1998 Norba Mountain Biking
Big Bear Lake, CA
May 16-17, 1998

Big Bear Lake is a mountain resort community located 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles and surrounded by the San Bernardino National Forest.

2,000 - 3,000 meters (6,750 - 9,000')

Big Bear Lake:
The fresh water lake is eight miles long and approximately one mile wide at its widest point. It has a maximum depth of 72 feet and over 23 miles of shoreline. Lake activities include fishing, water skiing, sailing, swimming and boating

Big Bear's alpine environment is dominated by pine and oak forests. The area provides a natural habitat for approximately 30 wintering bald eagles and 29 species of rare plants, 10 of which are indigenous to the area.

Click here for last year

Race Preview
Norba Begins Beneath Snowpack

Shaun Palmer
Welcome back to Big Bear Cal-if-or-neye-aeeeee! The NORBA season again begins here with snow...lots of snow. The top of the downhill course is four feet under and there's still enough white stuff at the bottom that the expo got pushed into the parking lot. You know what that means — MUD! The sport and junior classes have been dropped to only one lap due to the brutality of the slippery workout they're recieving from this course. Although the course will look a lot different from last year, many of the same players are returning and they're stronger than ever.

Mikki Douglas
This winter, Shaun Palmer stepped out of retirement and proved to the world that he's still a world class snowboarder by taking the X-Games Boardercross title, then went on to fufill his Motorcross destiny by placing in the ranks of the best in Dirt Bike Racing. Last year Palmer busted up the Downhill competition by three seconds. We'll see if anyone can catch him this year. The women will be missing veteran Mikki Douglas, but the contingent of young American female downhillers is only growing. We'll be looking to see if Marla Streb and other seasoned speed freaks can hold off the fearless young cats.

Beth Coats
The Cross Country race will be absent of last year's winner, two-time winter Olympic biathlete and a mountain bike pro since 1995, Beth Coats. Beth suffered severe spinal injuries in a rock climbing accident in Colorado March 25. Her inspiration will be missed by all this weekend. Ruthie Matthes should be looking strong.

For the men, the hometown veteran Tinker Jaurez is looking strong this season and the Canadian crossover (now riding for America) Kirk Molday should be among the top ranks. My money will on Molday or Andres Brentens. If ths year's World Cup is any indication, it's anyones race. Let the mud fly.

Click here for the '97 NORBA Snow Summit Opener

— Hans Prosl, gettin' down an dirty for The Mountain Zone.

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