History: Vikin Fjord National Telemark Series, 1986-1988

  • February 16, 2015

Vikin Fjord Folder Cover-logo-webThe Vikin Fjord National Telemark Series was sanctioned by USSA and sponsored by Vikin Fjord Vodka and Outside Magazine.  The series ran for three years, from 1986-1988 with about 5-8 races each year in resorts from coast to coast.  The series concluded each year with the Vikin Fjord US National Championships.  There was a men’s and women’s series winner crowned at the end of the season as well as a US National Champion.

During those years, the National Champion was the man or woman who won the Dual Slalom elimination event at Nationals.  By 1991 (and perhaps earlier) the National Champion would be determined by calculating the best 2 or 3, or 3 of 4 event results for each racer during the Championships.

These documents were used as part of the PR package to promote the Vikin Fjord Series and National Championships.

PR photos of leather boots, 3 pin bindings and skinny skis used at the time:

“Shown here are a side view of an “unaltered” telemark boot and a close-up of the boot toe in the telemark binding mounted to the ski.  Although some racers alter their boots with plastic attachments, the manufactured boot is similar to a heavy leather hiking boot with a 1/2-inch extension of the sole from the toe.  This extension fits into the 3 pins of the binding and is held in place by a flat metal bale.  This 1/2-inch connection point offers great flexibility in foot movement but makes balance and control a challenge.  This is all that holds the skier to his skis through the high speed race courses.”  (Photography: Doug Child)

Vikin Fjord Photo -PR photo of Mark Lance with leather boot-webVikin Fjord Photo for PR ski-boot-binding-web


The second year of the Vikin Fjord National Telemark Series included 7 and the National Championships at Aspen, CO.  The 7 races were held at:

Sugarloaf, ME

Sun Valley, ID

Snowbird, UT

Snoqualmie Summit, WA

Telemark, WI

Squaw Valley, CA

Snow King, Jackson, WY

Buttermilk/Aspen, CO – National Championships


The 3rd year of the Vikin Fjord Telemark Series included stops at:

Vail-Beaver Creek, CO

Mount Cranmore, NH

Stratton Mountain VT

Telemark, WI

Alpine Meadows, CA

US National Championships were held in Snowbird, UT and were hosted by the Wasatch Telemark Committee (see news article)

Photographs used for PR for the 1988 Vikin Vjord National Telemark Series:

1987 Whitney Thurlow photo for PR-web

Whitney Thurlow, pictured above on his victory run at the 1987 Vikin Fjord Championships in Aspen, Coloardo, has won four consecutive national telemark ski championships.  Thurlow is a purist when it comes to the drop-knee telemark technique and is considered to have one of the “cleanest” styles.  A native of Maine, Thurlow is assistant ski school director at Crystal Mountain, Washington.”  (Photography:  Doug Child)

1987 Heidi Stutzman photo for PR-web

“Heidi Stutzman, the reigning “queen of telemark skiing,” is shown above at the 1986 Vikin Fjord Telemark Championships in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.  Many attribute this twice consecutive North American Champion’s speed to her unique “low” style.  Stutzman splits time between ski patrol, the family farm and college in Boise, Idaho.”  (Photography:  Doug Child)

1987 Monte Bell photo for PR-web

“Monte Bell, pictured above in a a characteristic growl, may be one of the top performers in this year’s Vikin Fjord Telemark Series.  An Aspen, Colorado resident, Monte spends summers kayaking Colorado’s whitewater rivers and building telemark boots.  He is an accomplished hang-glider test pilot and has been known to carry a parachute even aboard commercial airline flights.”  (Photography:  Doug Child)

1987 Anne Sullivan photo for PR-web

“Anne Sulllivan is one of the rising stars on the Vikin Fjord Telemark women’s circuit.  Sullivan trains at her home in Stowe, Vermont and is considered to be a potential threat to western dominance in women’s telemark racing.”  (Photography:  Doug Childs)

Thank you to Jim Fox, former USSA Telemark Coordinator, who kept these Vikin Fjord files for decades and then gave them to Tory Hauser in 2014 to be used as part of this history project.