• Maddie Phaneuf

Fall = Almost Winter (!!!)

I know, I know, it's been a while since my last post. I've been super busy (too lazy) to write...but I'm currently in the process of reorganizing my room and putting away summer clothes to make room for my winter clothes (!!), so I figured now is the perfect time to write a blog the midst of my room looking like a tornado ripped through it.

Anyway, it's already well into fall, with winter just around the corner. Today I woke up to 35 degree weather, and frost (snow?) on the tops of the local High Peaks. This is my (second) favorite time of year...When you can start wearing more layers, the air is crisp, and the leaves are vibrant oranges and reds.

One of the last summer sunsets on the water at Clare and Erik's apartment

When I returned from Germany, I spent a lot of time catching up with family and friends. I visited my sister at her college for Parent's Weekend, which was nice! I also went for a little hike with my hometown friend Tyler Socash, who recently spent a year hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand, and the Appalachian Trail. It was fun to talk about our journeys. We also had a good training group here for a while...X Team member Joanne Reid was here, along with Jennie Bender who is learning biathlon and is great to train with!

Tyler Socash and I at the top of Owl's Head

Clare, myself, Joanne, and Jennie keeping it fun during Testing Week!

My sister Olivia, my dad, mom and I at Parent's Weekend

This fall I decided to try to get out and hike as much as possible. I also wanted to try and get on some new trails that I had never done before. Clare, Erik, Susan, and I spent one morning hiking the Rocky Peak Ridge, starting at Bald Peak, towards Rocky Peak, and then Giant Mountain. This took us about 4.5 hours and the views were beautiful the entire time. You could see Lake Champlain in one direction, and the surrounding High Peaks all around us.

Susan, Clare, and I at the top of Bald Peak. Lake Champlain in the background

At the summit of Giant Mountain

Another day Clare, Erik, Hallie Grossman (from Craftsbury GRP) and I went to one of my favorite spots in the Adirondacks; Indian Head. From there we also added on high peaks Colvin and Blake. The entire hike took about 5.5 hours, and there were beautiful views on Indian Head and Colvin...not so much Blake, it is a wooded summit.

Panorama at Indian Head

I decided to spend the following day hiking another high peak I had never hiked before; Mount Colden. This was such a great hike! I started at the Adirondack Loj, ran into Marcy Dam, up towards Lake Arnold (one of the highest lakes in the Adirondacks, at 3800') then I got to the false summit, and then to the summit. You could see Lake Placid from the top, and all the other high peaks around. I then ran down the Lake Colden trail, to Avalanche Lake/Pass (which is another one of my favorite spots in the Adirondacks), back to Marcy Dam, and back to the Loj. It was a fun solo adventure that took about 5 hours!

At the false summit, looking toward Wright, Algonquin, and Iroquois...Lake Placid is to the right where all the vibrant leaves are​

At the top of Colden, looking South West towards Lake Colden

One of the reasons I love running at Avalanche Lake so much, the boardwalks against the rocks!

Avalanche Lake

Some other highlights of this fall have been rock climbing (of course), helping my family move firewood, having some niece time, and the US Biathlon Banquet. I also had the privilege of being interviewed by FasterSkier earlier this week, check out the article here!

I went rock climbing a week or so ago down at Deadwater, and we were lucky the clouds decided not to open up while we were on the rock.

Found this guy in the wood pile at home! Biggest toad I've seen this season

Also got to have some Aubree time while at home

Chloe Levins and I at the biathlon's not everyday you see us wearing non-athletic clothing!

Now we have less than a week until the final World Cup Team trial races in Jericho, Vermont. I'm hoping to do a lot better than the races earlier this summer. I'll write another post about how those races went next week at some point. I hope everybody is having a great fall!

Currently listening to: Babe by Evenings

- MP