Skiing at the World Criterium Races

A Little Personal Info

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Hi, I'm Brad! I love the great outdoors and enjoy skiing. This blog is inspired by some of my many life experiences and world travels. I have a Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis and work to find solutions to some of the world's challenging energy and environmental problems. In 2011, I went back into competitive snow ski racing and won the USSA National Speed Series (Downhill and Super G) title for my class (M5). It was an amazing and fun year of skiing. I also enjoy being around all kinds of animals from horses to dogs and love to spend time at Tahoe, my little farm near Cool or traveling somewhere new around the world. I have been to Nepal and seen Mount Everest, to Alaska's Denali, the Matterhorn in Switzerland and even Maroon Bells near Aspen, CO. Thanks for stopping by and checking out my website.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Boeing 737 into SFO runway 28R and Baron G58 Over Idaho and into Boise

ILS runway 28R into KSFO (that's San Francisco, California)

Beautiful sunset on fun FSX flight from Missoula, Montana to Boise, Idaho.

Landing ILS 10R at Boise, ID

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

F/A-18 Simulator

I have been having a lot of fun flying the F/A-18 simulator.
Here is a climbing 9,000 feet per minute turn at Mach 1.1 near Flight Level 200 on the heads-up display.
You can see Lake Tahoe in the distance.
You have to really stay ahead of the airplane or it can get away from you quickly!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Getting my trees ready for Christmas

Owl Creek Ranch Activities

I'm starting to get my Douglas Fir and Noble Fir trees ready for Christmas. 

I've trimmed about 25 percent of my trees so far and they're looking great.

Some trees are over 11 feet! 

Lots of wildlife out and about this time of the year.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Tribute to World Cup Ski Racer - Bode Miller

This is a small tribute to Bode Miller.  Bode is a member of the US Alpine Ski Team.  He is the most successful male skier in US history and is considered one of the greatest World Cup racers of all time. 

He has 33 World Cup wins, 79 podiums, two overall world cup titles, has won in each of the five ski racing disciplines (only five male skiers have ever achieved this in history), has won 6 Olympic medals and 5 World Championship medals. 

Anyway, a short tribute to a great World Cup, World and Olympic Champion.  I’m not sure any words can really do justice to his amazing skiing…but, I thought I would at least give it a try.

Here’s to you Bode!

Inspiration on Ice
By Bradley Meister 

Bode pushes forward in the start house
And stops at the wand across the gate
He is focused and ready and gets into that place
Matching his mindset and mood
To the rhythm and pitch of the initial course conditions

As he looks down the course
That iconic stoic stance is captivating
His unique style uniquely fascinating
The risks and thrills beyond exhilarating
The admiring world stares waiting for Bode Miller

Moments away from a run that will be inspiring
The time clock starts its countdown
He’s in a place he knows as the zone
In seconds he’ll unleash the many skills he has honed
Flying down the steep sides
Of a treacherous sheet of ice he will own

His motivator starts in on his motivating tone
Then onto the course he is skiing all alone
Remembering the place he has previously flown
That now feels less like a ski run and more like a drop zone
Filled with endless rush as he carves his way home

In a two minute race he will break eighty or more
Screaming down a run most would not dare
Laying on his side with a chiseled base pattern
He rides a tuned steel edge to the limits
Arcing a new curve as he slices through the snow

On a set of World Cup skis that are black and white Head
Down a run he’s quickly repelling
Soaring through the air like a man on a mission
Like fire through the cold
He is now completely ripping
Skiing straight down the fall-line
Releasing leveraged power
As the course crowd goes louder and louder

With the tactics and plan perfectly dialed in
He now steps up the intensity
To the limits of his mind
When he’s really on the edge
He hangs out at the place called “neutrality”
Then waits for his innate talent
To just wed with reality
Then boom he defies gravity
Like he’s from a different galaxy
Living his words and...
"Skiing as fast as the natural universe will allow"

Each run is once chance for gold
Bode will let it all go
The only thought through his mind is skiing sublime
When asked how he does it
I think I know what he’d say…
Inspiration on ice
He doesn’t need to think twice

He’s got the balance of life in his hand
Skiing the circuit and being a husband and dad
He loves his precious daughter
And now has a son and is the two-time proud father
He found the love of his life with Morgan
She improved the quality of his life
You can see it when he skis
He is focused and ready
And turns the skis with ease like he’s running the table
Rolling the dice every time
Lighting up that course when he tucks

With his heart in every turn he is running on the edge
But consistent and steady
Poised like a cat ready to pounce
He’s alert and always ready

Far from a New Hampshire farm where he was homegrown
Living his State’s famous motto to “Live free or die”
Skiing in the backseat as he believed true all along
Frustrating the coaches advice from the sound of their tone
Doing it the Bode way from the start  
In a red barn with the high jumps and squats
And the freedom to roam alone…in the woods by his home

Where he built strength in his legs that allowed for more power
So he could ski off the wall on the Strief
Like when he’s doing a high speed left footer
At the bottom of an ice covered tower
Coupled with the many skills he has shown
Made him a rare five event winner
And put him on top with 33 world cup golds

