Jim and Nancy Young live in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, near Rocky Mountain National Park at 9000 ft elevation, where they share their love of the outdoors, and Siberian Huskies. They built their current home over the 1999-2000 winter, where they coexist in separate centuries, Nancy with her spinning and crafts, and Jim playing in the world of computers and radio.

Nancy has a wide range of interests. She got started in Cross Country Skiing because Jim was getting into it, she quickly mastered it and became one of the very few female instructors in Wisconsin in the ’70’s and was the first woman in the USA certified as a Master Nordic Ski Coach. Along the way, she completed many half and full ski marathons, including eleven 55 km American Birkebeiners.She is best known for her 16 years as Nordic Director at Snow Mountain Ranch in Colorado, where she oversaw the expansion from a small backwoods ski area to one of the largest in the country. While she was there, the Nordic Center enjoyed a reputation as an elite training center, not just for top-level cross county skiers and biathletes, but also for elite runners and bikers who were cross-training on skis. She also ran a youth ski program that produced numerous champions and Olympians.

Nancy the artist is into stained glass, spinning and natural dyeing, wood carving, as well as figurines and dolls. She has taught spinning and has given numerous spinning demonstrations either at historical sites or in classrooms. Her stained glass work not only appears in private homes as commissioned custom works but also as original works in three churches and chapels near her mountain home. Some of her production work can be seen in a local gallery in the mountain town of Grand Lake, Colorado.

Using both her stained glass and wood carving skills, she has made trophies and awards for both sailing and skiing events, from the local to international levels, for many years.

Jim is internationally known as a ski and sailing coach, who also does Internet site design, a variety of writing projects, as well as consulting on fund raising for non-profits. Best-known in Sailing, he worked at the Olympic level for over 30 years, including 2 Games as Head Coach of the Swiss Sailing Team, and one as Training Center Director/Assistant Coach for the US Sailing Team. He has also been private coach to a number of Olympic athletes, in both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. He was active in Cross Country Skiing at the highest levels, including Domestic Development Coach and head of Coaches Education for the US Ski Team, and Head Coach of the US Biathlon Team.

Since late 2004, Jim has spent the springs and falls in country he fell in love with while traveling across it many times in the early ’80’s, the deserts, canyons and ruins of the Southwest. He works as a guide for his little sister, Jody, and her adventure travel company, leading others into a land he has explored on his own. A link to Jody’s web site is here, and on Jim’s menu on the right.

In the world of non-profits and fundraising, Jim has long been involved in helping to raise money for aspiring Olympic athletes and developmental programs. More recently, he has been active in fundraising for community projects, working as Development Coordinator for the Grand County Library District, helping to raise the money needed to build two new libraries in Colorado mountain towns.

As we slide into the so-called ‘retirement’ years, we stay active; Nancy manages a tourist/clothing shop in Grand Lake, while Jim volunteers in Rocky Mountain National Park, trail roving and guiding at an historical site in the Park, plus a couple weeks every spring and fall as resident ranger at the remote Horseshoe Canyon in Canyonlands National Park . We manage to get in a handful of weeks each spring and fall camping/hiking in beautiful, and usually hard-to-reach places (try to find Adobe Town in Wyoming, or our hardest-to-get-to National Monument, the Gila ruins in New Mexico, or one of our beautiful island parks, the Virgin Islands National Park).

Yurt skylight

(Because some have asked, the photo above is the top/skylight dome in the ceiling of our yurt.  What do you mean, “yurt??” Doesn’t everybody have a yurt in the back yard? Ours is a solar-powered getaway.)