Friday, March 27, 2020

Virtual Sonot Kkaazoot

Due to the pandemic, the Sonot Kkaazoot couldn't be held as normal. Instead, it was held "virtually," with each person doing their own version. Corrine and Eric both did a version.

Corrine's version:
Leisurely 20K virtual Sonot
Corrine having a good time during her virtual 20k Sonot Kkaazoot.
Barb skied with Corrine for part of Corrine's Sonot. 
Corrine's route.
The Chena River was fine at the start. 
Tom Helmers took a photo of me in my colorful garb. (I decided to dress up for this special occasion!)
The Chena River was quickly deteriorating.
After just a couple of days, the virtual Sonot could no longer be held on the river. 

Half with Barb. Decided to at least do the 20K Sonot. Might try to do 50K on Saturday but will need to see what happens at work. Glad to get out a little early today.

Eric's version:

I finished the Denali State Bank Virtual 50k Sonot Kkaazoot today! 

It took me 6 hours, 17 minutes. Classic skiing. (This was my classic year, so I wanted to classic ski the Sonot.)

The trails were generally in great shape. Thanks to Bad Bob Baker for grooming the Chena River and the Birch Hill grooming crew for grooming the Birch Hill trails. A bit of snow over night covered some parts of the route, but those weren’t bad. The newly groomed sections at Birch Hill were outstanding! 
Things went pretty smooth. Of course, I had a couple problems at the start. Despite taking a leak at Birch Hill (when I dropped off some emergency water at the Warming Hut), I still needed to tinkle when I started! I had to ski several kilometers before I had enough privacy. 

The other thing I noticed right away was that I brought my skate skiing poles! Oh well. I decided to channel my SCUMbuddies Bill Husby and Frank Soos. (SCUM = Susan’s Class of Untrainable Men.) I channeled Bill, aka “Poles” because he double poles a lot, in the flats, and I channeled Frank, the tallest SCUM, the rest of the time.

I saw several people skiing the trails near the Birch Hill Stadium, including NSCF Head Groomer Tom Helmers. (Yes, he does ski!) It was good to see several people out skiing in these stressful times. I didn’t see too many farther out on the course, though I did run into fellow SCUM Don Pendergrast and partner on the river. They were doing the 20k portion of the Sonot. Awesome! Oh, I also saw a coyote cross the river in the morning. That was fun to see! 

All in all, a great way to spend the day! I encourage everyone to get out and ski if time and weather permit! 

Eric followed the traditional route, which uses the Chena River, because he did it early enough.
He was one of the few who were able to use the river.