Chiara and Ron Gajar
Archive for the ‘Skiing’ Category
Wednesday, April 24th, 2013
Tahoe Rim Trail Association launches inaugural Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge
Friends, families and colleagues kick-off new self-guided Trail Challenge on National Trails Day, Saturday, June 1
WHAT: Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge. The Tahoe Rim Trail Association (TRTA) has selected six scenic points on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Participants will hike, bike, snowshoe, ski or ride horseback to each of the destinations and receive invitations to select experiences designed exclusively for Trail Challenge members in 2013.
WHEN: June through December 2013
WHERE: Tahoe Rim Trail. Official kick off location is Van Sickle Bi-State Park in Stateline, NV on National Trails Day, Saturday, June 1. Registration begins on Wednesday, May 15 at tahoerimtrail.org.
COST: $55 for new TRTA members (includes $35 individual annual TRTA membership), $20 for current TRTA members
INFORMATION: Visit tahoerimtrail.org or call (775) 298-0012
Incline Village, NV – April 2013 – Do wildflowers and snow capped mountain peaks leave you breathless? Do you love incredible Lake Tahoe vistas? Then step up to Tahoe’s next big adventure: The inaugural Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge benefitting all participants and the Tahoe Rim Trail Association.
“The Trail Challenge is a program for current and new Tahoe Rim Trail Association members. It is a fun way to experience select portions of the 165-mile Tahoe Rim Trail while supporting the TRTA,” shares Mary Bennington, TRTA’s Executive Director.
How it works
“Once you register, the adventure begins! The Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge is a family-friendly and healthy way to create lasting memories while having fun hiking, biking or horseback riding this summer,” explains Kristine Mitchell, TRTA’s vice president of trail use.
TRTA has selected six premier destinations on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Participants register for the Trail Challenge online at tahoerimtrail.org and strive to experience all six destinations by the end of 2013. Participants hike, ride horseback, mountain bike, snowshoe, ski or use a combination of methods with friends, family members or on their own to complete the challenge. All participants will receive an inaugural Trail Challenge T-shirt and access to everything related to the program including exclusive admission to the members-only website where people will track achievements, share pictures as well as access GPS waypoints for the six destinations. The program cost is $55 which includes all of the benefits of the Trail Challenge plus an individual annual TRTA membership. Current TRTA members can register for just $20.
“The Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge allows participants to get out and experience the beauty of Lake
Tahoe and offers a great way to connect with people you care about and make new friends,” adds Mitchell. “We are especially thankful for this year’s inaugural sponsors – NV Energy, REI and Spin Games.”
Visit tahoerimtrail.org for more information about the inaugural Tahoe Rim Trail Challenge.
ABOUT THE TAHOE RIM TRAIL ASSOCIATION (TRTA)
Established in 1981, the Tahoe Rim Trail Association is a membership-supported organization that maintains and enhances the Tahoe Rim Trail, a trail like no other™. TRTA exists to practice and inspire stewardship, promote access to the beauty of the Lake Tahoe region and sustain the Tahoe Rim Trail system. We operate two overarching programs: Trail Operations and Trail Use. Both programs offer in-depth trainings and rewarding volunteer opportunities. TRTA recruits, trains and manages approximately 1,000 volunteers who contribute more than 17,000 hours annually to support TRTA’s mission. Volunteer efforts, individual and corporate donations and grant funding make TRTA’s annual stewardship work and more than one hundred free public offerings possible. Visit http://www.tahoerimtrail.org.
Thursday, March 14th, 2013
We are excited to see Squaw Valley host the US Alpine Nationals this month. What a great event to bring to the valley, especially with a long history of Squaw Valley ski team members on different ranks of the US Ski Team.
Congratulations to these current Squaw Valley Ski Team athletes who all qualified to compete in the 2013 US Alpine Nationals: Thomas Robles, Hughston Norton, Cody Wilson, Garret Driller, Lena Andrews and Morganne Murphy. They will be competing against several of past Squaw Valley ski team members who are currently on the US Ski Team, including Julia Mancuso, Foreste Peterson, Marco Sullivan, Travis Ganong, Nick Daniels, Bryce Bennett and Keith Moffat. What a thrill for these young athletes to compete against some of the athletes they looked up to over the years. Good luck to all the athletes, especially those who are or were on the Squaw Valley Ski Team.
Check out the promo video and schedule so you are ready for the fun ahead.