Each run is once chance for gold
Bode will let it all go
The only thought through his mind is skiing sublime
When asked how he does it
I think I know what he’d say…
Inspiration on ice
Is his prescription for life

In 2002 Salt Lake City games, he was supposed to be down
His body got twisted and he nearly spun around
Then he popped back up and actually flew down
In the downhill portion of a race called combined
And finished the slalom run after turning on a dime
To speed to Olympic Silver with an awe inspiring time

In 2005 at the Alpine World Championship Races
He lost a board on the high speed Bormio downhill track
And nearly finished the race as he continued to attack
He flew down San Pietro and tucked La Konta with one ski
Until he decided to stop
To the cheers of the crowd
To the sounds as Bode rocked

In 2008 he almost won the Kitzbuhel Hahnenkamm race
He did something crazy coming off the Steilhang face
I still think the Italians had the best playback call
“Mama mia” they said… as he skied on the wall
Then Bode came from over a half second behind
Just after the Hausberg to again blow our minds
To close after the Zielsprung
In a high speed mid-air tuck
Was something to see
Surreal for sure
He’s rare company

I could go on and on - there are just too many to list
Every time he gets on the mountain
Is like a masterpiece of skiing bliss
As he flies through air and turns ice into mist

He’s Rembrandt, Monet and Van Gogh all in one
His canvass is the mountain and his paintbrush a ski
Each run a unique piece of artwork
Personally carved for us to see
The balance, the skill and crazy risks he takes
Makes him Bode Miller - makes him history

Bode, when you ski, the world is inspired by your talent
And we are captivated in time
In every turn you push yourself to new record lines
You’ve earned your place in history and set yourself apart
A magnificent Overall, World and Olympic Gold medal champion firmly etched in our minds
The epitome of Inspiration
And a true legend in your time
Good luck with the 2015 ski racing season!

Solden 2013

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Enjoying the Fall Weather in California

I am standing near the base of Sugar Bowl Ski Resort in California.  Can hardly wait to start skiing.

Tribute to World Cup Ski Racer - Steven Nyman

This is a small tribute to Steven Nyman, an Olympian and member of the US Alpine Ski Team.  Steven became the first American to win the famed Saslong downhill in Val Gardena in 2006.  Steven has now won the downhill in Val Gardena three times (2006, 2012 and 2014).  I had the chance to meet Steven and do some cycling with him back in June of 2011.  I was impressed with his cycling strength and endurance.  Anyway, a very short tribute to acknowledge the admiration of a great World Cup Downhill Champion.

Photo Credit:  US Ski Team

The Saslong course is considered one of the five "classic" men's downhill races, along with Garmisch-Partenkirchen's Kandahar (GER), Kitzb├╝hel's Hahnenkamm (AUT), Wengen's Lauberhorn (SUI), and Val d'Isere's Criterium (FRA).  It is well known for the "Camel Humps” a series of three jumps which racers must negotiate in quick succession with speed.

 Photo Credit:  US Ski Team

Val Gardena King
By Bradley Meister

It hangs under the Saslong
Like an ice covered swing
This wild ride sensation
Flowing like a downhill racers dream

It is one of the five classics
In the World Cup Downhill racing thing
And if you can win it you become
The Val Gardena King

You might be in sunshine
You might be in shadows
The big rock sets the tempo
On where your skis can sing

An extra left foot push at the start
Can get him on his way
As he sets up for a speed run
Diving in, right away

He rounds the second turn
And is already flying on his way
Afterburner engaged
This is going to be Nyman’s day

Post air he’s in compression
Then a long right footer carries him farther down
An uphill compression, then pop
It’s woopty time

As he flies over the Mauers jumps
Heading straight down the hill
He’ll carry lots of speed
To where it all goes down

Just before he soars
The crowd yells “Steeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeven” pretty loud
Then he launches into thin air
It’s a wonder he came down

He soars 60 plus meters on the camels
It’s exhilarating to watch
The crowd gets a big thrill
To watch Utah’s Steven Nyman
Letting it go and throwing it down

Now it’s almost time to think about Ciaslat
The technical part of the course
With turns, bumps and ripples
You better be on it to hit the mark

So exiting the camels
He's coming in with extra heat
He’s really on the edge
Now watch him work his feet

In the Ciaslat he’s pulled off that magic
That only Nyman can do
He may be near the backseat
But his skis are still tracking true

Yes…he’s in the zone
It’s game on all the way
He feels the need for speed
So he puts the hammer down

He’s in the final schuss
Momentum screaming past
Over the tunnel jump
It's history in the making
With one last passing flash

He crosses the finish line
The time clock now shows green
It’s number one next to Nyman
Yes…he’s got the lead

The crowd makes a big noise
He hardly feels the cold
And celebrates on top the podium
With another World Cup Downhill Gold

And now you know the story
Of the first American racer
Who laid it down
Under the mighty Saslong
In Italy's famous ski racing town

He’s known as Steven Nyman
A speed specialist on the Team
But when we think about these victories
He becomes the… Val Gardena King

Good luck Steven as we get into the 2014 Olympic season!

Note:  Some ideas for this tribute taken from Steven's Youtube video describing the famed Val Gardena Downhill course.