Whoa, Alley Loop Bender

The CB Skier’s Journal went on a little bender in preparation for and then to recover from the Alley Loop.  That event takes a bit of work to put on.

Hopefully, if you’re a reader, you were in the “paranoid” category if you read this post, https://cbnordic.org/skiersjournal/go-the-distance/ because, apparently, the Alley Loop took place in April this year with temps well into the 40s.  Red category glide paraffin would have been a good call.  Ski*Go makes a nice “orange” glide paraffin that would have worked well too.  A violet paraffin for the shorter races would not have been bad.

As for kick, wow, I’m not even sure what I would have used if I were to have done the 42 KM classic.  My thought was to do what’s called “covered klister.”  I would have put on a really thin base klister for durability.  Then, I’m guessing, a universal klister like Swix’s Universal VM klister, thin but not as thin as the base klister.  Then place the skis outside overnight or long enough that the klister freezes before the race start.  When the klister is hard and frozen, put on a kick wax of the day, Guru Red would have been my guess for that day, a couple layers, corked in.

Over the duration of the 42 KMs, the top layer would wear off as temperatures rose thus leaving the klister for later in the race when temps were even higher.  In theory, this set up can work quite well.

Crown (“fishscale”) skis would have also been a possibility.  Many brands are coming out with better and better “skin” type classic skis that are light enough to be in the low end of a race category ski.  These skis have a factory installed synthetic/Mohair skin insert in the kick zone of the ski, just like adhesive skins on alpine touring or backcountry skis.  Brands like Salomon, Rossignol, and Madshus have all improved this type of ski which is great for tricky kick waxing conditions.

Zero type classic skis (“hairies”) are another possibility but take experience to get them to work.

This is all hindsight now but learning to wax is an iterative process of trial and error so this is an attempt at a post mortem of sorts on what was a tricky day for waxing.

For most people, when the conditions get tricky, it’s a good day to skate.

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