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Tag: Good To Know

Good To Know: Cross-Country Skiing

Photo: Upitrek

Cross-country skiing is the earliest form of skiing. The word “ski” comes from an old Norse word “skid,” which translates to something akin to a “split length of wood.” The activity dates back some 5,000 years; most likely it was developed in northern regions (Scandinavia and Siberia) by people who discovered that strapping flat boards onto their feet for hunting and transportation beat walking in the thick snow. Military applications soon followed (legendary “free-heel” troop were thought to move as fast, or faster, than cavalry through snow-bound terrain). By the 1800s, not only had skis, boots, and bindings evolved,; so had the skiers. Races became popular with soldiers; soon the aristocracy adopted the sport for entertainment at their winter homes.

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Good To Know: Pond Hockey

“Bringing Hockey Back to the Basics,” is the slogan for the Pond Hockey Classic a series of tournaments developed in New Hampshire in 2009. Now hundreds of teams from across the country compete for a spot in the event. There are open leagues (like the Labatt Blue Balls from Boston), age group teams (like the U35 Live Free and Dangle from Londonderry, NH), women’s teams (Miss Conduct from Hingham, MA), and in the Twig League (Here for the Beer from Calgary, Alberta). Sure, there are tens of thousands of pick-up games across North America that start pretty much whenever it’s cold enough for the ice to form (typically from November through March), but for the serious player, this organized approach is a fun way to combine competition, adult beverages, and–hopefully–the thrill of victory.

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Good To Know: Hot Tub Etiquette

Nothing feels better than soaking your cold and aching muscles in the hot tub after a full day of shredding. While hot tubs are best shared with friends and perhaps a cold beverage or two, some unwritten rules exist on how you should behave while bubbling away at 104 degrees.

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Good To Know: Do You REALLY Need Demo Skis?

When renting snow equipment–especially during the chaotic early hours at most major ski resorts–the question of whether or not you want demo skis can feel like an ask from a sketchy salesman at a car dealership. But know that demo skis or snowboards aren’t the equivalent of a top coat on a car; they can  make the difference. That said, demos aren’t for everyone, and with an increased fee of $15 to $20, it may be an unneeded expense to your time on the mountain. Here’s a few tips to help you decide whether or not to upgrade.

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Good To Know: Does Electrolyte Loss Cause Cramping?

We’ve all been there at some point–out in the middle of a run one minute, then limping in pain from muscle cramps the next. Up until a few years ago, the prevalent belief was that, by regularly consuming a sports drink during workouts, you could prevent muscle cramps. Yet, even after recent studies have all but debunked the theory that fluid/sodium loss through sweat is the cause of cramps, the belief still persists. So what is going on?

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Good To Know: Things To Fear in Finland

Exotic may not be the first word that leaps to mind when contemplating the animals of Finland, but just because this country isn’t crawling with rare poisonous snakes or aquatic creatures with mouthfuls of razor-sharp serrated teethed doesn’t mean the fauna of Finland should be taken lightly. In fact, the country boasts more than 260 carnivores (not counting humans). Here are a few to fear:

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Good To Know: Avalanche Awareness

The growth of backcountry skiing–in large part fueled by a flood of newer-generation, affordable backcountry equipment–has also caused an increase in accidents and deaths in the backcountry. And as excited as we all are to get out and enjoy some solitary deep-powder fun, it’s important to remember that buying the right equipment doesn’t secure your safety.

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Good To Know: Polar Vortex

If you were living…pretty much anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere last winter, you know that the polar vortex was no joke. Sure, the name sounded like it came from some ill-informed Hollywood executive. But it was all too real.

As defined by AccuWeather, it’s a large pocket of very cold air, the coldest in the Northern Hemisphere, which sits over the polar region during the winter season. As defined by those of us who endured it: it was just plain cold, the kind of cold in which adjectives feel superfluous. It was when cold became the new four-letter word.

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Good To Know: The Yeti

First things first. The Yeti is not Big Foot, nor is it Sasquatch. The term Yeti refers to the elusive animal that’s said to inhabit the cold-weather regions of Tibet and Nepal. Big Foot and the Sasquatch are more commonly “found” in forested areas, particularly those of the Pacific Northwest. But the confusion is understandable. Both creatures look similar: a large, almost ape-like humanoid with slightly hunched shoulders and lots of body hair. But only the Yeti is said to be found in places typically covered by ice, snow, and frost.

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Good To Know: Ski Lingo

Congrats! You’ve graduated from rental skis into the brave new world of ski ownership. But this is a daunting universe…finding the right alpine ski can be as confusing as calculus. They come in all shapes and sizes, with different side cuts, waist widths, tail design, camber, and flex patterns. Even we get overwhelmed–so we spoke with Pete Wagner, the genius behind Wagner Custom Skis. He’s a wizard at matching ski design with a person’s ability and goals, and he’s been kind enough to share a few tips to help you find the perfect pair.

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