Change it up

by • October 14, 2013 • ToastComments (0)378

Winter’s coming and it’s about time

 

Fall in Alaska - MICHAEL JONES - ALASKASTOCK

MICHAEL JONES – ALASKASTOCK

Despite being a person who prefers skin-warming, flip-flop wearing weather over the ice-encrusted, dark days of winter, I still view October as one of my favorite months. Growing up in Virginia, I anticipated watching the bright colors of autumn turn the crumpled grass and parched trees from a tired, pale green to vivid oranges and reds. Cycling over mountain roads or running along tree-lined streets littered with leaves was a daily gift I treasured.

But after living in Alaska for the past 19 years, those are distant memories. Now, I appreciate October for a different reason. Yes, the snow and darkness is coming, but there’s something about that anticipation – if anything just the excitement of change ahead, of variety and new activities to come – that spur me forward. The chunky wool sweaters are taken out of storage, and the skis come out to get a good waxing in preparation of the season to come. The sled dogs begin to get antsy, excited when they see the sled emerge from the shop to be prepped for another season.

Embracing this change is what keeps life fresh in the first place, and that’s why this month, we’ve featured the story of Matt Novakovich’s latest athletic feat: obstacle racing. This sport has quickly become international, overtaking triathlons and marathons as the sport of choice among competitive and amateur racers. Pro teams are sprouting up, and in XGame-like manner, the sport of obstacle racing is challenging athletes to their limits.

Novakovich, one of Alaska’s most well-known adventure racing names, is a Mount Marathon winner, decorated cyclist, triathlete and runner. He even likes to practice jumping cars and fences, well, just because. His entry into obstacle racing is the latest in his adventures.

Read how he toppled the national champion in his first race on Pages 12-15.

So, as the leaves here in Alaska begin to fall, and the mornings start out a little more brisk, it is indeed time for change. Why not? Try something new. Maybe in this month’s edition of coast, you will see something that grabs your attention – something you’ve never tried before that might be worth a shot. We hope so. This place is so full of adventures just waiting to happen: Learn to ski, study the science of snow or take a ski train into the backcountry.

And if that’s not adventurous enough? Escape from it all (Janice Tower shows you how on Page 26) and go biking in wine country.

Coast will be with you every step of the way. ◆

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