Joseph Peter Wilson

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Joseph Peter Wilson
Country USA
Full name Joseph Peter Wilson
Born (1935-05-22) May 22, 1935 (age 81)
Lake Placid, New York, U.S.

Joe Pete Wilson (born May 22, 1935) skied for the US in cross-country at the 1960 Winter Olympics, but later became a well-known administrator in the United States. Wilson also wrote several books on cross-country skiing, all co-authored by William J. Lederer. Wilson set up the cross-country ski area at the Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vermont - the lodge established by the Trapp family of "Sound of Music" fame. In 1973, Wilson organized a meeting of 25 ski areas and established the National Ski Touring Operators' Association. Wilson was named as its first President from 1973-1977. After several name changes it is now called the Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA). CCSAA is an international association of US and Canadian cross-country ski areas. Joe Pete is also known for setting up an inn in Keene, New York, the Bark Eater Inn, and developing the ski trails around the inn.[1]

Early Life and Education[edit]

Born Joseph Peter Wilson in Lake Placid, New York, he is the son of Gordon H. Wilson and Anna L. Wilson. Joe Pete spent his summers on his family farm in Keene, New York. In 1953 he graduated from Lake Placid High School where he was a Ski Meister Skier for four years. In 1954 he attended Vermont Academy under Warren Chivers. In 1958 he graduated from St. Lawrence University where he competed in cross country, Nordic combined, and Ski Meister under Otto Scheibs. He was used for team Alpine scoring only when necessary. He was elected Captain of the team for two years. As skiing started to grow in popularity in the U.S. in the 1940s and 1950s, colleges began including ski racing in their athletic programs. Since the sport was so new, college coaches had to use the four best skiers they had in order to qualify as a team. Each of the four did the best he could in his specialty of either cross country, jumping, downhill or slalom. A four event skier was the rare athlete that could place high in all four disciplines. Thus was born the Ski Meister Skier.

1963 Discovering Mt. Van Hoevenburg[edit]

After leaving the U.S. Team, Wilson returned to Lake Placid and the family business. He volunteered coaching high school kids throughout the Adirondacks. He was eager to get coaches and skiers tuned into a great way of life.

He was also analyzing potential locations in the Lake Placid area to establish a U.S., Oslo style "Holmenkol". But the time was not right. He predicted at the time it would be at least ten years before there would be enough interest in the U.S. to support such an idea! Consequently, he was more than mildly surprised when he was contacted by the head of the N.Y.S. Forest Rangers, Mr. William Petty, to research the Mt. Van Hoevenburg area, with the idea in mind of creating cross country trails in a park type atmosphere. Since the bobsled run was already there, they had substantial land holdings there.

Wilson had developed a reputation in his late teens for his knowledge of the woods, his logging abilities, road building capabilities, and knowledge of heavy equipment. He eagerly took to the job. He spent two months tramping, judging, and recording his notes. His only concern at the time was if there would be adequate elevation change to comply with international rules. Subsequent land purchases solved that problem. As a result of the efforts required to hold the 1980 Olympics it became next to Holmenkollen, the premier cross country ski center in the world. Under its new director it is again headed that way.

U.S. Army[edit]

1959-1963, He was a lieutenant in the United States Army. He was assigned to the U.S. Biathlon Team Training at Ft. Richardson, in Anchorage, Alaska. He spent his entire four year service career competing in cross-country and in Biathlon for the U.S. in Europe and with the U.S. Army Marksmanship Team. Wilson says he thinks he only saluted a ranking officer five times in the four years.

Upon arrival at Ft. Richardson, Alaska, Wilson was shocked to discover there were absolutely no training facilities available for Biathlon. No trails, and most importantly, no shooting range. There wasn't even one soul that could spell the word BIATHLON. Wilson knew what he had to do. He just rubbed his hands together and got at it. He had heard all the wild tales about working in the Tundra. He soon found out exactly what that meant! Based on his word alone U.S. Army Corps of Engineers delivered a beautiful, shiny, new caterpillar D-8. Wilson and his two teammates, Dick Taylor and Peter Lahdenpera, former college racing competitors, and the only three skiers representing the entire Nordic/biathlon team at the time, built a complex biathlon shooting range which was used for the next 12 years, until the U.S. Army stopped financing the U.S. Biathlon effort.

