Wednesday, January 30, 2019

2019 Ely Bristlecone Birkebeiner

 January means it's time for the Ely Bristlecone Birkebeiner race. This is a fantastic cross-country ski race held at Ward Mountain near Ely, Nevada sponsored by the Ely Outdoor Enthusiasts. The Birkebeiner race is named after a 12th century treacherous journey through the forests and over the mountains of Norway to help protect the 2-year old heir to the throne.

Ely held this race many years ago and then it went into a hiatus. The Ely Outdoor Enthusiasts brought it back. Here are posts from the 2016 Birkebeiner, the 2017 Birkebeiner, and the 2018 Birkebeiner.

 Desert Girl couldn't wait to warm up.

Desert Girl was then willing to take photos of the Adult race.  I was so excited that I got my skis crossed right away and got stuck. Then I was laughing so hard it took me awhile to figure it all out.

Fortunately, I did get it figured out.

We went up. And then we went around a lovely loop. I don't have photos of any of it, because I was really competing this year. I was trying to go as fast as I could, and let me tell you, cross-country skiing can really get your heart pumping! Fortunately, Ely Outdoor Enthusiasts have many more photos on their Facebook page.  

This year the race included not only cross-country skiing, but also snow-shoeing and fat-tire mountain biking. I thought it was pretty cool for all three to be finishing about the same time (they started different times and had different routes). 

 Soon it was time for the kids' race. They lined up. And then they were off!

Desert Girl likes costumes. One year she wore a tutu. This year she wanted a bright red cape.

The kids had a sweet downhill to get to the finish.

Desert Boy had a better pair of skis this year, and they worked a lot better for him.

Isaac looked a little out of control coming down the hill, but it was his dad who crashed. It was all in good fun.

And he made it to the finish in good spirits.

There were a couple nice fire pits to help keep participants and observers warm.

We had a large contingent from Snake Valley. And we did quite well. For the women's long race, we won 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. For the men's long race, we got 3rd. And for kids, we got 2nd and 3rd. Way to represent!

The addition of Shorty's Food Truck was fantastic. All the participants got some delicious chili included with the race sign up. We also sampled their delicious sandwiches afterwards. Yum!

Well, it was a great event, and we are already looking forward to next year. Thank you, Ely Outdoor Enthusiasts, for giving us a good reason to get outside!

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