Heather Nelson

Role: Kayak Leg and Team Captain
Team: Kulshan Cycles, Whatcom County Women
Age: 39
 
How did you become involved in the Ski to Sea:
When my husband and I moved to Bellingham in 2003 we started training and racing with the local paddling community. Everyone started asking us if we were doing the Ski to Sea. We got kind of excited. So, when I friend said if I put together a team, he would be our sponsor, I jumped on the opportunity. That year I did the canoe leg and my husband did the kayak leg. We were hooked and have raced every year since.
 
What has kept you together as a team for so long now?
My current team, Kulshan Cycles, is a Whatcom County Women’s Team. The vision in creating the team was more than to just race Ski to Sea, but to bring together a group of strong, amazing and talented women whose paths might not otherwise cross because we do different sports. It has really been fun.
 
We have become great friends and training partners year round. We have been together 5 years now and still we all just thrive off each other’s energy. It is an awesome thing.
 
Present Occupation:
I am a full time Mom… or adventure Mom as I like to say.
 
Length of Employment:
I have a 3 ½ year old boy, Hayden and 5 month old girl, Jazlyn.
 
Education:
Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UC Davis.
 
Favorite Sport:
I love the water, so, surfskiing, Stand Up Paddle Boarding, outrigger canoeing are favorites. But, I also love the simplicity of trail running and the challenge of multi-sport racing.
 
Favorite Quote:
Shut Up and Show It!
 
Last Book Read:
I am a mystery novel addict! I always have 1 or 2 going.
 
Long Term Dreams/Goals:
I love racing and adventuring, and have had the opportunity to do a lot of very cool things with my family growing up, then on my own. Now, as a mom of two beautiful children, I dream of a life of adventure with them and my husband. We do our best to share our passion about living an adventure and race filled life with Hayden and Jazlyn and dream of traveling and racing more and more with them as they get older.
 
Beyond that, my goal is to stay true to the lifestyle I love and stay young at heart. I want to paddle a 2000-mile expedition when I am 80. Run a marathon at 85. I want my grandkids to think I am the coolest grandma ever.
 
How long have you been involved in the Ski to Sea?
8 years.
 
Do you plan to be in the Ski to Sea race again?
Of course!
 
Do you plan to do all 7 legs of the race?
Maybe if there was an Iron Division I am sure I would do all seven legs then. Otherwise, I am going to stick to the water! I LOVE the kayak leg… I have to admit, running up the beach in front of 1000’s of racers and spectators and ringing that bell to the roar of the crowd, I am totally addicted!!!
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