Wednesday, January 26, 2011

I ski on boulders

No big deal.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Internet is still brutally slow. Really bad in the evenings, when traffic is high. Still managed to pull my patience together for some pictures from Jericho.

Today was a chill out and check out the town day. Grabbed a cappuccino and browsed the shops of downtown Lake Placid. Tomorrow I'm back training and preparing for the trials races on the weekend.

Wax huts at the race site

Phil Violett, Joel Pacas and Myself

Picture whoring

Receiving my medal, far right.

On the ferry from Vermont to New York State.

Just passed by Peru, haha.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Holy moly it's hard to cope without internet. I'm back online now, so here's a summary of my races the past couple days.

Thursday night was a club level race. Being a club level race, there was nothing on the line, and it was completely just for fun. It was a 6km Sprint race. Not much to say, pretty uneventful race. Finished 1st, had 1 miss prone and 2 miss standing. Not very impressive shooting, and skiing was definitely relaxed. Competition was slim, but fun nonetheless.

Saturday was the first race of this weekend. Same story, 10km sprint. I started right behind my teammate, Joel Pacas. My skiing fitness has definitely been lacking in the New Year, and Joel quickly put a gap between us. The only possibility was shooting better than him. Good for him, but unfortunately for me, I had 2 misses and he had just 1. With his shooting in top form and skiing better than me, I didn't stand to gain over his speed. I finished a reasonable 4th place.

Sunday was the Pursuit. Starting right behind my teammate again, I knew my only chance was to shoot well over this format's 4 shootings. Coming in for the first shooting, Joel had already finished his first prone with 3 misses, I knew I had an extremely good chance. I shot clean in this first shooting bout and passed him while has was in the penalty loop. With 4 misses total, I maintained my position for a 3rd place finish. On the podium feels good, even if it isn't gold.

Afterwards, we packed up and drove 2 hours from Jericho, VT, to Lake Placid, NY. So now I'm sitting in my room at the Lake Placid Olympic Training Center. Wicked place. 24/7 food, cheap rooms, and best of all, free WIFI! Although, it isn't very fast...

Pictures to come as soon as they upload.

Friday, January 21, 2011

No love

You never realize how nice you have it until it's gone.

It's so frustrating to have such inconsistent Internet access. I feel almost anxious when I'm sitting around watching TV and wondering what I'm missing.

And my thumbs are super sore from typing this from an iPod Touch.

Anyways... today was official training, and I'm very pleased with my performance so far. Last night I did a "Just For Fun" race, and winning that has rewarded me with some much needed confidence. Tomorrow is that first race of my eastern tour, the 10km Sprint. Wish me
luck, hopefully I'm gonna pwn some n00bs.

Sunday I am travelling from here, Jericho, VT, to Lake Placid, NY, where there is allegedly wireless Internet everywhere. I can't wait!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Travel and Ice Cream

Quick day of travel to Montreal with a stop in Winnipeg. Winnipeg airport is a dead place, as you can see;

Hanging out in Jericho is pretty boring - no WIFI access! Who would've thought that in this day, you could go ANYWHERE without wireless internet being available.

Ah well, we passed the time with a visit to the Ben & Jerry's Factory. Ice cream samples galore!

More updates to follow when more reliable internet access is found.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Impressively productive day

Just kidding. I spent the entire afternoon playing with my cat.

Up early tomorrow for my flight out east. Travelling alone. This is gonna be a fun one! :D

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Wicked snow, and coming soon.

Like I said a couple hours ago, it's super warm out. And after a couple months of training (read "suffering") in -20 weather, this is so welcome. I am so happy.

It's just unfortunate that I am leaving on Tuesday for a couple of races on the eastern side of the continent. I will be competing at North American Cups in Jericho, Vermont and Lake Placid, New York. The latter race, in Lake Placid, will also be qualification trials for teams to represent Canada at this season's second group of European races. It's sad to leave such glorious skiing conditions locally, but it will be fun to travel and see new places.

