The Sierra Ski Chase is a low-key race series, now in its 21st season. It’s open to cross-country skiers of all ages and abilities. The purpose of the Ski Chase is to promote greater participation in XC ski race events, which currently draw a wide range of skiers, from top-level athletes to recreational skiers who complete courses at their own pace. Whether you want to race, push yourself a bit, or take on a Ski Chase event as a “tour” is up to you!

There are two ways Far West members can participate in the Sierra Ski Chase:

  • PARTICIPATION, which is free and open to ALL Far West Nordic members, and
  • RACING COMPETITION, which is open to Far West Nordic Racing and Supporting members only.

The key difference between these: PARTICIPATION is all about completing a series of races – many participants like having such a goal for their ski season. RACING COMPETITION is an age-handicapped competition in which points are awarded based how you place at each race in which you complete. Competitors are scored throughout the season, and Ski Chase Racing standings are updated as races are completed. YOU MUST BE A FAR WEST NORDIC RACING OR SUPPORTING MEMBER TO BE IN THE SKI CHASE RACING COMPETITION.

  • ALL ages are eligible for Basic Participation
  • Any XC ski race that’s at least 5K counts towards Basic Participation.


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Participation Prizes! All Far West members who complete a minimum of 5 eligible XC races this season are eligible to receive the 2015 season commemorative Participation Prize.

Bonus Prize for New Far West members: if you’re a first-time Far West member this season, you’re eligible to receive a bonus prize after your first 3 qualifying races. Bonus prizes will be one of prior year’s participation prizes (while supplies last).

Race eligibility: the only requirement for which races count towards Ski Chase Participation Prize eligibility is that they (1)each race you complete must be a minimum of 5K in length, and (2) races must occur in the Far West regions (California, Nevada, and Arizona). The list of races in the Far West region can be found on our Race Schedule.  Races vary in terms of distance, race format, and terrain/difficulty — there’s a wide range of races to choose from, so you can pick whatever races are right for you.

Great Raffle Prizes Too: all participants ages 20 and over who complete a minimum of 5 races will be eligible for raffle prizes donated by our sponsors (in addition to the participation prize). You must be present to win a raffle prize at the prize awards ceremony (see below), and you must complete 5 races by the date of the awards ceremony to qualify for a raffle prize.

Prize awards ceremony:

  • Participation prizes will be distributed at an end of season party, and at other XC events by prior arrangement (please e-mail Peter Hanson).  We can make also mail your prize via Priority Mail if you pre-pay our postage cost.
  • Raffle Prize drawings will be held at the end of season party. You must be present to win.

What You Need To Do To Participate: other than being a Far West member, you don’t need to do anything to start your Ski Chase participation. Just start doing some of the XC races and keep track of which races you’ve done. When you’ve completed your 5 races (3 qualifying races for new members) please fill out the form below telling us which races you’ve completed and we’ll put you on the list to receive this season’s participation prize. Far West Nordic Racing and Supporting members do not need to submit this form- we will keep track of you race count for the season.

Racing Competition


Eligibility: you MUST be a Far West Nordic Racing or Supporting member age 20 or over to be scored in the Sierra Ski Chase Racing Competition. If you’re a Basic member and wish to upgrade to a Racing or Supporting member, you may do so in the online store. Juniors are not eligible for the Sierra Ski Chase Racing Competition.

What you need to do: All Racing and Supporting members will automatically be scored, there’s nothing you need to do to start being scored other than completing races. If you’re a Racing or Supporting member and you do NOT wish to be scored, please e-mail Peter Hanson.

Eligible Races: Races 5k and over count for 10 points with additional age and place points for races with 40 or more adults.

Sierra Ski Chase trophyCompetition Awards: The top man and woman will have their names inscribed on the SIERRA SKI CHASE PERPETUAL TROPHY on display at the Auburn Ski Club. Racing competition standings will be updated throughout the race season and posted on the Racing Standings page; the final winners will be computed after the last race included in the competition.
Criteria and Point Scoring: The objective of the Sierra Ski Chase point scoring is to consider several key aspects of race achievement:

  • Recognition of top race finishers
  • Rewarding participation and perseverance as well as race performance
  • Handicapping results based on age

Races with at least 40 seniors + masters competitors will be scored with placing points shown in the table below. Age handicap points will be given to the best 5 races per participant, that means 1 point will be added per year over age 34. Everybody will receive 10 points for finishing a race plus placing points. After your best 5 races, each additional race will be worth another 10 points. Specific races will be scored as follows:

  • The Tahoe Rim Tour will be scored as 2 separate races, i.e., a classic race and a separate skate race. Similarly, the Mammoth Marathon will be scored separately from the Mammoth Half Marathon.
  • The Great Ski Race will be scored with 30 points, with no age or finishing points.
  • Several races offer “short course” formats: these will be evaluated and scored as separate races.
  • WAVE START RULES: Women who choose to race in the MEN’S wave of any race with wave starts by gender will score the points calculated by her placement in the MEN’S Wave, but those points are applicable to her overall series score.
  • Only skiers will be scored for the Billy Dutton Uphill, not runners.

