuk

4 comments:

  1. How fun to ski to a cabin and then ski down for dinner!

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    1. Yes, the cabin has a really nice location - just far enough out to get you away from civilization but close enough not to be too much of a hassle to ski to!

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