Birkie News Bulletin – 14th October 2021

Please note  If these emails do not display correctly in the email application that you use e.g. Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, Hotmail, Apple Mail, Thunderbird, Windows Live Mail, Yahoo Mail etc you can always view the content on the Club’s website. Click <>.

Birkie Athlete Grants

The club has been supporting athletes for forty years by providing financial assistance for overseas travel and associated expenses. If you believe you fit the eligibility criteria then download an Application Form and submit it to the secretary by Monday 18th October. The Form is in Word format and can be typed into. It will appear in your downloads folder or on the desktop. Please attach supporting documentation as requested.

Lily Murnane – profile

Lily competing in USA.

Participating in the Emerging Talent Program (ETP) alongside fellow snow sport athletes and being able to learn from experts helps young skiers and snowboarders understand that they are not alone on the journey towards becoming successful athletes, according to 18-year-old cross country skier Lily Murnane. Read Lily’s profile [HERE].

Snow Australia eNews & XC News — subscribe

Open up the Snow Australia website <> and scroll to the bottom of the home page. Fill in your name and email address and click subscribe.

On the next screen check • Cross Country Community Update AND • eNews and click subscribe.

NOTE — If you are already a Subscriber to Snow Australia eNews then to get the NEW publication you need to access a previous Snow Australia eNews and scroll to the bottom and click on Manage Your Preferences and make your selection there.

Note — If you go to the News menu on the Snow Australia website you can also access these publications.

Birkie Bits by Nordic Ned

  • Nordic Ned is short on ‘bits & pieces’ this month. It would be great if he had some help.

2021 Virtual Hoppet Report

The Kangaroo Hoppet has wrapped up for another year with a great participation level and many wonderful stories from a virtual event. 

Way back in the sunny and free days of February the Organising Committee decided to again offer a virtual Hoppet so that overseas skiers could keep up their involvement with the event despite being locked out of the country.

By June they were still thinking along the lines of offering a real event for Victorians, plus folk from within the Border Bubble and the ACT, but by August reality set in and the Virtual Hoppet became the only offering. The option of a refund or transfer of entry to 2022 and free entry to the virtual event was offered to all those who had entered the actual event. Only 5% have asked for a refund, which is nice.

The Virtual Hoppet attracted almost 1200 entries with 31 countries and all Australian states and mainland territories represented, and ages from just a few months to 83. (The babies and toddlers competed in the pouch class, reserved for children who were carried or towed along by their parents.) Participants came from Argentina, Austria, Canada, Czechia, Dubai, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and the USA. 

The activities and stories were as diverse as the locations from across the world. As well as the expected running, walking, cycling, mountain biking and, for those lucky enough to live in a Victorian Alpine Resort or in the Snowy Monaro LGA, cross country skiing. Other activities included exercise machines, paddle boarding, canoeing, swimming and one in a wheelchair on the rail trail in the Ovens Valley, or a 21km beach running slog (well done Barb Plant!). Altitudes ranged literally from sea level (one lady swam 7km at Middle Park, taking three days as she stayed within her daily exercise time limit) to 3000 metres (a Swiss skier doing 42km on the glacier at Les Diablerets). Jussi from Finland paddled a sea kayak for 93km over two days in the gulf of Bothia.

The Virtual Event and the long-term sustainability of the event is reliant and genuinely appreciative of the major sponsors. AGL have remained a committed partner since the beginning and continue to provide financial and logistical support for the event as part of their contribution to the community that they live and operate in. AGL also invest in athlete scholarships each ear that support the aspirations of Australian skiers to compete internationally (more on this topic in a later edition).  The Mt Beauty and District and Community Bank have recently joined the Hoppet as a major sponsor and have been vital in supporting the event through the COVID disruptions. Falls Creek Resort Management have maintained vital support for the actual skiing event through financial, logistical support and preparation of great trails for the event and during the season. All major sponsors of the Hoppet are vital to the ongoing sustainability of the event and the Hoppet Organising Committee and skiing community are genuinely appreciative of their support. 

While a great way to get motivated to do some exercise, the Virtual Hoppet was primarily aimed at keeping connected during our second year of pandemic restrictions. Many participants shared their stories on the Facebook page Kangaroo Hoppet – Do It Your Way. Take some time to check it out as there are so many great stories from the valley and around the world.

Next year…..surely the event will run on snow as before! It will be a big celebration for the Hoppet as 27th August will be the 30th staging of the event. Keep it in mind, and get thos skiing muscles sorted during summer and help us celebrate this amazing event in 2022!

Ben Derrick – Race Director

Mt Bogong – West Peak

Heath Matheson reenacting the Billy Barker photo taken sometime ago on the edge of West Peak. Billy Barker is the current head of the Mt Hotham ski patrol and does the daily snow report on their website.

Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing Update

Bogong High Plains

The Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing will share the beauty of the Australian Alps with those who choose to take part in the proposed 57-kilometre multi-day route. The current track upgrade will create a five-day and four-night route as well as providing options for those who looking to do shorter overnight walks.

