More than 6,500 skiing enthusiasts turned out over the weekend for the annual Holmenkollmarsjen, a ski race that has changed course many times and now offers one that’s long and another that’s shorter but still a challenge.
Despite another spate of rain and mild temperatures last week, organizers and skiers alike were cheered by more snow during the night on Friday, which allowed for well-groomed trails on Saturday morning for the 53-kilometer (32-mile) main course that now runs from Sørkedalen, north into the hills and forests of Nordmarka and ending up at Holmenkollen. The shorter course runs for 25 kilometers
The sun even peeked out Saturday morning for the first time since the Christmas holidays, and turnout was strong even though the race collided with the opening day of competition at the Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Newspaper Aftenposten reported that Arne Post of Team United Bakeries won the men’s 53-kilometer race, crossing the finish line after two hours, 37 minutes and 42 seconds. Ole-Henrik Kabbe of Bærums Verk won the shorter race after just an hour and five minutes, 10 seconds.
Inger Liv Bjerkreim Nilsen, also of Team United Bakeries, won the women’s race, skiing 53 kilometers in two hours, 59 minutes and 52 seconds. Her sister Betty Ann Bjerkreim won the shorter race after skiing its 25 kilometers in an hour 15 minutes and 40 seconds.