In the Fairbanks area, equinox is a time of rapid transition from light to dark and back again. It is also the time for our two marathon events, the Equinox Marathon (Ultramarathon, and Relay) held on the Saturday nearest the autumnal equinox, and the Sonot Kkaazoot held during the vernal equinox period. With the 51th Equinox Marathon successfully contested a little over a week ago, it’s time to start preparing for the 27th Sonot Kkaazoot.
For the first post for the 2014 Sonot Kkaazoot season, I wanted to focus not on the skiers who participate in the Sonot, but on the various race volunteers that make the event possible.
Because the Sonot Kkaazoot starts on the Chena River and then traverses on trails groomed just for this event, there are road crossings that needed to be staffed with volunteers who shovel snow over the road as cars pass by:
and direct cars and skiers at three different locations:
Not only do cars present risks to Sonot skiers, at the Fort Wainwright ski hill, the racers need to be directed away from alpine skiers, snowboarders, and those on tubes:
And someone has to organize all these people (and supply them with nifty visible vests) and Sam Lamont did that task (and took all the photographs in this post):
Feed stations were staffed by local high school ski teams and their parents except for the finish line that Bob Wilkinson staffed in addition to his efforts organizing the feed stations and the cleaning up the jugs after the event:
Organizing the start/finish area and providing commentary throughout the day was Kent Karns:
Dan Baker took on setting up the course and sweeping it after the race:
In between he took a lot of race photographs that should soon be available on his photography website:
Timers for the Sonot Kkaazoot are on the Chena River from the first start to the last finish. Here are the two intrepid members of the timing crew still at work when the last racer finished:
And then finally, there’s Bad Bob Baker, who worked with the 2013 Sonot organizers way more than he planned to make sure that the Sonot Kkaazoot continued beyond his tenure as race organizer:
I hope that you’ll consider joining these volunteers for the 27th Sonot Kkaazoot on Saturday, 29 March 2014. Leave a comment and we’ll contact you.