A weekend of events for Jackson residents — the Pole Pedal Paddle and the Jackson Hole Rendezvous music fest — also included the fourth annual Marmot Coombs Classic at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.
Friends, family and members of the Doug Coombs Foundation showed up at Teton Village to remember the ski mountaineer who inspired many in the Jackson community.
Coombs died in the French Alps in 2006 when he went over a cliff while skiing to the aid of a companion.
“Doug was sponsored by Marmot for almost 25 years,” said Emily Coombs, his widow.
“When he died Marmot wanted to have an event in Doug’s name to honor him.”
The event is considered a classic, not a race. Although Coombs was extremely competitive, he was all about having fun.
During the classic skiers took their shot at two routes at the resort. There were no winners and no losers, but participants did receive raffle tickets for how many laps they completed, up to five. Following the race the skiers used the raffle tickets for an assortment of Marmot Gear, Smith products and two pairs of K2 Coomback skis.
The more difficult route of the two was the Pepi’s Bench Headwall Hike. The run started in the Cirque and went down the Coombs headwall.
“The whole day was great,” Emily Coombs said. “We gave one of the kids the Doug Coombs Award.”
Karoline Montes, a member of the Doug Coombs Foundation, won the award for her attitude, effort, spirit and overall friendliness.
At the end of the day Doug Coombs’ friend John Scott grabbed everyone’s attention with a speech in which he told stories about the late skier.
Scott told of the time in 1991 he bought his friend a plane ticket to compete in the World Extreme Skiing Championship. At the time the ski mountaineer had no money, and Scott jokingly threatened him with work-related punishment if he didn’t come back victorious.
Coombs returned home a winner. It was his first of two World Extreme Skiing Championships. His second came in 1993.
Scott brought with him the trophy from the 1991 championship and presented it to Doug’s son, David, 11.
Emily Coombs said her son loves trophies, and loved that one especially because it was his dad’s. The award towered above the boy.
The eighth anniversary of Coombs’ death will be celebrated tomorrow. He would have been 57.
By Clark Forster
Originally posted on jhnewsandguide.com