Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Newton's Hill

On several Sunday's now, I've met Brett for rollerski drills in the Westborough Business Park by his house. Maps call the hill this park sits on "Newton's Hill". There is a wide road, when coupled with a parking lot driveway, that nearly reaches the high point of the hill. In all, it gains about 160ft at a very consistent 6% grade. This is perfect for climbing intervals.

Newton's Hill

What is so cool about rollerskiing here is we pretty much have the place to ourselves on a Sunday morning. Maybe three cars will go by in an hour's time. No neighbors giving you stink eye and plenty of room for cars to go by.

Steady Grade

Ten repeats pretty much cooks me. I can V2 it in less than four minutes, but typical intervals run 4-4.5 minutes. Great for VOmax work. This past weekend we tried free skating up it. A month ago I don't think I would have survived this. I've been focusing a lot lately on free skating without poles. I learned I really haven't been tapping into my leg strength much. When free skating up a hill, either you get over each ski with a good snap or you don't go anywhere. Since I've started free skate laps on my lunch loop, I've dropped my free skating time about 15-20%.

The weekends continue to be quite conducive for long rides. On Saturday, Dave and I opted to for fat tires on trails rather than risk another debacle like the prior weekend with CX bikes on ice. There are trail riding options in southern New Hampshire where one can ride five hours and barely see pavement. One such route links up Massabesic Lake, FOMBA trails, Tower Hill Pond, and Bear Brook State Park via Trail 15. You do ride a portion of Trail 15 both directions, but large loops can be ridden at either end. Dave and I did a 48 miler in 4.8 hours, hitting limited bits of FOMBA with a nice loop in Bear Brook. You actually cover a lot of territory in this ride and feel like you accomplish something.  We saw a few other riders out there and a lot of guys with guns. Why is it when you ride away from guys with weapons, you feel like they are lining up a bead on your back? I get the same feeling when I am riding in bear or mountain lion country. Anyway, we went over Hall Mountain, rode the length of I-trail, Bobcat, crossed over Podunk and rode the new singletrack up from Hedgehog, then Bear Hill to top and down Ferret trail before heading back out.

Dave descending Ferret Trail on SS

Prospects are looking quite promising to get my fix on snow this weekend. Bretton Woods now has 30k groomed. Once skis touch snow, the Cape becomes fair game for riding...

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