Project Update

A preliminary Environmental Values Assessment has been created to give the community a broader understanding of the project and how Parks Victoria are ensuring that there is minimal impact on the environment.

A Business Case and further development of a Visual Landscape Assessment is also taking place to assist with refining the locations, details and design of accommodation and trail alignment, surface and grading.

The planning work is expected to be finalised in early 2022.

Stage 1 which includes track upgrades and creating up to two overnight campgrounds including roofed accommodation options is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. Further completion of the crossing will be subject to future government investment.

Want to Know More?

An Online Information Session is going to be held to keep the community up to date on project progress.

Date: Wednesday 27th October 2021

Time: 7pm – 8:30pm

Register HERE to get involved.

For more information on the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing click HERE.

Hoppet Promotion 1990/91 style

Hoppet Postage Stamps — In 1990/91 the National Team tour of Europe which included the World Championships in Val di Fiemme, Italy the team members wore these ‘promotional signs’. They wore these for the entire trip to help promote the newly accredited Worldloppet Event the Kangaroo Hoppet which was to be held in August 1991. Can you identify any of the skiers? Let the editor know.

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Birkie News Bulletin – 6th September 2021

Please note  If these emails do not display correctly in the email application that you use e.g. Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, Hotmail, Apple Mail, Thunderbird, Windows Live Mail, Yahoo Mail etc you can always view the content on the Club’s website. Click <>.

Snow Australia Medal Recipient

Mark Gray giving it his all — 1994 Winter Olympic Games Lillehammer Norway

Snow Australia has announced one more cross-country recipient of the Snow Australia Medal from the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer Norway. It is Birkie club member Mark Gray.

Click [HERE] to read all about Mark and his journey becoming a Winter Olympian on the club’s website Ski History page (scroll down to section 7).

From the Race Secretary — Ann Bellingham

Rocky Valey Rush & Sun Valley Ramble

Although the event was cancelled this year, I would like to acknowledge the following:

  • Thanks to the small team of local Birkies on the race committee who are prepared to get a race up and going for those still able to attend. Unfortunately it was not to be and Victorian Covid lockdown was implemented from 1pm on Saturday afternoon, the day before.
  • Thanks also to the 33 entrants we had up until Friday night for your support!!
  • Thanks to Meg Crebbin who came up with a fantastic poster this year.
  • Thanks to Geoff Sorenson for the planning to get the course prepared for the day.
  • Also thanks to Michal Trnka of Alpine Timing for all his work on the entry side of things, generating certificates and also for getting information to participants and also for fielding lots of enquires and the occasional criticism.
  • Also many thanks to Snow, Trek and Travel who were once again prepared to sponsor the event, even though last year and this year have not been great for snow related businesses.

Maybe we can finally get something going in 2022!! 

Ann Bellingham
Race Secretary

Snow Australia eNews & XC News — subscribe

Open up the Snow Australia website <> and scroll to the bottom of the home page. Fill in your name and email address and click subscribe.

On the next screen check • Cross Country Community Update AND • eNews and click subscribe.

Click [HERE] to read the latest issue of Cross Country Community News edited by Finn Marsland Snow Australia’s Cross Country Skiing Program Director. It’s a quality publication.

Note — If you go to the News menu on the Snow Australia website you can also access these publications.

Birkie Bits by Nordic Ned

  • Virtual Kangaroo Hoppet – Entries to date 1,173. Go to <> for more information.
  • BuffsHow to Wear a Buff. Click [HERE] to view 14 ways.
  • Early Skating TechniquesClick [HERE] to view the short video (1:23).
  • Facebook page. Search for Falls Creek XC (public group with 1.3K members).
  • Facebook page. Search for Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club (private group with 205 members).

Looking Back – Hoppet #1 (1991)

  • Who was responsible. Click [HERE] to read a short summary from the Hoppet Gazette (the Hoppet News Bulletin at the time).
  • President’s welcome message i.e. Bob Flower. Click [HERE].
1990 Nordic Bowl Race Hut before the hut was raised 1 metre. That is a lot of snow!

West Peak Mt Bogong with Mt Beauty & Kiewa Valley below. Real or Photoshopped? It’s still a great photo.

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Races this weekend


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Birkie News Bulletin – 13 August 2021


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News Bulletin – 12th August 2021


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News Bulletin — 28th July 2021


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News Bulletin — 25th July 2021


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News Bulletin – early July ’21


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June News Extra

Birkebeiner Classic XC Ski Race postponed

Hello all cross-country skiers,

The Birkebeiner Classic, scheduled for the 4th July, is postponed as there is not enough snow to set the tracks and run the race. It is too uncertain to wait until Friday’s predicted snowfalls to make a decision, so we are planning to hold the Birkebeiner Classic on Sunday 11th July instead. So get those skinny skis ready and waxed and head to the Nordic Bowl for a 10:30 am start.

Registration is online-only — <>. Entry can be done right up to start time.

On arrival at the Nordic Bowl check-in via the QR code on the race hut, collect bibs in the Nordic Bowl and be self-sufficient with your food and drinks. Be Covid safe, maintain social distancing and wear a mask if needed.