My reflections of the years I was on the Biathlon Team and of Joe Pete Wilson:

In October 1964 after completing basic training and AT (combat engineer), I reported for duty at Fort Richardson, Alaska to be a member of the U.S. Biathlon Team. The team was up at Independence Mine Skiing and Shooting training during the week and back at Fort Richardson on the weekends, therefore I was unable to meet the team until the weekend. As it turned out many of the skiers were athletes that I had raced against in the past. Although I did not know them in person, I knew them by name and they knew of me and we quickly became close friends. The team was indeed a close family. We lived on the same floor with rooms next to each other. And so my life of a bi-athlete began. And I must say it was the most fruitful and most fun time of my entire life.

Now, during this time of living and training you naturally hear of former athletes that were on the team and of their accomplishments and of course one of these athletes was Joe Pete Wilson who I had known about in prior years. As I recall, he was a bigger than life character and I had the pleasure of working for him and John Green in the first part of the 70's. I believe it was 1970-1971 and 1971-1972. They had started a company called North American Nordic, a brilliant concept of starting ski touring centers throughout the New England area, with plans to eventually go nationwide. Unfortunately two no-snow years in the northeast put a stop to that idea and I know Joe Pete lost over a million dollars in that venture. But he did keep at it and eventually succeeded running a touring center and B&B in Keene, New York, called the Bark Eater Inn where my wife and I came to visit and spent a week with him and had a wonderful time visiting and skiing. When I went to settle up for our week's stay, Joe Pete said let's go up to my office and we will settle up. We went to his office, Margaret got out her checkbook, and I said, "What do we owe?" and Joe Pete said "One dollar". I argued with him to no avail, but he would take no more. This was and is the type of man he is. He will always give and expect nothing in return.

While working for him at N.A.N., I learned more about him and his love for life and others. I learned that while the biathlon team was having a difficult time continuing as it was no longer sponsored by the military, Joe Pete stepped in and kept it going. I also learned that he had and still has a love for running heavy equipment, a career that I took up after returning to Colorado.

Joe Pete was the man and officer at the time that talked the General at Fort Richardson into letting him build the rifle range at the biathlon training site at Fort Richardson and to this day, if Joe Pete has the opportunity to climb on a piece of heavy equipment and operate it, he will. Joe Pete has always had a vision of the future and he never let anything get in his way. If there was an obstacle in his way, he would overcome it. If there was a roadblock, he would go around it. He always moved forward, never back. Just like a dozer building a rifle range, keep pushing and moving forward. Joe Pete, you are my friend. Always have and always will be.

Allen Small, Durango, Colorado

Olympic Pre-Trials[edit]

1959, First American in the Olympic pre-trials in the 15k, also known as the North American Nordic championships-Squaw Valley.[2] This placing set Joe Pete up as a major U.S. skier due to the number of U.S. and foreign competitors in the race. International Olympic Committee Rules require that a major International Competition be held in all events prior to an Olympic Competition, usually scheduled one year prior as a trial run to test the complex systems involved.

Nordic skiing is the poor cousin of Alpine (Downhill) skiing, which is so popular in the U.S.

The individual disciplines involved in the Nordics are cross-country ski racing, ski jumping, combined cross-country and jumping, biathlon- cross-country skiing, and rifle marksmanship!

1960 US Olympic Team[edit]

Wilson was a member of the U.S. Nordic Ski Team Competing in Squaw Valley, CA in 1960. He skied the 30K. Finishing 43, the exact reverse number on his racing bib. He later commented he somehow ended up with the wrong bib! Based on his results in the pre-Olympics, on the same courses in 1959, he should have placed much higher.

