The old college try: 2011 NCAA Nordic Skiing Championships at Trapps

The 2011 NCAA Skiing Championships are being held in Stowe and I managed to attend Wednesday's Nordic Freestyle races at Trapps.

These events are a big production and the meadow was set up with all kinds of gear -- not just a lonely timing shack in a field.

After the big storm on Monday, conditions were perfect for the racers: Relatively warm temperatures made for fast snow.

Dartmouth's Sam Tarling, winner of the men's 10K race, powers to the finish.

Women racers climb while coaches radio time splits back to the start/finish.

Some men were cooling down after their race and one of the competitors was talking about having to sit down and write a paper very soon. Somehow I don't think that this will be as much of an issue for players in the college basketball tournament, especially for the teams that reach the final 16...

(Non-flash gallery here.)

Taking photos on snow is challenging -- reflected light makes getting correct exposure a hit or miss affair -- and my Pentax is about the least capable sports photography setup imaginable. The images in this gallery aren't the greatest, but there's a first time for everything, and this was my first time with a camera at a ski race.

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