Archive - May 2011 - Sports Article
Deena started it all.
A decade ago, the then-Deena Drossin came charging out of the University of Arkansas and scooted up to Mammoth to train.
Overnight, given her dazzling performances around the world, Mammoth in the summer wasnâ€™t just about fishing and camping.
Itâ€™s hard to imagine what might have happened around here had Deena chosen a different path. She won in London and Chicago.
No one here will ever forget watching her bronze-medal finish at the Athens Olympics in 2004, tears streaming down her face as she crossed the finish line.
Itâ€™s been a long winter up here in the northern Eastern Sierra; eight months of snow, a cold, cold April, flowers frozen on the bud in May.
Even the most ski-crazy winter fanatic is beginning to feel cheated, as May gives way to June with more snow predicted for next week.
But there is hope.
Itâ€™s called a car. Yes, cars are gas-guzzling, carbon-spewing monsters that we should feel guilty for driving. But they are also the essence of freedom and adventure and in this case, escape.
As it turns out, weâ€™re too high for our own good up here.
Not really, but when it comes to World Cup biathlon, Mammoth is way over the limit in terms of elevation regulations, according to Mammoth Winter Biathlon Director Mike Karch.
That does not take Mammoth out of the winter biathlon universe, by any stretch, he said.
But it might make it difficult if Mammoth has any designs on conducting a World Cup event.
There are times when a hike is just not a hike. Itâ€™s something else, maybe many things else; an adventure, a discovery, a meditation, a love song.
So it is with the hike up Hilton Creek in early May after the biggest winter on record; a winter when the Long Valley area received 195 percent of its normal snowfall.
The fact that most people donâ€™t even know there is a Hilton Creek hereabouts only adds to this hike being a bit more of a mystery.