Racing in Europe[edit]

1961-1962 - He was on the U.S. Team racing in Europe, including Scandinavia, in cross-country and in biathlon. 1962 - He finished tenth in Falun, Sweden: in their National Championships among 900 competitors, a significant placing for an American at that time. Still impressive even today. This would be the equivalent to what is referred to today as a World Cup. His two teammates also had impressive performances. These placings remain the highest ever posted by a U.S. Skier to this day.

1964 North American Snowshoe Champion[edit]

Having just recently left the U.S. Ski Team, Wilson was ready for a little testing. The North American Snowshoe Championships sponsored by the Saranac Lake Chamber of Commerce as part of their famous Winter Carnival, which was first introduced in 1897, seemed to be the perfect place to test the water – in its fluffy form. Wilson was new to the sport, but not to competition. After the race he remarked that it certainly had been a pleasant day.

1965 Bronze Medalist in World Championship St. Moritz Switzerland[edit]

Wilson came to the sport wet behind the ears so to speak. It developed eventually that he possessed an innate love of ice. Once when asked what makes a good bob sledder he answered, "You have to love ice, and not just in your drinks". This fascination combined with his competitive spirit and drive made his work easy.

At one point he was the brakeman for the U.S. two man team and the #1 four man team in Europe. He somehow missed the 1964 Olympic Bobsled Team, where his former two ski team pals were competing in Insbruck, Austria, for the U.S. Ski Team. A fact he says that pops into his head from time to time that he regrets! Had fate played a different role Wilson could have been on three Olympic teams in three different sports. His national rankings in Polo and Auto Racing add to the mystique.

1967-1968 Treasurer Vermont Ski Areas Association[edit]

Wilson was elected treasurer of the Vermont Ski Areas Association.

During the formative years of Alpine skiing and the major growth of Big Alpine ski areas across the U.S., Vermont was the recognized leader in ski area development. Numerous innovations to ski area development, and the sport itself were pioneered in Vermont. It was in this environment that Joe Pete found himself from 1966 to 1969 as general manager of Burke Mt., in East Burke, Vermont, just north of St. Johnsbury. Getting to know these people was fun, exciting, and highly educational, especially in the area of ski operation and management. Being elected treasurer of the ski areas association and controlling all that money wasn't bad either, but the opposite swing of the pendulum for Wilson.

Burke Mountain Academy[edit]

1966-1969 - Burke was a small ski area in East Burke, Vermont. Under Wilson's management the entire facility was expanded, including the trails and Base Lodge, where a bar and dining room were added. Several farmhouses were completely remodeled. Several condos, townhouses, and a vacation home were built. A complete sewage system was designed and built. Wilson made sure Burke mountain, although a bit off the main track, would provide a pleasant experience. Wilson staffed it with many young, enthusiastic people with skiing backgrounds, typical of the day. As a result of his real estate background, Wilson realized the future sales value of the land surrounding this Monadnock type mountain and the spectacular views it offered. Wilson also knew that along with ownership came the right to control the design and atmosphere of whatever was done in the future. Wilson put together a 4,000 acre land package on the dominate north facing view site, which also controlled lands on the east and west sides of the mountain.

In the continual effort to increase business at Burke, Wilson realized he had a lot of mountain and a lot of lift capacity, especially mid-week. He was aware of the experiments with ski sports academies at Stratton and Stowe. He decided it was worth a try. He made the proposal to his board; the Burke Mountain Academy was born.

1970 Complete Cross-Country Skiing and Ski Touring[edit]

Co-authored "Complete Cross-Country Skiing and Ski Touring" with William J. Lederer. Many believe this book is responsible for starting the boom in cross-country skiing in the United States in the 1970s. To this day, Wilson does not know what initially brought Lederer to Burke. However, through a fairy tale series of events, a lasting friendship and a great book were the outcome. Many say this was typical of Wilson's career.

William J. Lederer was co-author with Eugene Burdick of one of the most well-known books in US history, "The Ugly American". Lederer was among the most prolific writers of the time. He had several other bestsellers. What did Lederer know about skiing, nothing, but Lederer knew how to write; Wilson knew how to ski, and could easily break down the principles of skiing techniques. They collaborated on the writing.

