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History of Far West Ski Association
by Catherine Ohl, Pacific Rim Alliance


National Ski Association
The national skiing organization began in Ishpeming, Michigan in the 1870s with a number of clubs formed by Scandinavian immigrants.

On February 21, 1904, Carl Tellefson of Ishpeming brought these clubs together and organized them as the National Ski Association [NSA]. The first sanctioned meet was held the next day.

In the 1920s, regional divisions began to affiliate themselves with NSA — the Eastern Amateur Ski Association in 1925, the Western US Ski Association [the Rockies] in 1926, and the California Ski Association and the Pacific Northwest Ski Association in 1930.

In 1962, NSA emerged as the United States Ski Association [USSA] and FWSA became its Far West Division. While USSA’s primary focus was competition, Far West was attracting more recreational skiers.

In 1979, Far West determined that USSA competitive programs were no longer a benefit to its mostly recreational membership and withdrew from USSA. In 1980, USSA organized into two divisions— competition and sports. Far West voted to merge into USSA and lead the sports division on condition recreation programs would have an equal voice with competition programs.

The new national organization didn’t work out as planned and in 1983, Far West withdrew from USSA for the last time.

Back to Far West History



Logo 1970

FWSA Logo 1970

Logo 1981

FWSA Logo 1981



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