So what's the deal with Nordic skating? It's kind of a cross between ice skating and cross country skiing. The skater wears a cross country ski boot and attaches a Nordic skating blade to the top binding, where a cross country ski would attach. The skating blade is longer than a regular skating one, and is free on the heel end.
|In case anyone was wondering, this is what a Nordic skate looks like, up close and personal.|
It just so happens that the longest outdoor track for ice skating sits on Lake Morey in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. And the only shop selling Nordic skates in the US rents equipment there. And the horrible cold that dragged on and on in Vermont this year froze Lake Morey good and solid so that there was no danger in using all of the track around the lake. So on the first Saturday in March all the stars aligned and it was time to try it out.
|Jon, Lynn and Liz getting ready to head out onto the ice.|
The cool thing about Nordic skates is that they can handle imperfect ice. I wouldn't say they glide right over everything, but they definitely handle some cracks and bumps pretty well, and it's not hard to work up a bit of speed, especially when you're on a 4.5 mile loop. Of course, one thing about being on a lake that is very frozen in winter in Vermont is that there are others who want to take advantage of that as well, mainly people ice fishing. So what is considering a skating track by Nordic skaters in considered a road by ice fishers in pickup trucks, and it's not too hard to figure out who common sense dictates has the right of way.
|Lynn demonstrating the share-the-crowded-road concept with one of the friendly neighborhood trucks that were also using the lengthy loop we were skating.|
|Contrary to the dire predictions of many, there were no dramatic spills on the ice, so Jon thoughtfully volunteered to do a dramatic interpretation for the record.|