1971 Glen Ellen[edit]

He became director of advertising and public relations and manager of real estate sales at the Glen Ellen ski area in Vermont. Again, his love of skiing and knowledge of the sport combined with past work experiences aided him greatly. Most noteworthy was his ability to listen to and field questions. With his broad and extensive experiences he had plenty of resources to draw upon.

1971-72 Cooke City[edit]

Barely noticeable, hidden in the very north western corner of Montana is a wide spot in the road called Cooke City. Many people have passed through never realizing there is no charge for parking! It is only a few miles from the north east entrance to Yellowstone.

In 1971 & 1972 Wilson conducted an extensive Nordic summer ski camp here. With support from the well known ski sports writer John Hitchcock, Cooke CIty proved to be an ideal location. The mountains in this area provide one exciting view after another. The skiing occurred at 11,000" to 13,000". The days were divided between short, scenic tours with substantial instruction and distance tours to the famous Grasshopper Glacier, where on hot summer days the glacier relaxed its hold on thousands of grasshoppers. Initially, millions had eaten the ground bare in the mid-west but had been driven off the plains in a violent windstorm, then caught in a freak Fall snowstorm here in the bitterroots. With endless sunny days and snow everywhere the days offered up rare experiences.

1972 Trapp Family Lodge[edit]

Wilson set up the cross-country ski operation at the Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vermont. Recognized as the first commercial cross country ski area in the U.S. Summing up all his experiences to that point, his alpine ski shop experiences as a kid in Lake Placid, traveling and racing in Europe and Scandinavia, writing the cross country ski book, counseling ski and hiking clubs planning ski treks, Wilson put together a cohesive plan for this new operation. He had a feeling even then that this could become a showcase. But he was plowing new ground. There were no examples to follow. There were no cross-country ski centers in operation in the U.S. or Canada at that time. This would be a first. It would be an experiment! For Wilson, there was a lot riding on it. This format became the standard for cross-country operations across the United States for years to come. The Trapp Family Lodge Ski Center operates much the same today as when Joe Pete originally set it up.[3]

To Whom it May Concern:

It is a privilege to put forth a personal recommendation for my distinguished friend and colleague Joe Pete Wilson, who has been an esteemed business associate for nearly three decades.

Joe Pete's history within the sport of Nordic skiing is unparalleled. In 1960 he skied in the Squaw Valley Olympic Games and has stuck with the love of skiing ever since. In 1972 he directed the first commercial cross country ski area in North America (Trapp Family Lodge). Within a year he founded the industry alliance of xc ski area operators, which is now referred to as the Cross Country Ski Areas Association. There are over 300 members throughout the United States and Canada. He has written several promotional books on the subject and has even operated his own inn and ski area.

With creativity, collaboration and tenacity he has helped to fuel several promotions of the sport. His sense of humor and dedicated spirit also contribute in making him a true coalition builder.

I am proud to call Joe Pete a friend.

Sincerely, Charlie Yerrick (Nordic Director, Trapp Family Lodge, Retired)

1972 CCSAA[edit]

Wilson could see that cross-country skiing was coming on. He realized there was little knowledge or information available to the general public in the United States about cross-country skiing. He decided an organization of area operators could exchange ideas, disseminate information, set standards, and assist insurance companies in the area of risk management. After a successful start and a couple of name changes, a strong and effective national organization emerged called the Cross-Country Ski Area Association (CCSAA) which is now an international organization including Canada and is headquartered in Winchester, New Hampshire.

1973 North American Nordic[edit]

He established a company called North American Nordic (N.A.N). He picked fifteen of the best locations in the Northeastern United States, that he could find, that he thought would make good cross-country ski operations. It was a combination of golf courses in urban areas and Country Inns in mountainous locations covering seven states. He groomed trails in all locations. This was a first for cross-country ski areas. The concept of a franchise type operation and the grooming of trails were a radical step in the right direction for cross-country skiing at the time. It ceased operations upon the sudden tragic death of his good friend John Greene, also an elite skier who was from Auburn, Maine.

