It was a beautiful, sunny weekend in Tromsø. Saturday began with a lazy morning at home. The kids built a fort in the little back yard and pelted us with snowballs when we came out – good way to start the day:)
On a quick walk outside, Joel saw that there was a quite the ski event set up just out our door two blocks away at one of the city center squares. We gathered the kids, covered them in waterproof rainsuits as the long sunny days are causing quite the wet Spring snow…it is impossible for kids to stay out of snow or puddles so we have adopted the Norwegain preparedness of good outdoor clothing for all types of weather.
In the City Center, we found a World Cup Ski Mountaineering Event. Who knew that was even a World Cup Sport? Saturday in the city center was the Sprint Event. Sunday was the big mountain trek a little ways out of town. We stayed to watch much of the Sprint competition which entailed skiers from all over the world – France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and Norway were the most noticable. We only saw one US skier. The Sprint consisted of strapping on super lightweight skis and boots (Dynafit Randonnee style) at the start. The skiers went straight up hill from the city square along groomed trails created along the road and parks in the center. At one point they had to stop, get out of skis, strap them to their backs and run up hill, get the skis back on then ski to a transition zone where they take their skins. With skins off they navigate a winding downhill ski back to the finish. It was pretty entertaining for sure. In the afternoon we took a nice little family cross country ski then home for dinner and homemade pizza!
Sunday began with another lazy morning, yummy crepes cooked by Joel and a game of Yahtzee that Odin handily won. We made our big adventure for the afternoon a family backcountry ski. The sunny days have allowed the snow to settle in the mountains around us, dropping the avalanche danger to very low. There are a few easy skis on the mountains around us that we have had our eyes on as good family adventures since we arrived here. Sunday was our day to explore Kvaløya just over the bridge off the island to the West of us. It was about a 10 minute drive:) We geared the kids up in cross country skis while Joel and I put on our backcountry skis and skins. We trekked in part way on some cross country trails then up the mountain. Adelheyd ended up taking a ride in the Chariot – Joel got his workout! Odin made it to the first ridgeline on his own in his cross country gear. It was quite the impressive climb for a 5year-old! Once on the ridge, we got the kids in their downhill gear that we had handily stowed in the Chariot, took our skins off and made our way down the mountain. The snow was a little wet and sticky, but the kids both made it down all the way on their own. It was awesome! As you can tell in all these posts, we are definitely taking advantage of the baeutiful landscape and outdoor possibilities around us. It is often hard to get motivated and get all the gear together, but once we are outside it is great. We just have to keep reminding ourselves to get out and explore. Each adventure has the possibility of being better or worse than we expect, we never know until we get out there. We expect no less than 3 major breakdowns from each kid along the way, but they usually don’t last too long and can often be fixed with food:) With credit given to our friend Donovan Power, we call these our ski-ventures!