Monday, November 5th, 2012
[Olympic Valley, Calif.] November 5, 2012 – For the second year in a row, Squaw Valley’s team is heading to the FIS Alpine World Cup in Aspen on November 24-25 to cheer on the Lake Tahoe resort’s Olympic Gold Medalist, Julia Mancuso, as she takes on the fastest female skiers in the world. A Squaw skier since age 2, Julia Mancuso is one of the fastest women in ski racing – having won seven World Cup victories and 31 podiums between 2006-2012, including World Cup podiums in all five disciplines.
In honor of the first major ski racing competition of the season, Squaw Valley and Julia Mancuso are launching two special eBay auctions to benefit the High Fives Non-Profit Foundation, a Truckee, Calif. based, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to raising money and awareness for athletes that suffer a life altering injury while pursuing a dream in the winter action sports community.
Click here to for a media image of Julia Mancuso (right click to save).
Click here to view the video of Julia promoting the eBay auctions.
Launching today, November 5 at 12 p.m. PST, the first auction includes a VIP Package* for two at the FIS Alpine World Cup in Aspen. This trip of a lifetime includes lodging at the Lime Light Hotel in Aspen, Colo. (Thursday, November 22 to Sunday, November 25), lift tickets for two to Aspen Snowmass for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, VIP tickets for two to all World Cup functions, two VIP passes to all GoPRO events, two VIP passes to the Squaw Valley Julia Mancusso House as well as an autographed Julia Mancuso POC helmet and goggles. *This package does not include airfare or ground transportation.
Launching at 12 p.m. PST on November 14 and running though November 24, the second eBay auction includes two Mountain Collective Passes, two Spyder Outerwear jacket and pant combinations, two POC helmets, two POC goggles, two KOSS headphones, two pairs of Head skis (winner’s choice), two pairs of Head bindings (winner’s choice), two GoPRO Cameras (complete sets), two Big Truck Brand / Julia hats and two Subscriptions to SNOW magazine.
To bid on these spectacular eBay auctions, point your browser to squaw.com/go-julia. One-hundred percent of the proceeds from both eBay auctions will benefit the High Fives Non-Profit Foundation, and Squaw Valley and Julia Mancuso will be matching the entire winning bid for the second auction.
Squaw Valley invites Julia’s fans who will be in Aspen for the FIS Alpine World Cup to join them for après race fun at the Squaw Valley Julia Mancuso House, located walking distance from the World Cup race venue. For more information, find the Squaw team at finish line cheering for Julia.
About Squaw Valley
Host of the 1960 Winter Olympics, Squaw Valley is a year-round mountain destination offering world-class adventures in every season. Squaw is renowned for its legendary skiing and riding that spans 3,600 skiable acres, six peaks and 30 chairlifts including a unique mountaintop beginner area and unrivaled expert steeps, chutes and bowls. In summer, the resort welcomes a full line-up of live music and festivals and Squaw’s Aerial Tram offers a scenic ride up to a host of mountaintop activities. For the ultimate slopeside lodging experience, guests can stay in one of The Village at Squaw Valley’s one, two or three bedroom suites, each with a fireplace, kitchen and balcon
Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows joined forces in November 2011, bringing the two ski resorts under common ownership. Skiers and riders can access 6,000 skiable acres, 43 lifts and 270+ trails at Squaw and Alpine Meadows on one lift ticket or season pass.
About High Fives Non-Profit Foundation
The High Fives Foundation is a Tahoe-based 501.c.3 non-profit organization dedicated to raising money and awareness for athletes who have suffered a life-altering injury while pursuing their dream in the winter action sports community. Follow High Fives on Twitter.com/hi5sfoundation and like us on Facebook.com/HighFivesFoundation.
For more information about Squaw Valley or Alpine Meadows, visit www.squaw.com or www.skialpine.com or call 1.800.403.0206.
Wednesday, August 15th, 2012
Squaw Valley just announced their new Mountain Collective Pass, a collaboration of ski resorts offering a combo option for skiing and riding this coming winter. For $349 an adult can ski 2 days each at Squaw/Alpine, Jackson Hole, Alta and Aspen/Snowmass. Plus you get unlimited 50% off any additional lift tickets for the season at all four resorts and 25% off lodging in all for destinations. This is an impressive alliance between several of the countries independent resorts that offer fabulous skiing and riding. So if you have the time to chase the powder this winter, this could be the pass for you. Check out more at www.TheMountainCollective.com.
