Meet the Skimo Racer - Scott Simmons

Birthplace: Anchorage, Alaska

Current hometown and mountain range: Durango, CO. The Laplatas, a sub range of the San Juans.

If you were not born in the mountains, what drew you to them or enabled you to move to there: I moved to Durango to race with Fort Lewis College’s mountain bike team. That year the team won the National Championship.

Age when you started skiing: 8

Number of years you have been skiing: 32

How long have you been skimo racing: This will be my 3rd “official” season. My first skimo type race was the Wasatch Overland in 1997.

How did you get into skimo racing: An Uphill Downhill race at Silverton Mountain.

Was there a moment of realization that helped you step it up to the next level of competition: Racing the Heavy Metal category in Crested Butte and beating some really strong racers who were on the latest and lightest gear made me realize my potential.

What is your favorite thing about skimo racing: I really enjoy the training aspect of skimo; spending endless hours (often alone) in the backcountry.

What is your favorite skimo race: The San Jaun Race on Molas pass.   This race takes place entirely in the backcountry.

What is your most memorable skimo moment: Chasing down Team Norway at the World Championship in Italy and seeing one of them fall to the ground puking as my kids ran next to me with the American flag to the finish line.

What do you do to keep in shape for skimo racing in the off-season: Riding the infamous “Tuesday Night Worlds” in Durango, peak bagging in the White’s of New Hampshire, climbing in the San Juans and mountain biking with my 9 and 11 year old boys.

What is your favorite non-skimo sport of hobby: I’m currently into uphill running/racing.

Skimo race wins: I have yet to win a big skimo race. I made it to the podium in every race I entered in 2011. My strongest finish was 2ndplace in the 2011 USSMA National Championship @ Jackson Hole.

Skimo race you have not done that you would really like to do: The Perra Menta. I would also like to do some races in Canada. Racing @ sea level would be fun.

Preference of skimo race format (technical vs. non-technical; in-bounds vs. backcountry; etc): I like the long single tracks climbs and traverses. Going from point A to Point B and technical descents. Races like the Sneffels Half Loop and the Grand Traverse.

Best skimo training tip: Rest often and have the other aspects of your life running smoothly; family, work, etc. Mix up your training to stay fresh.

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