In the event that a race has less than 40 adult participants, each participant will be awarded a flat 10 points.

We have changed the scoring for the 2013-2014 season so that there’s an incentive to race for each place. There is now a point for each place and extra points for the first few places.

Placing points are as follows:

For men:
45 points for 1st place, 42points for 2nd place, 40 points for 3rd place, 38 points for 4th place, 36 points for 5th place, 35 points for 6th place, 34, 33, 32, 31, 30, 29, 28, 27, 26, 25, 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

For women:
40 points for 1st place, 34 points for 2nd place, 29 points for 3rd place, 25 points for 4th place, 22 points for 5th place, 20 points for 6th place, 18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

Past Winners
Louise Wholey
Peter Hanson
Beth Reid
Jeff Schloss

Beth Reid
Phillippe Mollard

Mischel Twining
Peter Hanson
Beth Reid
Russell Reid

Maggie Fillmore
Phillippe Mollard

Karen Seaward
Peter Hanson

Beth Reid
Peter Taylor

June Lane
Phillippe Mollard

Carolyn Tiernan
Peter Hanson

Laura Stern
Rick Reynolds

Laura Stern
Phillippe Mollard

Beth Reid
Russell Reid

Louise Wholey & Laura Stern
Ralph Johnson

Debbie Hakansson
Lindsay Crawford

June Lane & Julie Young
Ralph Johnson
Laura Stern
Stan Eriksson

Helga Sable
Tav Streit

2015 Finishers


Congratulations to the following racers who have completed their 2015 Sierra Ski Chase.
*If you have completed your Sierra Ski Chase and your name is not listed below, please email Peter Hanson to make sure you get your prize and are entered in the raffle!

WS (20-29) MS (20-29)
Anja Gruber
Emily Blackmer
Caitlin Bernstein
Janelle Webb
Spencer Eusden
Patrick Johnson
Wyatt Fereday
Gus Johnson
W1 (30-34) M1 (30-34)
W2 (35-39) M2 (35-39)
Pete Stirling
W3 (40-44) M3 (40-44)
Molly Zurn
Matthew Sanford
W4 (45-49) M4 (45-49)
Beth Thomas
Lorene Samoska
Andy Pasternak
Troy Corliss
Peter Hanson
W5 (50-54) M5 (50-54)
Mike Seiffert
Karl Volz
Paul Honeywell
Dan Warren
David Groechel
Blair Romer
W6 (55-59) M6 (55-59)
Ed Klotz
Jeff Schloss
Bruce Pauly
Mitch Dion
Jonathan Bourne
W7 (60-64) M7 (60-64)
Carolyn Tiernan
Karen Seaward
Stephen M. Miller
Rick Mitchell
Robert Colt
Thomas Altenbach
Fred Kowitz
Bruce Culbertson
W8 (65-69) M8 (65-69)
James Rosen
Ralph Hendrix
Raoul Kaufman
John Cobourn
W9 (70-74) M9 (70-74)
Louise Wholey
Michael Cohen
William Thauvette
 W9 (75-79)  M9 (75-79)

Click here for SIERRA SKI CHASE 2014-2015 RESULTS

Click the results link above for the final standing for the 2015 Sierra Ski Chase with an adjustment for low racer numbers due to the lack of snow this winter. None of the 7 races in the Chase this year met the criteria for scoring with placing points + age handicap, which is 40 or more adult (senior + master) racers. However, we did have 4 races with over 30 adult racers. We decided to include these races for full scoring to allow for recognition of top race finishers, rewarding participation and perseverance as well as race performance and handicapping results based on age. I hope this is a satisfactory solution to our low numbers this year. Hopefully, we’ll have better snow and more racers next year! 
We will have some swag prizes to distribute to SSC & Masters Challenge winners at the Far West end-of-season awards and party to be held at a time and place to be announced. Hope to see you there!
Please let me know if you have any comments or questions.
Peter Hanson