YMCA Falls Creek XC Events

The Development XC Skiing Track-Setting/Grooming in Australia from the late 1960’s to today.

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Casserole Dinner, Junior Camp & other news

Please RSVP if you intend to come to the start of season Casserole Dinner Friday 14th June — email the secretary <secretary@birkebeiner.org.au> Note: Special guests Tommy Silverster and Ash Forrer will give a presentation on their recently completed Australian Alps Walking Track adventure covering 650 km which took them four weeks — we have to be impressed by these 15 year olds!

Birkie Junior Development Camp

  • When: Saturday 13th – 14th July 2019
  • Where: Outdoor School Bogong Village & Falls Creek Ski Resort
  • Cost: $50.00 members, $75.00 non-members (includes $25.00 student membership)
  • Expressions of interest at this stage to: Organiser Browyn Gray – email <bron.gray.ibag@gmail.com> or mobile: 0402 105 237 (text)
  • Application Form — Shortly members will receive an email including an application form and method of payment.
  • Website link <https://www.birkebeiner.org.au/programs/junior-camps/>

2019/20 Committee

  • Executive
  • President: Ewan Silvester
  • Vice President: Michelle Forrer (social secretary & junior convenor)
  • Secretary: Ronice Goebel
  • Treasurer: Jeanette McLaren
  • Committee members
    • Nick Wright (membership secretary & skidoo steward)
    • Ann Bellingham (race secretary)
    • Peter Smith (clubhouse manager)
    • Paul Gray (acting treasurer for 6 months)
    • Blair Hume
    • Allan Marsaland (KHoppet rep)
    • Mal Oldis (new committee person)
    • Warren Sanders (new committee person)

There are a number of portfolio positions filled by non-committee people:
• Kate Prest (Bulletin editor)
• Ian Franzke (search & rescue and skidoo mechanic)
• Ronice Goebel (ski de femme co-ordinator)
• Paul L’Huillier (website administrator)
• Bill Little & Ronice Goebel (Hoppet Board reps)

2019/20 Membership is now due.
Please click [HERE] to join.

New carpet laid in the clubhouse – Note the new Turbo Vacuum Cleaner
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Reminder – AGM – Tuesday 21st May 2019

The Club’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held on Tuesday 21st May 2019 starting at 7:30 pm in the auditorium next to the Mount Beauty Visitor Information Centre.

The club relies on volunteers so please have a think about how you can contribute
to this great club in 2019/20. 

Click [HERE] to view full details about the AGM including how to nominate.

Clubhouse cleared ready for the new carpet to be laid this Friday
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Annual General Meeting – Tuesday 21st May 2019

The Club’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held on Tuesday 21st May 2019 starting at 7:30 pm in the auditorium next to the Mount Beauty Visitor Information Centre.

Meeting reports — Reports on the past year’s activities come from the following: President, Treasurer and Sub-committees: race, junior, clubhouse and search & rescue.

Meeting elections — Office bearers (President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer) will be elected. A number (to be decided at the AGM) of ordinary committee member positions will also be elected usually with designated portfolios. These can include, for example, social secretary, membership secretary, Bulletin editor, website administrator, volunteer coordinator and sub-committee convenors (Race, Junior, S&R and Clubhouse). Some of these roles would be volunteer non-committee positions.

If you are interested in an executive position or ordinary committee role please notify Ronice Goebel ( Secretary). For a Nomination Form click [HERE]. The Form is in Word format so it can be downloaded, filled in on the computer and emailed to ronice.goebel@gmail.com by 5 pm Monday 20th May. Alternatively, a form can be downloaded, printed off, filled in and mailed to Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club, PO Box 192, Mount Beauty 3699. Forms can also be handed in at the AGM. The club also has a number of sub-committees i.e. race, junior, clubhouse and search & rescue. If you would like to assist on one of these please indicate your interest either on the form or at the AGM.

View AgendaClick [HERE]

View the 2018 AGM MinutesClick [HERE]

Proxy voting: A member may appoint another member as his or her proxy to vote and speak on his or her behalf at the AGM. This must be in writing and signed by the member who is appointing the proxy. Get them to hand it in at the AGM.

