So what about the Alaskan Nordic Ski-to-Sea Contingent? [a work in progress…]
Bellingham is famous (at least in a few circles) for the annual Ski-to-Sea relay race, composed of 7 legs (8 participants) that traverses the 100 miles or so from the Mt. Baker ski area parking lot, by way of the 5000 ft top of the slopes to the beaches of Marine Park, south of downtown Bellingham. (see map)
While this race has been going on for almost 50 years and is very popular (usually maxing out at xxx teams), the talent pool is not known for a large number of Nordic skiers. Hence, teams are frequently searching for a cross-country skier to fill their ranks.
The first leg of the race is cross-country skiing. A loop course of about 6 km, with honest up and downhills, but nothing that an experienced skier can’t ski without scouting. There is usually plenty of snow; the track is plenty wide, but only groomed for skating, no classical tracks. The top 1/3 or so skiers all skate, beyond that, some do and some ski classical (all with some version of waxless skis).
- travel to/from Bellingham. Allegiant has just announced direct flights between Anchorage and Bellingham for quite reasonable prices. (Beware of additional fees, such as more $ to ship your ski bag!)
- Entry fee: $100 per person on the team.
- Lodging, food, local transportation: Pete and Meg have guest rooms and floor space, as well as a 12 passenger van.
Weather: T-shirt, blue-bird skies – or cold, windy, rainy weather. Who knows?
Calendar / Schedule: The race is always on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend (May 26, 2019). Allegiant has only twice-weekly flights. Probably Wed, May 22 or Sat, May 25 – Wed, May 29.