Public Radio for the Central Kenai Peninsula

Besh Cup held in Homer for the first time since 2020

Nordic skiing competitors for the 2024 Besh Cup await race results on Jan. 21, 2024.
Jamie Diep

The Kachemak Nordic Ski Club hosted races for the Besh Cup on Jan. 20-21 at the Ohlson Mountain trail system in Homer. The Besh Cup is a tournament consisting of six days of Nordic skiing races spread out from December to February. The cup has two days each of racing in Anchorage, Fairbanks and the Kenai Peninsula. These races determine who qualifies for the Arctic Winter Games and the Junior National Championships.

The races on the Kenai Peninsula usually rotate between the Tsalteshi trails in Soldotna and Homer. However, the ski club has not hosted the Besh Cup in Homer since 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Jan Spurkland organized the Homer portion of the races this year. He said many of the competitors are racing in Homer for the first time.

“Typically, these are high school racers, and the last time that these events were here, these racers weren't on the scene yet,” he said, “so a lot of new skiers come into town. And I think they were very happy with the experience they had.”

The weekend of races in Homer saw many wins across age groups and distances for skiers from the Alaska Pacific University Nordic Ski Center and Alaska Winter Stars. Spurkland said it is inspiring to see the young skiers race, as well as where they end up.

Former racers in Besh Cup here in Homer have gone on to ski at the Olympics, and even most recently podium in World Cup ski races,” he said.

The final two days of racing will take place this weekend at the Birch Hill Recreation Area in Fairbanks.

Results for the Besh Cup in Homer can be found here.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Email
Jamie Diep is a reporter/host for KBBI from Portland, Oregon. They joined KBBI right after getting a degree in music and Anthropology from the University of Oregon. They’ve built a strong passion for public radio through their work with OPB in Portland and the Here I Stand Project in Taipei, Taiwan.Jamie covers everything related to Homer and the Kenai Peninsula, and they’re particularly interested in education and environmental reporting. You can reach them at to send story ideas.