The Summer Olympics are finally upon us, which means we are only a few months removed from what really matters: The Winter Olympics.
I’ve always grown up dealing with the Summer Olympics as a nice diversion from watching baseball for a fortnight, but my passion for worldwide competition stems from memories of experiencing the Winter Games. They were always more relatable to me from the perspective of a skier, always seemed to have a more-intimate level of competition where the United States didn’t dominate the field like the 1927 Yankees.
Thanks to a year-long COVID-19 delay, the 2020(1) Olympic Games in Tokyo will now run into the winter version less than 200 days later in Beijing . And despite pandemic-related snafus still gumming up the works in Japan, perhaps we, as skiers and riders, should brace for these Games as a nice appetizer for an Olympic schedule that, according to us at least, matters a lot more.
There’s less of that sense this year though, with the Olympics adding events like sport climbing in 2021, becoming even more friendly to outdoor enthusiasts like ourselves. Snowboarders can enjoy watching the grandfathers of their sport, surfing and skateboarding, make their Olympic debuts. Those of us who trade in our skis for paddles in the summer can watch with awe as Olympic kayakers and canoers do things we could never imaging doing ourselves on the Saco.