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Stevens Pass, WA
March 4-7, 1999

  • PREVIEW: Northwest Hosts US Telemark Nationals
  • Rice and Thompson Take Sprint Classic
  • Telemark GS is Fast and Furious
  • Sabin and Thompson in Classic Performance
  • Audio Interviews

    Telemark Preview
    Free heel skiers take it to the gates during the 1999 US Telemark National Championships in Stevens Pass Washington this weekend.

    The road to Leavenworth, Washington on the east side of Stevens Pass is lined with 20-30 foot white walls of a season's accumulation of the fattest dumps in the Northwest in recent (or longer) memory. We don't have the stats to prove it yet, but take our word, the mountains here are a deep layerful history of storm after storm of the epic Northwest season of 1999. It's the powder apocalypse before the next millennium. Thank you Mamma Nature. Don't change for Y2K.

    Jimmy Ludlow
    The most exciting of telemark races takes place this weekend at Stevens, where a concentration of Northwest telemark enthusiasts are hosting the US Nationals. The regionals are usually the last race of the season here, but this year big brother national is moving in for the weekend, sponsors and all, and the vittles in the VIP tent are better than ever.

    But it ain't the World Cup circuit, and thanks for that. There's no T.V. to dictate the race schedule, no rigid institution to steer the sport toward becoming a commodity, and uh, not much funds. Telemark is the last great renegade of the 20th century.

    We arrived on Friday night and crashed the weekend race party at the modest local ski hill in Leavenworth, a misfit Bavarian oasis in the heart of the Cascades. Free salmon, salt potatoes and cake satisfied us Northwest style, and some expatriate Canadians took a nighttime hike into the trees of the high ridge and sailed for an evening gelande sprung off the antiquated nordic jump. This is the real thing.

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