Local Climate

The local climate is insane. The Canadian Rocky Mountains create for some often extreme weather patterns. Check this out; (Only a relevant link for today, really)

The town of Canmore, where I am, is sitting at 0°C. Meanwhile, the City of Calgary, only 80km away, is hanging out at a chilly -15°C.

I'm definitely not a "worldly" person by any means, so I'm wondering; do you know of any other area's that have this much of a climate contrast in such a short (or shorter) distance?

Saturday, January 15, 2011


I thought I had loads of cool stuff I could share about my job. Turns out, I don't really. Tech Week was pretty lame.

On another note, I am the current North American Cup points leader. Hopefully I can get a few pictures of me racing while wearing the leader's bib.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


To take a break from the lighting tech, I will share with you a ridiculously cool piece of audio equipment.

Yamaha LS9-32
Value: Approx. $11,000
The LS9 is a digital mixing board made by Yamaha - ya, the same people who make ballin' motorcycles.

Using a digital console like this allows me to do without several other pieces of audio equipment. It is able to do compression, gating, equalization and delay. It also has a whole suite of effects such as reverb, which I use extensively to make the mediocre live guitarist sound respectable. If you want to know what any of those are, or how I use them in a show, ask in the comments.

Me sitting at my LS9, waiting for the show to start.

And the coolest thing of all? Motorized sliders! Press one button and all the volume control sliders will move to preset levels all on their own! I use this to make a smiley with the sliders - quick touch of a button and it's a frowny LS9.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


I was hoping I'd use something new every day that I could share. Most of what I've been doing has revolved around lighting. Sooo... Well, I guess I'll share the LED Lighting fixtures I'm using a TON of.

Enter the ChromaQ ColorSplit

Oh lord these puppies are expensive. At around $1,500USD a piece, my show has $30,000 in LED fixtures alone. It's well worth it, though. I control all my lights through Lighting Software made by Jands. The LED are superb at setting a tone with different ambient lighting colours. I'm also using certain lighting cues that allow me to use the LED's as strobe lights. You know the apex of that sick techno song? Strobe effects make it that much more intense. Combining them with an industrial sized fog machine and the MAC250's I mentioned in my previous post, I've created a pretty wicked scene. I will have to snap some pictures tomorrow.

And on the personal side of things, 5-6 hours of sleep a night is becoming a drag. Work sucks, but having to do 2 hours of physical training when you get home makes it suck that much more.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I've decided tech week will chronicle the cool stuff I use at work.

Today was spent setting up an epic lighting array. The hotel I was setting this up in has disgustingly dirty power. Not only that, but any plug in the wall could be part of any number of circuits, which who knows what else on it. In order to reduce the amount of interference, I use something called an Opto-isolator. It essentially turns electrical signals into light, and then back to electrical signals. Since there is no physical connection, there is a reduced risk of distorted signals.

Usually I don't need to use one, but the Martin MAC250's I was using were basically crashing due to the dirty data they were receiving. And having your moving heads go dark during a sick dance party is super embarrassing.

Blue lights are MAC250's in action!

Monday, January 10, 2011


Since I am working all week, and it's stupid cold outside again, I will be sharing other content that interests me. Thus, this week will be;


I work as a technician for an Audio/Visual service company. My boss keeps me around due in large part to my vast knowledge of electronics. Today, I fixed an equalizer which had a damaged power supply. I cannibalized parts from a broken VCR, namely a voltage regulator and a couple of capacitors. The cannibalized parts were even of higher spec than the originals; PERFECT!

Anyways, here is a glorious tutorial on voltage regulators by Afroman over at Afrotechmods. Enjoy!

Sunday, January 9, 2011's Man of the Year

I was recently named's 2010 Man of the Year.

Click here to see the announcement.

It's a local forum that has become an unexpected source of support. Not in the usual, "Awww, good job there little fella" kind of way. I love their tactless humour and blunt motivation. Go check it out.

NorAm#3 Pursuit and World Cup Results

A super sucky day for me. Placing wasn't awful, but I am not pleased with my performance. Apathy is preventing me from giving a full report right now. I'll probably just keep putting it off until it's no longer relevant... Sorry.

