Alyeska uphill race tough on competitors, easy on the eyes

Published: Apr. 17, 2021 at 2:44 PM AKDT
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GIRDWOOD, Alaska (KTUU) - World-class cross country skiers attacked the mountain, gaining over two thousand feet of elevation on their way to the finish line near Seven Glaciers.

The uphill climb was the third event of the Tour De SkiMeister, the other two events were distance races that were held at Kincaid last weekend. The events are part of a much more low-profile Alyeska Spring Carnival due to COVID-19 restrictions.

In this uphill event racers face steep grades of up to 30 feet, it is the rare ski race that starts at the bottom of the mountain and finishes at the top.

“On a race like this, it is just having fun with it and getting the chance to push super hard. That was the strategy I guess on the steep pitches I settle in and then where it levels out, I really try to kick it back in gear and make time where time was easy to make,” said David Norris, the winner of the men’s uphill race.


Norris finished with a blistering time of 24:23.25, using an unorthodox wobble style to get to the top quickly. Not far behind him as far as time goes was the women’s winner Rosie Frankowski.


Frankowski finished with a time of 27:43.70, winning the women’s race by nearly 90 seconds and beating many of the men.

“I am a climber and like I said I do the mountain running races so uphill is my best shot at beating men so I was trying to go for them,” Frankowski said.

This was the third of three races over two weekends to decide who the SkiMeister of the event would be and there are big names all across the leader board.

Men’s Tour De SkiMeisterTotal Time
Scott Patterson01:23:13
David Norris01:24:22
Gus Schumacher01:24:54
Women’s Tour De SkiMesiterTotal time
Anna Darnell01:11:42
Tuva Bygrave01:14:54
Katey Houser01:23:11

You can find a complete list of results for all of the competitors on the live timing website.

This is the first time that Alyeska has hosted the uphill event and according to the mountain manager, it won’t be the last. Sunday the hill stays busy with a downhill fat-tire bike race. That goes from the top of the tram to the day lodge, that race will start at 10 a.m.

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