Letter from Butch Widen to Joe Pete Wilson and Interested Parties Dating back to the early 1970s, I managed Bass Sports, a recreational sports division of G H Bass & Co., a globally known footwear producer, based in Wilton, Maine.

During the 1970s-1980's, Bass Sports, searched and brought to markets, products in the hiking, biking, skiing (alpine & cross-country), industries.

The XC ski sector was a focus, as the sport was unknown to the recreational market, hence offered a commercial opportunity of enormous size. Health, fitness, outdoors and sex were ingredients to promote.

John Greene, an ex St. Lawrence skier, was hired as my Product Manager, and with the back-up of our Bass Footwear for boots; we needed to add the other essential parts which we did not produce, namely skis, poles, bindings, wax and apparel. Off to Norway I went, returning with contracts from brand leaders, Splitkein skis, Eie bindings, Liljedahl poles, Swix wax and Odlo skiwear. All of these brands were the choice of the global elite XC racers, Od Martinson, Bill Koch, and this list is miles long.

With a full compliment of XC products, we needed to bring this assortment to the public, and to break into the traditional ski shop retailers. John partnered with an ex St Lawrence skier, Joe Pete Wilson, and off we went, launching PR events, traveling to ski shows, knocking down and on doors about this vision to a NEW sport, Touring.

Golf Courses opened in winter months to accommodate all sexes and ages for a winter walk. With Joe Pete's enthusiasm, vision and relentless drive, stores began to merchandise the new winter sport of XC Skiing. We held Central Park NYC events with fashion editors (Vogue, Mademoiselle, etc.) and interested parties. The headlines helped to nationalize our dream into an industry, today enjoyed by millions.

North American Nordic XC Ski Centers, founded by Joe Pete became the gold standard for other privately owned centers across our country and into Canada and still hold that reputation today.

In recent days, I have learned the Ole timer, has a new vision to re-launch snow-shoeing, from the back woods where guides and moose hunters roam, to the golf courses and abandoned narrow gauge railroad beds. My guess, he is onto something—Again!!!

Thanks for the Memories, Butch Widen

1974 P.S.I.A.[edit]

At a point Wilson realized a cohesive teaching system for cross-country was imperative. He brought together a small group of people working in the sport who were involved with major cross-country ski areas. A solid teaching system evolved, which was universally accepted and known today as P.S.I.A. Wilson was honored by a lifetime achievement membership in P.S.I.A. He is now serving in his fortieth year.

Joe Pete Wilson-

Few individuals deserve more credit for the revival of the sport and industry of cross country skiing than Joe Pete Wilson. I have known Joe Pete for more than four decades. He always loomed larger than life in my eyes. I first encountered Joe Pete in the early 1970s when I was a fledgling cross country ski instructor. I saw a movie in which Joe Pete was the skier and I was amazed at his technique. I was an instructor at one of his franchised North America Nordic centers- Blackberry River Inn, CT. One of my early experiences with Joe Pete included a spring trip to Jackson, NH to attend a meeting of EPSTI instructors. All the instructors decided to take on the Wildcat Valley Trail, a challenging hunk of terrain especially under snow conditions that day. I was having a tough time of it and Joe Pete kept with me and offered continuous encouragement.

Joe Pete was a visionary for the cross country ski sport. He was one of the original "Eastern Professional Ski Touring Instructors" (EPSTI) and owner/operator of the Bark Eater Lodge. His missionary work in promoting the sport through instruction and the development of an organized industry association for Nordic areas was tireless. Early efforts to organize the EPSTI and codify instruction techniques, lesson plans and promotion evolved into NESTOA (North East Ski Touring Operators Association) which we worked hard to morph into a national organization NSTOA (National Ski Touring Operators Association) which eventually gathered international members and became CCSAA (Cross Country Ski Areas Association).

I still stand in awe at his vision and accomplishments.