A great supper will be served following the meeting with lots of socialising included.

The club relies on volunteers so please have a think about how you can contribute to this great club in 2019/20. 

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Weekend Working Bee Report

Blair Hume (co-ordinator) had a team of 32 people including six kids in attendance over the two days. A heap of work was done. Geoff Sorensen (Resort Management) and Kevin Cosgriff (Parks Vic) were also in attendance to co-ordinate work in their areas.

Work completed — replacing the sound system on the Race Hut, re-aligning the Watchbed Creek to Langfords Gap pole line, i.e. it now follows the road, and placing poles used to erect snow-fencing along sections of this part of the road, slashing scrub in the Nordic Bowl and at Panorama Corner and removing overhanging tree branches at Panorama Corner, placing poles along sections of the High Plains Road between the dam wall and Watchbed Creek to affix snow-fencing, drainage/pipework on the Sun Valley loop, relocating some poles on the aqueduct between the bowl and Wombats Ramble, servicing the snowmobile and cleaning the clubhouse.

Thanks to Stuart and Cath Richardson who looked after the BBQ and lunch arrangements on Saturday and to Allan Marsland and Jim Gargan on Sunday. Thanks to Blair Hume who ordered and delivered the meat and other supplies.

Peter Smith installing the new speakers. Completed job: from left Brian Keeble & Peter Smith
Watchbed Creek to Langford’s Gap pole line re-alignment – Ewan Silverster & David Hunt on the job. Geoff Sorenson (Resort Management) with that ‘digger’. No crowbar hole digging on this working bee.
Ian Frankze servicing the snowmobile. Tony Pammer & Peter Burgess slashing scrub in the Nordic Bowl

Attendees — Blair Hume*, Brian Keeble, Peter Smith, Gray family (Paul, Bronwyn, Hanna), Peter & Robyn Burgess*, Allan Marsland*, Frankze family (Ian, Rosie, Bethany, Chloe), Tony Pammer, Ronice Goebel, Jeanette McLaren, Michelle Forrer, Richardson family (Stuart, Cath, Isaac, Max), Jim Gargan*, David Hunt, Roger Blackwell, Russell Bellingham, Jim Crebbin, Warren Sanders, Tom McMahon, Paul L’Huillier, Geoff Sorenson* (Resort Management), Kevin Cosgriff & Andrew Kromar* (Parks Vic).
   *attended both Saturday & Sunday.

Lunch – a well earned rest!
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Local Subsidised 1st Aid Training

Alpine Shire Council has the opportunity to offer a number of heavily subsidised first aid training places for volunteers from community and sporting groups in the Shire.

There are two places available per organisation. The cost will be $30 per person (normally $150.00) and this will cover the cost of the training, morning tea and lunch.  The training will take a full day and there is an expectation that participants will undergo pre-course reading and worksheets before attending the course.

The club will pay the $30.00 so it is free to members. There is also a number of full-fee paying positions available — Mount Beauty $180.00, Bright/Myrtelford $150.00. Also covers the cost of morning tea and lunch.

Mount Beauty – Sunday 2 June 2019
Bright – Sunday 19 May 2019
Myrtleford – Monday 20 May 2019

Please contact the secretary Ronice Goebel ASAP if interested — Mob: 0409 332 642‬ or Email <ronice.goebel@gmail.com>.  

A reminder: Club Working Bee — 27th & 28th April. RSVP to Blair by Monday 22nd April — Mob: 0404 530 358 or Email <blairhume@yahoo.com.au>


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Club Working Bee – Sunday 27th/28th April

Jeanette McLaren & Jim Gargan showing off their culinary skills at a previous working bee lunch BBQ.

Date & where to meet — Volunteers should meet at the Birkebeiner Clubhouse at Windy Corner, Falls Creek on 27/28 April 2019.

Times — Meet at the clubhouse at 9:30 am, Lunch at 12:30 pm and finishing at 4;30 pm.

