Pole (singular) is back on skis

Bill Husby (aka Poles) is back skiing after his ladder accident

During the Frank Soos Distance Race #3, The Unpleasantry, I was passed by Thomas St. Clair holding a broken pole in one hand and skiing outside the tracks with just one pole. I mentioned to our group of skiers that Bill was perhaps part of a growing trend.

Then today, Bill headed out to Smith Lake to keep him at the top of our Creme de la SCUM team in miles earned for our 2000-mile relay on the Race Across Alaska Winter Challenge. I hope that this didn’t jar any of his fractured ribs and that he will soon join our workouts again.

Sunday without Poles

Sunday at SCUM corner without Bill–-photo by Joanna Fox

Sunday was a noteworthy SCUM ski. We had probably 4 inches of new snow that had been newly groomed and tracked. Temperatures were a balmy 8 deg F above zero. But our injured Creme de la SCUM leader, Bill Husby (aka Poles) was not skiing back and forth at the head of the pack. With his cracked lower rib and nondisplaced fracture of the right ulna, Poles will likely be Pole (singular) when he rejoins us. However, a half-strength Bill Husby will still ski faster and further than the rest of the SCUM.

PLEASE support Bill’s recovery by donating to the trails fund:


I’m willing to wager that Bill will be back on his skis and snowmachine sooner if he knows that his work is needed and appreciated.

Recover Quickly, Poles!

Tuesday evening, Bill Husby, who was Chief of Course for the recent Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association (RMISA) and Besh Cup races, was attempting to put bins of directional arrows overhead in the old shop. The step ladder slid out from under him. Bill fell backwards about 5 feet and landed on his right side injuring his ribs and his elbow (shown below):

Friday evening update from Bill:

Here’s the scoop: cracked lower rib (just let it heal) and a broken bone in the right elbow. 

photo by Bill Husby

We need a mended Bill because of all his excellent grooming and the course work he does for Nordic Ski Club of Fairbanks races. In addition, Bill has been racking up the most miles for our Race Across Alaska Winter Challenge team, Creme de la SCUM


Here’s are team photo with our ski poles substituting for Poles Husby:

Creme de la SCUM–photo by Mike Mathers

Heal quickly, Bill.

Not only do we miss your pace setting, without you out in front, no one gets the picture when one of us head plants into a snowbank. Joanna thought that her documentation of a snowy hat 0.5 km after the fact would stand up as evidence in a court of public opinion. I beg to differ.

She did not get the picture–photo by Joanna Fox

Recover quickly, my friend. We miss you. I hope that you get some sort of high-tech cast that allows you to ski and groom while your elbow heals.

Minto Ski

Are you getting tired of skiing the same trails here in the Fairbanks area? Scott Brucker would like folks to come try out his ski trails in Minto in hopes that we’ll help promote his trails for future ski events.

He emailed:

I’d like to invite you and some folks for a personalized ski session of my trails. It was about 3 weeks ago I had a ‘jib’ ski and skate skied 14 miles of my trails, it was absolutely glorious. I’m trying to obtain/build better drags and figure out a way to put corduroy in the trail. I exploded my snow drag the other day, which really pissed me off when the hitch failed and caught a tree. I figure if I show people it is a good trail, they will pass that on by word of mouth and might be able to help host a race or get school ski programs to come out this way.

Here’s updated google earth Imagery of my trail system.

Roughly 400+ cords of wood now cut and stacked in the past 7 years. So exciting to see the scars I’ve let on the planet. I added about 1.5 miles to the trail from last year. Here is an image of a 9.5 mi route.

They can be combined with other trails for 24 miles of skiing if I really wanted to, but I’ve found maintaining that much trail is exhausting, time consuming, and costly. Right now I’m maintaining 14.5 mi trail as my longest, and a total of 17 miles of trail. 

A trip to Minto might make a perfect spring break trip.

Contact Scott if you’re interested: email: sbrucker@yksd.com

Good News! 6 more weeks of winter

Today, on the Blackhawk Loop, the SCUM groundhogs determined that we’ll have at least 6 more weeks of winter.

Look at the shadows that Bill and Mike saw today:

Bill’s shadows and groomed tracks on the Black Hawk--photos by Dan Johnson
Newly retired Mike Mathers casts long shadows

Don’t be discouraged by the temperatures on the Birch Hill web thermometer. The sun makes the trails feel much warmer now. You can ski under natural lights from about 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. now.