Skiing in the Gatineau Park trails was absolutely incredible. I had an amazing experience and I definitely increased my skill of cross-country skiing. Although it was exhausting, skiing for roughly 12 km was worth it.
The trip consisted of trails throughout the Gatineau Park region. The trails were comprised of continuous hills at the beginning followed by a massive hill just before lunch time. We ate lunch at the Huron cabin, which was set just beside one of the trails on top of a small lookout. After lunch, our class split into two groups who would go different routes, based on level of difficulty, but would end up at the same location. I took a harder trail lead by Mr. Brouwer. The trail ended up at the Champlain lookout where we met with the other group. (The Champlain lookout can be viewed in the picture). After taking a break there, we started our trip back down the mountain. We did not take the same trail as we had begun on. We took a more scenic and open route to a different parking lot where we would be picked up to head back to school.
Two things that I thought enhanced the enjoyment of my experience were my attitude and my ambition. I kept a positive attitude and really aspired to achieve my main goal on the trip. This was just to simply develop my cross-country skiing skills and increase my ability to skate ski. My ambition also attributed to achieving this goal. I was eager to accomplish my goal and I knew I could do it. It wasn't a difficult task, but I knew I had to work at the techniques of skate skiing and stay positive when difficulty occurred. I understood that I was only going to get better if I tried and after the first few kilometers, I started to get the hang of it. Once I began to control my form and essentially skate ski, this made it so much easier to climb the hills. The control helped me be more comfortable in the herring bone technique when climbing the hills. The hills were repetitive at the beginning of the trip, but the trail began to descend closer to the end. This was very relaxing because I was fatigued near the end and my body was disgusted with the idea of skiing uphill one more time. Even though I was tired, I was very pleased with how the day turned out.
Although my day was successful, I did have a slight problem in my preparation before the trip. Luckily, it was overcome as the day went on and didn't ruin my experience. The problem was that I had planned on classic skiing for a better part of the day. Therefore, I waxed my skis before we left for the trip. Wax is not ideal for skate skiing. I decided, after waxing, that I was interested in improving my skate skiing ability. The wax on my skis only gave me some difficulty when skiing because it would cause the ski to stick to the snow at times and I would lose my balance. This, however, did not ruin my day and I wasn't going to let it. I just persevered through the obstacle because I was very devoted to accomplish my goal. I was pleased that I was able to complete my goal just before lunch. This gave me the rest of the day to ski freely and in control, not worrying about any difficulties. I was confident because then I knew what my capabilities were and it made it much easier to ski in both classic and skate techniques. I was very proud of myself that I gained a new skill and it was awesome that I was able to share it with my friends and classmates. I would love to do this again.