Hope to see you all there.

Ann Bellingham
Race Secretary

Welcome New Members

Colleen AdamsBright
David ChlebnaBright
Eleanor ChlebnaBright
Amelia FeatherstonFAIRFIELD
Felix GrimmerPort Fairy
Lescinska GrimmerPort Fairy
Liesel GrimmerPort Fairy
Nick GrimmerPort Fairy
Leanne HowardBrighton
Leanne HullTawonga South
Mackenzie HullTawonga South
Peter HullTawonga South
Arthur HyslopTawonga South
Bruce HyslopTawonga South
Margy JansenFalls Creek
Paul KovacsPorepunkah
Jennifer MacdonaldMount Beauty
Nicholas Mason-SmithMount Beauty
Ava MoegelFalls Creek
Laif MoegelFalls Creek
Max MoegelFalls Creek
Jack MordesBrighton
John MordesBrighton
Athena MortonPort Fairy, VIC
Eden MortonPort Fairy, VIC
Leon MortonPort Fairy, VIC
Mari-Liis TammelaTawonga South
Grace WalkleyFalls Creek

Falls Creek Cross Country at Windy Corner — Drop in for all your XC skiing needs including refreshments.

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News Bulletin late June

Birkie Junior Development Camp — Sat 10th & Sun 11th July 2021

FOR: Grade 4 to Year 12 students, from beginners to advanced WHEN: Saturday 10th and Sunday 11h July 2021

WHERE: Meet 8.30am Saturday morning at Bogong Outdoor School, Bogong Village (15kms from Falls Creek) or 9am at Birke hut, Falls Creek. Accommodation Saturday night is at Bogong Outdoor School, Bogong Village.
Camp will finish at 3.30pm on Sunday at Bogong Outdoor School, Bogong Village.

MEALS: All meals (except Saturday lunch) will be provided. Families will be requested to bring a plate to share for afternoon or morning tea. Please notify of any food allergies.

SKI HIRE: Cross Country skis can be hired from Mount Beauty Secondary College on Friday 25th June (start of school holidays), or YMCA Windy Corner Sat/Sunday mornings. Participants will require classic skis Saturday and skating skis Sunday. Please advise if ski hire is required.

TRANSPORT: Transport will be via car and carpool.
COST: $50/child for members. Non-members will need to sign up for a $25 student membership. Click [HERE] to sign up as a member.

ENQUIRIES: Bronwyn Gray — Mob: 0402 105 237 or Email <>  REFUND: full refund if camp affected by covid restrictions or if you’re sick.

COVID INFO: Please do not attend the camp if you are unwell. Your child will need to be collected from the camp if they become unwell.

REGISTRATIONClick [HERE] to register for the camp. Applications close Sunday 4th July.

Membership – Now Due!

The 2021/22 Membership fee is now due. Please click [HEREto renew.

Birkie Bits by Nordic Ned

  • Important Dates
    Casserole Dinner – Postponed
  • Mid-Season Dinner at Roi’s — Postponed
    Note — More details of these events will be published when decided on
  • Clubhouse & COVID-19 Protocols — The clubhouse is accessible. COVID-19 protocols are in place including the Service Vic QR Code. A new door lock has been added and there is a new code that has been communicated to members in a previous email. Please read all documentation at the Clubhouse re restrictions on numbers etc.
  • Kangaroo Hoppet Aid Stations — For 2021 plastic cups will not be provided. Skiers will need to carry their own water bottles and can get a refill at the stations.
  • Hoppet Entries open 1st July 2021 <>.
  • Birkebeiner Classic XC Race — Sunday 4th July – start 10:30 am. Volunteers needed. Please contact race secretary Ann Bellingham if you can assist. Mob: 0427 006 246, Email <>.

2021/22 Birkie Committee

Executive membersPresident: Ewen Silvester, Vice President: Michelle Forrer, Secretary: Ronice Goebel, Treasurer: Jeanette McLaren

Ordinary Members — Ann Bellingham, Allan Marsland, Nick Wright, Peter Smith, Paul Gray, Stephanie Germancheya, Michal Trnka, Kate Prest, Elaine Thomas

Volunteer PositionsPeter Smith: Clubhouse Manager, Nick Wright: Membership Secretary, Paul L’Huillier: Website Administrator & News Bulletin, Ronice Goebel: Ski de Femme Co-Ordinator, Warren Sanders: Bush Search & Rescue (BSAR) Victorian Delegate, Ian Franzke: Skidoo Mechanic, Nick Wright: Skidoo Steward

Athlete Grants

Thanks to the hard work of our secretary Ronice Goebel the club was successful with their application via Victorian Sport & Recreation for an Athlete Grants. Congratulations to the following skiers Casey Wright, Nic Blackwell, Tommi Silvester and Hannah Price who have been given funds to assist their cross country skiing in 2021.

Registration is ONLINE <>

National Race Calendar

Click [HERE] to view or download the 2021 Race Calendar.

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