Personal gear & tools to bring — Warm clothes and waterproofs as appropriate for the weather. Drinking water, sunscreen and a sunhat or thermos with a warm drink – keep an eye on the forecast. Overalls or similar protective clothes, strong work gloves and boots.

Some of the tasks to tackle are:

  • Re-alignment of pine pole line on Langford’s Straight to Langford’s Gap side so they can be used to mount the temporary snow fencing trialled very successfully in that area last winter. We’ll use a skid steer with an auger to dig post holes. We will need to have some traffic control and design a traffic management plan.
  • Potentially install/relocate pine poles on BHP road section from Dam Wall east to Big River fire trail. To be set up to mount snow fencing and re-located to LHS of High Plains Road heading out (better for grooming operations.. .)
  • Ongoing Vegetation management, particularly the trees drooping over Panorama loop trail on the section from Panorama Corner to AGL corner (on the Panorama corner end). We can access the tipper if required.
  • Tidy up the ski/back-sack rack nearest the Aqueduct (replace lower railing).
  • Clubhouse Spring clean and tidy up. Also the possible installation of a protective screen on the upstairs outside door.
  • There are a couple of culverts which need attention also:
    • RHS of BHP Road on the approach to the dam wall – outlet needs opening up and inlet needs brush cutting and some reshaping.
    • Pipeline trail on the uphill/SE side of Little Canada.

Hope to see you there Blair Hume (co-ordinator)
(50% of our members are not from the Kiewa Valley so it would be fantastic if some members from outside the area could make themselves available for the working bee)

Other possible tasksBrian Keeble and Peter Smith are planning to install new speakers on the Race Hut as part of the communication system upgrade.

RSVP to Blair by Monday 22nd April — Mob: 0404 530 358 or Email <blairhume@yahoo.com.au>

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Falls Creek & Mt Hotham SOLD!

The rumours were rife prior to Christmas that Vail Resorts was purchasing both Hotham and Falls Creek in Australia. However no official word was made by either party by the end of the year and those same rumours began to fade in the new year.

Falls Creek Vic

We can now confirm today that the worst kept secret in Australian ski industry history is a secret no more. Vail Resorts is officially acquiring the two Victorian Resorts for AU$174 million according to a press release from the publicly listed company, making it three Australian resorts on the Epic Pass including Vail owned Perisher in New South Wales.

Click [HERE] to view Full Report

More Falls Creek News

Stuart Smythe — CEO-Falls Creek Resort Management

Casting my eye across to the plateau of Spion Kopje, covered in a blanket of lush greenery, it’s hard to believe this summer has been so hot.

Plenty of the locals have anecdotal ‘evidence’ that barometers in the village exceeded 30c, but checking the official stats, since the start of December, Falls Creek recorded its hottest day this summer on January 16th, 2019, where the mercury hit 28.2c (Note: 28.6c, February 9th, 2009 is the hottest recorded). No wonder the lake was such a popular gathering place – not just for locals, but also visitors looking to escape the heat in the low lands.

With the climate change lenses on, I thought a quick review of how this compares to history might be worth investigating (note – official Falls Creek B.O.M. stats only go back to 1990). So, this summer, average peak temperatures have been 3.7c above the last 30 years, whilst rainfall is currently on track to meet the average of 298.7mm for the three months of summer. This might explain the lush green vegetation everywhere.

Click to read more of this report
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2019 Senior World Championships – Seefeld, Austria (19/2 to 3/3)

Ski and Snowboard Australia (SSA) announced on February 14th that seven Aussie skiers had been selected as part of the national team which will compete at the 2019 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Seefeld, Austria.

Beginning 20 February for almost two weeks the Aussie contingent has a formidable line up with a balance between seasoned veterans and fresh rising talent.

With four women and three men, Australia’s team includes four athletes who competed almost a year ago to the day at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games.

Congratulations to club members Phillip Bellingham, Katerina Paul and Aimee Watson on their selection. The club wishes them well in their endeavours to ‘be the best they can be’. Valerio Leccardi (National Coach & Manager at the Championships) is also a Birkie member. Good luck with the team, Valerio.