1975 Scandinavia[edit]

The man called The Father of Nordic Skiing in the US, in his area of expertise at the time, Leonard "Butch" Widen says the idea to import a US Nordic businessman to Scandinavia to lecture on the Nordic scene in the US originated in Scandinavia. Wilson was chosen for the job. He spent three weeks lecturing in Norway, Sweden, and Finland. His secondary assignment was to test aquavite. Wilson was up for the task. He was familiar with the customs and the people in all three of the countries due to his racing experiences. His knowledge, wit, sensitivities, and patience aided him greatly. The experiment was a success.

1977-1978 United States Biathlon Team[edit]

Wilson was named coach of the US Biathlon team. Wilson was recommended for the job based on his racing career and his extensive coaching experience. His resume included his highly successful book plus his guidance in producing the PSIA instructors manual. His knowledge of Kentucky windage and his extensive training in rifle marksmanship by the famous M.Sgt Marvin Fitzpatrick of the U.S. army rifle team also helped. In 1978-79, the US Biathlon Team had significant success at the World Championships held in Lake Placid prior to the 1980 Olympics. Among other things, he was given a signed poster for his efforts, with the inscription 'Your incomparable enthusiasm continues'.

1979-1980 Olympic Venue Manager[edit]

Wilson was the venue manager for the Bob and the Luge for the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. He directed a staff of 4,000 employees and volunteers.

1981 Bark Eater[edit]

Wilson took control of the family inn business known as the Bark Eater in Keene, New York. Bark Eater is the English translation of the Indian word Adirondack. Due to business regulations at the time the Bark Eater Inn and Silver Saddle Riding Stable operated as DBA's, under Indian Meadows Farms, the corporate name. Wilson built a polo field, an ingenious trick on an Adirondack hillside farm. The riding stable grew to a total of eighty-five horses.[4]

1981 Bark Eater X-C Trail System[edit]

Utilizing old cow paths and logging trails, and capitalizing on the rolling terrain and hills nearby on the 250 acres he owned, Wilson designed and personally constructed a trail system that people drove for miles to try. From growing up in the earth-moving and logging business as a kid, he was a very skilled heavy equipment operator. The key Wilson says, is to not be too heavy. When it comes to uphill and downhill, you can't fool an old dairy cow! The trail system offered many pleasant rest stops and spectacular overlooks. Since they were built right into the trail system, they could be enjoyed by everyone, despite their ability. There were no challenging ascents nor precipitous descents preventing anyone's access.

1983 World Masters[edit]

He was chosen as the Chief of Race for the World Masters skiing competition at Mount Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid. This event attracted 1000 competitors. An overwhelming number at that time. This time around Lake Placid had snow and lots of experienced volunteers.

1984 Nordic Alliance[edit]

Nordic Skiing hit a major slump. There was major concern and no clear cut answers. Wilson got some of his merry band together to try to get answers. There were some positive results. The major problems were defined, thus directing all future energy in the right direction. More time would have made a significant impact on the sport. Wilson had been carrying the administrative and financial duties but was finally forced to direct all his energies and resources to his business.

1985 Country Inns and Back Roads[edit]

The Bark Eater Inn was invited to join "country inns and back roads", considered by many as a list of the top 200 country inns in the United States.

1986 Ski Magazine[edit]

A story in "Ski Magazine" called Wilson "an iconoclast before his time."

1986 Ski Inns Book "Cross-Country Ski Inns of the Northeastern United States and Canada"[edit]

Based on the idea of a simple concept. Wilson was asked to put together a unique coffee-table book combining country inns and cross-country ski centers, often referred to as the "Ski Inns Book". He put together a financial plan, contacted the ski inns, and personally visited each to check qualifications and facilities. The result was a successful, classy coffee-table book.

1991 Second Ski Inns Book "Cross-Country Ski Inns of the Northeastern US and Quebec"[edit]

The success and sales of the first ski inns book led to the publication of a second, referred to as the second edition which included some minor changes and some new inns. It too was popular and in fact today there are no books left of either publication. For a time Wilson had one copy of each edition, but now there is question if there are any, except in private collections.

2000 Ski Trax Magazine[edit]

Wilson was named one of the top ten people who have done the most to promote the growth of cross-country skiing in the United States in the last century.

2001 Lake Placid Hall of Fame[edit]

Wilson was inducted into the Lake Placid Hall of Fame.