Thursday, May 17th, 2012
Press Release from Squaw Valley…
Squaw Valley Ski Team Coach Wins Domestic Coach of the Year
[Olympic Valley, Calif.] May 17, 2012 – Squaw Valley is proud to announce that the resort’s Head Men’s FIS Coach, Konrad Rickenbach, has been awarded Alpine Domestic Coach of the year by the United States Ski & Snowboard Association (USSA).
In their press release announcing the 2012 award winners, the USSA wrote “Rickenbach has consistently produced some of the most well rounded athletes in the West has had many athletes nominated to the U.S. Ski Team. He uses his coaching to promote positive attributes in all aspects of young racers lives. A former U.S. Ski Team coach now working with the Squaw Valley club program, he is an example of what a good coach is – a mentor, a teacher and a friend.”
Rickenbach has a long and impressive track record of training highly successful ski racers from coaching the U.S. Ski Team to coaching Olympians Phil and Steve Mahre to their respective Gold and Silver medals in the 1984 Winter Olympic Games. Having lived in Squaw Valley on and off since the 1980s, Rickenbach started working with the Squaw Valley Ski Team in 2000 with the 12 and under athletes and became the Team’s Heads Men’s FIS Coach for the 2010 – 2011 season.
“Konrad’s deep appreciation and understanding of the mental aspects of ski racing is a huge part of the reason that so many of our athletes qualified for top level competitions this winter,” said Todd Kelly, Squaw Valley Ski Team’s program director. “Rickenbach is undeniably dedicated to the kids that he coaches, and we are truly fortunately to have him as part of our team.”
Tuesday, March 27th, 2012
It is with pride that I write this blog about Ali Kariotis, a Squaw Valley Freestyle Ski Team member. In Valmalenco, Italy, the FIS Junior World Freestyle competition came to an end with Ali Kariotis on top of the podium, champion on the dual slalom event. This was the 5th USA medal of the competition making it the most successful American representation at the event ever. Ali has been a long time member of the Squaw Valley Ski Teams, starting with the wonderful Mighty Mite program. In fact I was one of her coaches during her time in Mighty Mites. She was delight to ski with then as she loved to ski and be on the snow. She acceled at a young age and now is proving herself in a worldwide arena. Congrats Ali. Click here to read more.
Monday, March 19th, 2012
It has been storming off and on for the last week. We have seen it all… huge light fluffly flakes, slushy wet flakes, sleet blowing sideways and rain. Luckily the storm ended with the light and fluffly snow we all love to ski. This weekend was packed. I heard multiple reports from friends from the bay area taking 6 to 7 hours to drive up with spin outs and stops over the summit. The parking lot and the lifts were packed Saturday morning, everyone ready for their piece of powder. It was definitely a day to ski with friends as the lines were long so you might as well catch up and the snow was sliding so gdod to be with a buddy. The ski patrol worked hard and got mostly everything open by the end of the day. Sunday was much less crowded on the slopes but the crowds were still big. It was a cold storm day so there were a lot of hot chocolate breaks happening. The skiing was still great but not as good as Saturday.
After a great weekend, many happy visitors hopped in their cars for the drive back down the hill. Around 4:30pm the line of cars from Truckee was just about to the Squaw stoplight. My sister and family tried to leave around 7pm and Highway 80 was closed. A lot of folks were stuck up here for the night. Speaking of being stuck, I was returning home around 8pm last night and could not make it to my house. There were pile ups of cars on both access roads stuck, smashed into each other and in the ditches. Crazy part was both pile ups included tow trucks who had been trying to help and joined in the mess. I parked at a neighbors house and walked.
Then comes Monday, ahhhhh! Headwall opened after a week of closure (i think). It was almost 2 feet in some places of light fluffy powder. The skies were bright blue, the parking lot full, the lines managable, everyone smiling, it was a good morning. What a little piece of paradise we have here in the Sierras.
Friday, March 2nd, 2012
Today was the blue bird powder day we have been waiting for all season. After two days of storms and lower mountain skiing, the sun came out this morning gloriously shining on Squaw Valley and the untouched powder of the upper mountain. Everyone and their brother and sister and all their friends were on the mountain today. The cars were a steady stream into the valley making the drive time from Tahoe City and Truckee 45 minutes and 1 hour respectively. By 11am the cars were parked down the main road to Eric Rd. (unforntunately many of those cars had parking tickets in their windshields).
