Many a guide has told the joke. "What does an Alaskan man want? — A woman and a truck, that both work."
In the spirit of this humor, the Talkeetna Bachelor Society birthed the Wilderness Woman Contest. Women are asked to drive, or fly, many miles
to show men that women can do all the work.
Local and visiting ladies can sign up beginning at 12 Noon at The Fairview Inn on the day
of the event. The event starts at 1 pm sharp. A sense of humor is highly recommended -- it’s largely
satire, but the competition and prizes are real enough. Be prepared to
compete in multiple timed events which change a little from year to
year. There is an outline of the event under the slideshow.
first round is a qualifier, in which, three or four women at a time run
100 yards with empty buckets to a ‘creek’, and return the same distance
with full buckets. If any water is spilled, time is added. The five
fastest finishers advance.
In the second
round, women are asked to prepare a sandwich and open a beer for a
lounging bachelor, and then head out into the ‘woods’. The five
finalists must put on snowshoes, and move from field to stream while
shooting a latex ‘ptarmigan’, sawing a small piece off of a birch
round, snagging a salmon, and evading a lonely ‘moose’.
Round three measures the five finalists snow machine skills. Each woman
must fill a sled with split wood, then tow it by snow machine and feed
the wood into a bonfire, around which bachelors tell lousy stories.
three rounds are timed. After penalty times, if any, are added, the
three times are combined, and the woman with the fastest cumulated time
wins. There are some great prizes for the top three finishers, but most
women do it for the love of the game.
What's a charity weekend without prizes for athletic and auction
achievement? Wilderness Woman Contest winners have received anything
from gold nuggets to free flights to Hawaii and London. Second and
third place finishers take home an assortment of hardware ranging from
handmade fur hats and bear claw necklaces to free lodging, meals and
activities provided by businesses in Talkeetna.