From Matias Saari:
We are saddened to report that Nat Goodhue, one of the Equinox’s founders, died Thursday in Vermont at age 80.
Goodhue was a student and skier at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks when he founded the Equinox along with fellow skier Gail Bakken and their coach Jim Mahaffey in 1963. Goodhue and Bakken each won the inaugural race. Goodhue won again in 1974, broke 3 hours in 1979 and eventually completed the race 13 times. His last race was in 2010.
Goodhue is pictured below shaking hands with race historian Stan Caulfield while Bakken looks on in 1968 (University of Alaska Photo).
Bakken died in 2015, while Mahaffey still resides on the Anchorage Hillside.
Incorporating Ester Dome into the course was Goodhue’s idea. “Let’s go up to the highest point within a 26-mile loop of the college where we can be inspired by that magnificent view of the Tanana Valley and the Alaska Range,” he said.
Goodhue’s vision continues to inspire hundreds of runners and hikers each September.