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Lowell_Skoog
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Olav Ulland dies at 92
« on: 06/17/03, 04:58 AM »

Although he was not a backcountry skier as much as a ski jumper, it is fitting to note the passing of Olav Ulland, one of the giants in Northwest ski history. Born in Kongsberg, Norway, Ulland made his name in the skiing world in 1935 when he became the first man in history to jump more than 100 meters on skis. A few years later he came to the Northwest to coach ski jumping. He liked it here and stayed the rest of his life. He helped build ski jumping at Leavenworth and also helped establish the Stevens Pass ski area. With Scott Osborn, an alpine skier from the Mountaineers, he founded the Osborn & Ulland ski shop, which was dominant in the Seattle area when I was a kid (remember Sniagrab?).

Here is an article about him from the Seattle Times:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/obituaries/134998931_ullandobit15m.html

And here's an excellent paid notice from the same paper:

http://www.legacy.com/nwclassifieds/LegacySubPage2.asp?Page=LifeStory&PersonId=1088369

In the mid-1950s, Ulland co-founded the Kongsbergers Ski Club in the Seattle area, which promoted the Nordic disciplines of ski jumping and cross-country racing. In those days, ski jumping was much bigger and more glamorous than cross-country. My father, Dick, and uncle Jim became members of the Kongsbergers and my father was club president for a year. The Kongsbergers used to maintain a cabin and jumping hill at the Cabin Creek exit along I-90, east of Snoqualmie Pass. My dad used to bring us there as kids. Although I never knew Olav Ulland personally, his name loomed large in my childhood, and his death provides more evidence, if any is needed, of the passing of an era.

A memorial service for Olav Ulland will be held at 2 pm, June 29, at the Mountaineers, 300 Third Ave. W, Seattle.
« Last Edit: 06/17/03, 05:02 AM by Lowell_Skoog » Logged
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