2011 St. Lawrence Hall of Fame[edit]

Wilson was inducted into the St. Lawrence University Hall of Fame.

2013 The Nordic Concept[edit]

Many people are unsure of the meaning of the various terms used in skiing. When the term Alpine is used, some people are immediately aware of the different disciplines that the term signifies. This is not the case with the term Nordic. Also, now the Nordic discipline of biathlon is becoming popular, adding more confusion. After considerable thought, Wilson has decided what is really needed is a universal symbol - a trademark representative of or depicting all four disciplines (Cross Country, Jumping, Combined, Biathlon). In this respect, there are a myriad of hurdles to consider. But progress is being made.

There are numerous ways to encourage greater use of the word Nordic. One simple way is to create a patch depicting the Nordic disciplines or a Nordic setting. One design for a distinctive patch has been completed and is part way through production. Other ideas such as pins, etc. are being explored. Production designs on those will start right away. Wilson has also launched a grassroots campaign to use the term "Nordic" more in conversation, writing, in print and signage.

2014 The New Ski[edit]

Although snowshoeing is a great recreational sport, many people find the snowshoe a difficult, frustrating challenge. Many attempts, some with great research and monetary expense have been made to develop a better design. Wilson has designed what he calls a snowshoe that slides. It has a slight side cut. The tip is slightly wider than the midpoint and the tail is slightly more narrow than the tip, but still wider than the midpoint. It functions best when used with a three pin OB binding and a rugged boot, like the Fisher OB3. It has a no wax base and a slight reverse camber (rocker). He has designed a second ski, a skate/touring concept and is working on its development and production.

2014 Founders Award[edit]

Wilson was honored with a Founders Award by Chris Frado, Executive Director and President of CCSAA for his work and dedication to the sport of cross-country skiing and the CCSAA.


Rumors of Lake Placid making a bid for a future Olympics have begun to circulate. Wilson is combining his knowledge of the area and his past Olympic experiences to draft a cohesive, workable plan the Lake Placid area can submit that will adequately utilize everything Lake Placid and the surrounding area have to offer and to enhance the chances of being awarded the bid! With only slight changes to traditional procedures a solid plan can be developed. As always, there will be naysayers and reluctance on the part of some to cooperate. However, Wilson's philosophy is that time and thought solve all problems. Wilson feels In order to make a successful bid for the next Winter Olympics, the U.S. will have to join forces with Canada. This will open up access and more potential venues, and ease financial burdens for only one country.

Personal life[edit]

Joe Pete Wilson currently resides outside Lake Placid, NY; near the Saranac Lake area, home to 3 new Nordic Olympians, one winning Gold.


Men's 30 Kilometres
Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1960 Winter 24 Squaw Valley Cross Country Skiing Men's 30 kilometres United States USA 43
Cross Country Skiing
Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T I1T I1R I2T I2R
1960 Winter 24 Squaw Valley Cross Country Skiing United States Final Standings 43 2-22:16.2 44:26 43 1-31:33 43


This summary was assembled primarily from newspaper and magazine articles written through the years, factual notes, wild stories, and interviews.

This sincere note is to my good ski friend Natalie "Nat Ski" Bombard Leduc, and her brother Jim, who could ski like the wind, and who I was swept along with in his breeze many thousands of feet in Sun Valley. I am deeply indebted to Natalie for her tireless support and endless encouragement. Natalie has paid her dues to skiing from High School in Saranac Lake to St. Lawrence University, to 110% community support through the many years. A gold medalist by all standards. - JPW

Selected Works[edit]

  • "Complete Cross-Country Skiing and Ski Touring", 1977 (author)


Butch Widen Letter (2015)

Mr. Charlie Yerrick Nordic Director, Trapp Family Lodge, Stowe, VT, Retired

Ms. Chris Frado CCSAA Executive Director and President Winchester, NH

Mr. John Fry US Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame Founder and Former Editor, Snow Country Magazine

Mr. Thom Perkins Former Executive Director Jackson Touring Center Principle, Thom Perkins Consulting