Member Profile: Jay Monson
What is your xc skiing history?
I bought my first pair of cross country skis (classic) when I was 14 and skied the often snowless fields of Southern Minnesota in the mid 1980s. I bought my second pair right after moving to Duluth in 1999 and skied Lester River and Korkki. It was great to find out what I was missing all those years. I began skate skiing last year when I thought racing would be a fun, new adventure. I also added skijoring with our chocolate lab, Jack and raced with him most Sundays at Snowflake this past season.
What brought you to DXC?
What else? Bryan French .
Favorite Ski Trails in Duluth?
In the area? Korkki for the history, Snowflake for the convenient location to our home, and Lester for the lights. I also enjoy heading into Wisconsin to After Hours near Brule and the Mt. Valhalla trails.
Any good race stories?
My first ski race was the Pepsi Challenge in 2005. I decided to take up racing to add to my marathon, half marathon, and trail running experience. The night before the race Old Man Winter brought in 10 inches of fresh snow and 5 degree temps. The trails looked like they hardened in the morning but the first wave of skiers took care of that. After the first lap around the resort in boot-deep mashed potatoes, I approached my wonderful wife, Sara, near the chalet at Giant’s Ridge. She told me that many skiers were dropping out due to the conditions. Quitting was not an option so after a quick glove change I took off for another loop on the inner trail system. I decided that a good Birkie qualifying time was not going to happen so I just cruised around the course, hanging out at the feed stations, talking, eating donuts, and drinking hot chocolate. I paired up with one of the last brave souls on the course as we trudged in at around five hours. It was so late in the race day all but a few spectators went home and my wife had the finish line check the feed stations for signs of life. What are you most looking forward to this ski season? Improving last years Birkie time by 10-15 minutes, skijoring with Jack, improving my technique by watching and skiing with others, and splitting my time more evenly between freestyle and classic technique.
Wife Sara and chocolate lab Jack.
4th grade teacher at Laura MacArthur Elementary School in Duluth.
Most anything when in season. Any fresh seafood and fish I can get my hands on. Many different pastas when carbo loading is and is not needed.
Running, canoeing and canoe tripping, kayaking, backpacking, downhill and xc skiing and a few rounds of golf.
International and domestic travel, cooking, and eating.