On a positive note, World Cup racers Brendan Green and J.P. LeGuellec had a good day in the Mass Start. A 25th and 20th place finish, respectively. These guys are doing excellent this year. World Cup results HERE.

I'll put in a concerted effort to make a decent update later today.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

NorAm#3 Sprint

Challenging day for me. Skiing felt like butt, and shooting on the range was mediocre. Results, however, were acceptable. I'm not sad.

Full report tomorrow. Just results for now;

PL Bib Name Nation Club SkiTime P S T Time Diff
1 8 Scott Gow CAN Rocky Mountain Racers 0:31:54.1 0 2 2 0:31:54.1  
2 7 Robin Clegg CAN Independent 0:32:50.9 3 1 4 0:32:50.9 +56.8
3 13 Matt Neumann CAN Caledonia Nordic 0:33:46.1 1 1 2 0:33:46.1 +1:52.0
4 5 Patrick Côté CAN Biathlon NB 0:33:48.7 0 1 1 0:33:48.7 +1:54.6
5 3 Beau Thompson CAN Canmore Nordic 0:33:52.3 1 2 3 0:33:52.3 +1:58.2
6 6 Johnny Forward CAN Canmore Nordic 0:35:19.9 0 0 0 0:35:19.9 +3:25.8
7 2 Jon Skinstad CAN Camrose Ski Club/Augustana 0:36:09.5 0 4 4 0:36:09.5 +4:15.4
8 4 Joel Pacas CAN Canmore Nordic 0:36:44.5 3 1 4 0:36:44.5 +4:50.4
9 12 Kai Skinstad CAN Camrose Ski Club/Augustana 0:37:14.3 1 3 4 0:37:14.3 +5:20.2
10 1 Elijah MacCulloch CAN Independent 0:39:44.3 1 1 2 0:39:44.3 +7:50.2
11 11 Kevin Jacobsen USA Bridger Ski Foundation/Montana 0:40:26.8 2 3 5 0:40:26.8 +8:32.7
12 10 David Tuss USA Montana 0:47:25.2 2 3 5 0:47:25.2 +15:31.1
13 14 Jon Schafer USA Colorado Biathlon Club 0:51:49.9 2 5 7 0:51:49.9 +19:55.8
DNS 9 Tyson Smith CAN Foothills Nordic *** 0 0   *** ***

Friday, January 7, 2011

Oberhof World Cup Results and NorAm #3

Excellent results from the Canadian men on the World Cup in today's 10km Sprint. Brendan Green placed 14th, J.P. LeGuellec 16th, and Scott Parras 34th. Huge props to these guys.

Then this weekend will be the second Biathlon race of the year for me. North American Championships #3, again in Canmore. I'm excited to get out and race again, however I'm feeling a lot of fatigue right now due to the last several weeks of hardcore training. I've been resting up quite a bit this past week, and I was expected to be more recovered by now. Not too crazy about the forecast, either. A daytime high of -17 is nasty. When it's that cold, skiing is brutally slow. Your skis just don't glide on the cold abrasive snow.

Well that sounds pessimistic, doesn't it?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Training is hard (No duh)

Timing is crucial with training. When, What, How much and How hard can have a dramatic impact on your performance throughout the season.

The 2010/11 season started out a little differently than usual. Often, the first races of the year will be qualifying races for things like National Championships. But this year, the races in December could be called, "Just for fun" races. My performance in them had little impact on my career. This means we can play with training a little bit, and "prolong" the training season.

What this means is that I have not yet changed my training to "race season" mode. The number of hours I train has stayed high, when usually you would be tapering back in order to be recovered well enough to perform in races.

So the last three weeks have been extremely taxing. 18-24 hours every week. Basically, I was on snow and skiing for a solid 3 hours non-stop every single day.

Today marked the last day of high-volume, and thus the end of intense fatigue and weakness. To go out with a bang, I had a nice day of volume, AND intensity. Basically, I spent 1h45min at what could be called "Race Pace." This picture is a graph of my heart rate throughout, and a summary of time spent in each zone.

In case the image below doesn't make sense to you; It's crazy. You can take my word for it.