To follow all the action visit the Official Championship Website <www.seefeld2019.com/en>

Also follow the team on facebook <https://www.facebook.com/ausxc/>

Other News

Work at the race hut — Today new storage racks were constructed to house the V boards and separate the aluminium orange poles with clips and without clips (race organisers please take note). This was a Brian Keeble initiative – thanks Brian. On another occasion Brian placed a number of stumps under the race hut to support the old floor (a big job). The old hut has been in the Nordic Bowl since 1989. Click [HERE] to view its history.

Brian Keeble – job completed

Mystery couch at the clubhouse – The pictured couch was placed in the clubhouse some time after winter. The committee has no knowledge of who placed it there. It is in the children’s ‘play space’ and is an inconvenience. The committee has asked that whoever put it there could they please remove it.

The mystery couch
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Summer News Update

RIP Doug Westerman

With great sadness we note the passing of Doug Westerman who passed away on the 17th January 2019 after a short illness. Doug was one of the clubs’s foundation members (1977) and was involved with the Hoppet as the High Plains Co-ordinator, since its beginning in 1991. He assisted in the early days of the Birkebeiner race, was very active in the club’s search & rescue squad as a field officer and as a hard working teacher at Mt Beauty Secondary College leading its ski team to many wins.

Club’s Overseas Coach for 2019

Since 2012, Birkebeiner has invited an international skier to volunteer with our club to assist with many events and training sessions for members.

This year we will be welcoming Erin Yungblut from Canada. Erin has an extensive background in elite nordic skiing, including biathlon, and she has a broader experience and knowledge of skiing from working for the Fast and Female organisation.  We look forward to having Erin volunteer with our club during July and August this winter. Look out for more about Erin and how you can participate in her member clinics in the winter edition of the Birkie Bulletin.  – Nic Wright

Race Hut and PA Systems

A few renovations and upgrades are going on. We plan on installing two new 100V external horn speakers at the front of the race hut, replacing the roving microphone with a new duel wireless microphone set-up, and installing a new music source with Bluetooth and phone integration. So for race and event organisers we will hopefully have a seamless system ready to go this winter.

Race Hut Storage, etc.

The middle room of the race hut will be reorganised with new shelving so that all the V-boards, poles, flags, etc. are located in the one place, facilitating race day setup and pack up. This work will take place shortly.  We will also see non-slip matting and even some new hut lining. Further down the track (2020) we may even see an extension to the race hut that will provide a better space for event management and for looking after volunteers. 

Thanks to Brian Keeble, Peter Smith and Paul L’Huillier for moving these projects along.

2019 National Race Calendar

The 2019 Australian Race Calendar has been released by SSAXC. It is possible that minor details such as starting times and contacts may change, however event dates and locations should all be final.

Australian Junior Championships — For 2019 and 2020 the Australian Junior Championship will be held on the fifth weekend of August (the weekend after the Kangaroo Hoppet).

The calendar can be viewed in PDF format. Click the green button.

2019 Junior & U23 World Championships – Lahti, Finland (19-27/1)

Nic Blackwell, Kat Paul & Darcie Morton were the only Birkie members selected in the Junior Team that competed in the championships in Lahti Finland. Kat Paul skied in the U23 World Champs and just missed getting into the top 30 for finals with a 33rd place. Team coach Callum Watson has reported on the team. Click the blue button to view the report.

2019 Senior World Championships – Seefeld, Austria (19/2 to 3/3)

Currently the team will consist of the following athletes:

  • Jessica Yeaton
  • Barbara Jezersek
  • Aimee Watson*
  • Kat Paul*
  • Phil Bellingham*
  • Mark Pollock
  • Seve de Campo
  • Liam Burton
  • CoachValerio Lecardi*
  • (* BNSC members)

Club’s Website additions

History of Skiing in Australia & the Birkebeiner race. Click the purple button below. Order of Australia Recipients. Click the yellow button below.

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