by: Eric Carter
Looking back in my training diary, it is interesting remembering some of my early-season training sessions and realizing that they feel like they were so long ago. We were incredibly lucky this season to have snowfall in early October. It wasn’t long before we were able to ski down to the valley and by the end of October, ski training was in full swing. I spent a good chunk of the season on the road, first traveling to the US Team qualifying races in the US and then living in Europe and traveling to World Cup races.
Snow conditions in Europe were incredibly bad. The Alps had very little snow all season and spring came early. The Dolomites were nearly summer when we arrived for World Championships. Only the Pyrenees had decent skiing. It’s hard not to look at the unseasonably warm temperatures, the lack of storms, and the smog that settles in the valley and not draw conclusions about climate change.
Luckily, the racing went better. While I didn’t have any breakout races, I continued to gradually improve my rankings. My first World Cup season, I was happy to be in the top 50, and now I am regularly pushing into the 20s and 30s. It’s nice to be able to see the top 15 skiers getting closer.
Now that I’ve spent several seasons racing over in Europe, it’s amazing to have a good group of friends over there. As the only American representing on the World Cup, it was fantastic to have some friends to hang out with before and after races, and to go visit in the time between. I got to see new parts of the Pyrenees and Alps and one of the highlights of the trip was visiting friends in Norway!
The race season is over but I’m glad to be back home in British Columbia. We’ve got one of the biggest snowpacks in several years and conditions are looking good for some high-mountain objectives once it stops snowing and spring can finally set in.
A few season stats (only Oct – March):
119 Ski Days
450 Hrs Training
2100 Km Distance Covered
196,800 Meters Vertical Ascent
24 Race Starts
26th in World Championships Individual
19th in World Championships Sprint
Great results! More snow in CO and BC in April than in the Alps during the winter – welcome home!