by Melis Coady
This Sunday a handful of Talkeetna’s most dedicated cross-country skiers gathered at the end of Whigmi Road for the 4th Annual Wooly Wooden Ski where traditional wooden skis, three pin bindings, and pine pitch tunings were the norm. It was a crisp and sunny winter day as the skiers headed out in their woolen garb for a two-hour ski tour connecting a new trail to an old route to Heart Lake.
The event was coordinated by Roger Robinson, the event’s founder. He was inspired several years ago to dust off a pair of his old trustee wooden race skis he used to compete on in the 1970’s for the Oregon State, a program know for turning out elite athletes, like Steve Prefontaine.
A few years ago Roger competed in the 40k division of the Tour of Anchorage on his wooden skis and old Ducks uniform. He had so much fun he was inspired to start an annual non-competitive ski event in Talkeetna featuring traditional gear. The wooden skis were beautiful but easily matched by the fine costumes. Shannon Post was wearing a vintage German skirt and cropped coat. Shoo Salasky was in a rugged traditional anorak with fur rough. Fun was had by all.