The 2015 edition of Ski to Sea race is not one we’ll soon forget.
Record low snowfall this winter left the mountain without enough snow to host the traditional first 2 legs of the multi-sport race—cross-country & downhill skiing.
Race organizers selected an alpine run to open the race instead, followed by the road run, canoe, road bike, and cross-country bike legs that we’re accustomed to. But rather than finish like usual with the sea kayak, race organizers added an additional leg—an 8.5 mile loop through Chuckanut Mountains by mountain bike—to maintain the team size and race length.
So in some ways, this ad hoc course is reminiscent of Ski to Sea’s legacy. Improvisation has always been in the spirit of this historic race. At its first running in 1911, some competitors hitch-hiked back to Bellingham after the train they were riding on derailed in Maple Falls. (Hear the whole story in the award winning film The Mountain Runners.)
This year, early leaders struggled to navigate the new opening leg. Several of the Alpine Runners went astray, and fell behind the leading group. In the end, team 268: Aeromech/Sensible.Technology—a team that had finished in second the last 3 years in a row—broke through for the victory.
Ski to Sea is accompanied by 2 full weeks of festivities that includes a community block party, 2 parades, a kid’s race, hundreds of affiliated local events, and one of the best finish line parties in the region.
Visit our facebook page for more photos of this year’s one-of-a-kind Ski to Sea.