Steve Rieschl - Sport Builder / Athlete - 1998
Steve Rieschl, who is originally from Robinsdale, Minnesota, has been a Colorado resident since 1955 when he attended Western State College. He was a member of WCS Ski Team and was coached by and competed under fellow Hall of Famer Sven Wiik. While at WSC, he coached a local ski team and helped build Cranor Hill, a local slalom and jump hill. Although his athletic achievement includes competing on state, national, and international levels, his contribution ranges from Nordic to alpine. He coached two Colorado-based ski teams for the Junior Nationals.Steve was very instrumental in creating a Nordic Instructor Certification Program, which began under the auspices of the U.S. Coaches Associates, and later transferred to the Professional Ski Instructors Association. For 18 years, he was an examiner with PSIA. He founded the first Vail Cross-Country Ski School in 1968 starting with one instructor, which quickly grew to 14. When teaching in Summit County, he created the "Ski to School" program, coaching and building the sport of skiing in the area, and was very active in the Frisco Gold Rush citizen race.As a competitor, Steve was a member of the 1960 Olympic team, and captained the U.S. Nordic Ski Team at the 1962 World Champion-ships in Zakopane, Poland.He led the first Vail Cross-Country Team on a trip to Aspen, which became the foundation for the trail system to the 10th Mountain Division Huts of today. He wrote a weekly column for five years, and helped produce two nationally distributed films on ski touring, and contributed to major ski magazines. He is the author of “Ski Touring for the Fun of It,” which was published by Sports Illustrated.He represented Garcia Ski Corporation in cross country skiing, presenting clinics, and made many personal appearances promoting the sport and produced 15 TV shows on ski touring tips which ran on national television for three years.Steve was awarded the Halstead Trophy for outstanding contributions to Colorado skiing in 2003.For many years he owned Ambush Ranch in Crested Butte, a ski touring center and retreat. He currently resides in the Buena Vista area.