Randonnee Racing Series – Colorado COSMIC

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | September 11, 2006      

The Colorado Ski Mountaineering Cup (COSMIC) series of backcountry skiing races is a happening deal for this winter. Organized by hard working race champion Pete Swenson, the series has five races scheduled so far:

Jan. 13 – Sunlight

Jan. 20 – Snowmass

March 3 – Loveland

April 21 – Silverton

April 28 – A-Basin

I got a call a few days ago from journalist Devon O’Neil, who was writing an article about the series for the Summit Daily News and needed (or so he thought) a few of my rambling quotes. I’m more a fan of rando racing than a participant, but I did share with him about being beat up in a couple of races, especially the 24 Hours of Sunlight. Prior to Pete getting the COSMIC series together, Colorado’s rando races were a scattershot deal, now there is rhyme and reason to things.

Aspen has had a strong series of winter uphill races for quite a few years, with one race including a short downhill so thus qualifying as somewhat of a randonee race. I’ve always been disappointed that the Aspen races didn’t include more of a downhill component — perhaps COSMIC will inspire some changes in that area.

The A-Basin Grind has become a popular uphill as well, good to see it included in the series. I’m assuming it’ll have a strong downhill component so it’s a full on rando race. Cool to see Silverton included, they’ve got the terrain for the real deal.

In all, ski mountaineering racing is terrific for backcountry skiing. It’s a fun pursuit in of itself, and helps the sport though equipment and technique development. The Dawson family wishes the best for the new COSMIC series, and thanks Pete!


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3 Responses to “Randonnee Racing Series – Colorado COSMIC”

  1. Dave Bourassa September 11th, 2006 7:15 pm

    Not a big fan of competition, especially when it comes to backcountry skiing, but I’m sure I’ll get talked into an event or two for ‘fun’ this year. : )

    Nice work in getting this series together Pete. I’m sure there will be a decent showing at all of the events.

  2. steve romeo September 11th, 2006 6:56 pm

    Wow…last time I heard, the COSMIC only had 2-3 definate dates. Great to see the venues coming together. Lucky for you ‘Cool-orado’ racers…I live in Wyoming=;)

    Good job Pete!

  3. Hamish September 18th, 2006 8:58 pm

    SMR (Ski-mountaineering racing, the generic term for rando races) is great for your backcountry skiing. You’ll improve fitness with a goal to shoot for and you’ll learn to be very efficient with your setup. Also, when you think about it, this is the original ski-racing, from back when the only way to go down was to go up first!

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