HRV ski team training for exciting season

Strong numbers, experienced athletes means high expectations for the season

Deep in talent, this year’s Hood River Valley High School ski team has high expectations for the season. As combined defending state freestyle champions and runners-up for racing, the team of 35 boys and girls is busy getting in shape and training for what is expected to be an exciting season for the Eagles.

Coach Scott Keillor, in his second year with HRV, says the athleticism, racing experience and upcoming talent the team has combines for a very promising season.

“We’re blessed with a lot of great athletes in Hood River,” Keillor said this week. “It’s hard to name individuals when we have so many great skiers on the team this year. Our captains are Ryan Colesar and Molly Clarke for boys and girls race teams and Hannah Hurley and Brendan Kerr for the freestyle teams.”

Keillor stresses that although freestyle is now a separate sanctioned division of high school skiing, for HRV they’re all one team.

“We encourage everyone to do both,” he said. “Racers don’t have to cross over if they don’t want to, but we require freestyle skiers to do at least two downhill races a season. Once they are juniors and seniors we let them specialize only in freestyle if they want, but we encourage everyone to do both.”

Keillor said numbers this year are up from last season, with a large group of young skiers interested in freestyle competition. He also said there are a good number of downhill racers feeding into the high school program with solid club experience, which is adding to the team’s prowess.

To prepare for the 11-race season, athletes have been dry-land training for the last several weeks with ski-specific exercises and strength training. The team won’t start official on-slope practices until after the Christmas break, in time to get a quick tune-up before the first race of the season on Jan. 5.

“To supplement dry-land training we also had a few sessions of athleticism training at Windells Academy,” Keillor said. “We’ll have a late holiday camp Jan. 2-4 and then it’s the Cato Race the next day.

“We have a great group of kids that are supported by an experienced coaching staff; we’re looking forward to a great season.”

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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