New pair of (rollerski) inflatable toys

21 May

21052009In skiing terms my life more or less ended the first of May. I’d had a bad experience with roller skiing, so that wasn’t any sure way to fix the problem. The first pair of rollerskis I bought had small, solid wheels and absolutely no brakes. Recipe for asthma or a violent death: either ski on bicycle paths next to large highways or take your chances on hillier routes with intersection crossings, potholes, skin burning rough pavement and other such potentially life-ending pleasures.

Not yet being suicidally depressed about the end of winter, I’ve been having a tough time building motivation to get back on them.

In a fit of desperation and financial irresponsibility I decided to try ordering a new pair from abroad. Even though Norway is the only place you can rollerski without being thought of as the pathetically insane snow freak you really are, the choice of equipment is nonetheless limited.

The picture shows my newly imported pair in all their beauty lying on top of another dodgy piece of junkie paraphernalia, my ski waxing table. Haven’t got an iron for my laundry but I’ve got one for my skis!

This model of rollerskis comes with a brake, adjustable speed reducers and pneumatic wheels. They’re advertised to work on hard packed dirt roads.

I tried them out today back behind my house at the first place I tried cross country skiing in Norway. The result was the basically the same except that this time I lost more skin. It turns out that horseback riders are my natural enemies and had churned the road surface up with their nasty hooves.

My next step was to roller ski by a far too well traveled paved road to a dirt road less favored by the horsey crowd. There the skis worked beautifully and I could have gone a lot further. The speed reducers and brake make downhills far less harrowing than with the old model. You just have to be sure to maneuver around any ruts or loose patches of gravel.

I had very high expectations for these things and they may well end up being life changing. They don’t give you as much freedom as skis because you have to be very picky about your road choice but there are still a lot of possibilities to explore in the forest.

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