And now for the ski report, it was about quality not quantity. I only had a short window of time this morning and planned to get a few great runs. As I got to the locker room, about 8:50am, KT and Red Dog were already loading and the Funitel line was longer than I have ever seen it. First run I headed for the skier packed powder on Chute 75. Nice and smooth, the snow was fabulous and the run empty. Next to the Funitel as the line had returned to normal, which broght me up the mountain for Siberia and the Reverse Traverse. Headwall had a late opening for the lif but the skiing was ready. I skied Sun Bowl and then the Horse Trails. The Sun Bowl was wind impacted but great after the first 10 turns, and Horse Trails was great. In fact I enjoyed it so much I went for another round and could still find untracked turns.
The crowds kept pouring in and I headed home about 11am to start my work day. I actually had a busy afternoon which included showing property. It is going to be a busy weekend.
Tuesday, February 28th, 2012
Thursday, February 2nd, 2012
We attended the welcoming reception for the team members of The Push: A South Pole Adventure organized by Squaw Valley Institute. This was the first public welcome of the team since their return from the South Pole. The Push was a goal for the first ever adaptive skier to push himself to the South Pole and arrive on the 100th year anniversary of the first explorer to the South Pole. Goal accomplished. I learned so much about the whole adventure, the planning, the motivation and the strength of the human spirit, as did a large group of attendees…the place was packed. Here is a brief synopsis. All the team members had a chance to get up on stage and share their empowering experiences. Video clips and photos were shown to give a taste of the adventure. A movie is in the making.
Roy Tuscany and Doug Stoup
Roy Tuscany: President and Co-Founder of the High Fives nonprofit organization spoke about High Fives and their involvement in The Push. They have given $300,000 to athletes with life altering injuries from winter sports in just the 3 short years they’ve been in existence. Originally Roy was supposed to be the adaptive athlete in The Push but he was so involved in getting High Fives going that he didn’t want to take time away from that to train. I’m sure quite a few athletes are grateful for that decision. What a well spoken and vibrant guy.
Director Steve Siig
Steve Siig: Director of The Push. Based on the photos and video clips it is going to be an amazing and emotional movie. Siig has been involved from the beginning and sounds really excited to tell the story. The Push was a year in planning and training before the actual event. I can’t wait to see the movie.
Doug Stoup and Tal Fletcher: Guides to the South Pole. These two men were the knowledge and know how to guide Grant Korgan to the South Pole one push at a time. Each push moved Grant about 2 feet on his sit ski. If he stopped moving for more than 30 seconds he would risk hypothermia. He would wake each morning and push himself for 12 hours a day, non stop. Doug and Tal guided, motivated, and even fed Grant along the way.
Steven Siig and Keoki Flagg
Keoki Flagg: Camera man extraordinaire. Keoki talked while the slide show was playing giving the audience insight to the adventure. He shared feelings about the peace, solitude and the human soul as he motivated himself through the adventure, continually looking for the best angle to capture the team as they pushed over the white frozen landscape. He kept his batteries in his under layers so they had life when they came out in the cold. The images he shared were stunning and so full. ( Tom Day and Petter Nyquist, the other crew/camera men were not there to share that night).
Grant Korgan, an amazing person and athlete
Grant Korgan: Saving the best for last, the adaptive athlete who pushed himself to the SouthPole and actually got out of the sit ski and walked the last 100 feet. Grant is an amazing story teller, so comfortable and charismatic on stage. He shared with us on so many levels getting the audience to both laugh and cry during his talk. Not knowing Grant personally, it sounds like his life may have changed for the worse at first and then for the better when he injured his back in 2010 changing the course of his life. It is to hard to summarize all the stories and emotions that were shared but I am sure the story will be well told by Steve Siig when the movie comes out. We had a chance to briefly meet Grant at the end of the evening. What a charming athlete.
To close, a few intersting tid bits shared by the team…
- it took two hours every morning to boil enough snow to make soup for the team for the day
- water, not kept in a thermos, froze solid in about 90 minutes
- the crew/camera men would pack up the tents in the mornings, catch up to the team, weave on and off the track as they captures photos, then hurry ahead to get the tents set up for when Grant, Tal and Doug arrived
- Grant’s toes were hooked to wires so he could monitor their temperature, the got to 23 degrees at one point halting the progress to immediately warm him up
Grant and his wife with my two kids.