Expedition “Between Snow & Sky”

Team Evergreen has made another successful experience, this time in Härjedalen – Sweden.

4 days of winter wild camping, snowkiting, speedflying and touring ski.

You can read all the report here : http://www.freeairadventure.com/BS&Seng.pdf

and to watch the film/documentary here : http://vimeo.com/22242182

FreeAir ADVENTURE New Website

We have updated our website:

http://www.freeairadventure.com/

New F-Mountains Website

L’école de Snowkite F-Mountains a mis sa nouvelle parure pour la prochaine saison. RDV sur le nouveau site WEB : www.ecole-snowkite.fr

The F-Mountains Snowkiting school has pulled on its new clothes for the coming season : check out the NEW website at www.snowkiting-school.com

VAKE 2010 Video Report by Ivan

http://vimeo.com/11102831

Final results : Evergreen Team comes 5th after 175 km of race! :)

Organization at its TOP : at the finish line, we are welcomed in a tent, especially set up for the Vake competitors, with a fireplace, BBQ, warm local soup and beers!

What can we ask for more? Some sauna and hot tub… yeah right!

Well we only had to ask…

After all the teams have arrived, we all reach Vadso where a diner (local reindeer meat!) has been organized in an old farm. 3 warm saunas and 2 hot tubs are waiting for us outside, with loads of Norwegian cold beers…

The final results are given : our team finished 5th on the overall, out of the 14th team which have raced over the last 3 days. But whatever the result, we are so happy to have joined this race and made it to the end.

We are aware that except for the small snow storm, we have been extremely lucky with the good weather conditions, visibility and high temperatures. It would have been a total other story racing the same 175km in the white out, by -20 degrees….

Anyway, competitors and staff all join in the hot tub to enjoy the party until late in the night, when the sunrise makes us realise that it’s time to go to bed, as we all have to go back to our everyday life, living our great memories of this VAKE 2010 behind us.

Finally, the VAKE is probably, and up to this day, the longest and hardest snowkiting race in the world. But for us, is simply the BEST of all! Great atmosphere, cool spirit, professional organization and amazing kiting area…

BIG UP to the Varanger Kite Club and it’s sponsors who have offered us one of the best snowkiting experience EVER!

And many thanks to our sponsors, families and friends ou have helped us before and through this adventure. For sure, we will do our best to come back next year !

Day 3 : Stjernevann / Vadso

It’s been snowing and blowing all night. Hidden behind its shelter, our tent has been shaken and covered with a white layer of fresh powder. But when we wake up at 6.30, the sky is blue and the air crispy cold…. but no wind is blowing.

Briefing at 8am confirms that we will race today anyway. Wind forecast is good, even though so far it’s still quiet. And this will also be the last day of the VAKE 2010, arriving tonight in Vadso, since the next day forecast is bad, leaving us no chance to make it to Vardo with the 3rd leg.

At 9am, the horn launches the start of the race. The wind is very low around the camp site, so some competitors have chosen to start walking. We take our chance with the 12.5m Montana5, not really motivated to walk :) And it appears to be a good choice, since reaching the hills going up to the plateau, we fill the wind getting stronger in our kites, and we are even running second.

But we are a bit too excited, and forget to check on the relief. So we take the most direct route, passing a hill on its left side, down wind. And within a few minutes, we end up standing still, our kite dead on the ground :( Further on the ridge, we see our concurrents still kiting in a light wind, but slowing fading away…. while we have no choice but start walking.

45 minutes walking later, we are approaching a better altitude, and the wind picks up. Back on track, we are heading in a straight line to the next check point :

This is a spot on a frozen lake, where a few fishermen and scooter drivers have gathered to see us passing by. A 30 min stop is mandatory… and we ear that the first 2 teams are already running an hour ahead of us.

Energy bar eat, water drunk, sledge repacked, we are in the starting blocks for the last part of today’s leg : a 22km line with a nice side wind.

Conditions are perfect: Cold snow, 10m/s wind sideways, we are flying to the finish line, crossing plateaus, canyons and rivers, and slowly gaining on other teams.

The last 4km are the most exciting: overlooking the wide flat area with the final line at its end, we see another team coming to our right. Making a quick choice, we stay on the ridge instead of going straight down, hoping for better wind. And it pays out! We are totally flying toward the finish line, leaving them behind and finally arriving 3rd of today’s leg!

What a race…. and what an amazing landscape we have crossed once again on those plateaus!

Day 2 : Waiting in a snow storm…

Our body is hurting when we wake up this morning. But we know why… :)

Sleeping in the snow was not a problem at all, since we are well equipped with proper Artic sleeping bags from our sponsor Bergans of Norway. Anyway, this is a very mild spring, and lately the temperatures have hardly dropped below -5 degrees at night. Good for us !

Morning briefing is clear : today’s leg has to be cancelled due to bad weather expected during the afternoon (snow and strong winds). Beside, we are already standing in the fog, and the 2 missing teams have not been rescued yet because of too bad visibility…

A dog sledge has joined us, so we enjoy a few rides with them. The organization has also set up a big tent with a small wood stove, where a few of us can spend some time chatting and warming up for a while.

But the snow storm picks up in the afternoon just after the missing team joined us. We have to secure the tent and build some wind shelter using snow blocks. The Russians do even better : they built a real Igloo! Beautifully done…

Finally, this day stuck at camp site is an opportunity to recharge our “batteries” while sleeping or relaxing in our sleeping bags… getting ready for the next leg of tomorrow!

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